Complaining springs from ingratitude
Part of our aim for this week is that complaining springs from ingratitude. I love the imagery of the spring in that line and we see it in today’s lesson.
Miriam and Aaron have gotten themselves all wound around the axle about Moses’ new wife. We don’t have a lot of information here. We don’t know if something happened to his first wife. We don’t know if there was some other tension or jealousy. We don’t know if it had anything to do with race or nationality. We just don’t know and I don’t think it wise to try to fill in the blanks.
What we do know is that “because of his Cushite wife” Miriam and Aaron “began to talk against Moses.”
What is interesting in the imagery of the spring is that, while they were wound up about his wife, that is not what popped out. They way they sprung up against Moses was by attacking his relationship and standing with God. The words punched at his relationship as being nothing unique or different. “has the Lord spoken only through Moses?”, “Hasn’t He also spoke through us?”
There are times in our lives where we, too, can get “all wound up” about something. Just like that spring, the issue coils around our heart, storing up all this negative energy. When we release it, it springs out, uncontrolled and normally not in a matter that has anything to do with what the real issue is, but just a way to inflict harm to the other person.
But, not only is that not a healthy approach, but it is also not the biblical approach. God recognizes we are human. He recognizes there will be disagreements among us. Have you noticed all the laws and guidelines He has been putting in place to address these disagreements and disputes? Have you noticed the 70+ elders he has put in place to help the people in these areas and how he equipped them with His spirit? God does not paint some make-believe land where everyone just gets along. God knows we are going to get wound up from time to time especially about family and especially about leaders and especially about family who are leaders and believers. We hold them to a higher standard and, well, sometimes we see things in them that we consider to be unaddressed faults.
But the biblical approach is not to become a spring. Instead, we are called to unwind the concern with a fellow family member to the brother in the presence of God. We are to release the energy, not attack with it, and get to the core of the situations. We are to trust God and hold to His words, but also to model His mercy and grace.
What are you wound up about? When have you felt the negative energy stored up in your heart? Who or what have you sprung out against, especially in a way that is totally unrelated to the core issue? What fellow christian can you join with to unwind the energy and address the issue with your brother and with God?
Start with a focus on gratitude to God. Start with the words, “thank you, Lord” and then keep saying it as you let the negativity unwind.
Moses’ sister, watched over him in the nile, approached pharoah’s daughter, lived as a slave in Egypt, was a prophetess, leader, singer of songs
He married a Cushite woman. We don’t know enough to draw conclusions (what happened to 1st wife) other than the fact that God, who knew her heart, was displeased and the wording in the bible implies jealousy and lack of humility
He didn’t respond, at least not directly. He likely talked with God about it (history of doing that)
grow sad, frustrated, humiliated, angry.