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Today I Saw God

Complaint-Free Whirl

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Tom recentlychallenged us to live in a complaint-free world for 21 days. The idea here is to go 21 days without making a complaint. The catch is you have to start over on Day One if you make a complaint. We all laughed out loud when he said he hoped to finish some time in February. Not us, we said, we can do thisbut not so fast. Several days later andI'm still on Day One. I talked to people who didn't make it home from church before they were switching their band to the other wrist. My original thinking was that I might have to take a vow of silence somewhere around Day 15 to make it… not so fast once again. It's been nice talking to you.

On Monday I got the distinct privilege of playing in the CRC golf tournament. I got the even more distinct privilege of playing in the same group as Ibrahim Dondaji. As Ibrahim was sinking a long putt on #18, I was thinking, "There is a person who has a right to complain"with all that he has been through. But somehow, I don't think there is a sliding scale for complaints. We don't get "passes" if we've had a tough life, or even think we've had a tough life. It's a slippery slope when you end up comparing yourself to other people. God wants so much more for us. He wants us to have life and to have it more abundantly. As Tom said, "Imagine a world where there is no complaining." It would be a very good place indeed.

It's easy to attempt this challenge by listening to all the people around you complaining. You even start comparing yourself to them and think, "I'm not doing so badly." Plank, mote and Matthew 7:5 quickly come to mind. We are so adept at deflecting our own problems onto other people. Jesus lived his life without complaining even though he bore the sins of the world. Is it asking so much that we give it a whirl and stop complaining? We might find a more peaceful life, healthier relationships and a life lived more abundantly if we do.

– Dave Edwards

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