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Monday, April 17, 2017

Need an attitude adjustment?

The greatest day in your life and mine is when we take total responsibility for our attitudes. That's the day we truly grow up. (John C. Maxwell)

Maxwell also reminds us that others often hear our words, but it is our attitude that comes through even clearer than any of our words! I have heard it said that our attitude determines our altitude - the way we will go is revealed in the attitude we maintain in our pursuit. We assume an attitude and it either carries us or weighs us down - it is simply that which "fixes" us to the point we are aiming toward.

Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. 13 For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him. 14 Do everything without complaining and arguing, 15 so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people. (Philippians 2:12-15 NLT)

As Paul writes to the church at Philippi, his one main goal is for them to grow up in Christ and to experience true contentment and joy. There is something powerful in contentment, maybe because it stems from a mind and heart truly focused on Christ - not swayed easily by every distraction around us. The attitude of contentment often drives us toward things that are truly worthy of our attention and keeps us away from things that will serve as nothing more than nuisance distractions in life.

As Paul indicated, one has to work hard at maintaining the right attitude that helps one attain the right altitude in life. The presence of God in our lives, working in us, giving us the desire and the power to do what pleases HIM is what is in consideration here, my friends. For our attitude is directly "conditioned" or "formed" by that which dwells within! When Christ is front and center in our lives, we find our attitude begins to reflect the conditions of contentment, peace, joy, and focus!

As Maxwell indicated, the thing that comes through the loudest or clearest most of the time is our attitude - the thing that some refer to as our "mental position". We take up this position - it isn't thrust upon us. Too many times we want to blame another for our attitude, or even the circumstances around us, but the truth of the matter is that our attitude is entirely within our control! It is something we assume (take up) - not something another gives us. 

When Christ dwells within, we are less likely to assume attitudes of haughtiness, anger, or even disdain for another. Why? His Spirit within us exerts a pull much in the same way the needle on a compass continually "pulls" north - there is a power within that "rights" our focus. Remember, focus and attitude go hand-in-hand. One is directly related to the other. His Spirit within helps us move toward grace and, in turn, to draw others toward grace, not to repel them with harsh or uncomely attitudes. 

If we find our attitude needs a little "adjusting" now and again, it is likely that the Spirit of God is "pulling" us toward center once again - he is exerting just enough pull to get us focused on Christ so that our attitude begins to reflect his grace once again. Just sayin!