This weekend I worked open to close. It was the first weekend I had worked both full shifts since before football season started. I enjoyed my time off during football season. So I grumbled.
This morning I woke up with a headache, and we had no advil. I grumbled.
Today was especially busy at work, which is unusual for a Sunday. I was hoping for an easy day at work, you know, with a headache and all. I grumbled.
I got to church this evening and had a small load of work to accomplish there before service started. It wasn't like I didn't know that going there. I'd even made mention of it to my husband earlier in the day. But still, for some reason, I grumbled.
We gathered for prayer before service began, just as we do every week, and in our prayer circle I made mention of my grumblings of the weekend. In a grumbling way.
Where exactly is that cheerful disposition?!
So, October was pastor appreciation month. Last week our church family blessed my husband. They gifted him a very beautiful and encouraging picture, signed by each of them. They baked and baked and baked and we had an enormous dessert buffet. It was really awesome and I know that he felt loved and encouraged by their kindness. Tonight that same tone of appreciation spilled into our service as our church family surprised me, thanking me for what I do there. They gave me a beautiful card and a groupon for a foot massage. Talk about a blessing!
Later in the service as my husband was preaching through 1 Corinthians chapter 9, he posed the question "How far are you willing to go for the gospel?" And it was with that question that it happened. Conviction.
The kind of conviction that hits you with groanings in your spirit.
The kind of conviction that instantly brings tears that sting the eyes, coming up from the soul.
It wasn't so much the question posed, but more the words that went along with it and where they led my thoughts. If everything in this life is about Jesus, where is my grumbling coming from? Aren't I serving Him when I'm serving my family by working all week and then through a long weekend? Aren't I obeying Him in following my husband in this full life of ministry? If it truly is all about Jesus, will I be willing to go even farther than this season of exhaustion, for Him, for the gospel?
(Not to mention these lovely people had blessed me, despite my grumbling over some of the very things they thanked me for doing.)
Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,
I was guilty of grumbling. I enjoy my jobs. Yes, they make for a very long week. Yes, they take up much of my energy and time. But I'm helping provide for my family. I'm serving those I love. And I'm given the chance to love others, to nurture young children, to serve families - to shine as a light in the world.
I was guilty of grumbling over my pain and busyness. It was a headache. A headache that went away as I abandoned myself to repentance and worship. Repentance and worship that left me refreshed and cleansed... blameless and innocent.
Do all things without grumbling... may I carry this conviction with me throughout this week, this season, this life.