Summary: The man went into the restaurant and said, “Do you serve crabs here?” And the waiter said, “Why, yes sir, we serve anybody here.” Twelve principles for enhancing our attitudes.
Let the Spirit of God Enrich Your Outlook (Eph. 1:15-20)
The man went into the restaurant and said, “Do you serve crabs here?”
And the waiter said, “Why, yes sir, we serve anybody here.”
The Bell, the Clapper, and the Cord: Wit and Witticism, (Baltimore: National Federation of the Blind, 1994), p. 73
George Croly wrote a marvelous hymn that embodies a prayer that the Holy Spirit would enrich, empower and enable us with a new and improved attitude. He wrote:
"Spirit of God descend upon my heart. Wean it from earth, through all its pulses move. Stoop to my weakness, mighty as You Art. And make me love Thee as I ought to love.
"Teach me to feel that Thou art always nigh. Teach me the struggles of the soul to bear. To check the rising doubt the rebel sigh. Teach me the patience of unanswered prayer.
"Teach me to love Thee as Thine angels love. One holy passion filling all my frame. The baptism of the heaven descended Dove. My heart an altar and Thy love the flame."
He wrote these words during a time when he was suffering great physical pain. Instead of sinking in to the trough of depression, discouragement and bitterness, he asked the Spirit of God to lift up His heart and eyes to the hill from whence came his help. His help was in the Lord who made heaven and earth.
The twelve following principles can lift your attitude and give you a rejuvenation of the encouragement that is embodied in your spirit through the Holy Spirit’s renewal, restoration and rekindling of His love:
1. The Holy Spirit gives us the spiritual eyes to see possibilities rather than problems in people, situations and relationships. Paul prayed for this kind of spiritual insight for the Ephesians: "I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe." (Eph. 1:18) Ask the Lord to give your people spiritual enlightenment to see more possibilities and less problems.
Illustration: Attitude and Strength
A person’s mental attitude has an almost unbelievable effect on his powers, both physical ad psychological. The British psychiatrist, J.A. Hadfield, gives a striking illustration of this fact in his booklet, The Psychology of Power. “I asked three people,” he wrote, “to submit themselves to test the effect of mental suggestion on their strength, which was measured by gripping a dynamometer.” They were to grip the dynamometer with all their strength under three different sets of conditions.
First he tested them under normal conditions. The average grip was 101 pounds. Then he tested them after he had hypnotized them and told them that they were very weak. Their average grip this time was only 29 pounds! In the third test Dr. Hadfield told them under hypnosis that they were very strong. The average grip jumped to 142 pounds.
Bits and Pieces, May, 1991, p. 15
2. The Holy Spirit helps you become more objective in your attitude and less oriented toward taking problems personally. Paul wrote, "Therefore, let us stop passing judgment on one another." (Rom. 14:13) Paul did not even judge himself since he left that up to the Lord. Ask the Lord to help you develop a thicker skin that is able to deflect criticisms and teach your people how to avoid judging one another.
3. The Holy Spirit teaches us how to think, talk and conduct ourselves as the person we wish to become like - Jesus Christ. It is necessary for a person to think correctly before they can grow into what they want to become. Paul wrote, "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind." (Rom. 12:2) Ask the Lord to teach you more about the way you should think, talk and conduct yourself, enabling you to grow into the best person God wants you to be. Solomon wrote, "As a man thinks within himself so he is." (Proverbs 23:7)
4. The Holy Spirit helps you be more of an overcomer than one frustrated by their circumstances. Paul wrote, "We are more than conquerors through Him who loves us." (Rom 8:37) Ask the Lord to help you develop more an attitude of praise, thanksgiving and confidence in God’s promises for victory amidst the strife.
5. The Holy Spirit gives you more of a courageous, bold and upbeat attitude than a mere maintenance perspective toward your ministries. Solomon wrote, "The wicked man flees though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion."(Proverbs 28:1) Ask the Lord to give you greater confidence that there is victory in Jesus for your personal life and ministries.