Monday Challenge!

Hey, Sweet Things! God prompted me to throw a Monday challenge out on Twitter early this morning and on my way to work it occurred to me that I should extend it to my dear fellow Siestas. Here’s the challenge: to go through this entire day (starting now, in case it’s a little late) until shutting our eyes on our pillows tonight without a single criticism or complaint. Consider it a deliberate exercise in Philippians 2:14-15. What prompted the challenge was my own feeling that I could get cranky today if I let myself. (I didn’t have room to explain it on Twitter.) I’ve told you before about my sleep issue (it runs in my family of origin and, no, I don’t drink caffeine later in the day) and a lot of days I just shrug it off but somehow, when Monday morning follows a short Sunday night, I feel fussier about it. This morning I could see the handwriting on the wall. I made up my mind to choose joy in the power of Jesus’ Name. While turning those pedals on my exercise bike, I told the Lord out loud that I wanted to make it all day long without voicing one single complaint. I could not believe how quickly my mood improved and I feel as happy as one who’s had 10 solid hours of sleep.

Now, let me quickly say this. I’m not a fan of living in denial. Some complaints are legitimate and NEED VOICING! I already had one of those this morning on a good friend’s behalf who is in rough situation. So, what do you do then? Voice it to God! Lord have mercy, don’t think I’m posing as some huge example here this morning. I’m just asking you if you want to join me in being very deliberate about our mouths and our attitudes today. If you have a valid complaint, take it to God and, if possible, say it to Him out loud. It increases the sense that you really did get it off your chest. Sometimes a silent prayer doesn’t carry the same power as one spoken with passion and holy intent. Make some declarations today so even your enemy knows you mean business.

What do we do if we get to noon having already blown it? START OVER!!! How many times we have to start over helps us see how habitual our complaints may be. We may have no idea that some of the people around us think we’re habitual complainers and perpetual nay sayers. We are also part of a culture that shouts from every corner of social media, “If you think it, say it!” and the discipline of self-restraint is circling the drain. Lastly, it just doesn’t help. Murmuring and complaining and dwelling on how much something or someone annoys us only adds to the bad mood.

Think up, Siestas! Let’s choose joy! And let’s choose it out loud. No time to proof this post and write it well. Lots of work to do but I’m doing it with joy. I’m crazy about you guys and think of you every day.

Jesus loves you. This I know.


463 Responses to “Monday Challenge!”

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  1. 151
    Kathleen says:

    I’m taking you up on this challenge! I am going to try it every day this week.

    Thanks Beth. Much Love to you.

  2. 152
    Tina says:

    Considering I have had little sleep this past weekend I can totally relate to being prone to being grumpy. I’m sure I’ve already blown it, wish I would’ve read it earlier. So as of 3:38pm, I’m going to try my “darndest” to not complain:) Thanks for the reminder!

  3. 153
    julie says:

    This is a great challenge! I’m in!

  4. 154
    Janice says:

    Its late in the day but not TOO late to choose joy! I’m getting ready to leave work and go home. No better time to choose joy!
    Thanks for the challenge!

  5. 155
    Joni says:

    I was in before I even knew about the challenge! I told God first thing this morning that I was not going to complain, that I would have a good attitude! Monday’s are very stressful but always seem to go much smoother when I choose to be happy over letting it all get to me.
    Thank you for all the encouragement that you bring!

  6. 156
    Linda says:

    Elisabeth Elliot once wrote of a woman who chose to go a whole two weeks without complaining because she sensed it was borne of a bad habit. So, I challenged myself a few months ago and flunked the first day. But you’re right, you just start over rather than letting it defeat you and it can be a fun game to see how long you can go without complaining. Playing that game also cheers you up. It’s a win-win. Thank you so much for the reminder!

    • 156.1
      Mary, Nova Scotia says:

      Hi Linda:
      I love the notion that complaining is “borne of a bad habit.” So often we feel ‘justified’ in our complaint and never consider the possiblity that it could simply be a bad habit. Samuel T. Coleridge said, “Habit is man’s best friend, or worst enemy.” Thanks for the reminder.

