How to Complain and Gain Peace and Perspective

Complain to God - This post reveals how you can complain to the One who can handle it and help you the most. #complain #prayer #God #Bible #verses #psalms #psalmist #tower #strength #encouragement #anger #sadness #grief #fear

Are you one of those people who works hard to declutter your closets and cabinets when the New Year rolls around? 

Complain to God - This post reveals how you can complain to the One who can handle it and help you the most. #complain #prayer #God #Bible #verses #psalms #psalmist #tower #strength #encouragement #anger #sadness #grief #fear

With the pandemic, many have been doing this all year long. Sadly, I cannot be counted among the many ranks of organizers out there, decluttering their houses. 

Don’t get me wrong. It’s something my house truly needs but not as much as my mind and heart need it! 

I know this because things have been getting to me—triggering my anger—more than usual lately.

At first, I felt as if others were the problem until I decided to pray about these annoyances. So, like King David of the Psalms, I brought my complaints to the Lord and He multiplied my insights like He did with the 5 loaves and 2 fishes (Jn. 6:9-14). 

There is always more than enough to consume and digest! 😉

You see, I’m currently offering a private Facebook Bible study group to understand and apply select Psalms of David. But there’s yet another purpose for this study—finding how to pray like David. 

And one of the primary purposes of David’s prayers was to complain to the Lord. 

[bctt tweet=”David didn’t sugar-coat his concerns nor censure his anger and fear. He knew God was big enough and strong enough to handle every complaint and problem. #Prayer” username=”BethSteffaniak”]

In fact, my new understanding about complaining is motivating me to resolve in 2021 not to complain to anyone but God. This doesn’t mean I won’t ever have hard, respectful conversations with my spouse or others.

But it does mean, God will be where I go first and much more often with any complaints. 

Besides, when I bring my complaints to God, He gives me so much more perspective about my part in every problem. When I complain to others, sometimes my “part in the problem” only grows larger, if you know what I mean! 😉

7 insights my prayer journaling and processing has unearthed for me . . . 

  1. I’m just as guilty of the offenses that others are doing that are getting under my skin.
  2. These are people who try to do their best when they see their faults and failures.
  3. God is the only One who can truly motivate and move them to change their minds and behaviors. Very often, I’m overstepping when I try to correct them.
  4. My graciousness—not angry complaining—is what truly motivates others to change. 
  5. God is using my prayers to soften my heart in preparation for any potential conversations I might need to have. 
  6. He is also using my prayers to soften and refine my heart and life so that I act more like Christ, whether I need to discuss issues with others or not. 

3 Key Steps for Bringing Your Complaints to God 

1.  Praise the Lord at the outset.

No one, including God, wants to be met with a complaint the moment a conversation begins. 

For example, David started off praying in Psalm 59:1 . . .

“Deliver me from my enemies, O God; be my fortress against those who are attacking me.”

Even though David began with a request here, it was spoken in tandem with an acknowledgment and praise of God for being his fortress. 

It wasn’t until verses 3-4a of this psalm that David brought his complaint to God . . .

“See how they lie in wait for me! Fierce men conspire against me for no offense or sin of mine, Lord. I have done no wrong, yet they are ready to attack me.” —Psalm 59:3-4a

2. Be completely honest with God about your complaints.

Did you see how emotional David was in verse 3-4a? He brought his confusion to God without reserve because he trusted that God could see his trouble for what it was. 

Trust me, He sees your trouble for what it is as well!

Also notice that David did not attempt to question God or His reasoning for not yet coming to his defense. First, he knew and trusted that God was already working on this problem. Second, he wanted to be completely honest with God because he knew God could see his heart and mind—not just the situation. 

[bctt tweet=”There’s no reason to pretend with God that everything is fine. He knows and sees it all—knowing what’s going on in your life and what’s brewing in your heart. #honest #vulnerable #confession” username=”BethSteffaniak”]

3. Allow God to open your eyes to all that is true about yourself and your situation.

David received the reassurance and encouragement he needed by praying with God’s truth in view. Near the end of this psalm, he declared . . .

“But I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble. You are my strength, I sing praise to you; you, God, are my fortress, my God on whom I can rely.” —Psalm 59:16-17

It’s important to note that David’s situation had not yet changed. But by bringing his complaint to the Lord, God reinvigorated his faith by reminding him of the truth. The truth about David’s situation and the truth about Himself—David’s fortress!

And because he trusted God to be his fortress, he could feel at peace when war and trouble were breaking out against him. 

[bctt tweet=”Trust God to be your fortress so that you can feel at peace when conflicts and trouble break out in your life and marriage! Psalm 59 #Psalms #marriage #encouragement” username=”BethSteffaniak”]

As for me and my complaints, I was able to see that much of my problem was/is my own perspective. Viewing things from God’s perspective has reinvigorated my faith, given me greater peace, and is enabling me to trust that He will protect me in the conflicts and battles of my life.  

Back to David: God did come through for him, delivering him in these trials and troubles.

And God will do the same for you as well!

Won’t you join me in turning over complaints to God so that we can gain the Lord’s peace and perspective while we wait on His certain help to come! 

It’s still not too late to join my Pray Like David Facebook Bible study. We just began last week (1/3/21) and will continue for 12-weeks. If you’d like to request to join, click here. To find out more about it, click here.

Also, I’d love you to check out—Faith Under Firea faith-based film. I’m going to be sharing an interview I had with the producer and owner of Generation Courage Films on Wednesday, the 13th. I think you’ll find it very inspiring, thought-provoking and just what you need in 2021!


