There is a repulsive and harmful sin lodged deeply in the hearts of many Christians. The harm and contagiousness of this unsightly little “virus” is usually underestimated. Although there are few messages heard about this infectious “disease,” the Bible clearly lists this sin along with the sins of idolatry, lust, and sexual sins. In 1 Cor. 10:10, we have this command, “Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.”
The sin of murmuring is way to prevalent in the lives of believers. It is often overlooked and is even categorized as being acceptable and justified at times.Remember God never changes; He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. It is also important to remember that, in the Bible days, God hated complaining to the extent that sometimes the consequences of it was death. God still hates murmuring, and He clearly commands us NOT to do it! “Do everything without complaining and arguing.” (Phil. 2:14)
God has been clearly pointing out this sin in my own life, and I desire to be completely set free from this awful habit. When I experience a frustrating situation, I find it much to easy to tell someone about it, rather than learning what God wants me to learn from it. In return, my murmuring spirit “infects” others, and they can also become discouraged or frustrated about it. I have come to realize that everyone murmurs and complains. Some complain a little while others complain a lot. However, it doesn’t matter to God whether it’s a little or a lot. It does not become sin after it is a habit or pattern for you. Complaining is SIN…the first time you do it! Every time you murmur or complain you break many of God’s commands.
When we complain about those in authority, we are actually murmuring against God, since He put them in a position of authority over us. Also, when we complain to someone who cannot help to solve the problem, we miss the opportunity that God gave in allowing us to experience it. We usually complain to others instead of crying out to God to deliver us from the situation. It is true that we all need someone close to us who we can confide in about our trials and frustrations. But, we usually use this as an excuse to justify our bad habit of murmuring.
This morning, I was sitting outside on our porch enjoying the beautiful view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. I was having my personal time alone with God, surrounded by the serene and breathtaking nature that surrounded me. God spoke to me and miraculously prepared me for the events of my day. These are some of the quotes from my devotional book that were directly for me. “Let me help you get through this day…One way is to moan and groan, stumbling along with shuffling feet. This will get you to the end of the day eventually, but there is a BETTER way. You can choose to walk with ME along the path of Peace, leaning on ME as much as you need.. .Thank ME for each problem you encounter, and watch to see how I transform trials into blessings.”
I had a perfect day filled with many opportunities to do just that! Did I always remember to respond the right way? No, I definitely did not! It has been a day that I am grateful that I won’t have to repeat! After multiple twists and turns in trying to meet the deadlines and demands of the day, I was faced with a decision. God finally got my attention, and I prayed something like this, “Oh God, You know all the things that are needing my attention right now. God, I don’t understand why You have me sitting here in the garage with an overheated van for all these hours–only to find out now that they can’t even fix it today! You know that I wanted to write my blog today so I could be at home tonight with my family. God, I really feel like complaining to someone right now, but at this moment I am choosing to NOT go by my feelings, but I am choosing to do what is right. I praise and thank You for all the blessings I have. I am choosing joy and gratefulness rather than the sin of having a murmuring heart. You know that I can’t do this on my own, God. I need YOU to help me!”
Bill Gothard has five steps that he recommends in conquering a murmuring heart. These are: 1) Recognize the ways that you have murmured. 2) Realize that your murmuring is against God. 3) Confess your sin and ask God to forgive you. 4) Acknowledge your murmurings to those who heard you. 5) Turn your murmurings into praise and blessing.
Examine your own heart! Could God diagnose you with a heart “murmur?” Do you have the tendency to murmur and complain? Do you react when you are asked to do something that you really don’t want to do? Do you complain about your frustrating situations, rather than thanking God for what He is going to do because of them? Do you discuss your problems with others who aren’t part of the problem or who can’t help you with a solution? When others complain to you, do you take up offenses for other people, or do you help them reconcile their issues? Remember, you can have a murmuring and complaining heart without even saying a word. Join me in making a conscious effort to STOP COMPLAINING!
“Gratitude and murmuring never abide in the same heart at the same time.”
~Cindy (For The Mullett Family)