Attitude

I am a quote addict and I eat them like some people eat M&M’s. Today, I have been pondering this quote from Attitude by Chuck Swindoll:

“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.  Attitude, to me, is more important than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than success, than what other people think, 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 embrace for that day.  We cannot change our past . . . we cannot change the fact that people 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% how I react to it.  And so it is with you . . . we are in charge of our ATTITUDES.”

I am learning to be bold by expressing truth in love. There is a balance. I pray that my attitude is in line with God’s Word today and everyday. When I make a mistake, I can go to Him and ask for forgiveness. I believe God wants us to have an attitude of love for Him and others. If it starts there, you won’t miss the mark. Where you start makes all the difference in where you finish. I want to finish well.

We have a choice everyday regarding our attitude. We have little control in what happens to us, but we have ultimate control of our response to things that happen to us. What are you choosing today?

… Selah …

Before I get out of the shower, while the sun is still perched beyond the horizon, 300 thoughts have wound their way through my morning routine.

Breakfast. Clothing. To wash my hair or not. Lunch for Callie. Medicine. Coffee! Deadlines. Clients. My calendar. New opportunities. Writing topics. Sore muscles from a run. Did I put the clothes in the dryer? Call dad. Call the pediatrician. Take chicken out of freezer.

Shower’s done and hair is washed. Coffee pot has been turned on, and the thoughts continue to fight for space in my brain.

A never-ending cascade of mental snapshots that intrude into the quiet stillness of my morning. I am the only one up. Oh, how I love to pause and watch my babies sleep, all three of them!

But the thoughts continue.

Selah. Pause. Stop. Breathe.

What makes this so hard for me? For you?

How do I turn off my brain? Now that’s a rhetorical question if I have ever heard one. It is a machine that only rests when I sleep. Thankfully. Maybe that’s why I covet my sleep?

Selah. To pause and reflect. To stop whatever you are doing or thinking about and ponder something else. More deeply, with more intention.

In a way, it means to get a handle on your thought life. To tell it what to do instead of it dictating your haphazard day.

I believe that this is critical. If we can master our thought life, our emotions and behaviors will fall in line.

That’s what I am reflecting on today. What about you?

Selah, friends.

As a man thinketh in his heart so is he.Proverbs 23:7

“Do not conform 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

Longing to Let Go

Another day has fallen off the calendar and Christmas keeps creeping up on us. The light of this crisp winter day fades and turns into an even colder night. As I sit in my warm and spacious home, I have so much to be thankful for. Yet, I long for so much more.

Not necessarily material things. I learned a long time ago that money will never make me happy.

Things that money can’t buy. Like peace, hope, and justice. Love, passion, and desire.

Sometimes instead of acquiring more, letting go is the best way to get more…more peace, hope, and justice.

And once you let go, you have the appropriate currency to acquire more love, passion, and desire.

What or who are you holding on to that is causing you to have anxiety, lose hope, and feel like a victim?

What is it costing you to hold on?

What would it look like to let go?

I am letting go, friend. And it feels like all those things that money can’t buy.

Impact: The Ripple Effect

“She will never know the impact her 5 minute conversation had on my life.”

“I wish I could thank the person that paid for my lunch yesterday. I will never know who he is, but his impact on my life will last a lifetime.”

“She will never know what she really did for me. She made such a huge impact with such a little gesture.”

“I never knew that giving to someone else would feel so good to me. That really impacted me.”

Small gestures of kindness. Words of thanksgiving and praise. Gifts of love and sacrifice.

You may never know how much something you do or say will impact people who cross your path. For the better or worse. The comments in quotes are real…true impact moments.

Do you recall tossing pebbles into a pond as a young child? I still love to toss pebbles into a pond or lake. There is something mesmerizing about watching the ripples created by the small unassuming pebble. Small, yet full of impact.

What can you do tomorrow, however small, that will cause ripples?

You are leaving an impact or making ripples, whether you realize it or not. Start small, and you may be surprised at the tsunamis that can be created.

No regrets!!

“Cowardice asks the question – is it safe?
Expediency asks the question – is it politic?
Vanity asks the question – is it popular?
But conscience asks the question – is it right?
And there comes a time when one must take a position
that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular;
but one must take it because it is right.”

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

My nanny used to always say to me, “do the right thing”. Now, even as a child, I knew what she meant. Don’t do what will make you happy…unless it is the right thing. Don’t do what will make everyone else happy…unless it is the right thing. DO what makes God happy, and you will be happy in the long run. Don’t worry about everyone else. Their happiness is not my responsibility.

Lora Jane’s synopsis of the above was always “do the right thing”. Easy enough, right??

As a child, this was much easier than it has become as an adult. Decisions at 8 and 9 years old are a little more black and white than decisions at 35 and beyond. But, in the end, my nanny was right about doing the right thing. If my compass is due North (God), then my decision-making becomes much clearer. If my compass leans to the East or West (other people and pleasing them), then my clarity fades.

For me, my moral code is based on God’s Word. It is where I get my clarity. It helps me to make decisions for my life and my family. When I have a particularly difficult decision to make, I pray, ponder, and pour through the Word until I have peace that I have the right answer. Sometimes it is not black and white, but once I have inner peace that comes from God, I then make the right choice, which is not always easy.

Every decision we make has consequences, or it costs us something. Doing the wrong thing, costs you something. However, doing the right thing also costs us something. It may cost you one of your friends. It may cost you your job. It may cost you your life. Are you willing to pay the cost to do the right thing??

Here are some coaching questions that may help you “do the right” thing. My nanny would be very proud!

What or who prevents you from doing the right thing?

What is it costing you?

Are you willing to continue paying that price?

If not, what is the first baby step in the direction of the right thing?

What is your moral code based upon?

When was the last time you did the right thing and even though it was painful, you knew you did the right thing?

Keep pressing on journey mates. You will NEVER regret doing the right thing.