Yes, I know, complaining isn't a spiritual gift but the way I enthusiastically engage in it, you'd think it was! Hey, and I'm good at it. Case in point, this morning, my husband and I had a miscommunication about our boys' schedules. I had just woke up, and since I am SO not a morning person, it sort of put me into a not so sweet mood. My husband left for work (he apologized, btw) and I dropped the boys off at school. I still felt like a major shrew. I hate that feeling - where you sort of just want to wallow in your bad mood. Maybe I'm the only one who does that, but it's almost as if, in a perverse way, you are enjoying feeling like a witch!
Anyway, I didn't want one little miscommunication ruin my whole day. I mean, really, definitely NOT worth it. So, I was praying, asking God to change my attitude and my heart. And He did. It was great. But for some reason, I still wanted to get online or on the phone and complain to someone, share with them how I was wronged! I don't know why I wanted to complain, even though my mood was much improved. It didn't even make any sense. If I go by New Year's goals and NOT take things personally, it was an honest mistake my husband made. It wasn't like he was trying to put a crimp in my day. But yet, I had this insatiable desire to complain to someone.
I'm not sure what I would get out of complaining - maybe justification that I was right or that I was wronged or, well, I don't know. Maybe it was just to get noticed and get some sympathy. Boy does that sound pathetic when I type it all out there like that!
Interesingly enough, we are studying the story of Esther in Bible study. And this week (or really last week since I am slightly behind!) we have been looking at Haman. Now if you are looking for an example of how NOT to be, Haman is your man. Talk about a bundle of self-focused, needy, warped humanity! He's just plain scary. But one thing Haman wanted more than anything was to be noticed and to be honored. He wanted people to see him and praise him and realize how great he was! As I was reading this, part of me was saying, well, thank goodness I'm not like Haman! Man- he was seriously messed up!
Today it hit me though- I am. Ouch!!! See, my desire to complain even after I had really gotten over it, show an ugly side of myself - my desire to be right and have everyone around me KNOW I am right, that I am the easy to get along with person (stop laughing!), the good sport. Complaining was about recognition. Now there's some self-realization that is not very much fun.
Beth Moore wrote this in the workbook and it really spoke to me. Maybe it will speak to you too. "Let's pursue a walk with God so close that the spotlights of this world - be they for us or against us - are eclipsed by His enormous shadow cast on our path. There in the shelther of the Most High we find our significance and the only satisfaction of our insatiable need to be noticed. There and there alone we are free to be neither depressed nor impressed with teh capricious reactions of this carnal world." I didn't end up complaining online or on the phone but it was a close call. Thank goodness God is patient with this slow learner!!