Think for a moment about the professions that are considered to be honorable.
Think for a moment the professions that earn the most money.
Now, think which professionals and workers you would miss the most if they went on strike.
For example, during the COVID-19 pandemic, many found themselves missing professional sports but…
Who do you think would be missed first a person’s favorite team collecting wins, or someone collecting their garbage?
Sanitation workers are the most essential of essential workers, but are often forgotten and not given the respect they deserve, and definitely not the pay they deserve.
The bible tells us to give honor to whom honor is due…
Romans 13:7 (NKJV)
7 Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.
Those whose profession is the very fabric of maintaining civilization itself deserve honor. In fact, it was on behalf of sanitation professionals that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was visiting Memphis when he was taken away.
The next time you take out garbage and don’t have to think about it anymore, thank God for your sanitation workers.
And, the next time you see them doing their job, give them some love, honor and respect.
On April 29, 1970, Jewel Records recording artist Lonnie Black got a birthday gift to last a lifetime, a beautiful baby girl.
He went on to become a Pastor, one of his members, a recently widowed woman named Dorothy Dorothy Johnson took it upon herself to cook dinner for him and his family every SONday afternoon after church. She had a grandson who lived with her, Aldtric Johnson.
Fast forward to 1987, Aldtric and Mechelle were married, and have been together ever since.
Today, my wife turns 50 years old, and she is still more beautiful than ever! She absolutely does not look her age.
Maybe it’s because her maiden name is Black, you know they say, “Black don’t crack”.
It happens every new year. Those prosperity preachers who want to ‘tickle the ears’ of their congregations make their annual claim, “This is your season for BREAKTHROUGH!!!
Good news is a great way to convince struggling members to ‘sow a seed’ into many of these ‘self-serving’ ministries.
The fact is that many hear this promise every year and never get their ‘check-in-the-mail’ breakthrough.
Yes, there are some good, transparent ministries out there doing great Kingdom work by serving the community and building relationships with God.
But, there are quite a few hustlers out there too.
It’s amazing how many of the true prophets in the bible were thrown into prison and persecuted.
BECAUSE, THEY DIDN’T ONLY DELIVER GOOD NEWS.
They warned the people of what God would do if they didn’t turn from their sins. Most of the time this wasn’t well received.
They also reminded the people of God’s unfailing love and willingness to forgive and restore if they turned from their wickedness.
2 Chronicles 7:14 (NKJV)
14 if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.
However, whether the news be good or bad, the one constant has always been the test for a true prophet is that the word came true.
Deuteronomy 18:21-22 (NKJV)
21 And if you say in your heart, ‘How shall we know the word which the Lord has not spoken?’— 22 when a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the thing does not happen or come to pass, that is the thing which the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.
Don’t allow those who pervert the Word of God by reducing it to a message of selfishness and prosperity harden your heart.
Use the word of God to distinguish between FAKE NEWS and FAITH NEWS.
It’s interesting the many ways the enemy can provoke us to sin. Paul even reminds us to keep our eyes wide open to the many tricks of the devil….
2 Corinthians 2:11(NKJV)
lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices.
Have you ever noticed how many times the Old Testament references “the sins of Jeroboam”? In 1Kings Chapter 12 (please read the entire chapter for context), Jeroboam, King of the northern kingdom of Israel became fearful that the people’s loyalty would return to Rehoboam, King of the southern kingdom of Judah and son of Solomon. He thought the people would kill him, so in an effort to prevent this he…
Sought and took bad advice (provoked by his fears).
Built two golden calves (provoking and facilitating the people to worship idol Gods).
Set them up in cities other than Jerusalem, provoking the people to travel to those cities to worship (one in Bethel and one in Dan).
Made shrines on high places (provoking the people to idolatry).
Set up his own priests who were not the sons of Levi (provoking the people and false priests to sin).
Chose his own day to ordain a feast for the children of Israel (provoking the children of Israel to worship in a manner other than what God had commanded for them at this particular time in history).
In short, the decisions Jeroboam made for the nation of Israel provoked and facilitated a culture of sin that God just didn’t only hold Jeraboam accountable for, but the ENTIRE NATION.
