This is Day 23 of a 31-Day Series called Bear in Mind: Cubisms.
I’m too hot! I’m too cold!
Why can’t I just wear jeans to church?
Chicken for dinner again?
Why do we have to go to another church?
Are you going to preach long?
Our cubs can complain about anything! Well, not all of them. Mostly Cubs 2 and 3 – those middle cubs! When we pick up the cubs from school, the first two questions are: “What’s for dinner?” and “Do we have anywhere to go this evening?” Depending on the answers Cub 2 and Cub 3 receive, they could spend the rest of the evening complaining. On Friday evening, the cubs weren’t particularly happy with dinner. “I don’t like that type of chicken.” Then, we had to get dressed to go support Poppa Bear (PB) who was preaching the second night of a revival at a church in the area. “I think a pair of jeans goes better with this sweater than my dress pants.” They complained about the traffic to the church. “How much longer?”
Complaints, complaints, complaints! When the complaining starts, I have one of these three responses:
Ignore them. Whatever the complaint, I either don’t respond at all, or just say OK.
Correct it. When a cub complains about what’s for dinner, my response is “Well, you can eat this chicken, or you can eat nothing.” I attempt to help them put their complaint in perspective. They could have it so much worse.
Squash it. When I’ve had enough of the complaining, I simply let them know that I’ve had enough. They know that one more complaint will result in some type of punishment and probably a lecture on being grateful and appreciative.
I remember hearing from a fellow pastor’s wife earlier this year that complaining was like saying to God that what he has given us is not good enough. Ouch! So, as I complain about my cubs complaining, I can’t forget that they were gifts from God…and I have to be willing to give grace. It’s hard sometimes, but it’s necessary.
I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. 1 Samuel 1:27 NIV