Philippians 2:14-15 NLT
Father thank You for today. Thank You for awakening me to a functioning body, to the blessings that only You can provide, and for opportunities that if I do not embrace I will lose. May I do work in Your name without complaint or arguing. I pray that I am obedient to You and not resistant to anyone that You send to lead, guide, direct, or motivate me at any point on my journey.
Help me to identify those areas where I am weak, exposed, vulnerable to attack, so that I may pray to You and praise You now for protecting, providing, and strengthening me.
May my praise even during moments of pain, despair, and confusion serve as constant testimony of Your constant love. I humbly thank You as a believer and follower of Christ. To You I give all of the glory. Amen.
When doing work in honor of God there should never be complaint or arguing. We should gladly perform our duties as His servants. Our work helps to provide dignity and sustenance to others, which results in praise and gratitude for Him.
Our complaints and arguments say that we have issue with the assignment, we feel above the level of work given to us, we have an expectation for more and greater.
Now, if in the context of complaining to and arguing with a person about our job, we should turn that over to God. At work if you’re labeled the complainer, the resistor, the rebel, guess what your manager or boss will be quick to do? Terminate you from the job. There’s a difference between speaking up about working conditions, morale, and other key factors that impact productivity, etc. and then there’s the approach of the person who complains whenever they have to exert energy beyond the level that they desire.
You know this person. It may be you. The constant complainer who whines about everything. They take on a “do we have to?” mindset that becomes an “I don’t feel like it” attitude. The range is from almost lazy, sometimes lazy, to blatant laziness. We must remember that God takes issue with the lazy. All must work and contribute in His eyes.
I had a college student in one of my classes that complained every week and seemed to attempt to start an argument by challenging other classmates and even me. He quickly was labeled by the class. Students eyes would roll each time he would interrupt me or a classmate to interject with his opinions, arguments, or complaints.
He was always trying to be the outlier in every instance. When we discussed dreams and goals in class he claimed he didn’t have any. I knew that this student was determined to cause havoc, but I had already taught his “kind” before in previous semesters. I was prepared for the nonsense he was storing up to unleash. I also knew he would soon withdraw from my class after he made a comment one week that “Professor Bryant I don’t think I’m gonna last in your class. You have it that we have to read and do work in here, like real work, each week. That’s just too much…” I smiled and replied, “yes this is a class where I teach, you work, and through your work you learn and apply what I teach you to life inside and outside of this classroom…”
There are some people who don’t want to work, and if they do they don’t want to work as hard or harder than anyone else, they want to dictate the level, intensity, and frequency of their workload and their participation. This is laziness and it is offensive to God and to the vast majority of His creations.
Lazy animals and insects die, either from starvation or from being devoured by a predator. Think about that. Let that resonate for a moment. Then think about man. Think about yourself. Think about the children around you that you’re nurturing, raising, mentoring.
Our levels of struggle prepare us for our next level of promotion. If you cannot handle what is presented to you how can you possibly handle greater at the next level? You complain about your job, the workload, the this and the that. Well what you’re telling God is that you don’t want your job. So don’t be surprised when you’re fired or laid off.
You pray to God for that better paying job, but it has greater demands than the one you currently have (or the one you used to have before becoming unemployed). If you’re constantly complaining and arguing with coworkers and managers in this current job (or the last) then how can you possibly handle greater workloads and pressures of the new job?
Higher pay won’t eliminate the intensity. It also won’t eliminate your tendency to complain.
We assume that the increase in pay will afford us other luxuries when the reality may be that although you may be able to pay more bills, you will probably have to work longer and harder which also means you don’t get to enjoy that home and car you pay for each month, you still can’t take that vacation, you may spend less time with the children that you now pay more for as you opted for a school with higher tuition. Those things will now be your newest complaints and will result in even greater arguments.
Show God what you can handle right now. Do it with a sense of gratitude. Workplace factors such as legal issues and morale can and should of course be addressed, but before bringing forth your grievance to man be sure to turn things over to God, that way when He touches your heart you are mindful that when you bring your grievance to your manager, boss or HR, that you do so with a light that magnifies God and casts you in a way that doesn’t label you a troublemaker—bound to be without a job—but rather an asset that understands the importance of safe workplaces and high morale—as both increase productivity and positively impact the bottom line. You’re mindful to speak with respect and honor as a child of God, never lowering yourself to speak or behave in a way that would dishonor Him.
Today’s message has given you different ways to see this Bible passage and see yourself through multiple lenses. Now it’s up to you to decide how you will walk, speak, and think.