I would hate to have to work in a complaints department. I once had to work at the (internal) help desk at a major software company and hated it. That was as close to dealing with constant complaints as I could handle. I’m not great at listening to people’s complaints.
However it seems like God doesn’t mind it. In Gen 15:1-8 we read a story about God and Abraham. God starts by telling Abraham his reward will be very great. Abraham isn’t too impressed by this. The one thing he wants – an heir – he doesn’t have. He complains about it. He blames God (‘you haven’t given me an heir’).
Still God responds with encouragement. ‘You descendants will be like the stars in the sky – uncountable!’ Abraham responds with belief but still complains, ‘How will I know?’ God responds again with grace and encouragement.
This story, as well as others like the story of Job, says to me that God is happy to hear our complaints. He wants to see some faithful response but responds to the questions and doubts with encouragement.
This idea does help me feel free to ‘dump on God’ and fire away with the complaints. I suspect it is more helpful than letting loose on all my friends. Especially when I’m questioning, ‘How is this going to happen?’ or ‘How do I know God will be faithful here?’
It also makes me question how I can be more God-like to my friends who are facing doubts and complaints. How can I respond with encouragement and faith?