TO HAVE A BETTER YEAR
Sometimes, I wish Christians knew how much God hates grumbling. He can’t stand it. He runs whole societies mental because of it. He kills people for it. Few things invoke His anger and His oath for judgment as much as grumbling.
Now, please note that most grumblers feel justified to do it. There is almost no one who murmurs about things that do not think they are being objective. They claim to be stating things just the way they are.
Let us take an important example from the Bible, from occurrences that were recorded for us to learn.
Nor grumble, as some of them did, and were destroyed by the destroyer. Now these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction…1 Cor 10:10-11 NAS
The people of Israel were in the wilderness, and the times seemed tough. The first grumble after Passover was when they got to the edge of the Red Sea. The sea was an obstruction in front, while the army of Egypt was closing up from behind. Their lives and freedom were in jeopardy. To the human mind, that is a valid reason to grumble. And they did. Note however that this was after the Lord had delivered them from Egypt with the 10 plaques.
They said to Moses, "Is it because there were no graves in Egypt that you have taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you dealt with us in this way, bringing us out of Egypt? Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, ‘Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians?’”
Another time they grumbled was when they were thirsty. There was no water around, and their wives and children, with their herds, were thirsty. It made sense to complain. But again, note that this was after the Lord had delivered them through the Red Sea by making it split in two. Such a miracle that the earth had never seen before, but they had already forgotten.
But the people thirsted there for water; and they grumbled against Moses and said, "Why, now, have you brought us up from Egypt, to kill us and our children and our livestock with thirst?"
Each time they murmured, they had a cogent reason. Yet, in all of this, they displeased the Lord. Yes, things may have been bad, but how come they easily forgot the things He had done. How could they have quickly forgotten all those deliverances. Why do we so easily forget the many blessings in our lives? There is the miracle of being alive and being conscious enough to even want things. All God is saying is that we should recall these things to mind and be full of thanksgiving.
The people of Israel made a habit of grumbling until the Lord had it up to the brim, and with one more grumbling, they provoked an irrevocable curse against themselves.
Therefore I was angry with this generation,
And said, ‘they always go astray in their heart,
And they did not know my ways’;
as I swore in my wrath,
‘They shall not enter my rest.’ Heb 3:10-11
Many of us are close to bringing a curse against ourselves. In fact, many are already walking in those curses, but they are not yet irrevocable. There is still space for change through repentance, so that days of refreshing might come from the presence of God.
Many Christians have made a habit of grumbling about so many things. It is a terrible habit. Please note that those people of Israel did not aim their complains against God but against Moses. The Bible told us again and again that they grumbled Moses, but the Lord said they were actually grumbling against Him. In the same manner, we today do not grumble against God; we only direct our murmurings against the government, the politicians and the so-called leaders, but God says it is the same thing like those who murmured against Moses; ‘you are grumbling against Me.’
Grumblers always walk under a curse. The heavens over them do not open fully. They make wrong judgments in their lives, while they think they are walking in wisdom. They cannot be led by the Spirit of God. No matter the voice they claim to hear, it is not the true voice of God leading them aright. They are in a hard place spiritually.
Yet they feel justified in all that they say, and so they continue.
It is the government
It is our leaders.
It is my father.
If only the president had done this or done that.
The word of the Spirit of God to the people of God as this year 2023 comes to an end, is that there must be an end to complaining and the pointing of the finger.
Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;
You will cry, and He will say, 'Here I am.'
If you remove the yoke from your midst,
The pointing of the finger and speaking wickedness…
"And the Lord will continually guide you,
And satisfy your desire in scorched places,
And give strength to your bones;
And you will be like a watered garden. Isa 58:9, 11
If you do not want 2024 to be a worse year for you, then you must make the change that is necessary. The change is to stop the life of grumbling and finger-pointing, and to start a new life of thanksgiving. It is not about attending a cross-over service, but about crossing over from a bad habit into a new one.
Thanksgiving must become a habit. You must become an expert in seeing the good in every situation and giving the Lord thanks for it. You must become one who gives thanks even when the good is not apparent. You give thanks by faith because you know that God is good and in everything He is working out good for you.
I have noticed that those who promote the secessionist movements in Nigeria have only the weapon of dissatisfaction to use to stoke their flames. Those are the flames of discontent. But the Spirit of God says the main problem with these people, in whatever part of the nation, is that they have rejected the wisdom of God and have decided they know more than God about planning the destiny of a people. You will notice that they reject the word of God and the person of the Lord Jesus. It is amazing that many Christians still follow them. Yes, they displease the Lord by so doing.
Now, the Spirit indicates that His people are to take time out and bless God for this country, and be grateful for all that He has done for them in it. The people of God must be deliberate in counting the blessings He has given then so far in this land in all these decades. If they do not do that, their lives will only go from bad to worse. No struggle will ever change that.
Behold, all you who kindle a fire,
Who encircle yourselves with firebrands,
Walk in the light of your fire
And among the brands you have set ablaze.
This you will have from My hand:
You will lie down in torment. Isa 50:11
A beautiful economy is not a product of human planning but a gift of God, and the Lord is saying that harder times lie ahead for grumblers in 2024. No matter where you go, your situation will not change unless your heart changes from one of grumbling to one of gratitude.
- Pastor Bankie
Please listen to the 5-part series titled, *A Deeper Walk with God (Neither murmur ye)*. Download free from pastor.ng.
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