So what kind of attitude are you going to carry into the New Year? Be honest with yourself: many things about your life boil down to the hand you have been dealt. You can't change the fact that you were born in that place and with certain givens for your appearance, IQ, or physical skills. Education and training can open some doors for you, but they cannot change your past, make you taller and more athletic, or alter the fact that some people are unfair in the way they treat you.
In spite of the fact that most of our life circumstances are beyond our control, we are all still tempted to fret and complain about things that cannot be changed. Of course they cause distress. They certainly put us at a disadvantage in certain contexts. They mustn't be allowed to define or defeat us.
The people who do best with life move beyond the temptation to whine and feel sorry for themselves. They face their disappointments and move beyond them. They acknowledge life's bad breaks and look for ways to turn them into growth moments. They work from a half-full rather than half-empty glass mindset.
These people have a different attitude than the defeatist and whiner. They have found a way to make lemonade from their lemons.
Teach me, O God, so to use all the circumstances of my life today that they may bring forth in me the fruits of holiness rather than the fruits of sin.
Let me use disappointment as material for patience;
Let me use success as material for thankfulness;
Let me use suspense as material for perseverance;
Let me use danger as material for courage;
Let me use reproach as material for long-suffering;
Let me use praise as material for humility;
Let me use pleasures as material for temperance;
Let me use pains as material for endurance.
When a given day begins, countless things are headed your way over which you have no control. It may be bad weather or someone's bad temper, a deadline that won't budge or a client equally resistant to change. The one factor you can control through it all is your attitude toward them.
Your attitude today will make all the difference in everything that matters.
Dear friends, you always followed my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away, it is even more important. Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him (Philippians 2:12-13)