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Attitude makes all the difference

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Have you ever seen that drawing of the young woman sitting at a mirror? When you change your focus, the young woman with her back to the viewer, looking into a mirror suddenly turns into a profile of a very old woman looking to the left. The same picture can have two opposite and distinct images, depending on how you look at it.

In the Old Testament, Joseph comes in a close second to Job when it comes to an innocent person who got the raw end of the deal, or the short end of the stick. But because of how Joseph looked at his picture, he was able to get a better perspective. In short, he had the right attitude.

Two really bad things happened to Joseph: he was sold into slavery by his jealous brothers at the age of 17 and was unjustly thrown into prison when he turned down the advances of his boss' wife.

If anyone had the right to be bitter about the rotten turn of events in his life, it was Joseph. But Joseph always seemed to look at the picture and see the young woman at the mirror, a nice scene, and not the old woman's profile, a not-so nice scene. The secular adage might be: When life hands you lemons, make lemonade.

Because of Joseph's positive outlook, consistently the story records that "The Lord was with [Joseph]; and whatever he did, the Lord made him to prosper," Genesis 39:23.

Joseph was able to look at the picture and find the good in it, even though someone else could easily find the bad. 

While most of us don't have situations similar to Joseph's in terms of tough breaks, we do have our share of ups and down; even heartbreaks.

So the question is, how is our attitude? What part of the picture do we decide to concentrate on? Do we make lemonade out of the lemons we get, or do we complain about the lemon's bitterness? 

Like Joseph, the choice is ours. A good attitude can make all the difference in which picture we see.