“The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.”
In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing. Job 1: 21 NIV
He replied (to his wife who said, “Curse God and die), “You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?”
In all this, Job did not sin in what he said. Job 2:10 NIV
Even though Job defended himself and questioned God, he also praised God’s name and did not curse Him. This was Job’s example he set for his wife, his friends, and us.
I carried it out unintentionally on a much smaller scale than Job, and learned a few things about grumbling versus gratitude.
At the beginning of 2021, I knew there was a possibility we’d have to move out of the townhouse we rented for two years. The owner mentioned wanting to sell last year, so we’d already been given a year of grace. I thanked God every day from January 1st because I loved living here and hoped we could stay. I tried to control God with gratitude. The call came anyway. We had to be out by March 31st.
A few days later, our rental company let me know they had a house for rent two blocks away. We looked at it on Friday and said yes. Gratitude worked differently than I expected, but, still, we had a place to live.
On Monday, I got another call. The owner of that house also decided to sell instead of rent because the housing market was booming. I thought, What can it hurt to stay grateful?
Just so you know, I typically defer to worry and whining, not thankfulness.
Four days later, a random conversation with a friend at church ended with her telling me that her neighbors put a “For Rent” sign in their window the night before. The house was on the same block as our townhouse and church.
The experience felt like I imagine an out-of-body experience would feel, kind of like something lifted me out of my grumbling and let me see gratitude for what it was.
Here’s what awakened:
Nothing good comes from grumbling except momentary relief, and it wasn’t worth it this time.
I’ve done harm by being negative and derailed good things from happening.
I felt relieved about being grateful even when things fell through.
This wasn’t about being grateful to get my way after all, but being grateful because I finally got it, “What good does it do to not be grateful?” That was the lesson.
I’d love to hear your stories about gratitude.
In This Together,