January 04, 2017

The Most Powerful “Thrive Factor” for a New Year

Written By Cary Schmidt

Are you ready to THRIVE into 2017?

Have you considered recently the power of attitude—how much our attitude toward life and circumstances determines so many of our outcomes? I really believe my attitude toward a challenge is 90% of the battle of growing through that challenge. Attitude determines whether I see an obligation or an opportunity, a burden or a blessing, a problem to suffer or a chance to grow. Two people with different attitudes can look at the exact same thing and see two very different pictures!

If you, like me, are determined to look forward with hope, anticipation, optimism, faith, and vision this year—then it’s all going to come down to our attitudinal choices. The Bible word for this is “spirit.” Daniel had an “excellent spirit.” Joseph had an indefatigable spirit. While there is such a thing as senseless, silly optimism—that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about a heart that thinks more deeply, sees more clearly, and understands how God works. I’m taking about a heart that refuses to mire itself in despair, self-pity, negativism, and complaint. God would call it “murmuring.”

If you’re going to win the war for your attitude this year, it’s going to be intentional and strategic. You’re going to have to make a choice. You will have to choose to see the potential, the upside, the opportunity behind every problem. You will have to wage war against things that assault your attitude—like weather, pettiness, self-pity, self-thought, and unrealistic expectations. You will have to lean into the challenges, determined to grow through them rather than shrink before them. More importantly, you’ll have to strategically choose your influencers—that which shapes your attitude.

This past Sunday at EBC we studied “A Visionary Life” and this coming Sunday we study “A Visionary Church”—all for the purpose of helping to infuse and cultivate within our hearts a collective spirit of faith and anticipation. Few things will energize your whole life more than an exceptionally good attitude. Few things will take you forward in faith, in family, in work, in community, in church more than a good attitude. Joy is a magnet. A great spirit is like a bright light on a gray day.

God can shape our attitudes if we allow Him—through worship, through His word, through His Spirit, through encouraging relationships in our church family. He uses all this and more to reshape our spirit after His Spirit! That’s why making God’s church, His worship, and His word a top priority in your life is so critical to your thriving in 2017. The greatest decisions you can make in regards to your own thriving are…

—Make Jesus the dominant relationship of your life.

—Make His word the dominant influence of your life.

—Make His church and cause the dominant purpose of your life.

Walk that road for the rest of your life, and you will love the harvest! You will never regret remaining faithful to Him with an excellent spirit!

“Then this Daniel was preferred above the presidents and princes, because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king thought to set him over the whole realm.” Daniel 6:3  

“He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.”  Proverbs 16:32