Be careful who you choose to follow.
Be careful who you choose to lead.
And, watch very closely those leaders whom you did not choose.
When leaders make unrighteous decrees, God will hold the entire nation accountable for following them.
Isaiah 10:1-6 (NKJV)
10 “Woe to those who decree unrighteous decrees,
Who write misfortune, Which they have prescribed 2 To rob the needy of justice,
And to take what is right from the poor of My people,
That widows may be their prey,
And that they may rob the fatherless. 3 What will you do in the day of punishment,
And in the desolation which will come from afar?
To whom will you flee for help?
And where will you leave your glory? 4 Without Me they shall bow down among the prisoners,
And they shall fall among the slain.”
For all this His anger is not turned away,
But His hand is stretched out still.
Arrogant Assyria Also Judged
5 “Woe to Assyria, the rod of My anger
And the staff in whose hand is My indignation. 6 I will send him against an ungodly nation,
And against the people of My wrath
I will give him charge,
To seize the spoil, to take the prey,
And to tread them down like the mire of the streets.
Even though all leaders are ordained by God, that doesn’t mean that they always make Godly decisions. Sometimes nations are given ‘bad’ leaders because of their disobedience and sin.
Take the 44th and 45th presidential administrations for example. Even though there are good aspects of both…The enemy cleverly found ways to provoke well-meaning Christians to compromise what God said in His word and their own personal Christian values to either support the man or satisfy their own flesh….
44th President of the United States championed rights for lifestyles (LBGT) that God clearly said are sinful. Yes, the decisions that people make are between themselves and God, but you can’t legitimize sin with legislation. Championing this cause promoted a culture that even uses the bible against itself. Many people now say, ‘That’s not what God really meant”. It also led to people attacking Christians for standing on the word of God.
45th President of the United States has provoked people who call themselves Christians to promote a man who clearly has not and does not display ONE Fruit of the Spirit. Who is clearly unforgiving, unrepentant, unapologetic, proud, disrespectful, insulting with no filter. This is not judging him, it’s stating facts. But, they excuse this because they felt he would be good for the economy, and national security.
His Press Secretary made this statement in defense of his ‘strong words’ in 2017, “They elected someone to be strong and when he get’s hit he’s going to hit back.” This statement is in direct conflict with God’s word…
Matthew 5:39 (NKJV)
39 But I tell you not to resist an evil person.But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.
He called NFL athletes SOB’s and consistently hurls out insults to his enemies and promotes and legitimizes a culture of doing so, in direct conflict with the word of God…
1 Peter 3:9 (NKJV)
9 not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing.
Those who claim to be religious leaders who support him have not spoken out against or rebuked his behavior just a the Prophet Nathan did David, but rather make excuses for it.
When confronted with an issue, study everything the word of God says on the issue in context and proper perspective without ‘cherry picking’ the verses that best suit what you want.
Make your decision about what you support in your heart. God will honor and protect you and your family when you don’t consent to what is clearly displeasing to God.
Joshua 24:15 (NKJV)
15 And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
Today, thousands of years later, leaders all over the world are still ‘committing the sins of Jeroboam’…provoking the nation to sin.
Body of Christ, no matter what your party may be, we must be very careful not to allow our politics TRUMP our faith.
The rich young ruler in the books of Matthew 19 and Mark 10 told Jesus that he kept all of the commandments from his youth up, but the Lord quickly reminded him that he was lacking something.
That’s true for all of us. No matter how much we may try to live upright, we will always remain lacking in some area.
You may not be a fornicator, an adulterer, a drunk, a murderer…you may go to church every time the doors open. You may be very generous in your giving …
BUT DO YOU COMPLAIN?
God HATES complaining. He doesn’t hate complainers, but He does hate it when we complain. One of Israel’s greatest, most consistent sins while in the wilderness was that of complaining and murmuring. In fact, it was their complaining that made an 11-day trip last 40 years.
God hates complaining so much he allowed His own children to suffer death to serve as an example of the level of judgment that complaining deserves…
1 Corinthians 10:10 (NKJV)
10 nor complain, as some of them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer.