      I also love how you choose to see this as a game. Who doesn’t enjoy a game!

      You go, girl! I’m with you.


  7. 157
    Pam says:

    Such a great way to focus. I am with you.

    Also, one of my favorites…Jesus knows me, this I love.

  8. 158
    Emily Brewer Miceli says:

    Aw, man… Just as I start typing the “I’m in,” my girlfriend calls and I start giving her a hard time. OK. Let’s start over… I’m in! …by the grace of God!

  9. 159
    Ash says:

    This is a great challenge – and also the Lord brought to my attention yesterday (after voicing my disagreement with my husband about his perspective on a situation), that, for me, the problem isn’t so much that I make a “complaint,” but that I don’t speak affirmation and encouragement. So, although it’s rare I vocalize a complaint to him, it screams louder because I am too silent in encouraging him. Along with the challenge not to complain, I need to add that I will affirm those around me. And I’m not saying I don’t complain, I just usually don’t do it out loud.

    • 159.1
      Holly says:

      I so agree…I am not too quick to praise or encourage my husband and affirm him. Why is it so hard? I am taking the no complaining challenge and also the challenge to affirm/encourage.

  10. 160
    Delora says:

    I got this in a email today and wanted to share it with you all.

    A young wife sat on a sofa on a hot humid day, drinking iced tea and visiting with her Mother.

    As they talked about life, about marriage, about the responsibilities of life and the obligations of adulthood, the mother clinked the ice cubes in her glass thoughtfully and turned a clear, sober glance upon her daughter.

    “Don’t forget your Sisters,’ she advised, swirling the tea leaves to the bottom of her glass. They’ll be more important as you get older. No matter how much you love your husband, no matter how much you love the children you may have, you are still going to need Sisters. Remember to go places with them now and then; do things with them.’

    Remember that ‘Sisters’ means ALL the women…your girlfriends, your daughters, and all your other women relatives too. You’ll need other women. Women always do.’

    What a funny piece of advice the young woman thought. Haven’t I just gotten married? Haven’t I just joined the couple-world? I’m now a married woman, for goodness sake! A grownup! Surely my husband and the family we may start will be all I need to make my life worthwhile!’

    But she listened to her Mother. She kept contact with her Sisters and made more women friends each year. As the years tumbled by, one after another, she gradually came to understand that her Mom really knew what she was talking about. As time and nature work their changes and their mysteries upon a woman, Sisters are the mainstays of her life.

    After more than 60 years of living in this world, here is what I’ve learned:


    Time passes.
    Life happens.
    Distance separates.
    Children grow up.
    Jobs come and go.
    Love waxes and wanes.
    Men don’t always do what they’re supposed to do.
    Hearts break.
    Parents, siblings and sometimes children die.
    Colleagues forget favors.
    Careers end.

    Sisters are there, no matter how much time and how many miles are between you. A girl friend is never farther away than needing her can reach.

    When you have to walk that lonesome valley and you have to walk it by yourself, the women in your life will be on the valley’s rim, cheering you on, praying for you, pulling for you, intervening on your behalf, and waiting with open arms at the valley’s end.

    Sometimes, they will even break the rules and walk beside you…Or come in and carry you out.

    Girlfriends, daughters, granddaughters, daughters-in-law, sisters, sisters-in-law, Mothers, Grandmothers, aunties, nieces, cousins, and extended family, all bless our life!

    The world wouldn’t be the same without women, and neither would I. When we began this adventure called womanhood, we had no idea of the incredible joys or sorrows that lay ahead. Nor did we know how much we would need each other.

    Every day, we need each other still. Pass this on to all the women who help make your life meaningful. You don’t know who might need to hear from you.

    Happy Valentine day to all my sisters.

  11. 161
    Lisa McGriff says:

    Sweet Beth, I take the challenge… I read something the other day and I don’t even know where.. But it said we should love people like we love our pets.. We should be able to forgive their mistakes as we would forgive our dog that just ate the newspaper.. Yes you would be probably be a little upset but it would not be long before you would be petting that dog and talking sweet to it.. Wow, made me look at my life a lot closer.. That is how God is with us, he forgives us and loves on us immediately when we confess and ask forgiveness..

