Recently, I was kind-of grumbling and complaining to the Lord. As one of my friends would say, I was “navel-gazing.” God wasn’t offended by my heart or attitude; but He gently began to remind me of some of the small things He told me to do that made small impacts in my life. Throughout the day, He continued to show me many small things in my life that He was working in. All of a sudden, my attitude changed. I began recounting the many blessings of the Lord, from the smallest to the biggest. The Lord led me to read the story of Jonah.
Jonah 2:9 (NIV) But I, with shouts of grateful praise, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. I will say, ‘Salvation comes from the Lord.’”
In Jonah 2:8-9, Jonah declares his gratefulness to God. We all know the story – after Jonah is spared from the tumultuous waters and the great fish, Jonah’s attitude changed. He relinquished his anger to God; and then He began to have a grateful heart.
Jonah’s life and his assignment from God was not just about him. God created Jonah to be a mouthpiece for the Lord that would save thousands. You see, Jonah was “navel-gazing.” He didn’t want to obey God, for whatever his reasons, and he actually ran the opposite direction.
The calling on Jonah’s life was not for him. What God wanted to do through Jonah was not for him; it was for the thousands of other people that God wanted to save.
I think sometimes we let our circumstances overshadow our calling. The enemy makes our situation HUGE, when in reality, it is temporary. So what happens? We begin to grumble and forget to be thankful for what God has done in our life. We forget to thank the Lord for where He has brought us from. Satan wants us to focus on our circumstances. God wants us to focus on Him. When we focus on the Lord, you can’t help but have a heart of gratitude.
Let’s not allow the enemy to amplify our problems so that we start grumbling and complaining. Rather, let’s be thankful for what we have. Right now as you’re reading this, look around you. I mean, REALLY look around you, and begin to remember the blessings that the Lord has given. Then turn your grumbling into praise and gratefulness, for the Lord is good! The Lord is kind! The Lord is worthy of our Praise!!!
Psalm 138 (NKJV)
138 I will praise You with my whole heart;
Before the gods I will sing praises to You.
2 I will worship toward Your holy temple,
And praise Your name
For Your lovingkindness and Your truth;
For You have magnified Your word above all Your name.
3 In the day when I cried out, You answered me,
And made me bold with strength in my soul.