But, don’t we have a right to complain sometimes? Especially when some things are beyond our control? Why does God hate complaining so much?
HERE ARE 7 REASONS WHY GOD HATES COMPLAINING SO MUCH…
1.COMPLAINING IS THE OPPOSITE OF THANKSGIVING
It doesn’t get more clear than this…
1 Thessalonians 5:18 (NKJV)
18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
Plain and simple…God expects us to be thankful and content in all things (Philippians 4:11-13). There is not one situation when one is complaining that they could not instead find a reason to give thanks or praise. In all of the Psalms where the psalmist was questioning God about troubles did the Psalm not end with praise and thanks giving. (Psalm 6, Psalm 13, Psalm 35, Psalm 94 are just a few). There is a difference in a humble lamentation and an arrogant complaint.
2. COMPLAINING POISONS YOUR ATTITUDE
If we’re honest with ourselves, complaining never makes us feel better. To the contrary if we’re angry it makes us more angry. If we’re frustrated it makes us more frustrated, if we’re discontent it makes us more discontent. Whatever our negative attitude, complaining just makes it more negative. Most of the time we even wear it on our expressions. We look angry and unsatisfied. It takes us from beyond a bad mood to a bad attitude. When we have a bad attitude long enough, it becomes our character…more on that in a moment.
3. COMPLAINING INFECTS THE ATTITUDES OF OTHERS
How many times have you felt perfectly fine and content about something or someone until someone complained? Complaining is contagious. When we share our negative discontent it can have the same negative affect on someone else’s attitude as well, especially if they are spiritually or emotionally weak.
When we spread discontent, animosity or just a negative attitude we become a stumbling block, and we must always remember that is something that the Lord hates too…
Matthew 18:6 (NKJV)
6 “Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea.
4. COMPLAINING IMPLIES WE DON’T TRUST GOD
This is huge! God had led Israel and promised them ‘a land flowing with mild and honey’. However, when things got tough, they continually complained and lamented that they wished they had never left Egypt.
Exodus 14:12 (NKJV)
12 Is this not the word that we told you in Egypt, saying, ‘Let us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than that we should die in the wilderness.”
Exodus 16:3 (NKJV)
3 And the children of Israel said to them, “Oh, that we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the pots of meat and when we ate bread to the full! For you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”
Complaining in difficult circumstances said to God then and still does today, that we don’t trust Him. Remember that through everything that Job went through did he never BLAME God of charge Him foolishly (Job 1:22).
Even if our circumstances are beyond our control, we must remember that God is sovereign to do what He pleases with His creation for however it suits His divine purpose, and we must trust Him in that.
5. GOD TAKES IT PERSONAL WHEN WE COMPLAIN AGAINST HIS ANOINTED
It’s God’s prerogative to choose whom He pleases to lead His people. Even though these leaders are mere men and women, He still expects us to submit to them. Notice God’s level of anger when the people murmured against Moses and Aaron…
41 On the next day all the congregation of the children of Israel complained against Moses and Aaron, saying, “You have killed the people of the Lord.” 42 Now it happened,when the congregation had gathered against Moses and Aaron, that they turned toward the tabernacle of meeting; and suddenly the cloud covered it, and the glory of the Lord appeared. 43 Then Moses and Aaron came before the tabernacle of meeting. 44 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 45 “Get away from among this congregation, that I may consume them in a moment.” And they fell on their faces. 46 So Moses said to Aaron, “Take a censer and put fire in it from the altar, put incense on it, and take it quickly to the congregation and make atonement for them; for wrath has gone out from the Lord. The plague has begun.” 47 Then Aaron took it as Moses commanded, and ran into the midst of the assembly; and already the plague had begun among the people. So he put in the incense and made atonement for the people.
We must be very careful of what we say about a man or woman of God, even when they make a mistake or have a human moment. Notice that God did not tell David that he could no longer be king even after he slept with Uriah’s wife and then had him killed (2 Samuel 12). David suffered the consequences, but that did not disqualify his anointing.
