Monday, January 20, 2014

Whiny

 

complaining: fretful; cranky

1. To utter a plaintive, high-pitched, protracted sound, as in pain, fear, supplication, or complaint.
 
2. To complain or protest in a childish fashion.

 
If my One Word for this year is beautiful, then it's no big surprise that my UNword is whiny.  What could be more unattractive, less winsome, and more obnoxious than the propensity to complain?  

Yes, I can be Lil' Miss Cranky PantsJust because you've got a bunch of letters after your name doesn't in any way mean you've arrived.
 
You'll seldom see this unpleasantness when I'm wearing my professional hat as a pastoral counselor ... and not too often when I'm writing.  But there are occasions when I can go on and on ad nauseum.  {Just ask those who know me best.}  Sadly, this complaining spirit shows my lack of faith in the loving God who oversees every detail of my life and reflects a short memory of all the incredible miracles He's done along the way. 

And if that wasn't bad enough, my whining does absolutely nothing to encourage or bless those who are unfortunate enough to be exposed to my annoying/irritating/boring litany.
 
Matthew 12:34 points out that 'out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.'  So when I allow myself to sink to that obnoxiously childish level, it should be a wake-up call that something is strangely out of kilter deep inside.  The disciple also goes on to warn us that we're going to have to give an account for 'every careless word' spoken. 

And Paul talks about grumbling in the same breath as he addresses the evils of idol worship and sexual immorality in 1 Corinthians 10.

Ouch.  This is something that God really despises!

I'm convicted today.  Putting this on the table is helpful.  I am reminded to bathe myself in gratitude moment by moment.  And be more proactive in seeking the Spirit's re-fueling so that I'm more and more defined by the fruit of His beautiful presence - 'love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.' 

Much, much more of Him.  Much, much less of me.

So ... what's your 2014 UNword?   Who don't you want to be?   What don't you want to do?   What bugaboo, character trait, moral defect, sin, habit, or thorn in the flesh are you absolutely done with?
 
 

* Sharing my UNword with Laura  +  Amy  +  Kristen  +  Lyli  +  Outside the City Gate

28 comments:

  1. Actually my word and my unword would be the same - "Compare." I have a tendency to negatively compare my life to others but I want to shift that focus to Christ and compare my life to His. That's when my perspective becomes clearer and His grace and love flows in that empty place I make in my heart for Him and Him alone!

    Is that photo of you when you were a wee little squirt? Is so, you were such a cutie! (No surprise!) Thanks for being so authentic and vulnerable about your weakness, my friend! Love it!

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    1. I was a beast back in the day, so I hear! But thanks for the complement anyway, Beth!

      ;-}

      I love that both your words are the same! Yeah, it sure gets wearying comparing ourselves to others all the time ... and all this social media (blogging, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, etc.) only makes it more of a challenge to wade through.

      A great big yes to shifting our focus to Christ. Oh ... to be God-absorbed instead of self-obsessed!

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  2. I knew this one was going to hurt as soon as I read your title. I like that you have an UNword. I'll have to think about that myself before tomorrow....

    "Much, much more of Him. Much, much less of me."
    That's my prayer, too. Thanks for this, Linda.

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    1. You're a true encourager, Lisa. I am working on gratitude, focusing on praising God right in the middle of all things. I LOVE that wonderful verse in Philippians 4 - 'whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things.'

      That's where I'm going with this. Only by His grace ...


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  3. oh gosh Linda -- this is something I try to be mindful of -- your post gives us all something to aspire to. xo

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    1. Well, my sister blogger, we know that there's nothing like putting something in black and white to spur us on! Hold me accountable, ok?

      :-}

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  4. Oooh! I haven't thought of an UNword yet. I will have to ponder that, I love your honesty, Linda. So often we say we are venting, but we really are just whining. It's then that I need a massive change in perspective- namely His. So true. God bless your week!

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    1. mmm, Lauren ... don't you love how we try to legitimatize our failings by putting fancy labels on our verbage? Like 'sharing.' 'Venting.' Being 'honest.'

      ;-{

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  5. Oh, Linda, I am guilty of whining. I may not always express it to others, but inside there are times I am whining and wishing some elements of my life were different. To me, an "unword" from "whiny" would be "praise." (I know it's a little backwards.) I need to better focus on praise, both for God and for others.
    My word of the year is "less," so the obvious "unword" is more, but I don't think that quite captures what I meant. I'll have to think about my "unword." Great idea--thanks for sharing.

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    1. mmm ... interesting thoughts, Nancy! I like that we can be honest with God about where we truly are. But then we get to choose what we do with our thoughts, our disappointments, our disillusionment.

      Have fun in figuring out that UNword ... and please let me know what you come up with. Thanks for dialoguing with us tonight!

