Pastors Note July 2016


I’m not sure where I came across this but it has stayed with me over the years, ‘whether you think you can or think you can’t you are right.’

For me it talks about attitude. Some people I meet amaze me. In spite of terrible trials they seem to flourish and grow, I find such people truly inspirational. That led me to ask what’s my attitude like when things go pear-shaped; how do I respond?

One of my favourite authors is Chuck Swindoll, here is his view on attitude:

‘The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company … a church … a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past, we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude.’

He goes on to say, ‘I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.’

What do you think? Is he right?

Rick Warren writing on the same subject writes:

‘It’s not what happens to me that matters as much as how I choose to see it. The way I react will determine whether the circumstance makes me better or bitter. I can view everything as an obstacle or an opportunity for growth – a stumbling block or a stepping stone.’

The Bible says; “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

I find those words so challenging, sometimes almost impossible to live, but in my better moments I see their wisdom. Some of the most inspiring people have gone through the most severe trials and yet the trials haven’t made them bitter they really have enabled them to grow as people.

Let me finish with one last quote from Chuck Swindoll;

‘People who soar, are those who refuse to sit back and wish things would change.’

Lord help us to be a little more like that each day.

All the best