6. COMPLAINING SHIFTS RESPONSIBILITY FROM OURSELVES
When I’m honest with myself. Much of what I complain about is the consequences of my own mistakes and actions. Yes, there are things that happen beyond our control. Misfortunes, storms, sicknesses etc. But, many times we will find ourselves complaining about relationships, jobs, purchases, situations and circumstances that either we prayed for or God gave us to benefit us.
As early as in the garden of Eden, rather than accept his responsibility for choosing to eat the fruit himself, Adam blamed his wife…
Genesis 3:12 (NKJV)
12 Then the man said, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.
7. COMPLAINING LEAVES A BAD TESTIMONY
As I mentioned earlier, when we express our dissatisfaction through complaining, and a negative mood and attitude, it can become our character. This is very important…
God expects us to set the standard of how to handle difficult circumstances.
When we react with negativity we have allowed that to become our testimony in that situation. When we allow our complaints to become go beyond moods to attitudes, we can allow that to become or come across as our character, especially in the limited context of other people’s exposure to us, or what they hear about us. Our character or perceived character can become our testimony.
Once we have mishandled a negative situation, our reputation may never recover. We don’t want that to become our testimony.
So, what to you do when you have a legitimate ‘complaint’?
Remember this. It’s not necessarily the fact that you disagree that makes it a complaint. It’s the fact that you disagree negatively. That you express your discontent or lament in a spirit of HUMILITY AND POSITIVITY.
There’s a difference in negative discontent and positive discontent.
Pray to God for the wisdom to handle your negative circumstances with grace and in a positive manner, and don’t get caught up in the sometimes overlooked sin of complaining.
How many times have you had an argument with _______________, and it was not resolved?
You still don’t agree?
They are still very much angry at you?
You still feel they are wrong?
Or, You may know that YOU are wrong?
Now is the time that you may want to buckle down in your anger. It is the foundation to a grudge and a wall in this ONE area of your relationship with _________________.
You may decide you aren’t going to speak to them. You may decide you aren’t going to listen to them. You may decide you are going to ignore them when they speak to you. You may decide to have a negative attitude towards them or be mean to them. You may decide to withhold affection and kindness from them….
There is a reason that God tells us…
Ephesians 4:26-27 (NKJV)
26 “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, 27 nor give place to the devil.
Proverbs 29:11 (NKJV)
11 A fool vents all his feelings,[a] But a wise man holds them back.
James 1:20 (NKJV)
20 for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.
SO, BEFORE YOU BUCKLE DOWN IN YOUR ANGER, PLEASE STOP AND THINK ABOUT THIS…
Have you done something to make God angry?
Have you neglected doing something that God wants you to do?
Do you want God to buckle down in His anger towards you?
Do you want God to stop speaking to you? Do you want God to stop listening to you? Do you want God to start ignoring you? Do you want God to have a negative attitude towards you or be mean to you…
DO YOU WANT GOD TO WITHHOLD AFFECTION AND KINDNESS FROM YOU…FOR EVEN A BRIEF MOMENT?
NO! OF COURSE NOT!
So, the next time your anger burns hotter, cool it off with an act of kindness and love, especially if you don’t feel like it. That’s what makes it kindness and love!
Give them a hug. Do something small but kind for them, even if they don’t want you to. Let them have the last word.
Remember, giving someone the last word isn’t loosing an argument, it’s ending the argument.
Make it clear to them that you aren’t going to let your anger rule the situation. Make it clear to the devil that he cannot get a foothold through the situation.
Remember how long God remains angry at us…
Psalm 30:5 (NKJV)
5 For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for life; Weeping may endure for a night, But [a]joy comes in the morning.
To sum it up, make sure you have a forgiving heart quickly and let it go.
Ephesians 4:32 (NKJV)
32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.
Luke 11:4 (NLT)
4 and forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation.”
Remember, you never really hold a grudge, the grudge always holds you.
Enjoy this video…combining years of corporate, radio and music industry experience, this discussion is about how indie artists can position themselves as national artists in an ever-changing industry. Especially those who want to create more revenue streams and what the Memphis Music Banq, a repository to showcase music for licensing, calls MAIL BOX MONEY.