Do you suffer from an all too common malady? The malady or sickness of COMPLAINITUS???  The weather is too hot or too cold; these people drive my nuts!   Why do I have this work situation, family problem, health issue???? Why? Why? Why?  Woe is me!   My favorite party is the PITY PARTY! Surely on the day of the picnic, rain will come!   If only I were born in another century, in another country and under different circumstances!   The Jews complained in the desert because they got sick and tired of their daily portion of manna! So do I find reasons to complain about anybody, anything and any circumstance! May God grant us a true conversion of heart!

FIGHT AGAINST NEGATIVISM!  If we are disciples of Jesus then we should fight vigorously against negativism and the infirmity already mentioned of COMPLAINITUS!

Shakespeare expressed it forcefully, “More painful than a serpent’s tooth is that of an ungrateful child.”   A poet has penned a concise  one-liner apropos to the topic: “I complained because I had no shoes until I met somebody without any feet!”  Jesus was amazed that after healing the ten lepers of their terrible and incurable disease that only one of them returned to give thanks. (Lk. 17:11-19)

Let us fight against COMPLAINITUS by cultivating an ATITUDE OF GRATITUDE. The reasons to explode in this attitude of gratitude are countless, but we will limit it in this short essay to five!

First, LIFE!  Thank God for your life. Thank the generous Lord for having given you human life, but even more supernatural life through the life-giving Sacrament of Baptism.  This Sacrament infused you with supernatural life and union with God who is LIFE in His very essence.   Through the Sacrament of Baptism you became a son of God the Father, brother to Jesus the Lord, and intimate friend of the Holy Spirit. Lord, I praise you and thank you!

Second, THE EUCHARIST!   The word “Eucharist” from Greek actually means “thanksgiving”. How exceedingly grateful should we be that we believe in the “Real-Presence” of Jesus in Mass, in Holy Communion and afterward present for us to visit in the Tabernacle. “Come to me all of you who are weary and I will give you rest…” (Mt. 11:28-32).

Third, MERCY!  Give thanks to the Lord for He is good; His mercy endures forever.”  In a cut-throat world where is it “Eye for eye and tooth for tooth” where mercy is quickly evaporating from the modern scene, we know and believe that our God is a merciful God. As the Psalmist emphasizes: “Our God is slow to anger and rich in mercy.”   Even though we may fall,  we know that the arms of the Father (The Prodigal Son: Lk. 15:11-32) are always wide open to receive us, in a mere heartbeat, as soon as we say, “Jesus, mercy!” As St. Paul so clearly reminds us, “Where sin abounds, the mercy of God abounds all the more.”

Fourth, HOLY SPIRIT.   Many are the sublime names for the Holy Spirit: The Sanctifier, Counselor, Consoler, Advocate, Paraclete, Gift of Gifts, Breath of God, Love between Father and Son,  Finger of God, and finally Sweet Guest of the soul. By maintaining the state of sanctifying grace in our souls, the Blessed Trinity lives within us--- the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Therefore, at any time, we can enter within the depths of our soul and begin a colloquy with the Holy Spirit. He should always be your best Friend!

Fifth, MARY OUR MOTHER.  Saint Juan Diego suffered an enormous problem: his uncle Juan Bernardino was dying.  On the way to Mexico, searching for a priest, Our Lady of Guadalupe, stopped him and dispelled his fears and anxieties with these words:  “Do not be afraid! Am I not your mother? I have you in the crossing of my arms…”  Rejoice and give thanks to God for the great gift of Mary. Remember always but especially in moments of trial that Mary is your mother, she has you in the crossing of her arms. She has you hidden in the inner recesses of her most pure and Immaculate Heart.   “Give thanks to the Lord for He is good; for His love endures forever.”