Replacing the complaining with an attitude of gratitude.
Thankfulness is the attitude that perfectly displaces my sinful tendency to complain and thereby release joy and blessing into my life.
The story of the ten lepers shows ten guys healed and only one guy turning back to thank Jesus. The amazing part is that the one who turned back was a Samaritan - a person who had natural animosity toward Jews. This story shows that no one has an excuse for ungratefulness. EVERYONE can make the CHOICE to give thanks and acknowledge the goodness and the grace of God.
Only when we recognize God as our gracious provider do we comprehend our need for God and begin to express faith in Him. All of the good things that God wants to bring into your life sprout in the soil of thankfulness. The kind of life-changing heart attitude that God desires is much deeper than surface verbal gratitude. Genuine gratitude requires that we get past obligation and somehow show that we deeply appreciate what we've received.
Here is a tough one to embrace: Eph 5:18,20 - this is the thankfulness that trusts God and thus is grateful for the bad things, even the things you wouldn't choose. Wow! Being grateful for even those things that are hard, unpleasant, down-right hurtful.
In spite of all that I see worthy of complaint, there is far more that I can choose to focus on that is worthy of thankfulness.
Choose to be thankful - moment by moment.
There is a great exercise at the end of this chapter (I challenge you...me too). Every night before you go to bed, right down 5 things that you are thankful for and every morning when you get up, read over your list. It'll change your dreams and your day!!
I'll start for tonight - God's love, Brad, David, my sisters, my job - as I continue, I will get more specific!