Okay, maybe I’m not a whiner in this picture. But photo search with the key phrase “Jolene whining” didn’t unearth anything. Not because I’m not a whiner. More likely because nobody thinks to grab the camera when I launch into a new litany of what’s wrong with my world.
Sunday morning before church would have been a good morning to snap a few classic, whiny shots. My inner whiner was churning out complaints.
Writing skits for Sunday school.
Getting ready to help with Adventure Club at church Sunday night.
You name it.
I was grousing about it.
Still I went to worship, the chip on my shoulder so big, it was to get through the front door. Somehow, I made it inside, and I made sure everybody knew how hard life has been lately. Then I settled down to listen to a group of women, four of them high school teens, from our church tell about their recent mission trip to the Congo.
They showed pictures of happy children dressed in rags. One teen described the best hospital in the area. “See how the floor is wet?” she said when a picture of the children’s ward appeared on the screen. “There’s no bathroom for the children. That’s urine.”
Two women laughed as they described how hard it was to cook a meal over a fire. Tears came to another woman’s eyes as she contrasted the poverty of the people to their joy in worship and willingness to give.
Tears came to my eyes, and to the eyes of those around me, when another woman listed staggering HIV statistics for the Congo. Thousands diagnosed daily. Children orphaned by the hour. The work being done through Global Fingerprints to rescue the orphans.
What do I have to whine about?
Why am I not grateful for what’s been given me?
Why am I not using it and the energy spent complaining to solve real problems?
God, forgive me.