Painting of Jesus appearing to Mary Magdalene after the ResurrectionAre you a Friday person or a Sunday person? Each year Easter gives us a special opportunity to stop and recalibrate our outlook on life. What is the difference between a Friday person and a Sunday person? Well, a Friday person is basically a pessimist, viewing every circumstance in a negative light, and always anticipating the worst: That little noise under the hood probably means I need to have my engine rebuilt. I’ll never be able to please my demanding boss. Nobody likes me. I’ll never get out from under these financial pressures. I guess I’m just meant to have a lousy marriage. This persistent pain in my side is probably cancer. A Friday person is someone who looks at a half-glass of water and thinks, “A lot of good that’ll do. I have a whole forest fire to put out!

A Sunday person, in contrast, is an eternal optimist. Not a deluded optimist, mind you, but a biblical optimist. Life’s engine noises, financial challenges, medical issues, and relational conflicts are all very real. But the Sunday person views all that life throws at her through the lens of resurrection Sunday, rather than the darkness of crucifixion Friday. There is hope in every situation: That noise is probably just a loose fan belt; I’ll get it checked tomorrow. I wonder what opportunities God will provide for me to serve my boss and co-workers this week? God loves me just like I am. And God put me on this planet to love—not to be loved. Who can I love today? If I do my part and handle my finances wisely, God will meet my needs. That pain in my side is probably just a pulled muscle. But whatever it is, I can deal with it with the power and purpose God provides. I wonder how much I’m to blame for my marital problems. Lord, what can I do to be a better spouse? What are you trying to teach me here?

Are you a Friday person or a Sunday person? A Friday person has every reason to be down on life. After all, on Friday we murdered the God who was sent to redeem us. And for the better part of three days, all the political and spiritual powers of domination and deception seemed to be in total control of our world. No wonder the disciples “stood still looking sad” during that dark period between the cross and the resurrection (Luke 24:17).

But a Sunday person? Well, a Sunday person has seen God turn ashes into glory and knows that it only took him three days to do so! A Sunday person knows he can do all things through Christ who strengthens him (Philippians 4:13). A Sunday person does not consider the sufferings of this present age worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us (Romans 8:18). A Sunday person is convinced that “we overwhelmingly conquer through him who loved us” (Romans 8:37). And a Sunday persons know that “in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28).

A Sunday person is, in a word, a Christian. And a Christian is a person who knows that Jesus rose from the dead, and in a very real sense, he has taken us with him. Jesus has risen! And so have we! So let’s recalibrate our outlook on life to reflect these two historical realities. In the words of Paul:

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. (Colossians 3:1-4)