I love a good attitude. My mother kids me about being so concerned with the attitude of store clerks. If someone is kind, they’ve won me over. I’ll be a faithful customer. If they suffer with a negative disposition, I struggle. I love friendly people; I just do.
As a Christian couple, how important is attitude? Very. It’s significant inside the home, as well as in public. Our attitude has the potential to make or break the relationship with our spouse. Our attitude has the potential to draw others to Christ, or drive them from Him.
Attitude is serious.
Jesus spent His last evening before the crucifixion with his disciples. If you read John 13-17, you’ll discover He took considerable time sharing what was to come in the near future for His disciples, and in years to come. It must have been heartbreaking, overwhelming, and unsettling for His closest friends. Jesus knew this.
He loved those men. He didn’t want to leave them anxious. He wanted to leave them with peace, His peace.. So before Jesus’ last, and most powerful prayer with the men, He reminded them that though they would see much trouble in this world, they would find peace through Him.
We have this same peace.
This is why we can have the same attitude as the disciples. We know Jesus has overcome the world. We can approach each day knowing we are victorious in Christ! We choose, like the disciples, an attitude of grace, faith, and perseverance.
Jeff and I have talked alot about attitude lately. We both continue to seek growth in our daily walk with Christ, as well as with one another, and we know our attitude affects this walk. In fact, we pinpointed five areas as a couple where we need to check our attitudes on a regular basis. We will discuss two areas here, and three areas on our podcast, “Attitude is Everything.”
Let’s look at two attitudes God expects in marriage.
-We will live a life of faith. Do you remember the story of the twelve Israelite spies? God commanded Moses to send the men to check out the land of Canaan. His next words were, “which I am giving to the Israelites.” (Numbers 13:1) It’s interesting that before they ever headed out, God told them the land was theirs. If you know the rest of the story, you’ll remember only two of the twelve returned believing God’s promise. The other ten were terrified.
God didn’t honor their faithlessness. The ten unbelieving men never walked Canaan again. Nor their families. Only the two, who held fast to their faith in God, stepped once again on the land flowing with milk and honey. Attitude was everything.
As couples, we must live believing Jesus has overcome the world. Then, we will face our marriage, and the troubles in this world, with a faith filled attitude. You entered into a covenant with God and your spouse - a covenant of love, respect, and belief.
Let me ask, which of the spies are you? Are you among the ten who see only the worst, or are you with the small number who believe the best?
It’s a slippery slope, paying attention to the negative. Suddenly, that’s all we ever see in our spouse. We forget the qualities that drew us to them years ago. We forget the numerous virtues they continue to display because our focus is blurred. It’s a dangerous view. We’ve been there. It’s almost impossible after 37 years of marriage to not fall into this pattern from time to time, but it’s not healthy, it’s not Christlike. Jeff and I pay close attention now, so we catch it quicker. We’re intentional, identifying the enemy. He’s slick...too slick. His slippery slope will destroy a relationship.
Decide now to have faith in God, your marriage, and your spouse. Notice the positive, and believe the best. Give the negative to God and trust Him. Remember, He has overcome the world.
-We will be generous. I believe generous people are grateful people. Generosity moves the focus from us to others. Again, our focus affects our attitude. There are more than enough verses in the Word concerning generosity and gratitude to teach us both are commanded. Why? Because through these we also find peace, trusting God to take care of our needs.
As generosity cultivates within our marriage, we begin to recognize blessings received. We stop fixating on our neighbor’s blessings. Whether we covet as a couple what others have, or we secretly covet attributes of someone else’s spouse, it’s dangerous. Don’t go there. The enemy feeds on greed.
Start now focusing on the blessings in your home and marriage. Start now focusing on ways to bless others. As you become generous with your spouse, and with others, you’ll develop an attitude of gratitude. You’ll be blessed!
Don’t forget to identify three additional positive attitudes needed for the Christian couple on our podcast, Marriage by the Word.
Seeking the Word,