Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise.
Listen, and you will hear the sound of a thousand grumbles. Children grumble about parents. Parents grumble about children. Grandparents grumble about both. Teachers grumble about students. Students grumble about teachers. Principals grumble about both.
Grumbling is a favorite pastime of humanity, and Jesus–followers are not exempt. Few vices are treated more kindly. God’s people may not get drunk, or cheat, or commit adultery, but, oh, can they grumble! God rescued his people from slavery in Egypt and gave them food and water in the desert, and what did they do? They grumbled (Exodus 12–17). God’s people grumbled so regularly that the apostle Peter had to say, “Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling” (1 Peter 4:9). James added, “Don’t grumble against one another … or you will be judged” (James 5:9).
In our world of a thousand grumbles, the psalms call us to a different way. Just as the psalms teach us about faith in times of fear (Psalm 46), darkness (Psalm 88), and anger (Psalm 137), so they also teach us to live every day as a gift by praying thanks.
Though the world gives us much to grumble about, the psalmist teaches, “It is he who made us, and we are his.” We belong to God. He saves and adopts us. As his children, we can rise above grumbling, as Jesus did.
Father, for your creation, for your saving work in Jesus, for adopting us into your family, we give you thanks. Help us to avoid grumbling and be more like Jesus. Amen
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