Attitudes can be a little tricky at times. I believe they are the filter to how we see the world. Yesterday, my husband and I drove close to six hours to get to a camp ground in the mountains. We had been discussing our attitudes and how we were going to try to manage them for the good.
Now most of you know when you make a decision to try and improve an area of your life, you are provided challenges to test you along the way. And sure enough hurdles were waiting for us. After a long drive and a desire to find our home away from home, our attitudes were a little edgy.
So when we pulled into the site, it wasn’t all we had hoped or imagined. The sewage opening smelled, a limb scraped the top of our camper and the ground was nasty. You can imagine, our attitudes were slipping, but we encouraged each other to stay on the straight and narrow.
After visiting our friends for a minute, I walked into the camper to find my husband kneeling down under the sink. We hadn’t used the camper for a while and to our dismay, the pipe under the sink had a hole in it. Water was everywhere and his attitude had drastically digressed.
As I write this, my husband has gone to the hardware store to purchase the parts needed to fix the pipe. I, on the other hand, am working through what had gone wrong with the one element to life we all have control of, our attitudes.
Paul had every reason to have a poor attitude. He was in prison with no hope of getting out. He had done nothing wrong and was chained to the floor in a jail cell that smelled far worse than my sewage pipe. I believe if anyone can teach me what to do to change my attitude, it’s Paul.
In the book of Philippians, he’s writing to friends and assisting them with their attitudes. He writes in chapter 4:8 “Finally, brothers and sisters, 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.”
Unlike Paul, my situation has changed. Candles cover up the smell and friends have joined us for small talk and laughter. And I only have to walk across a path to experience this beautiful stream.
Isn’t it sad how we can miss out on some of the most beautiful gifts God has for us when we use a negative filter to look through? I promise I will try harder today to live with a grateful spirit and as Paul writes, I’ll ponder on all the things that are excellent and praiseworthy.