Imagine the scene if you can. You have spent your time enduring the hardships of a slave. In fact you have faced generational slavery that has gotten progressively more inhuman. Having to work under hard conditions with cruel taskmasters. Being forced to kill your young. Working without the necessary tools to do the job most effectively (even though they are available).
Everything about this existence is gloomy. Then someone outside of you steps into eradicate your situation. With a mighty hand he shows his power. He makes it clear to your oppressors that releasing you was in their best interest.
You are released, redeemed you might say. On your journey, however, something terrible happens. To your front is an insurmountable obstacle and as you look over your shoulder you see and hear the sounds of an approaching army. An angry army lead by your oppressors. Doom fills your heart. Death is certain.
Then that great benefactor steps in again, he provides you a way to be set free and then in a mighty act he destroys your enemies behind you. You are free from oppression. You benefactor has procured your redemption. You heart is thankful and you sing songs to honor him.
Then at the first sign of struggle you complain. And in fact after a while you are known as simply a “murmuring people.” How ridiculous?
If you have any familiarity with the Bible you probably recognize this story as the redemption of Israel from Egyptian bondage. How quickly they forget God’s mighty acts on their behalf and turned to complaining is always astonishing to me?
They should have responded in thanksgiving continuously because God liberated them from a situation that was hopeless. No matter what they faced in front of them thanksgiving should have been their response. God had redeemed them and He was still working among them, How can you not be thankful?
Yet, today I know that God has done mighty acts for my benefit. He has freed me from the taskmaster of sin through the mighty act of His Son. I am free. My response should be a life of thanksgiving, but yet I catch myself complaining far more than I should. You see complaining is the opposite of thanksgiving. When we complain we fail to recognize the mighty works that God has done in our lives. We get our perspective wrong and stop focusing on what our Savior has done for us.
So as Thanksgiving approaches do not simply be thankful and forget. But allow God’s redemption of you to reshape your mind. So that no matter what happens, you have cause for thanksgiving and not murmuring?