Optimism on Good Friday

 
passion-of-christ
Photo by “The Passion of the Christ”
 
 
I have always wondered why they call one of the most gruesome days in history “Good Friday.” How about calling it “Shocking Friday” or “Horrific Friday”? Maybe that will put more of an emphasis on what Christ went through for us on the cross.

I am truly an enigma. People have called me a “pessimistic optimist.” No matter how oxymoronic it might sounds, I think in many ways it describes me pretty well. I am very cynical of myself, as well as other people, which confirms my pessimistic side. But at the end of the day, I am hoping and rooting for the best in people – a forever optimist or as some would call me, a “hopeless romantic” (yes, I love the cheesy happy endings in movies).

Zig Ziglar, the famous motivator said,

“Most of us would rather be around a person who sees hope in the future than one who sees nothing but trouble ahead. I’m talking about the kind of optimism which sees a solution in every problem, optimism that looks for the solution instead of concentrating on the problem. In his 1828 Dictionary, Noah Webster said that optimism is the ‘opinion or doctrine that everything in nature is ordered for the best, or, the order of things in the universe that is adapted to produce the most good.’ The pessimist and pessimism are not identified by Noah Webster in his dictionary.

Optimism is a valid approach to life because when we encounter difficulties, if we are optimistic we will immediately start thinking about a solution to the difficulty, whereas the pessimist will look at a problem and ask, ‘I wonder what’s going to happen next?’ or say, ‘There’s nothing I can do.’”

 
 
I am wondering if it is ok to be a pessimist when we look at our situation without Christ. Our hope in the future would definitely be bleak and we would see “nothing but trouble ahead.” This is the reason why so many people lose hope – we are just too focused on ourselves and our situation.

But with Christ, “everything in nature is ordered for the best” and “adapted to produce the most good.” Dr. William Arthur Ward said, “Deep optimism is aware of problems, but recognizes the solution; knows about difficulties, but believes they can be overcome; sees the negative, but accentuates the positive; is exposed to the worst, but expects the best.”

It is only in Christ.

Therefore on this Good Friday, may we be pessimist as we look our situation and self-righteousness, but a true optimist as we look to Christ, who died on the cross and resurrected from the dead to give us new hope.

See, there is always a happy ending with Christ. Today is a “good” Friday.