To Complain or Not To Complain?

There are a lot of reasons to complain, but the main reason is pain.  Pain.  It is an interesting word.  It comes in so many different shapes and sizes.  In the Dictionary it means a feeling triggered in the nervous system. What a simple answer for such a complex word that causes so many feelings and emotions and images that come to ones mind and/or heart.  Some people can handle it so easily and others have such a struggle with just a paper cut which is nothing at all much less a busted lip or black eye.   Pain can manifest itself in so many very different ways; physically, sexually, mentally, emotionally and verbally.  It can feel like a pin prick at the tip of your finger, or a sting by a bee, the burn of the flame of fire, the ache of muscles well used, or the tingle of your funny bone after you have hit it on something hard.  If your lucky you only experience pain in one way in one area of your body such as only having mild Migraines.  Unfortunately, I have pain in several different areas and the pain is varied in multiple ways and intensity.  Some of  pain is correctable but not all so  I am classified as in chronic pain.  Chronic pain effects about 86 million people in American.  They range from mild chronic pain to severe chronic pain. Because I’m in the high mild chronic pain, I am on medications, but my pain doctor is trying  nerve blocks to cut down on some of the pain and it is working in some of the areas, but unfortunately not all.

For a long while I was constantly talking about my pain to everyone who would listen and some who wouldn’t. When people  asked me how I was doing, I would actually tell them about all the pain I was in and how depressed I was.  It turned people away from me, even though I didn’t realize it at the time.  I was so self absorbed and wrapped up in my pain-put-upon me wrap.  Finally, a friend who had not cut me off was brave enough to tell me to my face that they were tired of hearing all the negative thoughts that I was saying and to stop complaining.  She also told me that maybe if I didn’t talk about it so much, the pain might not be so bad.

Well, It made me stop and think.   I started thinking about other people for the first time in a long time. Would I like to hear about nothing but someone’s pain everyday, all day, long without stop?  No!  Would I try to do something about it? Yes, if I could.  If I couldn’t,  I’d do what I could for that person and pray for them.  I have started watching my words and trying extremely hard to stop talking about the pain at all , but there are times that the pain is just so bad that it  has to be acknowledged if for no other reason than to ask for pray or when you hit a hole in the road and your head hits the roof for your car.  .

My friend did make me think about the complaining, and I wanted to know what God said about it.   First, I had to define pain and complain as they apply in the Bible. According to the Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary by W.E. Vine,  in the New Testament of the bible,  pain is both a noun and a verb.  As a noun it can be one of two Greek words; either pono  – “anguish” as in Revelation 16:10 or  ocin – “travail pain” as in Matthew 24:8 or “sorrows” as in 1 Thessalonians 5:3.  As a verb it can be basanizo or “ to rub on the touchstone to put to the test.” In this statement a ” touchstone” is a dark stone used in testing metals.  It can also mean in general “to distress” as in Revelation 12:2.

Now that we have an idea about what the Bible says about pain, let’s look at what it says about complaining.  In the Old Testament there are three different Greek words for complainer or complaint.  There are 1)mempsimoiros means “one who complains” or “complaining of one’s lot” as in Jude16. 2)momphe means “blame” or “occasion of complaint” or “quarrel” as in Colossians 3:13. 3) aitoma means “in charge” or complaints” as in Acts 25:7.

So we know the definitions but do we have the understanding of theses words and can easily use them yet? No! We need to put the definitions into action, so let us look into the Bible and see what God says about these concepts.  After Adam and Eve fall from grace, one of the things that God did was intensify a woman’s labor pains and added painful efforts with children.  Also because of their biting of the apple, we all as well will experience the pain of death.

According to Psalm 142:2 KJV we are suppose to lay complaints at God’s feet. In Isaiah 53 we get a eye opener on how both God and man look at these two concepts. It is clear that even when we were sinners, God loved us.  He took on all our sicknesses and He carries all our pains.  It also shows us as well that man has never treated prophets and men of God very nicely, but we were especially cruel to Jesus.

You have to keep in mind that God did everything for us that he has done not because of anything that  we could have done on this earth or in heaven.  We are born into sin thanks to Adam and Eve.  Not one of us is innocent and that includes babies. We have to stop complaining all the time or thinking that we are entitled to something in this world.  Thank be to God for loving us so much that he took on all our bad stuff so that we may have all of God’s good stuff.  AMEN

 

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