Close The Vents! (Heart Vs Habit part 7)

“Close The Vents!” (Heart Vs Habit part 7)

(Final Version)

Pastor Jim Lowe III

Sunday Morning, 9:30am Stream 04/14/24 (2nd Sunday)

(Final Version)


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{All scriptures are “NIV84” unless stated}

Message Title:

“Close The Vents!” (Heart Vs Habit part 7)

We have been saying that 2024 will be a special year for many.


2024 Will Be A Year Of Favor For The Faithful!

We have been doing a LOT of checking ourselves this year.

We are trying to make sure WE are showing ourselves faithful to God! Bishop taught LAST WEEK about Rebellion against God!

The point is to see WHERE are are falling short with God.

If we don’t want the favor…

we don’t have to be faithful…

But the worst thing is to THINK we are doing the right thing… When we aren’t!

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This is where the HEART part comes in!

If you are on the job…

and find out something you’ve been doing for years is wrong… What do we do?

If we CARE about that job… we’ll change.

At LEAST TRY and change!

If we do NOT care about the job… we won’t.

So WE are working to make sure God sees our faithfulness THIS year!

That means if we CAN tighten up… we should!

Because THIS year…God is handing out EXTRA favor. So what are we talking about today?

THIS MONTH a whole year ago…we started a series. It was called “Be Careful Who You Listen To.”

We talked about making sure you have the right people speaking into your life.

Because the things you hear can either help you…or hurt you… But after a year…

We need to revisit this.

Proverbs 18:21

21 The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.

Again…the words around us… Something VERY important about it.

Was the words WE use…

Today we’re going to talk about the power of OUR words. and how those words can get us into trouble.

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The tongue has the power of life and death…

We have a silent killer among us… it’s the words we speak.

Message Title:

“Close The Vents!” (Heart vs. Habit pt. 7)

When we talk about vents…

we’re also talking about complaining. we’re also talking about grumbling.

Complain (v)

  • express dissatisfaction or annoyance about something.

Vent (V)

  • giving free expression to a strong emotion {anger/annoyance}

This is something many of us do.

Some of us have gotten so good at it…

we don’t even realize we’re doing it.


Complaints Are Things We Do Typically When Something Bothers Us.

Many of us can have a great day…

But the one time something bothers us.

the one time someone says something to us.

THAT’s the part we remember the most!

And we talk about it.


What Are Things We Complain About?



childrenmanager at work


order wrongpeople in the drive thru clotheshouse

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churchchurch members

pastorthe lady who took our seat



healthwork life choiceschurch! workchurch



We complain about all of these things as if we weren’t supposed to have any troubles.


John 16:33

33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

The trouble is going to come… we can’t stop it…

The thing is not the trouble…it’s what we DO when it comes!

Jesus has overcome the world… but we don’t go that route.

our natural response is to complain.

Some of us have gotten very good at complaining/venting/grumbling! It becomes a place of comfort for us.

There is a MAJOR problem with that!


Our Mouths Can Get Us Into A Lot Of Trouble!

The bible tells us that our words mean something!

Matthew 12:36-37

36 But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken. 37 For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”

Our words matter!

If we are talking TO a person…

if we are telling someone else about a person/event.

We will be held accountable for what we say.

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God is sitting there with a notepad listening… writing what we said!

Some of us call it complaining… some of us call it venting.

Because we have to be careful when we do it!

Many of us consider complaining/venting/grumbling as therapeutic. As in it makes us feel better

But this does NOT come from God!

It’s NOT one of the things God gave us!

Let’s talk about what God does give us.

Galatians 5:22-23

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

The problem with grumbling/complaining is that it goes against these things.


Ways Complaining Negatively Affects Us:

  • It Doesn’t Actually Help Us Feel Better!

It MIGHT feel good to go to as many people who will listen to us. to talk about how bad things are.

to talk about how crazy that person is

to share our frustrations so others will feel our pain.

What happens when we complain? It works us up!

There have been studies on venting/complaining…

it has become a thing called a Neoassociation Theory.

The Neoassociation Theory:

“The More We Talk About, Think About, And LOOK At The Things That Make Us Angry, The Angrier We Get.”

What this means is that when we complain/vent…

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this is practicing anger and doesn’t actually address the source.

If we were to think of the things that make us angry… and we start describing that anger to others…

it makes us more angry. “And the MORE I think about it…”

Ever had someone venting to you…

and they start raising their voice at you?? and YOU are just listening??

These things don’t give us peace! They rob us of it!

They don’t give us joy!

They don’t give us the fruits of the spirit… They make us more angry!

