Challenge: One day, no complaining

It seemed not entirely impossible, a challenge worthy of accepting and attempting, something that could be so lovely and uplifting and all. A good and timely lesson for us all.

And then Better Half weighed in on the Sunday school/small group gathering assignment called “fun work,” not homework.

Go one day without complaining.

“We’re not gonna’ last,” he said chuckling with confidence as we made our way through the church parking lot to the car to head home.

I said nothing, biting my lip for distraction, refraining from what I normally might have barked at him with a little hiss for good measure.

“We’ll never make it,” Better Half added for emphasis, as if I hadn’t heard his first prediction about what he called not homework, but more like “mission impossible.”

I shot Donnie Downer a look that probably wasn’t very Christian-like.

Our Sunday school class was given a challenge involving four things to do during the week, the first of which was to orchestrate, experience and set our sights on a whole 24-hour period in which we wouldn’t whine.

No crabbing.

No criticizing.

No belly-aching.

We drove home in silence, contemplating the ramifications, thinking what on earth will we do now?

We pulled in the driveway, looked at each other and started laughing.

You don’t realize how much you whine until you start listening to yourself.

We decided before too long into the day of this experiment, however, that we were going to need a tutor or maybe some extra-credit homework to get a satisfactory, not an unsatisfactory on this lesson.

Two other parts of the homework assignment were a little easier: Make a list of your blessings, which — hello! — could be motivating in cutting down on your complaining — and see a need, fill a need.

The last one seemed to be the easiest one to pull off –play. Enjoy life, laugh, have fun as if you were a child again relishing, for example, something as simple as a game of jacks.

Jacks! Now there’s a game I could stand to revisit, I told Better Half, encouraged as I vowed to go out and buy an old-fashioned set of metal jacks, but all I could find was the set with the big plastic ones.

Now that’s not a complaint, mind you.

That’s just an observation.

We’ll keep working at this no-crabbing stuff, but these things take time.

And that’s probably why God made tomorrow.

(Kiaski, a resident of Richmond, is a staff columnist and community editor for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times. She can be contacted at