Wednesday, June 17, 2020
Is It Okay to Complain?
“Wake up, O Lord! Why do you sleep? Get up! Do not reject us forever” (Psalm 44:23 nlt).
I was watching a special the other night on the history of country music, and I noticed how many country songs have the most interesting titles. This includes songs like, “She Got the Goldmine (I Got the Shaft)”; “How Come Your Dog Don’t Bite Nobody but Me?”; and “You’re the Reason Our Kids Are Ugly.”
The writer of Psalm 44 had his own country song so to speak. He wrote, “Wake up, O Lord! Why do you sleep? Get up! Do not reject us forever. Why do you look the other way? Why do you ignore our suffering and oppression? . . . Rise up! Help us! Ransom us because of your unfailing love” (verses 23–24, 26 nlt).
The psalmist was being honest with God. He was saying, “Lord, honestly, it seems like You’re asleep right now. It seems like You’re not paying attention. Wake up, Lord. Hear our cry.”
Prayer is not just petition, though it includes that. It is not just worship, though it includes that as well. Prayer also can be, dare I say, complaining. There are psalms in the Bible that we call psalms of lamentation in which the writers are crying out to God.
It isn’t always a bad thing to complain to God, to bring your concerns to God, to bring your questions to God, or to bring your pain and sadness to God.
Even Jesus, as He hung on the cross, cried out, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:46 nkjv). Jesus was crying out to the Father, and we can do the same when we’re in pain.
When we’re hurting, we should pray. When we’re happy, we should pray. When we’re sad or confused or have complaints, we should pray.
God hears our prayers. And He wants to answer our prayers.
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