Monday, December 01, 2008
Current Study: People Who Made a Difference
Today’s Topic: Trust God
Today’s Scripture: Psalm 84:10-12 Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless. O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you.
What a week it was. I sure missed my time at the computer each morning. I thought I would be spending the days deer hunting and using up my vacation time. Instead I spent three days sick in bed. It was the worst gun deer season ever. But I really didn’t feel all that bad about it because I just kept thinking about the big buck I got during the archery season. He will be on my wall soon. Life is a lot more fulfilling when we are thankful for what we have instead of envious of what we don’t have.
There are blessings to be found in every circumstance of life. Sometimes we need to be reminded of simple lessons like that. We need our attitudes adjusted. I received a reminder like that yesterday in church. My attitude wasn’t bad, but my cold was really annoying me. I had made it through the first service with only two coughing spells, and they weren’t bad. Well, the first one was because I missed the mute button on my microphone and coughed right into it, bringing a collective gasp from the congregation. I think several of them were frustrated that I had awakened them from a nice dream. As I sat in the front row for the second service, a young man named Tom leaned forward during the offering and told me he had a story for me. It’s just what I needed to hear.
Tom is a new believer, and is serious about his faith. He told me that he had been having a bad day at work on Saturday. He works in a fast food restaurant, and the customers had been frustrating him all day. Imagine that – on the weekend after Thanksgiving customers being annoying. Anyway, several of his previous customers had paid for their food with quarters. He had grown tired of counting change. Why couldn’t someone just be normal and hand him paper money? He turned around from his station and confessed to the Lord that he was frustrated, and asked God to bless him. He turned back to his cash register to help the next customer. After taking the order, the customer handed him a five dollar bill. He looked at it as he placed it in the cash drawer, and there, written in hot pink ink on the bottom of the bill, were the words you are blessed.
As he told me the story, he showed me the bill. He had exchanged one of his own for it, and said he was going to carry it in his wallet as a reminder to trust God. I could see in his eyes that God had taught him an incredible lesson. I needed the reminder as well. You see, no matter how frustrated we may be at the circumstances of life, we are blessed when we trust in God. It’s so simple. So why is it so hard to practice every minute of every day? It’s because we are more envious of what we don’t have than we are thankful for what we do have. I didn’t get to shoot any deer. I didn’t get to hunt as much as I wanted to. I didn’t get to see my boys shoot any deer. I did get to see all of my grandchildren. I did get to spend three days watching sports center and football. I did get to spend extended time meditating on God’s word and preparing for Sunday’s sermon. I did get to see God use that to touch several lives and initiate change. It’s our choice what to dwell on. We get to choose what to think about. We get to choose our attitude. The great preacher Chuck Swindoll said it this way.
The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.
Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or 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 every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past… we cannot change the fact that people will 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.
As for me, I will choose to remember that I am blessed, because I trust in the LORD. How about you?