Numbers 10-11; 2 Thessalonians 2
There will always be something to complain about in life. No matter how much you have or how good life is, there is something that could be picked at or better. When we are dissatisfied, we go looking for more or for a fix, which could lead to trouble. When and if we do find that worldly fix, it won’t be long until we are dissatisfied again. Today, we can learn some valuable things from our readings in finding true, and the only lasting satisfaction in Christ alone.
The people led by Moses sure loved to complain. Can you blame them? I think after wondering around the wilderness that long and not knowing what the end was going to be would have me right there with them. The problem with this is that the people failed to see and be thankful for what they did have. The Lord had delivered them from Egypt, even though they started to second guess and think life back there wasn’t so bad after all. The Lord has supplied them with food, even though it was the same thing every day. The Lord also supplied them with great leaders, like Moses and Aaron to interpret what He instructed them. While there are two sides to a situation, the people needed to start seeing the good, rather than what was always bad.
When we complain about everything in our lives, it is easy to take for granted what the Lord has given us. What if instead of complaining every time we felt dissatisfied, we thanked God for what He has given us. I think our attitudes would change quickly. Our complaining not only affects us, but it affects the people in our lives and around us. Even though Moses had been working so hard to follow what the Lord wanted him to do with the people, the complaints seeped through him to the point he lashed out at God, exclaiming how heavy this burden had become. (I feel like this some days with my toddler.) The people didn’t care about Moses and how hard he had worked, only about themselves and what they believed they needed and deserved. Be aware of who is affected by your complaints.
When we are dissatisfied, we may end up with what we want, so be careful. The Lord sent quail to the people, but He also told them He would send so much meat, that they would be sick of it. I can imagine the people complained about the meat after some time, and they do continue complaining later. In our own dissatisfaction of life, we face the temptation to look for something “better” or a “fix”. The people of Thessalonica are warned about falling for false prophesies and false teachings. People can come across as flattering and “right”, but that doesn’t mean they are. A temptation can come up as something you “deserve”, but that also doesn’t make it right. Be careful where you look to for satisfaction. Only Christ can truly offer you that.
Consider what you are saying to others about Christ if you are constantly dissatisfied. God states in Numbers 11:23: "Is the Lord's arm too short? Now you will see whether or not what I say will come true for you."
When we begin to question God, and thinking there is something better out there to satisfy our hearts over Him, it sends a message to others, especially those who don't know Christ, that they don't need Him. That He isn't as great as they have heard. That He is exactly what they thought He was. Be careful! Don't let others stumble over what your little discontentments cause to be an eternal loss. Prove that God is all you need.
Where are you tempted to look for satisfaction in this life? In a relationship? Job? Achievement? It is clear that Christ is the only One Who satisfies. He created our hearts and our entire being and knows what we need. Be careful as you start justifying “what you deserve” and “what would be better”. Those are the times we fall hard over our steps and realize those things never fully satisfy, and soon we’ll be looking elsewhere again for something else to fill the void. Fill it permanently with what Christ offers you.