It's camp week at our house. You already know that my youngest is at hockey camp. My oldest went to Secret Agent Camp this week.
The description of the camp sounded super fun. They were supposed to learn about spy gadgets, codes and spy techniques. My daughter was going with her best friend and was so excited about going. They thought they were going to come home and be able to spy on all of us.
Unfortunately, the week has turned out to be a disappointment. The stuff they're talking about in her camp is more along the lines of what a police detective might do, rather than a spy. They've yet to see any type of spy gadget. Most of their time at camp is spent in a classroom watching the teacher demonstrate things.
To say my daughter and her friend have been disappointed would be an understatement. In the car on the way home the other day they decided to issue outrageous fines to the camp teachers for all the ways the camp did not live up to its description. By the time we got home, the imaginary fines were in the millions of dollars.
Now, I understand my daughter's frustrationg with the camp. I'm a bit frustrated at paying for something that hasn't turned out to be what it was advertised. However, I'm trying to temper my frustration so my daughter can have a good attitude.
After the million dollar fines car ride, my daughter and I had a conversation about dealing with disappointment. We talked about how even though the camp wasn't what she thought it would be, we needed to put the best face on it. We could hope the next day would be better. We can let the camp know in our evaluation that it wasn't what we expected.
But for the rest of this week, we need to quit grumbling and find the parts of camp that we can enjoy and learn from. We talked about how God expects us to do everything with a whole heart. Colossians 3:23 says "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters." That includes summer camp.
If my daughter spends the whole week grumbling and complaining about her camp, it's just going to make her miserable, and it's not going to make the camp any better. But, if she goes into camp with the attitude that there's something here that I can learn and I'm going to give it my best even if it's boring, then she can be unexpectedly surprised if something interesting happens.
It's important for our kids to know that their attitude matters. Attitude can make any type of situation better. And sometimes it's the only part of the situation we can control. My daughter can't change the content of her camp. She can change her attitude toward it.
So, whatever situation you or your kids find yourself in today, remember that your attitude matters. Enter the situation with the thought that you're going to give it your best effort, even if the circumstances are not ideal. Because that's all God asks of us.