We have been contemplating some practical suggestions for how to overcome a grumbling spirit. So far we have recommended: (1) being realistic, (2) remembering that all complaining is ultimately against God, (3) carefully weighing your words, and (4) filling your mind with that which is good and positive.
Let us now consider two more suggestions:
5. Overcome the temptation to grumble by making positive people your companions.
This suggestion is closely linked with the prior one. We know how uplifting positive people can be. It's great to be around them. They make you smile, they make the day seem better, and they can turn a bad day into a good one. Find those people, study those people, and try to be one of those people.
6. Overcome the temptation to grumble by remembering that your influence will be maximized for good as an encourager, not a complainer.
All around us there are people who are discouraged and beaten down by life. They have plenty of people around them who are reminding them of the negative things all the time. What they need is someone with a godly, holy, positive perspective. No one likes to be around someone who complains. We cannot impact the world favorably for Christ if we repel people with our personality.
We live in a world of hurting people. All around you there are people who are just getting by from day to day. They see little purpose in life and their goal is to get as much as they can before they die. These folks don't need us to feed their despair. And they don't need us to turn away from them because of their attitudes. They need us to speak and live the good news of Jesus Christ before them. They need God's servants to live with joy and not just talk about it. They need Christians to point to the future of glory that makes the struggles of the present less burdensome (cf. Rom. 8:18).
The Lord blesses us so richly today. We have so much for which to be thankful. Our lives should be full of joy, not grumbling. However, many seem to focus on the negative and desire to point out the worst in everything. God is angered by such, and some today will not see the Promised Land because of such attitudes. The root of the problem is selfishness. People who complain haven't completely died to themselves! After all, dead men don't complain, do they? Is it not the case that Christians are to die to self and live for Christ? Absolutely (cf. Matt. 16:24; Gal. 2:20). Dear friends, please think on these things. If you're a complainer, it's time to change. Not only are you disobeying the Lord and displeasing Him, but you're also showing immaturity and a lack of total commitment to His cause. If you're really living for Christ, why complain about mistreatment or your rights being violated? There is a purpose in life's challenges, so resist the temptation to grumble!
Let us conclude by reading the fuller context of Paul's thoughts in Philippians 2 and also some thoughts from chapter 4: