“Therefore the Jews started complaining about Him because He said, ‘I am the bread that came down from heaven.'” (John 6:41)
Something about a whiny, sing-songy voice protesting and demanding its own way that can unnerve a person. When my children were little and would start the “Mom pleeease” whine, I’d calmly smile and say “Sorry, I don’t understand whining.” Whining fell on deaf ears; mine. Jesus encountered all kinds of whining from His people (He still does). When people are dissatisfied or annoyed with something or someone they start to protest their grievance. Whining and grumbling lead to sin. Grumbling can become a way of life. Life situations and circumstances are seen through a filter of negativity. It’s almost impossible to see the truth or find the good in life when we wear glasses of complaint. In John 6 Jesus reveals the truth of who He is; the salvation of the world, come to redeem man and give him a better life.
The religious leaders of the day couldn’t hear the truth because they were fixated on the fact that Jesus claimed preeminence and equality with God. Instead of rejoicing in the provision of salvation, they were complaining and influencing others with their negative talk and attitude. Instead of receiving the grace offered, they were saying, “Who does this guy think He is anyway? Isn’t He just the son of a carpenter?” Knowing their hearts Jesus said, “Stop complaining among yourselves.” (John 6:43). Later in the chapter we read, “From this time many of His disciples turned back and no longer followed Him.” (John 6:66)
Even His disciples became influenced by the opposition, walking away from what they previously knew as truth. Too often we become a product of those we associate with. We must make wise choices when it comes to those we interact with on a regular basis. There will always be grumblers, complainers, and whiners but we can learn from the example of the twelve. In John 6:67 as many disciples walked away Jesus asked the twelve, “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Peter responded, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and to know that You are the Holy One of God.” (John 6:68-69)
It’s time to hang up the “No Whining” sign and commit to listen only to the language of heaven. It’s here that you will find the Words of life!
Heavenly Father, You have the Words of life. Let my words be few and Yours plentiful, in Jesus’ Name, Amen.