Attitude and Effort

IMG_4127Last week I posted a quote by Billy Cox – a motivational speaker – on Facebook that read, “The two things in life you are in total control over are your attitude and your effort.”

As I’ve contemplated this piece of advice, it has occurred to me that most of us are a bunch of control freaks running around thinking we have it all together, when in fact, we have very little together.

I hope it’s not just me….

If you are one of the few who are calm, cool and collected…well, look around and you will likely see family, friends, neighbors, and co-workers – or me – who can often have a bad attitude and who make even less effort to do anything about it.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that if attitude and effort were so easily controlled we would have lots of folks with sunny outlooks and the less fortunate wouldn’t be such a large group (because we’d put so much effort into helping others, ourselves, etc.).  Sigh.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:8-9

God tells us above what is important.

The problem begins when we place ourselves as our highest priority.  We then become the control freaks that lack action and the effort that make a difference, because we care too much about worldly things and not our heavenly destination.

However, when we focus on God and the things that He deems significant (purity, honorable, justice, love, excellence and praise-worthy things), we find our lives will reflect these characteristics.

“What is the difference between an obstacle and an opportunity?  Our attitude toward it.  Every opportunity has a difficulty, and every difficulty has an opportunity.” ― J. Sidlow Baxter

Life will always deal out its generous share of difficulty.  It’s our job to face each day with a positive attitude and the knowledge that God is in control and we are His hands and feet.

Make no mistake, changing our attitudes and efforts takes purpose and planning.  Without these, we will have a lot of good intentions without anything to show for them.

This, in turn, leads to a disgruntled attitude and a lack of motivation to put in any effort because of past failures.

Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.  For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. Colossians 3:2-3

Set your mind on God and start sharing this great attitude with the world!  It’s a great combination of attitude and effort!!!!

Some Wisdom for Today:  Proverbs 17:22 – A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

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