“I love my attitude!”

12-21-12 attitudeNot My Problem

In high school, I had a friend who was described by the school principal as having an “attitude problem.” As rebellious teenagers who had not properly learned the value of respect for authority and the importance of being teachable, my friend and I thought this was hilarious. I even bought him a t-shirt that said, “I Love My Attitude” on the front.

My friend proudly wore the shirt to school just as proudly as he wore his attitude problem. At the time, I saw him as the one with a rebellious attitude and me as just being a supportive friend. Little did I know that my own attitude problem was also growing.

Okay, It Is My Problem

Recently, I was asked to do something because someone else backed out of a commitment. Although I knew right away I would say yes, I purposefully held off making the commitment because my attitude about doing so was terrible. It was filled with assumptions about the intentions of others as well as judgments of what they should or should not have done.

I felt like I needed to get my attitude right before I said yes. Should I have said yes right away because I knew I would eventually anyway and then hope a right attitude followed? What if it didn’t follow?

Doing the right thing with a wrong attitude has bruised my witness way too much. For this reason, I needed to get at the root cause of my attitude problem before making the commitment. I suddenly realized that this was a reoccurring problem that had been growing in my spirit since high school. Time to receive victory over my attitude.

Spiritual Surgery

God’s Word will divide soul and spirit; it will properly judge the thoughts and attitudes of the heart (Hebrews 4:12). I needed spiritual surgery because I was justifying my attitude instead of taking ownership of it. I was allowing others to determine my response to life. As will always happen if we let it, God’s word gave me a much-needed attitude adjustment.

The Bottom Line

As I studied scripture regarding attitude, I more fully realized a truth I had recited to my two boys many times: “Attitude is a choice.” Here’s my scripture path:

  1. Genesis 4:6-7 – Choose to respond correctly and not to react.
  2. Numbers 14:1-4 – Avoid letting a bad attitude lead to a bad decision.
  3. Proverbs 29:25 – Base your attitude on God, not on other people.
  4. Habakkuk 3:17-19 – Refuse to let circumstances dictate attitude.
  5. Matthew 5:5 – Decide to have a humble attitude.
  6. Philippians 1:20-25 – Live with eager expectation.
  7. Philippians 2:5 – Adopt Christ’s attitude.
  8. Philippians 4:4 – Choose joy!
  9. Philippians 4:6-7 – Turn everything into a prayer.

Attitude is a choice, not a feeling. Do you think Jesus felt like being arrested & crucified? He chose a humble attitude based on His purpose from the Father. In following Jesus’ example, I need to do what’s right for God’s will in my life, for what lines up with who I am in Him.

The Root Cause

After re-learning what the Bible says about attitude, I then applied a Biblical principle I knew to be true but that I had up to this point failed to apply to in choosing and directing my attitude.

My attitude in every situation began to change only when I deliberately focused on doing what God wanted me to do in that given situation. When I focused on others and on my selfish desires, my attitude basically tanked. My opinions (not always based on fact and usually based too much on assumptions) and feelings about others should not create my attitude.

When I focus on what God wants, I can step into the light and choose an attitude that pleases Him and that allows me to make the most of every opportunity He gives me in this life. (Ephesians 5:8-17).

DISCUSSION: What can you share about the impact of choosing your attitude?

 Subscribe to Struggle to Victory by Email or Subscribe in a reader

15 thoughts on ““I love my attitude!”

  1. Excellent commentary. I can testify that when we can control our attitude (condition of our heart), we will be the master of our words and actions, and there will need to be less apologies and bad feelings in our relationships. Thanks for reminding us as we are in this special time of year. God bless.

  2. I've noticed that one factor by far determines my attitude – what I meditate on during the day. There have been times where I've mulled over my frustrations with somebody, and I've jumped down their throat the next time I saw them. When I focus on what's wrong and let my internal dialogue be centered around the flaws I see, then my attitude is ALWAYS negative. But when I focus on the good, then I'm thankful and in a much better mood all around.

    • Loren, it reminds me of a friend's motorcycle observation. Your bike follows where your eyes focus. Your attitude follows what you mind concentrates on. Good thoughts–Tom

  3. I do believe attitude is a choice we make. We have to choose how we respond to situations. We have to diligently choose not to react. We must not be controlled by our emotions or by how others act. We are responsible for our choices and attitude is a major one that impacts all areas of our life.

  4. OH ya! I totally agree that attitude is a choice. Sometimes it is hard to choose the right one and then it usually leads to trouble of some kind. Thankfully God helps when I realize I am having a bad day and chnage my focus to praise. That I have round is the best attitude adjuster for me. Merry Christmas everyeone!

  5. This is my focus right now. Something that is really helping me is to ask myself, "Is this NOW?" If it's not now, I refocus my mind on the present. My attitude problem is always the result of something that happened before or worrying about something that may happen in the future. I also agree with Loren that it helps when I seek to help others have a good attitude. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *