It didn’t’ take long for him to start complaining… it never did. That was his reputation – a complainer! He complained about his job, his boss, the benefits, the people he “had to work with.” He complained about the government, the state where he lived, his community (its leadership and its services), and his neighborhood. (Anyone who would pause long enough to listen would get the unwanted and undesirable “scoop”). And the school where his kids attended… He griped about everything – the school board, the principal, their teachers, their coaches, the traffic before school and after school, the lunch program… He complained almost every time they went to the grocery store or a restaurant (the food, the service, the cost)… Oh, and he griped at home – at his wife, at the kids… And then there was the weather… Complain, complain, complain!
Get the scene? Oh, you know this guy? WORSE PART, HE CLAIMS TO BE A CHRISTIAN!!! Everybody in town knows him! TERRIBLE TESTIMONY!!!
Read about a whole bunch of people like him this morning during my time of “coffee with the Lord”… (Two occasions – Exodus 15 & 16, and right after a wonderful miracle of salvation at the Red Sea!) And believe me, these weren’t the only times – the record of their grumbling appears over and over again in the chapters that follow.
“And the people grumbled against Moses, saying ‘What shall we drink?’ (And God provided a miracle of provision at Marah)…
And then just a little bit later in the wilderness, “The whole congregation of the people of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness. And the people of Israel said to them, ‘Would that we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the meat pots and ate bread to the full, for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger!’”
And Moses reminded them, “The Lord has heard your grumbling that you grumble against Him – what are we? Your grumbling is not against us but against the Lord!” (From Exodus 15 & 16)
And there it is – the tragic bottom line – a “grumbler” like that, especially one who claims to be one of “God’s people” is really “grumbling against the Lord!”
Is it any surprise then, that Apostle Paul in writing to Christians about the importance of their Christian testimony in the 1st Century said… “Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world!” (Philippians 2:14–15 ESV) Instead, may I be thankful and grateful – positive and optimistic – because of my faith in God and gratitude for what Christ has done and is doing in my life! Remember the little children’s worship song… “This little light of mine, I’m going let it shine! …”