Celebrate

21 Jun

Are you ever weary? I’m not referring to fatigue resulting from hard physical work. I speak of the weariness from working too hard, too long. It may be a job, a project, a tough relationship, or even following hard after God. Today it all caught up with me. I realized I was weary.

George looked at me. “What’s wrong?” (I can’t fool hubby.)
“I have no idea.” It took some thought as to why I felt bummed. “It may be because I can’t seem to have any fun.”
In the last couple of days, I had taken several breaks from writing. House cleaning and laundry sure didn’t help—neither did gardening, reading, or watching a recorded TV show. I tried prayer, Bible study, and counting my blessings. Nothing fixed my mood.
Then George asked, “How about dinner and a movie?”
Bingo!

I needed celebration. Everything I tried was a solitary endeavor. I needed fellowship and fun. God is all about celebration. Think of the angels proclaiming Christ’s birth or the apostle Paul reminding us to “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4 NIV).

God proclaimed regular times of celebration in the Old Testament. The biggest and best was the Year of Jubilee. Every 50 years God commanded the Israelites to cancel all debts, release slaves, plant no crops, and return property to the original owner. Every generation could experience new beginnings through complete trust in God’s provision.

Jesus began His public ministry proclaiming He was the fulfillment of the year of Jubilee.
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” (Luke 4:18–19 NRSV).

George’s offer made me realize I had become captive to a deadline. I grabbed Richard Foster’s Celebration of Discipline and read the last chapter: “The Discipline of Celebration.” It was balm to my soul. How easy it is to forget the joy of the Lord is our strength (Neh. 8:10). Joy is also a fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22). Lack of joy should have been a clue I wasn’t trusting God to help me meet my deadlines. My life was out of balance.

God had already provided for this evening of celebration. The place I wanted to eat “just happened” to have a Groupon—$20 worth of food for $10. Fits of laughter made a delicious meal even more delightful. We saw a good movie at the senior discount. What a blessing.

Are you weary? Perhaps you need a date with your mate, a night with the girls, or a game in the man cave. Celebrate love and friendship. Celebrate freedom in Christ. Celebrate with music, laughter, good food, and gratitude.
Just celebrate.

3 Responses to “Celebrate”

  1. George June 22, 2013 at 4:01 am #

    We’d have gone, with or without the discount

  2. Judabeth Bural June 22, 2013 at 8:49 am #

    What a wonderful reminder that the heart should always be on the PROCESS not the goal. This post is a beautiful gift after a busy week of VBS.

  3. Leslie Biffle June 22, 2013 at 12:06 pm #

    Love this!

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