Pastor Bruce Rauma
Complain, compare, controversy
My dad told me multiple times growing up, "the easiest thing in the world to do is criticize." That statement has stuck with me my whole life - because it's so true isn't it? Listen, with all that has happened in 2020 and even current events by no means do you need yet another blog of negativity. My goal is to quickly buzz through complaining, comparing and controversy and how I view these three subjects.
Let's talk about complaining, or not. Think about how easy it is to complain. Examples: my boss is a real jerk, my neighbor threw their garbage in my yard, that stupid guy cut me off in traffic, our government is jacked up, my significant other yells all the time, the weather is terrible, my expectations weren't met, I didn't catch my limit of crappies, blah, blah, blah. Literally, for whatever reason when someone is in "complain" mode my ears just completely shut off. I try so hard to indulge and listen well but it doesn't work for me. Reading that you might just start complaining right now thinking, "dude, you don't get it."
So here's a few thoughts: Rather than complain, think about how much time it takes out of your life to complain. You've got to rehearse the story in your head, tell someone or multiple people for that matter all the details, get on social media and post about it, send an email, write a stern letter, keep the drama going by texting more about it and it goes on and on and on. One complaint in your life (though it might be legitimate) can take HOURS if not days you'll never get back. That's just one complaint. If you're a true complainer think about how much time all those complaints would add up to. At the end of your life as you look in the rearview mirror, do you really want to spend your life this way? I'm just asking.
We live in a country that has freedom of speech so you can choose to live it however you'd like and I won't criticize you for it. It comes down to a choice for each of us, live a life of complimenting, seeing all perspectives, be rational - or complain about it.
The same holds true for controversy (in my opinion). There is some real drama to get ourselves involved in. "What did they say?", "What did you mean by THAT?", "That is total blankety blank!". It's so easy to watch a tv show or social media video and start to romanticize how glamorous it would be to live a life like someone else. How easy we become magnets to all the chaos, like sheep led to a slaughter. This starts to train our thinking over time to live someone else's life. If that person is a complainer or controversial, let's jump on the band wagon and stir the pot. Yuck! Once again, what a waste of precious life. When we realize that the results leave us nothing, we revert in our human nature to overcompensate with escape mechanisms. Drugs, alcohol, cutting, over-eating, break-up, did I mention complaining?
So here's a thought on controversy. You have a choice to get involved or not. The more that you contribute to the controversy the longer it goes on. You have to decide what outcome you seek. Chances are there are hundreds lined up on a different side waiting to oppose you. No doubt division is real and we can see it all over the place. The decision we all play is whether we want to live a life this way, whether we want it to keep going or see peace in life. Nothing brings more death to the VISION you have for your life than
DI-VISION, controversy, drama. Once more, I'll never criticize a person who would choose to live this way. I pray you have peace that surpasses all understanding and a fulfilling life free from chaos.
Now I believe this last subject is a root that causes complaining and controversy. It's what I call the "compare game". Stay with me for just another few minutes. I eluded to tv shows or social media videos earlier. The other day someone told me I should upload an app (not going to reference which one) on my phone. So I did. Supposedly it was super fun and interactive and it could help me be more engaged with others. I started scrolling through it and within about 5 minutes all I saw were ladies making dance videos. I deleted the app because I'm just not all that interested in that stuff BUT, my point is the first thought that came to mind is how many people compare themselves to others. How their dance moves were cooler, how their apparel looked in comparison, how that lighting and background and song selection, you get it. No criticism here at all. It's just an app, it's just some dancing, it's just life. Right?
I do have to end by giving you encouragement. Taking time to keep up with someone else and the race they are in will only exhaust you. Why? Because that's not the race you've been asked to run. You were given a gift to be exactly how you were made to be. The positive attributes about you are unique. You can't be a fast runner like the other person because you were designed to run marathons. You can't dance like them because you were meant for karate. Get my drift? There's is no one on earth made exactly like you. You have value and purpose and a meaning to why you live out this life. The contributions you make toward God, yourself and others will be your legacy. Live positive my friend. Life is so much more fun than complaining, comparing, and controversy.