At our house D.R.A. stands for Dirty Rotten Attitude.
And believe me, when there IS one, nobody’s in a good mood!
One of the few things I learned early on is: a bad attitude is the symptom of a deeper problem—a lather of thoughts, emotions, anxieties, etc. simmering below the surface, bubbling up in a hot, smelly, nasty froth, and usually spilling over onto those closest to me.
Whenever one member of our family starts seething, another one of us will usually ask, Okay… What’s the real problem?
Sometimes it takes a little more probing, but when we eventually figure out the actual reason for the upset, the tension level decreases almost immediately. Or in some cases, the emotion is redirected toward the primary cause, instead of something or someone who happens to be available (or in the way).
A fellow blogger wrote about a recent less-than-enjoyable trip she took to a reunion with her family. The humidity was so bad her hair frizzed uncontrollably. She had a choice to make.
My hair was a mess, but that’s no reason to be a grouch. I just pretended I was gorgeous.
Her relatives might remember her wild hair, but more likely they were blessed by her confidence, humor, lively conversation, well-behaved kiddos, her obvious love for her spouse, and a genuine “pleased to meet you” when introduced for the first time to his side of the family. Her attitude changed her presentation.
God is a Master at:
transforming hum-drum into something beautiful,
turning impossibilities into victories,
using average individuals and everyday objects to accomplish extraordinary purposes!
I just need to cooperate by believing He can and He will… by thinking His thoughts whenever faced with a challenge… instead of giving in to a D.R.A.
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. – Philippians 4:8
Yeah, life can get pretty messy at times, but the real mess exists within my mind when I allow my fallen nature to persuade me of anything other than the truth.
What am I thinking? Could I be more grateful? Can I remember what God has done in the past? Don’t I believe He will prove Himself faithful again? And where’s the worship (when I complain)?
With a change of perspective, my countenance reflects the Spirit’s goodness rather than my growl-y-ness. These difficulties, this chaos, my self-imposed predicaments (or not) are all temporary.
But how I handle them has a profound impact on everyone I come into contact with, on my perception of the world around me, and in my daily walk with Him.