A laden soul


May my spoken words and unspoken thoughts be pleasing even to you, O Lord my Rock and my Redeemer. (Psalm 19:14)

John Maxwell reminds us, "People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude." What does your attitude say today? Does it reveal your tiredness or frustration? Does it shine forth with encouragement and hope? We actually 'choose' our attitude, but we would like to blame our attitude on others or circumstances. If it is bad, we blame it on the bad stuff happening in our lives. If it is jubilant, we attribute it to the good stuff going on around us. Spoken words reveal much, but our unspoken thoughts often come across in our attitude. Don't believe me? When was the last time you looked at your posture when you are in the depths of thought about something that is giving you a bit of trouble? How is your posture when you are well-rested versus weary from a lack of the proper rest? Your posture might just reveal a bit of that 'inner thought' attitude you have going on right now!

When both our spoken words and unspoken thoughts are influenced by the Spirit of God within us, we are more likely to reveal an attitude of grace, love, and forgiveness. Those three things go a long, long way toward elevating one's attitude! They can unburden even the most laden of souls. Holding onto a grudge - the feeling that you have been wronged - will just lead to a 'laden attitude'. Your inner thoughts will betray your outward facade. What you believe about the other person will eventually come through loud and clear even when you don't say a thing! Love generously, forgive freely, and give grace where it is least deserved - then see what that does to lighten your burden. 

In closing today, I'd like us to each answer the questions posed by clergyman Henri Nouwen: "Did I offer peace today? Did I bring a smile to someone's face? Did I say words of healing? Did I let go of my anger and resentment? Did I forgive? Did I love? These are the real questions. I must trust that the little bit of love that I sow now will bear many fruits, here in this world and the life to come." What fruit will you bear today isn't just revealed in your spoken words - the real fruit may be hidden in the recesses of your unspoken thoughts. Let the Spirit of God lead you into those recesses today - bringing to light any area where you are holding onto things that only serve to burden your soul. Then let go. Just sayin!

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