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An Optimist’s Checklist for Easter

Victor Perton, The Centre for Optimism 3 mins read

Easter and the Resurrection story celebrates faith, hope and optimism.

The Episcopal Bishops Sloan and Marray wrote, "The resurrection joy is the gift to the world of new life, life conquers death and that the love of God is freely gifted to us in a spirit of renewed hope and optimism."

Uniting Church Minister the Reverend Ray Atkinson wrote, "We are optimistic because we look at Him and see the final pattern. To be a Christian means to be an optimist because we know what happened on the third day after Jesus's crucifixion. We know that Jesus's leap of faith was not in vain, as God raised him up. He trusted enough to outstare the darkness, to wait upon the resurrection of the third day, not to try to create his own resurrection, but to wait upon the resurrection of God."

Orthodox Archbishop Chrysostomos said, "The hopeful message of the resurrection of Christ comes to drive out from our hearts the heavy winter of life's trials and to bring the coveted spring, to dispel the clouds of pessimism and to inspire us with the messages of optimism for the victory of life over death."

The fact that Jesus has conquered death for Christians should always leave us optimistic about life.  

David Burt, Premier of Bermuda, wrote, "Easter is the most significant season of the Christian church: a time of renewed hope and optimism, celebrating the resurrection of Jesus." 

In one of his sermons, "Why I am an optimist", the American evangelist Billy Graham quoted St Peter: "We, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness."

Billy Graham went on to say, "I am an optimist not because I blindly hope - all evidence to the contrary - that somehow everything will work out all right. Nor am I an optimist because I believe in man's unlimited ability to solve his problems. I am an optimist ultimately because I believe in God."

Dr Sid Roberts reflected with me, "Easter is the ultimate annual marker of renewal (specifically resurrection), and of optimistic hope. Our word for Easter carries a connotation of new birth or dawn. Even the more secular aspects of Easter, like bunnies, eggs and new clothes, signal the hope of spring."

Australian Salvation Army Leaders Floyd and Tracy Tidd said Paul reminded the believers in Ephesus that the same power that raised Christ from the dead is available to us who believe. It is a power that enables us to Live a life of joy, victory, poise, buoyancy, and optimism.

In "The Optimism of Easter," Adriano Di Prato wrote "The tale of Good Friday is incomplete without the optimism of Easter. Christ's death by crucifixion is closely followed by his resurrection. Similarly, the promise of eternal life follows the despair of death… Enter into His triumph. Be open to your stark reality, and embrace every opportunity to forgive, love and honour your truth. For the Kingdom, an eternal promise of hope and optimism, lives deep within. May you feel the optimism of new beginnings, love and happiness during this joyful Easter Sunday."

Some reject optimism in favour of hope. I don't believe you have to make that choice - the spiritual life and faith enhance optimism, and, for me, the Easter lesson of Christ's death and resurrection is one of hope and optimism.

An Optimist's Checklist for Easter

Surround Yourself with Positive People:  Easter is a time for gatherings, sharing good food and enjoying chocolate in many creative forms!

Meditation and Prayer: Good evidence shows that meditation, particularly compassion meditation, enhances optimism and happiness. Prayer is a form of meditation, so this is a good time to meditate and pray on the messages of Easter.

Gratitude: Again, expressing gratitude is a beautiful way to make you and others happy and optimistic. As we gather with family for the Easter celebrations, there's the perfect opportunity to express thanks for the day's hospitality and memories of good times. A message to those far away is a great idea, too.

Singing: Some of the most beautiful music ever written was composed for Easter. Those going to Church will have the opportunity to sing, so take the opportunity and sing with vigour. Sing to yourself or sing with others!

Walk and Take Some Deep Breaths: Walking in company or alone is another good way to enhance your feeling of well-being and optimism. While on that walk, make sure to take some deep, slow breaths and fill your lungs with the fresh air of Easter, whether your Easter is in Spring or Autumn.

Use Positive Language: Don't just ask, "How are you?" Ask people, "What's the best thing happening for you?" or "What has brought you joy today?" or whatever variation feels natural to you.  

Ask, "What makes you optimistic?"

This article is published under a Creative Commons Licence and may be republished with attribution.


Key Facts:

Easter is a time for Optimism.

Easter and the Resurrection story celebrates faith, hope and optimism.

Surround Yourself with Positive People

Sing


About us:

Victor Perton is the Author of Optimism: The How and Why and the Chief Optimism Officer at The Centre for Optimism


Contact details:

Victor Perton 0417 217 241

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