    • 161.1
      marlinda flynn says:

      Lisa, I love that comparison. Just thinking about how I love to love my dogs and cats and how Our Father loves us so much more.

      • Lisa McGriff says:

        Marlinda, it hit me like a ton of bricks.. But God has to do that with me sometimes because i don’t always comprehend things immediately…

  12. 162
    Amanda says:

    I needed this challenge today!! Several things came up in my day that could have caused great anxiety…I am finding how the lack of complaining though is preventing my worry and anxiousness also! It really is changing my entire day. Praise God that he put this on your heart today, Beth. I think we all needed it! How crazy that one seemingly small change in our attitudes can change our entire outlook on our day and the events that occur. It is not an easy challenge, but one I want to challenge myself to today and the days to come!!!

  13. 163
    Kimberly says:

    Dear Beth,
    This is a timely post. I’ve been recovering from heart surgery and feeling discouraged by the slow process. On the way to church yesterday, I complained to my husband the whole way how unfair it was my 39 year old body isn’t keeping up with what my head wants to do. Then at church, one of the Pastor’s saw me and said “I’m so glad to see you up and about. God has had great favor on you. I don’t know why, but God has shown you great favor.” It just blew my mind. I should have been thanking God for another Sunday to go to church with my sweet family, instead of complaining. Right then, I decided no matter how slow my physical recovery is, I’m blessed to see my four children grow in their relationship with the Lord.

  14. 164
    Pat says:

    I, too, am getting a late start, but really needed this. That is why my last month’s verse was Eph. 4:29. Helps to have this encouragement, Beth. Thank you!

  15. 165
    toknowhim says:

    Love you too Beth πŸ™‚ I got on here this afternoon, but I think your Monday challenge is one I need to take this whole week. Thanks for the reminder πŸ™‚

  16. 166

    I’m IN!… but since it’s so late in the day, I will do this challenge tomorrow and the rest of the week. I don’t want glimpses of being a sour gal show up in my day… I choose sweet joy (taking any complaint I have to the Lord and not people around me)! Thanks, Beth.

  17. 167
    Martha says:

    Beth, I am having a horrible time with sleeping…guess it’s our age! It’s driving me crazy! Thank you for this reminder today. I have SO much to be thankful for… my husband had an appt with his oncologist today to get the results of his latest cat scan and he is still in remission.. Praise our great God!!! So.. how on earth can I complain about anything!!

    love you so much,
    Martha in MS

  18. 168
    Chrissy B from Kings Mtn., NC says:

    Thank you for this post it was such a confirmation for me! God is soooo Awesome!!!!

  19. 169
    Katie says:

    Dear Mr. Beth,
    I think that it is important to not let other people’s negative comments affects us. Today, I set out determined to not complain or talk negative about anyone or anything. Since I am starting a new business, I have been spending LOTS of time at my bakery getting it ready to open on March 1. I am TERRIFIED of failing, but God has made it so clear that this is exactly where He wants me to be and the way He wants our family to serve our community. While cleaning the kitchen equipment, in the door walks a girl from church. She put me down and my business in nearly every sentence she spoke. By the time she left, I felt angry and discouraged. I wanted to call my best friend and stay all kinds of bad things about that girl. But, I quickly voiced my thoughts to the Lord and He gently reminded me that I am doing what HE has asked me to do. The first verse I learned in the Siesta Scripture memory challenge was, “but the world must learn that I love the Father and that I do exactly what my Father has commaded me.” John 14:31 I am doing what God has asked me to, and I will not be discouraged by negative people!! Thank you for your ministry, Mrs. Beth! It has touched my life in many, many ways.

  20. 170
    Julie says:

    Thank you for the challenge and the encouragement! It is a perfect way to start out my week!

  21. 171
    His Jules says:

    I am taking the challenge, thanks I really needed this to start my Monday off. Just goes to prove “Mamma always knows best!” (Mama Siesta’s too!)

