Attitude Adjustment
Melanie Chitwood

"Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus…" Philippians 2:5 (NIV)

One day I opened my car door and was blasted with a horrific smell. I searched every inch of the car but could not find the source of the stench. I then took action to get rid of the smell: I scrubbed the carpet with deodorizers and sprayed air freshener. The stench persisted. I left the car doors open, deciding I couldn't possibly run errands in that stinky car.

I went back inside, opened the refrigerator, and noticed a small trickle of milk had leaked on to the shelf. After examining the milk container, I realized that the milk must have leaked into the car the day before when I got groceries. That explained the cause of my stinky car: spoiled milk, one of the most offensive odors I've ever smelled.

Negative attitudes are like the stench of spoiled milk, permeating our lives and affecting everyone we come in contact with. Think about some of these negative attitudes that might make you stinky: complaining, selfish, prideful, bitter, or unforgiving. Do any ring true with you today?

Now imagine a pleasing aroma. What comes to mind? A freshly baked pie, the scent of the ocean, newly brewed coffee, or a cinnamon candle. A pleasant aroma is so powerful that it can bring a smile to our faces and make us feel more positive. The same is true of our positive attitudes. In our relationships we can be like a fragrant aroma by adopting attitudes that please and reflect Christ. In fact, Paul teaches that we are a "fragrance of Christ" (2 Corinthians 2:15). Consider these pleasing attitudes: thankful, humble, generous, gracious, kind, and cheerful. You can ask God to be one of these fragrances through you today.

Our attitude provides an accurate litmus test for the true condition of our hearts. God cares first about the condition of our hearts because when God has our hearts, He knows that we're surrendered to Him. He'll mold us and shape our attitudes and actions to reflect His character.

Dear Lord, search me, O God, and know my heart (Psalm 139:23). Soften my heart and make me willing to receive an attitude adjustment from You. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Today’s devotion is adapted from What a Wife Needs from Her Husband, companion to What a Husband Needs from His Wife, both by Melanie Chitwood

Visit Melanie’s blog, What Matters Most

The S.O.S for PMS: Practical Help and Relief for Moms by Mary M. Byers

Show your spring style with a She Speaks T-Shirt in Cranberry or Teal.

Application Steps:
Since our attitudes reflect the condition of our hearts, take some time to sit quietly before the Lord. Allow the Holy Spirit to search your heart.

If you know you've had a bad attitude, ask the Holy Spirit to reveal the root of that stinky attitude. For example, if you've been grumbling and complaining, the root of this attitude might be a sense of entitlement. Once you recognize the root, confess it and ask God to remove it. Ask God to work His Christ-like attitude in and through you.

Consider the various relationships affected by your positive or negative attitude. What fragrance does your spouse smell when you come near? Spoiled milk or a fragrant spring candle? What attitude do your coworkers get a whiff of? What about your children? Or,.the cashier at the grocery store when you're hurrying and running late?

In which relationship is it the most difficult for you to be the "fragrance of Christ"?

Power Verses:
Proverbs 4:23, "Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flows the springs of life." (NAS)

2 Corinthians 2:14, "But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place." (NAS)

© 2010 by Melanie Chitwood. All rights reserved.

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Blogger Diane said...

Wow! I sure needed to hear that this morning. After a silly spat with my husband last night, I woke up several times during the night to pout a little more and make sure that no part of his body was touching mine while we were sleeping. Not only did I rob us of the joy of the evening, now I'm sleepy and tired because I didn't sleep well. Thank-you for reminding me I can choose my attitude!!

Anonymous Lynn said...

I laughed until I cried when I saw the title of your devotion today. Monday morning, back to school after a week off for spring break,not exactly the most peaceful we ever had. Momma's "mean girl" came out, daughters "princess must scream" came out and they collided. After my daughter left for school, I (mom) was not happy. My husband said, "Sit down and do your quiet time, you need it this morning." I logged-on to your devotional and it is entitled "attitude adjustment". How appropriate--God has a sense of humor when he teaches us things about ourselves:)

Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is a saying that "Attitude is everything". So true. I loved this and needed it greatly. It is wonderful to be able to choose the sweet smelling attitude through the power of God. I am so glad that He helps me with this because otherwise, I would be so stinky. Stinky does not bring glory to God.

Blogger Familyof6inTX said...

Needed this today. Last night my husband called me on the fact that I was very snippy with him every time he asked a question. There has been a lot going on in our lives recently and I have let that seep into my attitude instead of letting God have the problems and keeping my attitude focused on Him. Thanks.

Anonymous Trista said...

So, when I am mad (bitter) with my husband because he will not change what he has been doing, I have to change MY attitude?? Please Lord take over, I cannot do this alone. My emotions tend to spill over. Live in me, LEADING my heart full steam ahead. Thank You, Amen. Christ like, here I come!!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok...I really needed that. Not ten minutes ago when I was having my prayer time with the Lord I asked him to help me to have a better attitude about several things going on in our lives right now. I am so thankful that my Father in Heaven allows me to know that he does hear & care about my prayers & what is on my heart. Today he let me know that through your devotion. Thank you for allowing the Lord to use you in a great and mighty way!!!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I loved it:)

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