When I was a kid, one of my mother's lines when we started to complain was "God doesn't like grumbling--the Israelites got forty years in the desert for grumbling." Well, not precisely. They got to gorge themselves sick on quail for grumbling and they got forty years in the desert for being cowards and not trusting God. But. Doesn't change the fact that when the Israelites started in on "Manna, AGAIN?" it didn't make God very happy.
A few months ago, I joined Facebook. And despite the complaints I've read about it recently, I rather like it. Sure, it can be a time sink--but so can a lot of other things. I'm learning that I've got a certain amount of time in my day that I'm inclined to "waste," and that if it's not going down Facebook's drain, or World of Warcraft's, it might simply be going down Minesweepers--and how much improvement is that? This is one of those areas that God is working on me.
No, the interesting thing for me about Facebook is the status updates. I enjoy hearing about what everyone is up to. I like reading them and posting them. But it's made me aware of just how inclined I am to complain and worry. How often, starting at the blinking cursor in the "Sara is" box, I'm inclined to put "tired" or "doesn't want to deal with the laundry" or "hopes the check will clear soon" or "is dealing with sick family members again." Do I detect a whiny note there? That's not who I want to be . . .
So I am attempting the discipline of positive status updates. Not that life doesn't have its down moments--but trying not to come at them from an angle that really only ends up making it worse. I've got a good life. I want the trick of reflecting it back to myself so that when I'm describing the sky, the first thing out of my mouth isn't that lone wispy gray cloud over there.