I haven't met too many Christians who would admit they want to be remembered as complainers.
For one thing, we've got the commands.
"Rejoice always..." "In everything give thanks..."
There's just way too much clear teaching on this subject for a professing Christian to say he wants to be a complainer and get away with it.
But besides all the commands, most of us don't want to be complainers because we're well aware of all its negative effects.
It destroys friendships.
It makes getting things done difficult.
It steals the joy out of life.
And on and on we could go.
Believer, unbeliever, most of the people I've met would say they don't want their lives to be characterized by complaining.
Thing is, I've met alot of complainers.
Most people would say they don't want their lives to be characterized by complaining and yet many, if not most people's lives are characterized by just that.
Oh, I know we've all got our excuses.
But I'm convinced the real reason our lives are characterized by complaining rather than thanksgiving is more fundamental, more basic than all that. Our complaining reveals we don't appreciate the gospel the way we should.
You show me a person whose life isn't characterized by thanksgiving and I'll show you a person who isn't really gripped by the truths of the gospel.
Think about some of the reasons a right understanding of the gospel should cause us to give thanks in all things.
I'll give you one.
We complain because we think we aren't getting what we deserve.
The gospel knocks us to our knees and causes us to give thanks because we know for sure we aren't getting what we deserve.
You have more?