Thursday, June 25, 2015

Attitude Latitude

One thing that I have learned as a caregiver is how much attitude comes into play. I think it really helps to choose to have a positive attitude. But sometimes our latitude or position as an advocate makes it difficult on our attitude. We are many times in positions where it takes some true grit to endure and to get things done on behalf of our loved ones.

Many would say that because of our latitude we have a "right" to let some things get out of control. I have to admit that there are days when it's a very big struggle to try and keep my attitude in line with Christian values. There are many emotions accompanying the caregiving package. We do get angry sometimes, sad at other times and emotions can just be all over the place some days. There's a lot on our plate every single day. But our attitude has a lot to do with how we handle an overloaded plate.

Running on overload does not excuse poor decisions or bad behaviors. We are still accountable for every word we say and responsible for where our thoughts roam Our attitude has a lot to do with how we live our days. I can get really down and have battled depression as a caregiver (some say it's part of the package too), but overall I tend to try to keep a positive attitude. It makes the day go somewhat smoother.

Psalm 57 is a passage that has a special place in my heart as I discovered it when battling a mystery illness in 1986. It described my emotions to a T as I felt like I was being swallowed up by sickness. Those around me thought I was dying. During that struggle this psalm brought me great comfort.

It's the second part of the psalm that stands out to me now. David says I will several times depending on the version you are reading. These are attitudinal declarations; he said:

I will sing and give praise
I will wake early
I will praise You
I will sing to You

Many times I've said that as caregivers we live in the furnace. We are constantly in the fires of life and they don't often let up. And even though it seems like it would be fair for us to be exempt in some areas, our attitude is still our choice, and we can't let our latitude determine it for us.

Today I will turn my thoughts to praising Him for what He has done. I will purposefully delight myself in Him. I'm going to guard my mouth a little more closely and work a little harder at staying positive in the fight. My thoughts will be on His goodness rather than the situation; and my meditations of Him will be sweet. Will you join me?

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