  22. 172
    Erin says:

    When I read the first few lines of this post, I uttered Oh, no. Since I’m reading this at 5:00, I’ve reflected back on my day and realized that I’ve spent a large portion of it complaining. So I’ve decided to make this my goal for tomorrow. I really should have read this earlier in the day. πŸ™‚

  23. 173
    Linda says:

    Oh how I wish I had read this earlier today. I just sent off an uncharacteristic doozy of an email to my husband – even after watching your word to us in the David DVDs only days ago about being careful when someone else is completely in the wrong toward us, lest we fall right down after them into sin. – This is why I am on my way to finally log with with my Siesta Scripture Memory Verse: “As for me, I would seek God, and to God I would commit my cause, who does great things and unsearchable, marvelous things without measure.” Job 5:8-9. Lord have mercy.

  24. 174
    HeleddNest says:

    Hi Beth, I tried to do this as soon as I saw it on Twitter. Quite challenging for me but really beneficial. Thanks, Heledd

  25. 175
    Sharon says:

    This reminds me of Amy Carmichael who decided not to talk about people for a whole day….At lunch that day w/ her friends, she didn’t have a thing to say! haha….. They wondered what was wrong w/ her! She did it that day, and then the next, and then the next…..and conquered her negative habit……That’s how I want to CHOOSE JOY.

    Thank you, Beth! How did you know I could have really been cranky today but instead needed to choose joy? πŸ™‚ You are lead by the Lord….this I know!

    See you tomorrow night! It’s such a blessing on Tuesday nights…..LOVE IT.
    Sharon in Katy.

  26. 176
    Cara says:

    Hi Beth!

    THANKYOU for this post! I was feeling convicted of this last week and happened to choose that exact verse for my scripture memory on Feb 1st. So when I read your blog I felt like God just cranked up the volume of its importance for me πŸ™‚

    God bless you!

  27. 177
    April says:

    Thanks for the challenge sweet sister Beth :)It’s already 3:15 here in BonneyLake but what a good time to start since my sweet hubby is on his way home with the grandbaby. I have to voice a Praise to all of you siesta’s!! God is doing an amazing healing in my relationship with my daughter and breaking of generational bondages!!!! My heart is so full of joy as to what God is doing. Praise Him!!!

  28. 178
    Debi says:

    I wish I would have checked your blog earlier. I just complained and spoke harshly to my spouse while he was leaving on an errand. I hope to have a better attitude before he gets back, and not to blow it the rest of the evening. Thanks Beth, just what I need. And thank you Jesus, you are all I need, and know when I need it.

  29. 179
    Beth Herring says:

    Oh, man.. I just got home and read this and I really needed this about 6 hours ago! But I will do this starting now and ending never!

    Love you Beth!

  30. 180
    Gloria says:

    After taking several of your book/video classes – Currently, I am taking your “Daniel” study. I have asked the Lord, Our God – as stated in your book pg5-“to grant you ‘the spirit of wisdom and revelation..'” pg11″asking God deliberately and thoughtfully to grand you depth of wisdom and understanding.” This being said – I continue each day/ some days almost all day with your study- I have found alot of what I call (I BETH) stories, which do not, in my opinion, have anything to do with the study, just a fill in the space words.(as in chapter 4 stated pg74-I feel that you have “cheat Him of glory” and put it on you! I wanted to study the book of DANIEL – get insight on this book! The good part it has made me go in depth with Christian studies to find out my own information on DANIEL – to correct several statements /word(ex:Plead-IT IS FOUND IN OTHER BOOKS of the Bible-)from your study – Remember the “Left Behind” series is a work of Fiction! Please look up “dispensationalism” –

  31. 181
    Shellie Paparazzo says:

    Um, okay. We’ll see if I can pull that off and it’s way past noon! It may require me to not speak! Now that would be something! Hehe!

    • 181.1

      Whoa! You know I did pretty good until my kids came home. I kind of had to “complain” about their bad behavior! I couldn’t just let it continue! I did think about it a lot though, and complained as little as possible. And then, I kept annoying them by saying, “Are you complaining?” all the time. It’s interesting how much I notice we all complain so much! Finally, my 12 year old son said, “Mom, you’re the one having a lot complaining day, not me.” I told him, “Okay, have fun with your complaining then, if it makes you happy.” He he!

