I don’t recall when I first came across “The Attitude” poem by Charles R. Swindoll, but every time I read it I am reminded that I must deliberately choose that which is right, that which is positive. In that poem he explains that our attitude, to a very large extent is more important than are the facts. He states, I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you…we are in charge of our attitudes.”
This morning in Texas, the storms broke loose. It has been raining—raining hard, for the vast majority of the past 12 hours and is predicted to continue for the next 12. It would be so easy for me to react irritably: With our clay soil, the water has no place to go but to puddle above the ground’s surface. Water leaked in and is running the length of my garage. I got wet just trying to load my car. Rain drenched my entire lower half as I made my way from the car to the office door. I slipped on the tile floor just after I entered the office. I sit here typing while my pant legs drip dry and my trouser socks turn ice cold. My son’s cross-country meet, which I thoroughly enjoy, will be cancelled. Patients will likely be late for their appointments with me because of the unusually poor road conditions. Etc. Etc. Etc.
Still, I have a choice. I choose to be joyous and grateful for this rain. The farmers are in desperate need of rain for their crops. Our severe drought conditions have dried up many of the lakes, resulting in grass literally growing under people’s boats and for many, where there used to be many feet of water, there now exists nothing but sand and weeds. And after a couple of days of rain, I will appreciate the sunshine all the more when it returns!
In Philippians 4:8 (NIV), we are admonished to take steps to ensure our attitude is right: “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.”
Here’s to expecting positive things to happen!
The clouds parted and blue skies peeked through your circumstances, Michelle. Thanks for spreading a little sunshine today.
God is faithful. Thanks for stopping by Pat!
There is a lot happening in my life right now that’s not really what I would prefer – terminal illness, difficult marriage, and so on – but there is always something positive to be gained.
In those two examples…if you’re dying, you don’t take days for granted.
And if your marriage is struggling, you learn that you can only control yourself – never someone else.
Andrew, you are so right. There is always something positive to be gained – but sometimes we have to choose to look for the positive. You are clearly making the choice. That’s at least half the battle. Praying you will experience even more positives than you can see at the moment.
I positively loved this post! Perspective is huge. Lord, I pray You rain-wash our lenses to see more clearly through Your eyes!
Yes, Cheryl, as you so aptly put it “Perspective IS huge!” The important thing is remembering God’s truth over and above what seems true in our circumstances.
Thank you, Michelle, for speaking into my life today. Attitude is like the rudder on a large vessel. And we who profess Christ alive in us cannot have both bitter and sweet water flowing from our fountain. It’s a contradiction. And He has called us out of Egypt, out and away from the bitter herbs of bondage. We eat them no more…and choose never to return!
Margie, what a beautiful illustration. May I suggest we go a step further and not just have the rudder on a large vessel, but use it. We have been given the sword of the spirit, but left in a corner it won’t be of much use. Used at the right time, as God intended, we are ready for whatever comes our way! Press on mighty warrior!
Thank you for this reminder, Michelle. And thank you for the bitter and sweet water picture. We can choose never to return!
Yes Vonda, the enemy would like for us to look at all the “bitter” pieces of our lives, but we have a God who can turn those bitter parts into heart-drenching sweetness. Because of Him, Hope Prevails!
Lifting up our attitude in down pours in our lives is like opening up an umbrella in a rain storm. Thank you, Michelle for reminding me to keep my attitude in working order like you did today. Insightful post that brought the Son’s shine in your message.
Carolyn, I love your umbrella analogy. I will remember that! I know you’ve endured plenty of storms. Thank you for sharing the insights you’ve learned along the way – That’s what the body of Christ is all about!
Beautiful reminder! Thank you, Michelle!
I’m so glad you took the time to stop by, MelAnn. Praying for peace for you today and everyday.
My attitude hasn’t been the best lately. I have felt a lot of depression. I am trying to get out of it. Yet, I must lift it up to the Lord as well as improve my attitude and outlook on life with gratitude and acceptance. Thank you for all your beautiful insights!