Winning Over the Urge to Blame and Complain

There have been times that I’ve been angry at God, blamed God, about the junk in my life. It’s easy to blame God for not “coming through” when we want Him to. Perhaps for you it’s financial hardship, or trouble in your marriage, or a rebellious child. For me, it’s fear and anxiety. I have found myself thinking about the “What ifs”. “What if this isn’t where we are supposed to be living? What if this is not the right job for me? What if this is as good as it gets? What if…” Slowly, I start drowning in my thoughts and that’s when I start begging God, (which is very different from praying) for peace and for Him to please come through for me. Thank God for His grace and unending love for us, though. He still seems to listen in those out of whack moments.

In one of those scary-thoughts-going-crazy-tempted-to-blame-God-for-my-anxiety-and-fear-moments, I felt that I should reevaluate my tactics. This begging thing wasn’t making my situation any better, if anything; it was making my situation worse. I believe God stepped in and said, “Ok, stop whining and start winning.” But how do we “win” over our urge to blame and complain? I believe it’s by realizing who’s on our side. I don’t consider God being the type to wash His hands and turn His face from us and our issues. Instead, He encourages us to walk through the ups and downs of life with courage because He is walking through it all with us. He is on our side, through it all.

God’s word declares, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you, and through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned or scorched, nor will the flame kindle upon you.” (Isaiah 43:2)

Through this passage God is basically saying that He guarantees He will be with us, through every possible, known and unknown, situation. When our minds start wandering to anxious and fearful territories, we can swiftly turn the other way, without complaint and remember that God promised He’d be with us. Winning over self-pity starts by believing God is on our side. He empowers us and gives us victory over any and every difficult circumstance.

Once, we believe and accept God’s promise that He’ll be with us through it all, we must believe the second part of that verse: that the hard places won’t “kindle upon” us. In other words, the marital struggle, the anxiety, the fear, the financial struggle will not consume us. We don’t have to blame God or complain or feel self-pity, when God assures us, that none of these things can consume us.

I’m learning to stop myself in my own tracks and declare what God says to me, “When I pass through the dangers of life, the trenches of life, God will be with me. When I walk by or in the fires of life, God will be with me. And I will not get burned nor will these troubles consume me”. We win over our urge to blame and complain when we take a minute to accept, receive and believe that God is with us and He won’t let us be consumed.

Prayer:
Thank you Father for being our rescuer, our helper and our protector. Thank you for being with us no matter how deep in the trenches of life we may be. Forgive us for giving into our urge to blame and complain. Give us the courage to walk through the storms of life knowing that you are with us. We know you will embrace us, cover us, and walk beside us as we go through the uphills and downhills of life. In Jesus name, amen.


What bible verse have you declared over you life that has helped you trust that God is with you, through it all?

What can you do today to believe and accept God’s promises for you life?


Special shout out to my dear friend, Laura Smythers, for editing my blogs. She’s a wife, teacher, educator, and passionate follower of Christ. Thank you for helping these posts happen.

Should I say yes or no? Overcoming People Pleasing

This post is part of Lysa TerKeurst’s “The Best Yes” Blog Tour which I am glad to be a part of along with many other inspiring bloggers.  To learn more and join us, click here.


ripcurrentofpeoplepleasing

“You know you’re caught in the rip current of people pleasing when you dread saying yes, but feel powerless to say no.” -The Best Yes, Lysa TerKeurst

Hi, my name is Theresa and I am a people pleaser. The hardest thing for me to do is say “no” to a friend, to a family member, to a leader, to anyone. I will beat around the bush as long as I can to avoid saying no. I’m not sure where this bad habit came from, but I have learned that it doesn’t make me a nicer person compared to the person who can say no, it makes me a stressed out crazy woman!

People pleasing, I believe, comes from a place of wanting to be liked and accepted. Desiring to please people at any cost can leave us empty very quickly. There have been many times when I knew I should’ve said no but felt like I couldn’t. The anxiety that settles in my heart knowing I might have disappointed a friend is something I struggle with to this day.

I would be lying if I said that I’ve completely overcome my need to please, but I am working on getting better at it. Living a life surrendered to God was difficult for me growing up, because I felt I had to be accepted by people and many of the people I decided to hang with were doing the opposite of what a God-fearing person should be doing. That led me to make decisions that ultimately drew me away from God. Experience has taught me that being accepted, people pleasing at any cost, wasn’t worth jeopardizing my relationship with God. He was the only One I had to please, and I was already accepted and loved by Him, no matter what I did or didn’t do.

Believing that you’ll be more loved, more favored, more welcomed because you say yes to someone’s request or someone’s party, is an unhealthy and erroneous way to live. If your friend or relative will love you less because you declined a request or invitation, then they’re not a good friend anyway. Over the past couple of years, I have learned that saying yes to the right things will set me up to have a more fulfilling relationship with God and with people. If I say yes to every project, every meeting, every outing, every opportunity, I won’t have time to hear God and do what He is calling me to do.

Oh and not to mention, I’ll drive my husband crazy with my long list of to do’s because I wasn’t able to say no. (Side note: it’s funny how we want to blame our husbands for not being able to keep up with us, yet we’re the ones exhausting ourselves and going crazy with our extensive list of tasks. They weren’t asking for this; we did this to ourselves, ladies.) At the end of the day we must learn to distinguish what our motives and intentions are when we say yes. Is it to impress others or to impress God? Is it to get accolade or to serve God and others? Also, are we prioritizing the things God has called us to make first? Like our spouses, our family, and our alone time with God. We should ask ourselves, “Is this ‘The Best Yes’ I can give my friend, is this answer a genuine ‘yes’, or am I overcommitting and giving them a yes disguised as a no?”

By declaring God’s truth that says, “I am accepted, I am loved, I am enough”, I am overcoming the need to please people. Discovering what God says in His word about me and what He has called me to do as His follower, helps me keep my motives and true intentions in check. Also, by implementing practical steps like giving myself time to think of my response (yes or no), having a max amount of projects I allow myself to take on, or asking my husband for his opinion before making a decision, I am overcoming my need to please.

How are you learning to overcome people pleasing?


New York Times Bestselling author Lysa TerKeurst has written a new book about finding your Best Yes. Many call this book “inspiring” and “fabulous.”  I call it a game-changer.  You can grab a copy at http://goo.gl/ZFUZbD