And there was much complaining among the people concerning Him. Some said, 'He is good'; others said, 'No, on the contrary, He deceives the people.'
Avoid foolish and ignorant disputes, knowing that they generate strife.
For God is not the Author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.
Our churches are designed to be meetings of joy in places of peace. But how many times do we find 'Strife, jealousy, angry tempers, disputes, slanders, gossip, arrogance (and) disturbances' (2 Corinthians 12:20)?
Clearly, God hates our bitter conflicts. He describes an abomination as 'One who spreads strife among brothers' (Proverbs 6:19). Because complaining is confusing. Truth can be lost among fiery darts. But without the Truth, we become prey; like sitting ducks in a murky pond or missing sheep from a squabbling church.
Even more, when Christians complain among themselves, point fingers at their kin, attack the outside world, or whine about their lives, where is 'The Prince of peace' (Isaiah 9:6)? We have confused His cause and not
straightened His path.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: when you don't get the role you wanted, when someone pushes into your line, when you're in a crowded waiting room, when the casting director is late, when you've been insulted or ignored, when the new stylist bungles your hair, when your car breaks down and your back hurts, don't complain.
Instead, be thankful for the audition. Give space to a frantic person. Make friends in every gathering. Show patience when others do not. Keep your peace among abusers. Find what's good in your funny hair. Smile at life's normal grievances. Because in tough circumstances, your grace under pressure is seen.
Your reaction is unusual, even abnormally positive. Instead of adding to confusion, you simplify every circumstance. You will be asked why you stay so calm. How wonderful to give the Answer.
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Complaining series.