Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Lamenting and Grumbling?

As much as I appreciate that the book of Psalms is honest, that it does not only have happy psalms but also lament psalms to depict the reality of life, I sometimes find myself complaining and lamenting too much. But it seems unreal and fake to be happy when you are not, so how do we find a balance?

Then all the congregation raised a loud cry, and the people wept that night. And all the people of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron. The whole congregation said to them, "Would that we had died in the land of Egypt! Or would that we had died in this wilderness! Why is the LORD bringing us into this land, to fall by the sword? Our wives and our little ones will become a prey. Would it not be better for us to go back to Egypt?" And they said to one another, "Let us choose a leader and go back to Egypt."
~ Numbers 14:1-4

Do all things without grumbling or disputing.
~ Philippians 2:14

I think that is why we are called to always be thankful in everything.

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
~ 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Give thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
~ Ephesians 5:20



  1. How do you interpret giving thanks for all things in the Ephesians verse Pearlie? Context seems to indicate that there are things that we should not give thanks for.

  2. I am quoting here Francis Foulkes from Ephesians, Tyndale New Testament Commentary: "The injunction to give thanks always and for everything presupposes a deep underlying faith that God can produce good out of even the most unpromising situation, and -that thankfulness, therefore, can be felt because of the confident hope that in some wonderful way God will make even disaster and suffering an occasion for later blessing." Foulkes was quoting Mitton.

    But I agree that it all depend on context. The passage was about meeting together as a body of Christ in our behaviour and treatment of one another. Same goes for the verse in 1 Thess, it addresses the believers as children of God.

  3. My thinking is that we give thanks "in" everything but not "for" everything. I have found that to be true in my life. For example, I am not thankful that my wife has a disabling disease but I am thankful that she is able to get around in her wheelchair. Does that make sense?

  4. Good point. Never thought of the conjunction in instead of for, and I agree. It means different.