Your Attitude Stinks

I had a revelation and I just had to share. I don’t know. Maybe it will help someone out there somewhere.

I have an attitude problem.

Last week my attitude when from bad to down right inexplicable. It started off with me calling people names in my head. You know..When someone cuts you off, and you say, “Idiot.”Not out loud, of course, only in your head. Nothing wrong with that, right?

However, it got worse. I was soon calling everyone an idiot, and sadly, worse. I did all this for absolutely no reason whatsoever! I don’t know what was happening to me. I noticed this happen once before when I was watching too much TV with cursing in it. But this wasn’t the case, becaise htis month I had been fasting TV. All this time, I am supposed to be getting closer to God and His likeness, and now I was getting further.

And this is what shocked me the most. A week prior, I had had an awesome week. I really did feel close to God. I was thinking I could give up TV for good. I was praying about doing missions work over the summer. I was smiling, skipping, and just having an awesome time. It wasn’t any wonder that I stopped smiling or skipping when my attitude went sour. The strangest thing was the fact that I no longer wanted to go on a mission’s trip. I had lost all desire. Poof. Just like that. What happened?

The only person I could think of who had a pretty bad attitude was Jonah. He was furious that he had to go to the wicked city of Ninevah to warn the people of their impending doom. Jonah ran the other direction and ended up in the belly of a whale. God ended up giving him another chance and although, Jonah finally preached to the Nivevites, he was still angry! He sat sulking outside the city just waiting for its destruction. Jonah totally missed it. Jonah was called to be a prophet and he missed the point of his purpose all on account of his rotten temper.

We will never know what happened to the rest of Jonah’s life. Did he ask God for forgiveness once again? Did he go on to do great things? Did he ever find joy in living for God?

I don’t want my story to end so abruptly and on such a devastating note. We must be wise and do as Ecclesiastes 7 states: “Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.”

Once I realized that my dream to do missions in the summer was slowly vanishing, I quickly repented. I never want to miss out of God’s plan and chance to use my giftings because of a stinky attitude.

Hey, I’m no fool.

All the Glory

It’s very hard to separate ourselves from what we do. But in reality, everything we do and are able to do is because of God’s grace and mercy. Maybe that is easy for you. Maybe it’s easy to give God praise when he helps you to get a raise or when you receive accolades for a job well done.

Is it just as easy to give him glory when you don’t want to do something?

Let me give you an example. Last Sunday, I had to go to an open house for 3 hours at my school. There is nothing worse than having to go to work outside of your normal working hours. I mean, holidays and weekends off is one of the perks to being a teacher. Well, I was complaining about it and I was trying to pump myself up by saying, “Well, I only have to be there for 3  hours.” But then God awoken my heart to something else. He said, “Why don’t you do it for me?”

Now, I’ve heard this said before. There’s a scripture in 1 Cor. 10:31 that reads:

“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”

But these were just words until the Holy Spirit breathed life into them and all of a sudden it took on a whole new meaning in my soul. So, I repented and I went to work saying, “Lord, this is for you.” And you know what? I had a great time. I got to do something I never get to do. I got to talk to potential new students, parents, and I even gave a tour of the school. Maybe because of my attitude people will decide to enroll at our school, which will mean we still have our jobs; but, even better yet, maybe my attitude of joy and willingness to help will spread to just one person and just maybe God could use that to touch their heart in a way only He can.

Look, God can do whatever He wants, but for some reason He chose to use us. There is nothing we can do outside of His gifting, so in everything let’s praise His name and bring glory to Him in whatever we do.

Knowing or Doing?

Have you ever heard that teen, who when spoken to says, “I know, I know,” sighs and storms off?

I bet it’s not just kids, sometimes we have the same attitude towards the things of God. I don’t know if it’s because we become seasoned Christians or because some of our Christian walk is done in cruise control, but we seem to “know” a lot, and yet, do a lot less. For example, I know plenty of scriptures that talk about healing, blessings, the promises of God, and so on; and here’s how I know that I’m not living them: I don’t always have peace. I’m fearful. I don’t think I have enough money. I get worried. I get sick. And I quite simply stop believing in my promises. And that’s the worst one. Somehow, the devil convinces us that God has forgotten us, just as he did to the Israelites time and time again.

But let’s look at Abraham for a second. In Genesis 15:5 God takes Abraham and gives him the promise. He promises him offspring as numerous as the stars. And what did Abraham do with that promise?

“Abraham believed the Lord and he credited to him as righteousness.”

Believing the Lord is credited as righteousness?  So not believing is credited as unrighteousness? Wow. Did you know that the dictionary uses that word synonymously with sinful, wicked, and evil….And we thought we were perfect Christians 🙂

James goes as far as saying, “But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.” (James 5:6,7)

Maybe it’s not that God hasn’t heard our prayers, but maybe there is something in us that just doesn’t believe. I mean really believe. I mean believing to the point of knowing with every ounce of your person. There have been plenty of times where I knew something with my mind, but the Holy Spirit revealed it to my heart. It’s very different, because when He does it, the results seem to be more permanent.

Ask God to check your heart. When God speaks, it shouldn’t be just another “I know, I know” response. Instead, we should seek God in order to become doers of the word and not just hearers.

Getting a New Perspective

I don’t know about you, but I am a creature of ridiculous habit. For example, when I am headed somewhere and I know that I will have to make a turn in a few miles, I will stay in that lane the entire time. I noticed this the other day when I was on my way somewhere and I was in the left lane and I felt so awkward being there because usually I am going to Starbucks and that would put me in the right lane. I felt all out of sync. Not only that, but the other night, I was looking through my driver’s side mirror and I adjusted it just a smidge. The angle may have changed ever so slightly, but the result seemed terribly significant. It got me thinking about 2012 and my perspective. What if I changed the mirror of my heart and just pointed it slightly closer to Jesus? How much more of Him would I see? What differences could I see in the world around me? What if I just took the focus off of me just a little bit. How much of others would I recognize? How much more of Jeremiah 29:11 could I see fulfilled?

I don’t know about you, but I want this year to be different. I want to take God at His Word 100% of the time. I want to see my promises fulfilled. I want to see my family and friends and even my enemies saved. I want to believe that God is who he says He is. I want to love God and love others. Period.

And I don’t think it’s too much to ask.

After all, my Father owns the cattle on a thousand hills.