I am posting some questions on the blog this week and next that have to do with our Christian life and ministry. I have already asked a question about our view of love of things and then our thoughts concerning sin. This morning, I want to get to the heart of our attitude in different situations and with different people. Here's the question:
Is My Attitude Like Jesus?
What is your attitude like at home, work, school, or church? Is your attitude different towards different people? Do you act differently when you are at different places? How do you respond when you are pressed?
I have noticed this being a parent. It is really easy for my children to have great attitudes when they are involved with other people and then really struggle with their attitude when it comes to their siblings. As I have coached many different youth league sports teams, I have noticed how easy it is for kids to develop bad attitudes based on how they play, what the ref calls, and so on.
But here's the deal. The Christian has been called to have the attitude like Jesus Christ. His attitude was one of service and giving. His attitude was for others. It was selfless, not selfish. It was pouring out, not taking in. That is the attitude of the one following Jesus. The Apostle Paul says it plainly in the book of Philippians:
"Have this mind [attitude] among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross." (Philippians 2:5-8)
When I talk about attitude, what I am trying to diagnose is the real you. Do you put on a front at church and then act differently towards people at work or school? Are you a hypocrite? That can be defined in two ways. One is saying that everything is okay when it really is not. It is hiding your sin from your Christian friends. But there is another way to be a hypocrite. It is hiding your faith from your non-Christian friends. Hypocrisy displays that your attitude is not like that of Jesus.
When we tell our children to "check their attitude" there is probably something for us to learn as well.