“Attitude” and “Disposition”

By Royce Frederick

Airplane pilots use “ATTITUDE” to refer to “the position of an aircraft in relation to a given point of reference, usually a point on the ground.”

When applied to humans, “attitude” has a similar meaning. It usually refers to a person’s MENTAL POSITION in relation to a person, object, or idea. The more often a person takes the same mental position, the more deep-rooted that attitude becomes. Eventually, it becomes part of his “DISPOSITION” — the fixed arrangement of his attitudes.

Your disposition can be good or bad. The more often you have a good attitude, the more likely it will become part of your total disposition (see Phil. 4:8). And every time you let your mind slip into a bad attitude, you grow closer to developing a bad disposition.

A BAD disdisposition often includes bitterness, resentment, discontent, selfishness, and pessimism. It causes real misunderstanding for the person’s own mind. He sees and hears things fro a bad viewpoint. He cannot make himself look at things from the other person’s viewpoint, or look at things in the light of God’s word. He may not even see the need to do so. Such a person often believes and trusts in things which are not true and deceives his own heart. “Let no one deceive himself…” (1 Cor. 3:18; see Js. 1:26).

A GOOD disposition includes cheerfulness, contentment, unselfish love, and optimism (see Prov. 15:13; 17:22; Philippians). It usually involves a willingness to listen, to consider matters from other viewpoints, and to evaluate evidence. Such a person can stand firmly for what he believes in, while he also studies all matters with a reasonable, fair mind. This man will be blessed with a deeper understanding of himself, of others, and of God’s will (see Jn. 8:31-32; Acts 17:11; 1 Thess. 5:21).

Let us strive to have good attitudes, so they will form good dispositions within us.