Copping an Attitude

images-2I recently heard a thought-provoking quote: “Attitude is the librarian of our past, the speaker of our present, and the prophet of our future.” As we work with couples, we often find “attitudes” to be sticking points, so I’m pondering this one, especially regarding marriage.

Attitude is the librarian of our past? We tend to base our attitudes on all the volumes of information we’ve accumulated through our experiences with our family of origin, our parents, and past relationships. Based on our past, we think that our relationship should be this way or that, but why should we use those “chapters of our past” and compare our marriage with them? My mother never did that! My dad wouldn’t do it that way! But should we hold on to “attitudes” based on our past? My advice? Write your own book!

Attitude is the speaker of our present? As the years go by, there are personality quirks and “pet peeves” that tend to be part of who we are. But after years of those patterns, they can rub us the wrong way until we can cop a pretty lousy attitude toward our loved one. Why does he still leave the toilet seat up? or Why does she always fold the towels this way? Sometimes, maturity is holding our tongue and letting things like that go. In the scope of doing life together, there are so many things that we can file away in our mental and emotional libraries that can become just plain silly. Let them go!

Attitude is the prophet of our future? When a bad attitude becomes a regular habit, it can affect our relationship, sometimes irreparably hurting your marriage. Nagging. Put downs. Sacrasm. Condescension. These are toxic attitudes that can destroy your marriage if you let it. Just don’t!

Your attitude is an outward reflection of your heart, and it is reflected in your face, your countenance, and your words. But in the end, attitude is a choice! Right attitudes bring God’s favor, direction, and blessing, while bad attitudes have negative consequences.

Is there someone or something that is influencing your attitude? A friend? A TV show? Sin? 1 Corinthians 15:33 says, “Do not be misled: ‘bad company corrupts good character’.”

Anchor your attitude—toward your mate and your marriage—in God’s truth. Allow God to influence the attitudes you have toward your spouse, and when you get a little off kilter (and we all do), simply repent and choose to turn your attitude around. Allow your heart to be transformed and your attitude and relationship will be transformed too.

How do you maintain a godly attitude toward your mate? I’d love to know.



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