Well I did it. I finally finished my first book from my 2012 Book List! I usually read through books much faster but life had me going different directions this month. Phew! But that’s not what you really want to read about–today you want to hear about the book not my crazy life so let’s get to it.
The first book on my book list was Lord, Change My Attitude by James MacDonald. While some books written by pastors tend to take on a more seminary-holier-than-thou type language, I was pleasantly surprised by how down-to-earth James MacDonald wrote this life-changing book, even adding a little humor at times. None of his points were ever over my head or beyond reach but rather created several of those “uh-huh that’s me…” or “so that’s what that means…” or “why didn’t I think of that?” moments.
The book is comprised of 10 chapters–5 chapters covering 5 major attitude issues (complaining, covetousness, criticism, doubt, and rebellion) and 5 attitude adjustments (thankfulness, contentment, love, faith, and submission). When I started the year, I was having some pretty strong struggles with most of these major issues due some events that happened towards the end of 2011. That said, it has been amazing to see how the Lord has changed my attitude and even my situations as I’ve worked through this book.
With Number 13-14 as the focal passage for the book, MacDonald demonstrates how the Israelites chose each of the 5 attitude issues and how making attitude adjustments changed their outcome. While I’ve done several studies on the journey of the Israelites from Egypt to the Promised Land, this is the first one I’ve ever seen focusing on the heart of the reason they were left to wander in the wilderness for forty years. Did you know that the number one reason God chose to let the Israelites wander is the desert and eventually die was their attitude? Yep, says it right there in Numbers 14:26-30.
The LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, “How long shall I bear with this evil congregation who are grumbling against Me? I have heard the complaints of the sons of Israel, which they are making against Me. Say to them, ‘As I live,’ says the LORD, ‘just as you have spoken in My hearing, so I will surely do to you; your corpses will fall in this wilderness, even all your numbered men, according to your complete number from twenty years old and upward, who have grumbled against Me. Surely you shall not come into the land in which I swore to settle you, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh and Joshua the son of Nun.
It wasn’t prostitution or murder or any one of the big 10. It was their attitude. Talk about some strong words to give you an attitude check! God definitely does not like sour attitudes.
MacDonald’s goal in writing this book is to help all who read to overcome these attitudes and replace them with positive ones. He begins each chapter with an intriguing introduction or a few words of encouragement, then relates the topic to scripture and practical life examples and finally closes with some practical solutions one can implement right away as well as a focused prayer that points your face ever upward.
This is definitely one book that will remain on my shelves and I will be sure to go back to read again and again as the need arises. We all have attitudes that need adjusting at one time or another, but I have never found another book that addresses the issue head on quite like James MacDonald does in Lord, Change My Attitude. There are so many take-aways from this book that one thing I will say–when you read this book, be sure to have a highlighter in hand. You won’t regret it.