  32. 182
    Barbara says:

    Choose Joy! That’s been my theme since our divorce last summer. Choose Joy! And let the righteousness rain down on me ~ Hosea 10:12. My favorite verse right now. Thanks for the reminder, Beth!

  33. 183
    Kay says:

    Beth, It’s amazing how God works. I just posted a similar post on my blog. Not so much about me, but about a conversation I was privy to yesterday when a friend forgot to use her conversation filter. Not that I’m not prone to do the same thing, mind you. But this just happened to be one of those opportunities when God put the zoom lens on someone else and showed me how my own tendencies to just speak my mind must look to others. I am reminded today to use the filter of Psalm 19:14.

  34. 184
    Dinah says:

    If you have time, you might enjoy reading a post on my blog about grumbling….

  35. 185
    Linda says:

    What a great challenge for my husband – haha!

    I generally don’t struggle with complaining and criticizing. Given where I was before Christ and where He has brought me to in Him, I rarely feel like complaining and criticizing.

    Back to my husband, though, would it be ok to ask him to take the challenge? He was like Eeyore all weekend.

  36. 186

    well i did pretty good until I left my house and then the bottom fell out OUCH!!!!!!!!!!!! Well I will do better next time my problem is my mind will always run ahead of me at least by one day and that is another OUCH!!!!!!!
    Thanks for this and giving us seista’s something to do in the Lord.
    Love you

  37. 187

    I went to visit an old church I haven’t been to in 10 yrs yesterday…think I will start going back…but anyway,
    The pastor used to tell his kids before they even started school in the morning, ” This is the day the Lord has made…” and his kids would have to reply, ” I will rejoice and be glad in it.”
    He then had us repeat it over and over…to like the top of our lungs.
    I think there are seasons that God allows us to be in a little of a sad self, because somethings are overwhelming.(You know it surrounds us.)
    but then when He calls us to get out of it…Oh He makes SURE that we do…I’m dealing with some tough changes, but His grace is sufficient…I know EVERYTHING has a greater purpose…and that is what helps me find joy πŸ™‚

    And mama beth…I just gotta say, I don’t know how you do the messages you do…I mean I did one on ” The thorn in our flesh” 2 Cor 12…and I think think the message went deep into my blood stream…He really makes us get it, before we GIVE it! πŸ™‚


  38. 188
    Pam says:

    OK–it is already 7:33 p.m. and I will spend the rest of the evening alone–surely I won’t complain!! I do think this is a great challenge so I will try this tomorrow–I will pray the Holy Spirit reminds me of this challenge every time I start to open my mouth tomorrow and complain. What a great reminder Beth–thank you.

  39. 189
    Cory Fletcher says:

    My Precious Mentor: I should have read this BEFORE I even got out of bed this morning!!! I’ve had whatever this bug is for the last 5 days and in bed with it for 3. You’d think I’d have had plenty of sleep! You are right about short nights and short fuses. So I’ve asked forgiveness and I’m starting NOW. (Headed to bed in an hour :} ) Thank you for that challenge and reminder of scripture. That shall be my aim each day this week. I have a lot to make up for from the last week! God Bless you, sweet Beth.

  40. 190
    Joyce Watson says:

    I think I might be one step ahead of you in this matter, just this week-end I was getting irritated with all the housework, supper, laundry, cleaning the floors and the Lord reminded me that I should be thankful I could do those things.
    …But, Lord I really want to be a Mary today not a Martha. Finally, I finished and sat down and spend quiet time with God.
    Yet, God also spent time with me while I was doing housework. My boys found a little bird sitting out in the snow in what was my flower garden. We gave him some bread to eat. He was so hungry. The Lord takes care of the birds and us too.

  41. 191
    Shawnna says:

    Wow, Beth…God is good. I’ve had a feel sorry for myself kind of day. Complained about this and that. With a few “me” minutes, I was led to look at your blog. Guess what? I’ve just spoke out loud to my loving Lord what has been at the top of my list of complaints today! How He knew I would need to hear Him speak to me today. God is good, all the time. Amen!

