“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.
Do not complain, brethren, against one another, so that you [yourselves] may not be judged.Look! The Judge is [already] standing at the very door. 10[As] an example of suffering and ill-treatment together with patience, brethren, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord [as His messengers]. 11 You know how we call those blessed (happy) who were steadfast [who endured]. You have heard of the endurance of Job, and you have seen the Lord’s [purpose and how He richly blessed him in the] end, inasmuch as the Lord is full of pity and compassion and tenderness and mercy. James 5:9-11 AMP
There are times in life when we feel that we have been mistreated by others. Sometimes it is true that someone has deliberately mistreated us, but sometimes it is just a matter of our perception of what occurred! For instance, you know that children often feel mistreated just because Mom made them wash the dishes or Dad told them to go to bed or clean up their room before their favorite cartoon was over. Now anyone with common sense will realize that the parents are making decisions that are in the best interests of the child and preparing them for the realities of life and responsibility. They will eventually appreciate their parent’s “tough love.”
Unfortunately, even adults sometimes do not know the difference between a deliberate mistreatment and feeling mistreated just because they did not get their own way! There are many people, who complain continuously about how they have been abused by others, when all it is, is that they would not let them have their own way in the situation. People who regularly behave like this are usually selfish and self-centered, with a victim’s mentality. This is not how Christians should behave.
God makes provision for every situation and circumstance you find yourself in: if people are treating you badly- whether real or imagined – the Lord tells you to walk in love and in forgiveness. He tells you not to murmur or whine or complain. In fact, when you complain, you bring judgment upon yourself, because with your complaining, God says that you are judging the other person and His Word already says that if you judge, you will be judged with the same measuring stick!
Therefore you have no excuse or defense or justification, O man, whoever you are who judges and condemns another. For in posing as judge and passing sentence on another, you condemn yourself, because you who judge are habitually practicing the very same things [that you censure and denounce]. 2[But] we know that the judgment (adverse verdict, sentence) of God falls justly and in accordance with truth upon those who practice such things. 3 And do you think or imagine, O man, when you judge and condemn those who practice such things and yet do them yourself, that you will escape God’s judgment and elude His sentence and adverse verdict? 4 Or are you [so blind as to] trifle with and presume upon and despise and underestimate the wealth of His kindness and forbearance and long-suffering patience? Are you unmindful or actually ignorant [of the fact] that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repent (to change your mind and inner man to accept God’s will)? 5 But by your callous stubbornness and impenitence of heart you are storing up wrath and indignation for yourself on the day of wrath and indignation, when God’s righteous judgment (just doom) will be revealed. 6 For He will render to every man according to his works [justly, as his deeds deserve]. Romans 2:1-6 AMP
God has plenty to complain about concerning you and me and He has every right to do so, but He chooses to love us, forgive us, be patient with us and be kind to us. In this way, He leads us to repent. He expects us, as His children, made in His image, to behave like He does – not just for the sake of others, but for our own sakes. If you will open your eyes and realize that the way you treat others is the way you will be treated and the way you judge others is the way you will be judged, then you will finally begin to behave in the ways in which the Lord is leading you. If you are His disciple, then you will walk, talk and behave like Him – you will walk in love, forgiveness and kindness and you will leave God to judge those who do not obey the Word. Other people are not your responsibility – they are responsible for themselves before God – you are your responsibility – so take care of your own attitude and do not complain about other people! Love others in the same way that the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit love you.
God’s love does not insist on its own rights or its own way, because it is not self-seeking, it is not touchy, fretful or resentful. Love takes no account of the evil done to it and it pays no attention to a suffered wrong. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes and love is always ready to believe the best of every person (1 Corinthians 13:5&7 AMP paraphrased). If you will not complain when people do the wrong thing to you, if you will walk in love and patience and joy, then God will bless you and protect you and whatever has been taken from you will be restored to you with interest!