      ;-}

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  6. Oh you are in ministry too! I was a youth minister and young family minister for fourteen years. Now I am a lay speaker in a much less defined role, but so know the walk of ministry. One of my new morning challenges this year (since May) was to post on FB the things I am thankful for within 30 minutes of waking up. Wow was that an eye opener. I thought of myself as being full of gratitude but some mornings I had to struggle to say what for. How ridiculous! Just starting the time after waking with gratitude has encouraged more time throughout the day in gratitude and actions based efforts on showing my gratitude in action and deed. (has led to all sorts of other aha's this year...) I look forward to knowing and reading your words. Yes, I agree, God can handle where we truly are, and He delights in our trust of letting Him be God of that part of us too! I love your word for the year, I am working on a project (Growing into Lovely) that reminds me daily of the beauty and beautiful in my life. ~hugs! Sweetie

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    1. Hey Sweetie! Welcome! I always love meeting a kindred spirit. Yep, I list my gratitudes, too, at the end of journaling. The journaling can sometimes be sporadic, but the gratitude? It's deep and wide. I just need to be proactive in choosing that grace when things aren't quite going my way.

      I look forward to connecting with you in the days ahead.

      ;-}

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  7. Oops.
    I have resorted to that behavior I am afraid.
    I also refer to it as a periodic need for hand holding!

    Enjoyed visiting,

    Laura
    White Spray Paint

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    1. 'A periodic need for hand holding!' LOVE that, Laura! Just LOVE it!

      I'm quite glad that you stopped in on this crazy-chilly morning ...

      ;-}

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  8. I love this idea of the "un" word, Linda! I think mine would be yours :). I know I can be a whiny butt sometimes. Thanks for giving me a smile.

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    1. I just knew I'd be in good company, Laura!

      Thanks for dropping in this afternoon!

      ;-}

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  9. the "Un-word" -- Love this concept!

    Ok, I will play. Mine would be "succumb."

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    1. Now I'M intrigued! Hope you'll be penning some thoughts on this, my friend ...

      ;-}

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    2. oh my! You have thrown down the gauntlet, and now I believe I may have to pick it up and write a post... :)

      Thanks for linking up at Thought-Provoking Thursday today! :)

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    3. Can't wait to see that post, Lyli!

      ;-}

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  10. Linda, what a great idea--the Un-Word. I like that! But I'm not real happy with having to say my un word would be everything opposite of love, especially --anger.
    Thank you for this thoughtful post, Linda.
    Blessings, Janis

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    1. Hurt, frustration, fear, feeling direspected ... all those roots of anger are so potent. I'm so glad you put this subject on the table, Janis. Truth be told, this is a HUGE issue for many Christian women.

      We need to look at our emotions square in the face, own them, and then figure out how to respond to their power in ways that are sane, healthy, and Christ-honoring.

      I hope this copy & paste link will be helpful http://creeksideministries.blogspot.com/2011/10/angry-8-steps-to-healthy-response.html

      Again, thank you. Very much. Warmest blessings, friend.

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  11. Hi Linda! I'm with Janis...great idea! Hmm... I don't want to be pompous. Yuck. I am a champion 'eye roller' and it's so bad. I remember a comedy sketch where a person rolled their eyes so much, their eyes fell out! It was funny at the time, but I remember it now in a different way.
    Everyone and every situation deserves my attention. Not my distain. I need to write this down so I don't forget!!
    Good to be back with you my friend :)
    Ceil

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    1. Distain, eye-rolling. Yeah, the whole thing. Who among us hasn't been there, done that? I'm struck today that we are all in very good company as we've shared our UNwords ... and all in need of much grace from our Savior. Thankfully He doesn't grow tired or weary {Isaiah 40:28}, and keeps lavishing His loving forgiveness on us.

      And I am SO GLAD you're back in the saddle again, my friend. My, you've been missed!

      ;-}

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  12. Linda, being whiny can come so easily to us when we're overtired, overwhelmed, just plain exhausted. It takes thought and effort to always respond with kindness and grace. And who can be like that 24/7? Not me, for sure! Most of us resort to childlike behaviour and can become 'miss cranky pants' under pressure.

    I've got 'listen' as my #oneword365 so maybe 'ignore' is the UNword for that? It may need some working out as these things don't necessarily follow as direct opposites. Great food for thought here! Thank you :) xx

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    1. I love that you've ID'd those triggers for us, Joy! Now ... to be aware of how we're feeling, own our stuff, and make a plan how to respond thoughtfully instead of react like Lil' Miss Cranky Pants, pictured at the top of the post.

      Ah ... I was such a delightful child!!!!

      ;-}

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  13. I'm really loving this UNword concept. I need to ponder this and see what word He gives me. Visiting from Outside the City Gate link up. I'm glad you found your way there. Beautiful community.
    Much love,
    Beth

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    1. Can't wait to see if something beckons your heart and mind, Beth! I love bumping into you here and there in these sweet online communities ...

      ;-}

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What's a conversation without YOUR input? I'd love to hear your heart ...

Linda

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