Pastor and author Charles R. Swindoll wrote: “Attitude … is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, thab money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company… a church… a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past… we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. 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.”
“You make me so angry!” you tell you spouse. I’m not sure what he or she did, but you (not your spouse) are responsible for your attitude. Another person cannot make you angry. They can act irresponsibly or even intentionally hurtful, but they do not make you anything. You are responsible for how you respond. If you are mad it is because you made a choice to become angry and not something else.
The sooner you accept that reality, the better you will be able to cope with the ups and downs of life. Each morning you can wake up and make two choices about your day. First, you are responsible for how you respond to life’s circumstances. Second, God will give you the guidance and strength you need to make the better choice.
God’s Word gives us this instruction: “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will”(Romans 12:2). You and I can choose to let the world shape our lives or we choose to let God renew our minds each day. With a renewed mind we have a renewed attitude. With a renewed mind we can better know how God would have us live.
You are responsible for your attitude. You are responsible for what you allow to shape you. Choose wisely.