 

How has God changed your perspective about a problem in your life or marriage through prayer?

 

What hesitancies or questions do you have about “complaining” to God?

 


Here are some lovely linkups I joinRemember Me Monday, Legacy Linkup, Inspire Me MondayPurposeful Faith, Tell His StoryInstaEncouragements LinkupRecharge WednesdayWorth Beyond Rubies WednesdayTune in ThursdayHeart EncouragementGrace and Truth, and Faith on Fire Friday.

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16 responses to “How to Complain and Gain Peace and Perspective”

  1. Beth, hi! Don’t you just love that we can be fully ourselves with the Lord, wrestle with Him over our burdens and questions, disappointments and frustrations?! I’m so grateful He invites us to unpack everything and lets us sort out our stuff in His wise and loving presence.

    Therein is our peace and rest …

    Like

    1. Yes, Linda! It’s so freeing and encouraging! I’m so glad we have a God who wants us to be ourselves with Him. Who wants us to come to Him with our every concern and complaint. Yes, indeed! “Therein is our peace and rest!” Thanks for coming by to encourage me, my friend!

      Like

  2. Beth, I am so inspired by your insights about complaining. Your study of praying like David has lead you to a better place. Just like He wants to accept your burdens, I am sure God wants to accept your complaints too (although I think your idea to greet him with praise is a good idea). We learn so much when we study the Bible. You were called to study the Psalms, and are putting what you have learned into practice. Good for you!

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    1. Thanks for saying, Laurie! Yes, it truly has brought me to a better place. I’m always amazed by how well and how quickly praying about my concerns leads me to a better perspective and motivation. Thanks for your encouraging and kind words, my friend!

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  3. If I would complain to God
    about my pain-wracked cancer’d nights,
    I think my logic might be flawed
    and I’d have passed beyond my rights,
    for His ways, they are not mine,
    and He has not the mind of man;
    His grace is harsh but still divine
    and I must take this as His plan,
    though I do not know His aims
    (and perhaps I never will),
    this fact shines through, His love remains
    and even if this butcher’s bill
    is higher than I’d ever dreamed,
    it has been paid, for I’m redeemed.

    Like

    1. I’m so glad that you are so accepting of your current plight, Andrew. Your courage and perseverance astound and inspire me to face difficulties in the same way. Praying for you, my friend!

      Like

  4. Yes! I love that we can be authentic with the Lord and bring our hard things to Him. Great encouragement my friend. This is how I have been trying to live my life for the past several years. It’s so ingrained in us to look outside of the Lord for our comfort, but He truly is the only pure source of comfort that always fulfills His promises. All that chocolate and Netflix does is expand my waistline lol

    Like

    1. Thank you, Nicki! I knew that you would resonate with this. Your candor and vulnerability are hallmarks of your blog and ministry. I truly appreciate that about you, my friend! And you are right about how we’ve been ingrained to look elsewhere. And I find that there’s sort of this false sense of control that comes from going around the Lord … that is, until everything falls apart! Lol! But it’s that small bit of immediate gratification that keeps me coming back for me. Not that I’m making excuses for this wrong choice. I just want to learn to come to the Lord the moment I’m angry, sad or confused. No chocolate or Netflix can fix those “broken places” in my heart! Hugs to you!

      Like

  5. Oh, Beth. I needed so much to read this today…many days! I am rather a recluse and only really talk to a few, but I must turn to the Lord for He already knows my heart, listens, teaches. Whereas those I do talk with give me their ideas which turn out not to be so good and frustrates me even more. Thank you…thank you. Praising God to start with is also such a fine way to begin. It actually calms me and that might be a wonderful way to talk with Him too.

    Like

    1. I’m so encouraged by your comment, Linda! And you are right about the ideas others give us. They typically don’t work! At least not like the ideas and truths God gives us when we pray and read His word! I do hope that you give yourself more to this practice and find that calming that the Lord always brings when we rest in His care! Hugs to you!

      Like

  6. I’m always telling people when times are hard, read and pray the Psalms. Pinned this one.

    Like

    1. So glad to hear that you’re resonating with this post, Mandy, and encouraging others to turn to Scripture! It makes all the difference, doesn’t it?! Thanks for coming by!

      Like

  7. You got me again, Beth. 🙂 I’ve been complaining more lately and I need to turn that ship around. Thanks for pointing me to the right complaint department, and showing me the best way to do it. I’ve got a feeling that many of my complaints will disappear altogether as a result. I’m featuring this post on Friday at the Grace & Truth linkup. I need to read it a few more times myself! 🙂

    Like

    1. Lol! I’ve got to work on this in my own life too, Lisa! It’s a daily battle. I may not be a pessimist but I sure can be a perfectionist when it comes to my expectations of others. Thank you for your kind words and I’m super excited to be feature at the next linkup! Thanks for always being a great encourager and supporter in my life, friend!

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  8. […] why Beth’s post stood out to me this week, “How to Complain and Gain Peace and Perspective” at her blog […]

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  9. This is such an important conversation, Beth! The Associate Pastor at a church I went to years ago counseled me during a particularly difficult relationship, and he always kept the focus on me and my relationship with God vs. blaming the other person in the relationship. I was able to experience real healing and had the strength to leave a potentially dangerous relationship. The experience taught me to always go to God with the situation first, looking for the beam in my own eye before trying to remove the speck from the eye of the other party. David’s Psalms are a beautiful lesson in crying out to God and bringing our situations to Him. Blessings on your week!

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