Saturday, October 10, 2015

Complaining About The Complainers

If you are following the 2015 baseball playoffs, you know one of the great turnaround stories of the season has been the Houston Astros. After being absent from postseason play for a decade, the Houston nine played clutch baseball down the stretch of the season, won a one game Wild Card contest from the New York Yankees, and defeated the favored Kansas City Royals on Thursday to take a 1-0 lead in the ALDS with the winner moving on to play the winner of the Texas Rangers/Toronto Blue Jays' series. Unfortunately, the Astros lost yesterday afternoon 5-4 after holding an early 4-1 edge. Still, the locals maintain home field advantage with Dallas Keuchel throwing tomorrow at Minute Maid Park where he is a perfect 15 and 0 this season. Our chances look good to advance!

And yet, as I ran an errand and drove home last evening after working out, the mood was doom and gloom from the majority of callers on 790 AM. As I listened to about fifteen minutes of the Matt Thomas wrap up show, I would have guessed Houston had the worst record in the history of the major leagues with no talented players. The complainers mostly were down on manager A.J. Hinch and his decisions and how he is costing the Astros the possibility of moving on. Forget that his decision making and handling of lineups and pitching moves got the Astros to this position in the first place. Forget that anyone would have gladly accepted this spot in the playoffs back in spring training. And forget that my senior students were in second grade when the Astros really mattered in baseball. I liked what the last caller I heard said:
"Matt, you might want to talk some of your callers back off the ledge."
Amen. We might want to cue Janet Jackson here singing, "What Have You Done For Me Lately?"

Why do we complain so much as humans? I know the conventional wisdom that talk radio gives fans a voice, although an anonymous one without a filter, and without fans there are no sports. But griping is evident in all aspects of our lives. We don't like this or that and everything would be better if my advice were followed. We see it at school- the work is too hard, the food is not good, the teacher is unfair, the rules are ridiculous. What's worse is we see it in our churches. My dad, who many of you knew, was an elder in three congregations in three different states. In one of the churches, there was a man who complained about everything. One of the other members told Dad that that was the complaining brother's ministry- complaining. What a joke. There is a time and place for thoughtful reflection and critique but can't we be grateful for all the things God has blessed us with? Especially in the US? What was it that guy wrote a while back?
This is the day which the Lord has made;
Let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Oh yeah- the 118th Psalm. Pretty good advice for our whining world. And one more thing; GO ASTROS!

Applicable quote of the day:
"Complainers change their complaints but they never reduce the amount of time spent in complaining."
Mason Colley

God bless,
Luke 18:1
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