Don’t Complain (school children)

Dear young people of St. John Vianney,
if you go to the bible and read the book of Numbers, you will see something there. Moses and the people of God were in the desert journey; that journey took them 40 years, which reminds us of Lent which takes 40 days. Their journey was to get to the Promised Land, a beautiful, rich land with wonderful foods and farms and fruit.
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So when they were nearby the Promised Land, Moses sent spies, to go into the land and check it out secretly, to see what it was like, and if they would be able to go there. Two of the spies were Joshua and Caleb, but there were 10 others who went. What did they find?
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For one, the land was so rich that a single cluster of grapes had to be carried by two men. It was a wonderful land, very rich. Joshua and Caleb told the people they should go there, but the other spies complained. The other spies said that those living there were very big men, and it would be a difficult fight to move there; they complained a lot, and so the people started to give up on the whole idea and did not want to go. Moses was disappointed.
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God was not happy with this. And for this reason, the people had to spend the next 40 years in the desert, until they decided to trust him and go to the Promised Land. Those complainers were the downfall of Israel.
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When we complain, we tear down the spirits of everyone, we discourage everyone, and many times, something really good does not happen. Joshua and Caleb tried to show hope and trust in God, but the complainers won out, and ruined everything.
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I know that everyone is trying to give up something for Lent, do a good deed or a new good habit; but I want to suggest also trying to go through all of Lent without complaining at all. When St. Josemaria was quite young, he made a decision to never, ever complain – and look at all that he accomplished!
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People exaggerate their problems.
You have to wait for only 10 minutes while your mother goes into the store – it is no sacrifice at all – but then you complain and whine!
You have to get up early for school on a cold day, it’s a little sacrifice; but then we sometimes complain, complain, complain: ‘I’m tired!’
Usually our problems are not big at all, they are nothing. Instead of complaining, we should count our blessings, God gives us many blessings.
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A lady was a big complainer, so her granddaughter gave her a little mite box, to put money in for the poor. On the front of the box she wrote, ‘Count your blessings.’ She said to her grandma, put a penny in there every time you have a blessing from God.
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Days went by, and the lady only complained, not a single penny went in. But then the granddaughter was telling her of how much the poor people suffered in Africa from not enough food; and the grandmother said, ‘Well, I thank God I have enough food.’ ‘There! said the niece. There is your first blessing – in went a penny.
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The next day, grandma got a nice phone call from her son; after speaking to him, she said ‘Oh thank God for my son.’ Another penny went in. Then she started to realize how many blessing she had, and in went the pennies and more.
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Instead of complaining this Lent, why don’t we instead thank God for his blessings.

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