When I was in high school, a classmate told me I should work at Disneyland. This came as a surprise because I’m an introvert, I don’t like crowds, and the neutral, inauspicious clothes I wear stand in start contrast to the flamboyance of the world of Disney’s outfits. When pressed further, the friend revealed it was because I seemed to always be happy. Now, close friends and family members would be able to tell you that this isn’t a completely accurate characterization, but given the choice of looking at things from a positive or negative light, I do try to go for the brighter one. More recently, some co-workers have also noted this trait and have started calling me the “eternal optimist.” And while I tend to think that when it comes down to it, I’m pretty realistic, in a way they are right. I’m an eternally optimistic, because I happily know where I’ll spend eternity.
It works like this, when you’re watching a movie and you already know that in the end things turn out well, you don’t worry as much about the bumps and bruises along the way. The characters may seem headed for certain doom, their lives may be utterly disrupted, but you know that they end up restored, and so you ride the waves of distress with less concern than those who are unsure of their future. Similarly, when you are confident about the fact that the worse life has to offer, very death itself, means that you will enter the presence of your Heavenly King (Phil. 1:21), you are not as worried about what happens until you get there. Is there pain in this life, yes. In fact, God promises it (John 16:33). However, when compared to the future glory that await those who follow Christ, it seems insignificant.
When you weigh this world in terms of eternity, every believer should be optimistic.