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  • Writer's pictureKandi Swift

Attitude is Everything

Sometimes things just don't turn out the way we planned. How we choose to respond in those moments may not change the situation, but it can change our attitude toward it. We get to choose.

Have you ever had your hopes set on something that didn’t turn out quite the way you dreamed or expected? I know I have, and I would probably be safe in saying you have too. Maybe you planned an event and one of your best friends who you counted on being there couldn’t make it, or the food turned out to be a flop. Possibly you planned a vacation, did all your research and when you got there the weather took a turn or your accommodations didn’t meet your expectations. The event or the vacation wasn’t enjoyed because everything didn’t turn out the way it was expected.

I had the opportunity of traveling to New York with close family friends a few years ago. We got to stay in a brownstone in Brooklyn Heights on a street that was named the city’s most beautiful street. It really was beautiful; old-fashioned street lamps, walkways lined with cobblestone and sidewalks decorated with flowerbeds and vibrant green trees. But this trip wasn’t without its “issues”. Literally right around the corner from where we were staying, we found out later, was one of the roughest parts of town. We had to walk through this area each day to catch the subway to the various places we were touring. One of the first nights while walking around the city, it began to pour. We had already purchased tickets for a bus tour and the best seats to see anything were on the top deck, open to the rain. The tour guide provided us with these thin, flimsy, hooded rain coats, so we decided to go for it. We sat on the top deck in the pouring rain and ended up getting soaked, despite the rain coats.

To this day, we reminisce over the scary walks through downtown Brooklyn and getting caught in the rain. When these less-than-pleasant things began to happen, we had a choice to either let it ruin the entire trip, or to make the most of it. I am so happy to say that we chose the latter and created wonderful memories because of it. We sang and laughed in the rain, we friended a business owner at the local street convenience store, and we prayed and walked really fast on our way back to the house every night.

Every one of us have had disappointments in life; times when we did our absolute best and invested our finest efforts, only for the outcome to be something less than what we’d hoped. Some of those disappointments were life-changing and much bigger than just a vacation. I’ve had those too, so I don’t discount the pain and struggles associated with such experiences. However, in these moments or life events, we have a choice. We can either allow the disappointments to take over and ruin it all, creating bitterness and anger, and making everything unenjoyable, or we can choose to make the most of it. When I say make the most of it, I don’t mean settle and succumb to an attitude of “it is what it is”. I mean, make a conscious effort to choose gratitude and thankfulness. There is good in almost every situation, albeit difficult to find at times, but if we make the decision to see the good, we will discover joy and contentment.

Attitude is everything, and we are instructed to guard and watch over it. It’s the very thing that will allow us to either despise or enjoy life. Let’s choose to enjoy it!


Proverbs 17:22 (ESV) “A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”

Philippians 4:8 (ESV) “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”

Philippians 2:14-15 (ESV) “Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world.”



Lord, help me to choose an attitude of joy today and every day. When disappointments from life’s events begin to surface, give me the ability to find the good. Your word tells me that the joy of the Lord is my strength. So, in choosing joy, I inherit strength to walk out each situation with gratitude and a thankful heart.


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