  42. 192

    I have made it to 7:05pm but have been VERY intentional! I am planning to carry this over to tomorrow.

  43. 193
    kim safina says:

    Precious Beth,

    I had my “game on” attitude and believed I would take that challenge with a winning prize touchdown!!!!!!!!

    My cheerleading skills had me cheering W~ R~ O~ N ~G
    WHAT does that spell… WRONG!!!!!

    For me,Speaking positive and uplifting others has, so I thought, been an easy task for my sanguine personality.
    So, when you prompted the challenge this morning, I thought it would be a piece of cake.
    Instead, I got a BIG BITTER BITE!!!
    I struggled with an afternoon phone call.
    The caller gave her opinion on a subject that we differ 100%! She commented that since there are so many divorces in the Christian faith, why not recommend all couples have pre-marital relations so they will know if they fit together . ARE YOU KIDDING ME????????????

    However, I decided to turn my frustration on scripture and then asked her how she came to this conclusion.
    WOW!!! It worked!!

    I am Soooooo glad that I didn’t open my mouth and spewwww!
    I conversed with a “loving heart” (okay, it wasn’t the most loving at first)foundation of scripture to back up my answer and opinion. THANK YOU!!!

    I don’t want to play that game with this person anymore!


    I choose Blessings!!!!

    I love you πŸ™‚

    Kim Safina

  44. 194
    Linda says:

    OK just read the challenge. Going to try it tomorrow.

  45. 195

    Yes. I will. I’ve only a few hours til some shut eye heads my way – so I’m going to commit it to my Tuesday experience as well.

    Thanks for this reminder. My Monday was so hectic that I thought I might grumble and complain like Israel in the desert, but then… My mood improved and my precious volunteer showed up to lighten my load. I loved the time we spent and how efficiently she worked through the task list I gave her. πŸ™‚

    My hubs and I had this very conversation yesterday after church. He had three hard, long days driving on ice and snow with some very foolish people. He was a bit negative – I asked him to choose joy and then today almost lost mine. πŸ™‚

  46. 196
    Susan B says:

    Oh, man! I just saw this post! Think I’ll make this my Tuesday challenge which will be big…I’m finalizing my taxes!

  47. 197
    Sandy says:

    Dear Beth, Just like everyone else who has commented, I needed this. I saw it at 12:30 on a friend’s facebook status, who must have seen your twitter. I didn’t get to read the blog til tonight. Actually, I do pretty good during the day. It’s now, in the evenings that I’m drained and need this. I join in with others to share on Why I Count it ALL JOY Wednesdays and Simple Pleasures on Thursdays (and Thankful Thursdays). And, my blog post for this past weekend was sNo Complaining! Psalm 147 of Praise. I can blog postively, but like someone else said, I need to add to that, that I will affirm others, and also just that I’ll have a better countenance and tone of voice.
    My Dad’s response to people when they asked how he was, was always, “I can’t complain.” That’s what my daughter shared about remembering the most about him, and it was used in his funeral. Now, it is a cotinuous reminder to me.
    Thank you so much for this challenge. I’m going to try it for the next 21 days of this month of February! I know that you’ve heard that it takes 21 days to develop a habit!
    Thank you again for always sharing what God lays on your heart. Whatever you need, we all seem to need, too!
    I love you!

  48. 198
    Valerie says:

    It’s rather interesting that I am reading this after 8:00 pm and am heading to bed soon as this is how my day went. For some reason I was in a rather cheerful mood and praised God for it during my 2 hour commute today. I only griped about other drivers a couple of times. Each time I did, I had to think of my friend Diane who never gripes – she just gives them permission to be crazy drivers. I decided to steer clear of them and stop griping. It made for a much nicer ride. : )

  49. 199
    Kay says:

    I have not been at my computer today to see this post, so I will definitely apply it tomorrow. What a great suggestion and reminder!

    Atlanta GA

  50. 200
    Stephanie says:

    I failed miserably. Will keep trying -starting tomorrow (or from right now)!

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