It may not be a phrase that we hear much, but have you ever thought to consider whether or not you have a “Pollyanna attitude?”
It basically means a person who only sees the positive in every situation. However it is not exactly a compliment to be told that you have a Pollyanna attitude. In fact, it’s used in a negative connotation. That’s because those with this type of attitude are also thought to be unrealistic.
Sometimes I think Christians can get wrapped up in a Pollyanna attitude. Those who walk around with an “I’m blessed” attitude 24/7 can actually become a bit unnerving. I realize this might strike a nerve with some but hear me out.
Don’t get me wrong, a positive attitude is a great thing to have. As a believer we definitely should be equipped with a positive attitude. However, a positive attitude should not override reality. Some things in life really aren’t that great.
The death of a loved one, the breakup of a marriage, a child who has turned away from the Lord…these are very real and very painful circumstances in life. When a Christian comes to you with a Pollyanna attitude, they can almost make you feel guilty that you are mourning a death, are upset about your marital struggles or that you lie awake at night worrying about your child.
I always say that just because I’m a Christian, doesn’t mean I’m a robot. I still have feelings and I still struggle. I have not “arrived” to that place where I can face every single difficult circumstance in life without losing an ounce of faith or doing it all right. Sometimes I really do mess up.
But I’m so glad that God doesn’t have a Pollyanna attitude toward me. He is full of mercy and grace and He can take whatever I dish out at Him. If you don’t believe me, spend some time reading the Psalms, especially “The Message” version. It gives you a real taste of an attitude that isn’t always positive.
Should we have a positive attitude? Yes, most definitely. But will there be times we fall short? As long as we are on this earth we will. So let’s cut each other some slack and get rid of the Pollyanna attitude.