Why Do We Do Things That Make Us Feel Ways We Don’t Want To Feel?

Many of us vent to “let it out.”

But if it makes us more upset… why do it?

Ways Complaining Negatively Affects Us:

1. It Doesn’t Actually Help Us Feel Better!


Ways Complaining Negatively Affects Us:

  • It Shows An Ungratefulness For What God Has Done For Us!

Many of us miss this one.

but when we complain/grumble/vent…

we are showing dissatisfaction for something that happens in life.

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but the steps of the righteous are ordered by the Lord. and if we aren’t careful…

we could be showing God we’re not grateful for what he’s done for us!

Even in the very beginning!

Genesis 2:20-23

20 So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts of the field. But for Adam no suitable helper was found. 21 So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and closed up the place with flesh. 22 Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.

The man was alone.

The Lord looked for a helper for him. he couldn’t find one…

so he created one!

The man was overjoyed…

something as beautiful as Eve.

Verse 23

23 The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man.”

Can you imagine how he felt seeing her the first time?

God made something he didn’t even know he needed.

But JUST Some time later…

Genesis 3:11-12

11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

What is the FIRST thing Adam does? He complains!

Verse 12

12 The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”

What was something so beautiful…

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Now becomes the thing to complain about. It wasn’t MY fault God!

“If you didn’t put her here…we wouldn’t be in this!”

He’s not only blame shifting… he’s saying it’s GOD’s fault!

We Do the SAME thing!

Many of us complain/vent today about that job we prayed for years ago. Many of us complain/vent today about that car we KNEW God gave us. Many of us complain/vent today about the spouse God handwrapped for us.

When We Complain About Things God Has Given Us, How Is God Supposed To Feel?

Another example:

Numbers 11:1-3

Now the people complained about their hardships in the hearing of the Lord, and when he heard them his anger was aroused. Then fire from the Lord burned among them and consumed some of the outskirts of the camp. 2 When the people cried out to Moses, he prayed to the Lord and the fire died down. 3 So that place was called Taberah, because fire from the Lord had burned among them.

THE people!

The ones who were in slavery… cried out to the Lord!

The ones the Lord had rescued…

ON their WAY to the promised land!

yet they couldn’t stop complaining!


When We Complain About Our Circumstances, It Shows We Aren’t Content With Where God Has Us!

Exodus 16:8

8 Moses also said, “You will know that it was the Lord when he gives you meat to eat in the evening and all the bread you want in the morning, because he has

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heard your grumbling against him. Who are we? You are not grumbling against us, but against the Lord.”

Many of us God might be trying to take us to the blessing we’ve been praying for. but because that journey comes with bumps in the road…

we complain.

we gripe.

we talk about this thing…

we talk about this person.

It shows our lack of awareness of what God is doing for us!

If you believe in God…

and believe he wants better for you.

TRUST where you are right now isn’t where he’s gonna leave you!

UNLESS you can’t stop talking about it!


How Do We Close The Vent?

{How Do We Close The Vent?}

  • Stop Talking About It

Proverbs 29:11

11 A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control.

If you want to feel better, stop doing the thing that makes you feel worse. Stop using your friends and family as a sounding board.

If it’s not to a spiritual counselor or therapist that will HELP you process it… it’s not going to help you.

If you have to address it…address it.

But consistently talking about it isn’t just a complaint…it’s venting.


{How Do We Close The Vent?}

  • Take Your Cares To The One Who Cares

There is one who wants to hear all of our problems.

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The Lord tells us to carry the problems to him… not to each other.

1 Peter 5:7

7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Cast all your anxiety on HIM. don’t cast some of it.

cast ALL of it.

Scripture says to CAST it.

To cast means to get rid of…by THROWING.

Philippians 4:6-7

6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Don’t be anxious about anything. Don’t let other things get to you.

Give it to God…and it says he’ll give you his peace.


{How Do We Close The Vent?}

  • Keep Your Mind Off The Things That Trouble You

Philippians 4:8

8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

Keep your mind on good things. Like what?

Romans 8:28

28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

This situation may be tough…but God is STILL working things out for you!

2 Chronicles 20:15 (b)

…’Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s.

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That the Lord is fighting for you!!

Deuteronomy 31:6

6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

That The Lord is WITH you… he CARES about you…

and He will NEVER leave you.

{In Conclusion}

We have to close the vents.

Venting/Complaining Is NOT a fruit of the spirit.

It doesn’t make us feel better…

it shows God we aren’t grateful for what he could be doing for us.

Philippians 2:14-15

14 Do everything without complaining or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe…

Close the vents!

Proverbs 29:11

11 A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control.



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