An Attitude Adjustment
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV)
16 Be joyful always; 17 pray continually; 18 give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
A story was once told of a little boy who was overheard talking to himself as he strutted through the backyard, baseball cap in place, toting ball and bat. He was heard to say, "I'm the greatest hitter in the world." Then he tossed the ball into the air, swung at it and missed. "Strike one!" Undaunted he picked up the ball, threw it into the air and said to himself, "I'm the greatest baseball hitter ever," and he swung at the ball again. And again he missed. "Strike two!" He paused a moment to examine his bat and ball carefully. Then a third time he threw the ball into the air. "I'm the greatest hitter who ever lived," he said. He swung the bat hard again, missed a third time. He cried out, "Wow! Strike three! What a pitcher! I'm the greatest pitcher in the world!"
What an attitude. I do not think that anything could discourage this young all star. Like him, we who name ourselves Christian must develop an attitude of great optimism, for when it appears to all others that life should hold no joy, we have something to sing about. When it appears to all others that there is nowhere to turn, we have an advocate at the right hand of the Father who intercedes for us and who hears us when we pray. When it appears to all the world as if our lives are to be despised and there is nothing to be grateful for, we as followers of Christ can lift our heads and break forth in a song of praise for we still have reason to bless our God for he has not treated us as our sins deserve. As Christians, we need to find our song of praise or put away the name. If we are Christian, pessimism must give way to optimism. We need to adjust our attitude to the name we profess.
II. Adjust your Attitude to Reflect Christian Faith
A. An Attitude of Joy (Billy Sunday – no joy, a leak in your Christianity)
1. Commanded Joy
2. Constant Joy
B. An Attitude of Prayer (The air we breathe)
1. Commanded Prayer
2. Continual Prayer
C. An Attitude of Thanksgiving (Matthew Henry – I was not the robber)
1. Commanded Gratitude
2. Consistent Gratitude
III. Adjust your Attitude to Reflect God’s Will
A. God’s Will is Declared to You (A great privilege)
B. God’s Will is Designated In Christ (A place of blessing)
C. God’s Will is Designed for You (A blueprint for the Christian life)
This week I heard a radio program in which the speaker was trying to give encouragement to the Christian to find their song. She said, it is not about whether you have a voice. Hymns and songs and choruses are not sung in the church because we have a voice, it is because we have a song. God wants you to have a song in your heart. A song of joy, flowing up to God out of a thankful heart. If you can not do that this Thanksgiving, then I encourage you to make an attitude adjustment.