The Bible is full of people who exemplified gratefulness and faith when it might have been tempting to complain. When our children are struggling with contentment, we can point them to the godly men and women of Scripture who handled their difficulties in a Christ-like way. . . .
When things are not going their way and circumstances are not ideal, children, like us, are naturally tempted to complain. We can encourage them by redirecting their perspective. Circumstances seem less important when their minds are turned toward God’s active involvement in their lives, his sovereignty, and ultimately, his eternal plan and reward. The temptation to fret and grumble over discomfort or trouble is more likely to melt away in light of the truth spoken to us in Romans through the apostle Paul: “I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us” (8:18). . . .
Of course, the greatest example we can point our children to is Jesus. Hebrews 4:12 confirms that Jesus was tempted in all the same ways as us when he was here on earth: “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin.” We cannot say that Jesus did not complain because he did not face the same situations as we do. Jesus encountered every situation, yet he did not sin. Therefore, he also encountered the temptation to complain, but he never did.
Jesus always exemplified what it means to trust the Father in all things. Through the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit, God enables his children to do the same. May we teach our children to not focus on the negative, which leads to complaining, but to take captive every thought, making it obedient to Christ and expressing an attitude of gratitude through praising God in all situations.