baseball I read recently about a little boy who went outside to his backyard to play some baseball. He thought to himself: “I am the best hitter in the world.” He threw the ball up and took a swing. He missed. Without hesitation, he picked the ball up and tossed it in the air again, swinging and missing again. “Strike two,” he thought, “but I am still the best hitter.” Then, for the third time, he tossed the ball up and with intense determination swung with all his might. He missed the third time, also. “Strike three,” he said, and laid his bat down with a great big smile. “What do you know,” he said, “I struck out, so I must be the world’s best pitcher!” What a wonderful attitude! In truth, the boy was neither the world’s best hitter or pitcher, but he chose to look on the bright side of things, rather than get discouraged.

Friends, what kind of attitude do you have? Do you have a positive attitude that looks for the good–even in difficult, trying situations? Maintaining an overall positive attitude is exceedingly important for disciples of Christ. “Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life” (Prov. 4:23). An upbeat attitude will help us influence others for good as we share our faith. It will help us weather the storms of life. “A merry heart makes a cheerful countenance, but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken…he who is of a merry heart has a continual feast” (Prov. 15:13, 15). Thinking positively is important!

Is it challenging to think on the wholesome while living in such a negative world? Indeed it is. But, we must avoid falling into the trap of negative thinking for it leads to many detrimental consequences:

– It clouds our choices when critical decisions must be made.

– It is like a contagious disease and difficult to overcome once embraced.

– It makes the difficult look even worse.

– It limits God and faith in our life.

– It robs us of joy.

– It hinders our influence among those we love.

It’s been said before: “Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right!” There is much truth in that statement. If we think optimistically and work toward our goal, our likelihood of success is significantly greater. It is true that we might have some setbacks and need to make some adjustments, but thinking positively is a crucial step. In contrast, if we have doubts about accomplishing a certain noble aim, we will certainly fail.

Dear listeners, fill your minds daily with that which is positive, good, and wholesome, and your attitude will start to reflect that. “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy–meditate on these things” (Phil. 4:8). – Stephen R. Bradd

God bless you all and have a great week,

Michael