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(July 18) Obeying without Grumbling

You can read Part One on the importance of biblical hospitality by clicking here

Believers are confronted with temptation and choices each day. Right in front of us stands the opportunity to do what is right and also the option to disobey the Lord. Some days the lure to disobey feels small and manageable. Other times, however, the pull of gossip, laziness, and pride can be unrelenting.

We often consider it a success if we manage to do the right thing. In our minds, it is easy to believe that as long as we force ourselves to do what we should, the Lord is pleased regardless of our attitude. Scripture tells us something different.

"Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.” 1 Peter 4:9

How easy it can be for us to buckle down and find a way to do what is right all the while, we allow ourselves to complete the task with a sinful attitude. 1 Peter 4:9 reminds us that our attitude is as important as our action.

We are to show hospitality to one another but do so without grumbling. We have all been there! We open our home to family or friends. We invite our Sunday School class to our house to build fellowship. You cook a meal for new neighbors to get to know them.

And after they leave? We sometimes begin to murmur:

-"Can you believe how long they stayed?"

-"I had no idea they would be so messy."

-"Their children were so poorly behaved."

-"I cannot believe I have to clean up this mess."

-"We are never doing this again!"

You attempted to show hospitality, but as soon as it was over, the grumbling began. Scripture is unflinchingly clear: "do not grumble." And there is a very good reason why that warning is given. It is because the Lord knows we tend to do just that! We are prone to do the right thing and then complain all the time we are doing it (and sometimes for days afterwards).

This principle holds for much more than showing hospitality. Are there other areas of your life where you find yourself following the letter of the law while completely disregarding its spirit? As followers of Christ, we are to do all things without grumbling. Easier said than done, I know.

Read Philippians 2:14-15

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.

So, today, seek to honor the Lord both by what you do and the attitude with which you do it. Show hospitality, but do not grumble about it. Serve someone else, but do not do it for the applause. Bless somebody today, but seek to do so in a way where they cannot repay you. These things are not easy, but they do honor the Lord. May we bring glory to Him on this day by what we do...and how we do it.


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