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God has blessed each one of us with a powerful weapon; our attitudes. Attitude is defined as a way of thinking or feeling about something or someone. How we think impacts our entire life, either for good or for bad. Bad attitudes can damage friendships and drive people away; conversely, good attitudes allow God to bless our relationships and bring the right people into our lives.
Our thoughts don’t exist in a vacuum; they’re shaped either by the world or by the Word of God. In light of this, it’s exceedingly important to cultivate the right thoughts and attitudes. We have a choice on what to set our minds on; God gives us clear instructions here. “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things...” (Philippians 4:8). What we expose ourselves to influences how we think, and how we think determines how we feel; therefore, internalizing God’s Word protects us from negative thinking.
Our attitude affects everyone we meet. The thought processes governing our attitudes are extremely important to God. He wants the best for us, but He gives us the freedom of choice to decide for ourselves how we want to think. Our decision profoundly affects the quality of our lives. “Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live!” (Deuteronomy 30:19, NLT).
The thought processes we embrace affect what we do and how we act, which may explain why people with sour attitudes treat others poorly. We live in an overwhelmingly negative, limiting world; absorbing its influence can’t help but damage our own thinking. A bad attitude is the result of dwelling on the negativity and destructive mindsets the world pushes our way. We counteract this by turning over our minds to God. “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (Romans 12:2).
It’s God will that we’re in happy, healthy relationships. The right attitude is a key ingredient in these relationships, and we cultivate them by letting Him teach us the right way to think. It’s important that we resist sinking into discouragement or depression while God is working on us. Focusing on the positive things in life puts us in touch with our joy, which gives us great power. “…Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!” (Nehemiah 8:10, NLT).
God doesn’t want us to go through life alone, but depending on our own resources can leave us thinking that it’s impossible to find just the right relationships for us. However, bringing Him into the situation is a game-changer. “But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26). The key to success is to trust that He’s not only able, but willing, to intercede in this area of our lives. Genuinely believing this keeps our attitudes right where they should be.