Cancer is a killer: brain cancer, breast cancer, melanoma, lymphoma, prostrate, pancreatic, lung cancer, and the kind of cancer that took my father—leukemia. Experts in oncology report that lung cancer is the number one cause of cancer-related deaths in America, but I don’t believe it. I still think the Cancer of Complaint is the biggest killer.
Watch the weather report. The same meteorologist who complains about the drought will find fault with a day or two of rain. Watch the faces of fellow drivers. If the car in front is moving a little slow, you’ll see the cancer begin to grow. Watch parents at sporting events. If we lost: “The coach should have subbed less.” If we win: “The coach should have subbed more!”
- Watch teachers...
- Watch students...
- Watch people at the checkout line...
- Watch bosses and employees...
- Listen to the pundits sound off...
The American Cancer Society doesn’t keep stats on this cancer, but it should. The Cancer of Complaint destroys relationships, sabotages performance, and snuffs out winning attitudes. In short, it kills!
The good news is that there is a cure.
Shortly after David became king in Israel he created a special place for the Ark of the Covenant, "the visible sign of the holy presence of the Lord" among His people. When David brought Israel’s most sacred item into the city it was cause for celebration. There was dancing, singing, and shouting. It was a party atmosphere!
David was thankful. And why not? God, the giver of good gifts, had delivered again. The King was so moved he had the royal choir learn a special song. It is a tune we would do well to whistle from time to time.
That day David gave to Asaph and his fellow Levites this song of thanksgiving to the LORD: Give thanks to the LORD and proclaim his greatness. Let the whole world know what he has done. Sing to him; yes, sing his praises. Tell everyone about his miracles….Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever. 1 Chronicles 16:7-9;34 NLT
There is nothing like heartfelt worship to fight off the Cancer of Complaint, a worship expressed in thanksgiving to God.
Give thanks to God for spiritual riches, sweet music, children’s laughter, green grass, blue skies, clean air, bright colors, textures to feel, aromas to smell, love to share, bodies that work, and when they don’t—loved ones who care. There is technology to marvel at, space to ponder, stars to watch, and the quiet of night to enjoy. And above all there is grace, the forgiveness of sins that is ours in Christ.
David’s song isn’t at the top of any charts, but it should be. Thanksgiving is the cure for the Cancer of Complaint. So give thanks to the LORD, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever.
Why not make a list right now of five things for which you are thankful. Add to it during the day. Before your day is done, do what David did and give thanks to God. It is the cure for the Cancer of Complaint!
Note: "the visible sign of the holy presence of the Lord" comes from the ESV Study Bible, a much better starting place to learn about the Ark of the Covenant than The Raiders of the Lost Ark.