“FORMING GODLY ATTITUDE”                 By Pastor YAU

Text: Philippians 2:1-8                                      December 4, 2011

 

 INTRODUCTION:

1)             Primary factor to succeed:  In a study conducted by the reputable Carnegie Foundation, it was discovered that to be successful in career, relational skills are far more important than knowledge. The research found that only 15 percent of a person’s success is determined by job knowledge and technical skills, eighty-five percents are determined by an individual’s attitude and ability to relate to other people.

2)             Mistakes parents made: Many people, especially people of Asian descent, believe that knowledge and skills learned through formal education or personal pursuit are the backbones of success. That’s why we see so many parents do all they can, scraping every penny, to push their kids to the best school they can afford if their kids are capable of making it there. Some of the parents pressure their kids on academic and career success but ignoring the importance of character training and attitude formation. All they want to see in their kids is making good grades, go to the best school, find the best job and make the most money. Few of the parents care what kind of men and women their kids turn out to be.

3)             Put the Bible into practice? Most parents, including many Christian parents, do not consider the Bible has anything to do with career success. While the Bible has little to say on making good grades, the Bible does have a lot to say about building good character and forming positive attitude and how to relate to people. From the Laws in the Old Testament to the teaching of the Apostles, there are tons of good direct and indirect teachings and principles we may use to build character and form attitude. To brush the Bible aside in trying to be successful is like trying to grow your body stronger and healthier but not providing proper nourishment from appropriate food intake.

THE IMPORTANCE OF ATTITUDE:  

1)           It shows your upbringing: The pattern of DNA defines the facts of a person on biological level just as attitude defines that same person on personality level. But unlike DNA, attitude is not born like DNA but is formed through the process of life. Attitude shows how a person is raised, how he lived his life and things he learned from his friends, chooses his friends, adopt the kind of life philosophy and how his family and surroundings contributed to the formation of his attitude. It also shows his ability to tell the difference of right from wrong, good from bad, being selfish or generous, kind or mean, forgiving or grudge holding etc. Many people believe that from a person’s attitude, you can tell how his parents did their job of parenting and how successful he is going to become.

2)           It colors how you see others: Attitude is like sun glasses: they color everything and everyone you see. Everything and everyone who may come in contact with you in school, at work, in church or at home or anywhere else is filtered through your attitude. Your attitude forms your opinion about the thing or person. You look at things or people from the filter of your attitude. Therefore many times, your perspective about an individual is either twisted or incomplete or incorrect or ignorant. Bias is inevitable when you make judgment on others based on your subjective attitude.

3)           It also colors how others see you: Most people who make judgment on you are influenced by your attitude. Instead of evaluating people and things based solely on facts and merits. People form their opinion about you based on your attitude instead of who you really are. Good and pleasant attitude creates a positive image about you that draws good and pleasant response from others. That’s why people who have positive and pleasant attitude get more things done than those who hold negative or unpleasant attitude. This proves that the result found by the Carnegie research is true.  Your attitude affects your level of success.

4)           It affects your happiness: People form their beliefs on life either happy or unhappy mostly not from their environment but from their attitude, the way they respond to their environment. Few people are able to change their environment, but all of us are able to change our attitude toward our environment: be happy or be unhappy. We always can find reasons to be happy or unhappy in any circumstance. It all comes down to our attitude toward people and things surrounding us.

 

 WHAT IS GODLY ATTITUDE? The Bible has a lot to say about attitude. Let us focus on four areas as we search to form proper attitude: Text: Philippians 2:1-8.

1)        Be tender and compassionate: “If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion.” (2:1)We live in this world of hash treatment to and from each other. Words spoken, attitude shown are mostly hash, unkind, sometimes even vicious. This is particularly true in politics, social issues, even in family conflict and in church disputes. Watching political leader using all kinds of hash word and willful false accusation in this election time destroys the trust or respect we have for the leaders of our nation. The Lord Jesus asked that we learn from him because he is gentle and meek in heart so we may find rest for our souls. (Matt 11:29)

2)        Be humble and respectful:  “DO nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourself.” (2:3) This is the most important attitude we all need to have: be humble and restful to others. We all have our worthiness, usefulness and contribution. But we should not think more than we deserve. Do not build a false sense of superiority. Being sober is being proper and reasonable. Pride is the worst attitude that may cause a lot of harm or trouble in our relationship with others. Respect others on their values and contribution to your family, work to success. You may not achieve what you have without their contributions.

3)        Be generous and caring: “Each of you should not look only to your own interest but also to the interest of others.” (2:4) Look for the interest of the self is part of being human. It is a natural ability and tendency. But being Christians, we are to learn from our Lord who was completely self giving, self-sacrificing for the well being of sinners of the world include you and me. Our generosity and care for others is what makes us different from the rest of the world. When we care about others, our attitude, use of words, and relationship with other will all become cordial and friendly. Selfish or self-center attitude segregates us from others that makes cordial relationship impossible.

4)        Have the same attitude of Christ: “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ.” (2:5) Paul continues to illustrate the attitude of Christ in 2:6-8: his respect to his position as the Son of God, His self sacrificial giving of his rights, his humility to become a human, a slave, his willingness to die on the cross, his obedience to God. How should we form our attitude to God and people to demonstrate our inner life to we will be effective witnesses to the lost world? To be more like Jesus is the goal of our spiritual journey until we grow in the image of the Lord. (Colossians 3:10)

 

WHY NEED TO IMPROVE ATTITUDE:

1)        Increases your personal value: Value here doesn’t mean money: no money can buy personal value. Value here means proper self-confidence, more likable, better image, more relaxed approach on life and happier feeling about yourself and others.

2)        Increases your potential of success: As found by Carnegie research, people with better attitude have better relational skills which in turn have higher chances of career success. To many people, better career success means higher social status and satisfaction.

3)        Improves interpersonal relationship: We are talking about relationship in the inner circle: your family, with spouse and children, close friends and loved ones. These are the people who determine your identity. We have seen people who may have high career success but low and poor interpersonal relationship. These people suffer from emotional imbalance, isolation, loneliness and low self-esteem or false pride.

4)        Increases your joy of life: Just look at point 4 on BIBLE ON ATTITUDE you may examine what kind of attitude you may have and how they may affect the level of joy of your life. Your positive attitude will improve your ability to relate to others and for others to get closer to you. You certainly will be much happier if you have a positive attitude.

 

 CONCLUSION:

1)        Do you have an attitude problem? Is your attitude helping or hurting your life, career and relationship? Are you honest in accessing your situation? What do you need to do to improve your attitude?

2)        What’s your attitude about Jesus: Do you respect Him? Do you believe in Him as Lord and Savior? He can change your attitude and life.