When you face a difficult or unpleasant situation, do you complain and focus on the negativity of the issue, or do you rejoice at the fact that things could have been worse? Do you perceive your glass as being half empty, or half full?
If you’re familiar with the classic novel Polyanna, written by Eleanor H Porter, then you probably would have noticed the reference in the title. Without going into too much detail, Pollyanna conveys a message to various adults throughout the book that,
“… there is something about everything that you can be glad about, if you keep hunting long enough to find it.” ~Eleanor H Porter
As a child, I remember watching the film (released in 1960) over and over again, however I never truly understood or comprehended what Polyanna was actually getting at, but now that I have reached adulthood, her sayings have become very meaningful to me- I try to play the glad game wherever and whenever possible.
Last year, my visual art teacher literally snapped me into shape and reminded me to play the glad game. I remember I was complaining and stressing because I had 5 exams in one week- by the way when I say I was complaining, I was literally moping around and ranting about how annoyed I was with the way my exam timetable had panned out. Anyway, after trying to reassure me once, she lay it hard on me and told me something I probably wouldn’t have wanted to hear, but now see how blessed I was to have heard it. She told me to stop complaining and to rather think of all the children in the world who don’t have access to education. Who would do anything to be able to sit for exams. As upsetting as it was to hear, I knew she was right. I knew that I was definitely not playing the glad game.
When you have the flu, be grateful that you don’t have a terminal illness. When you get served a plate of food you do not particularly like, be grateful that you even have food. When you don’t get selected for a position you really wanted to receive, be grateful that you still have many other opportunities. In every single circumstance and situation you find yourself in, have a heart of thankfulness; no matter how disappointed, hurt or anxious you may be- there is always something to be glad about.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God” (Philippians 4:6).