If you are reading this on Friday, February 4th, it’s my birthday! I thank God for another year of life, and ask for blessings over this next new year in creation. I’m also thankful for those who will celebrate with me, and I want to invite you to celebrate as well. Now, I don’t necessarily want you to celebrate my birthday, although I welcome it. This isn’t about me, it’s about celebration. Did you know celebration is considered a spiritual discipline?

Just this past week the staff gathered together to celebrate my birthday before I left for vacation. Now, I’m not big on celebrating my birthday. I typically ignore it until someone tells me to acknowledge it. My first thoughts in this moment were, “We’ve got too much to do. There’s no need to pause for this, really.” Maybe you love to celebrate birthdays, and that’s great! However, our world is so busy and chaotic that sometimes it may seem like there is no room to celebrate. Maybe we don’t feel we have enough time to get our work done in order to celebrate. Maybe we aren’t sure we’ve earned the celebration. Maybe we feel celebrating is a privilege and it would be inconsiderate. Whatever the case may be, our understanding of celebration should not be thought of as a hindrance to life. In fact, celebration should be the model for life!

As I let my thoughts settle down I realized, this really is less about me. It was a joy to see everyone gathered together with smiles on our faces. My birthday may have been the spark that ignited the fire of celebration, but I’m not the one who kept it going. The one who keeps it going is the Holy Spirit who connects us all. When we gather together to celebrate it is the work of the Holy Spirit in us that brings out that laughter and cheer, because She is reuniting with another piece of Herself in the other people we are with. The Holy Spirit draws us together, and our world tries to resist that gathering in many different ways. But we are created in the image of God, follow the life of Jesus Christ, and are imbued with the Holy Spirit. God celebrates in creation, Jesus begins his public ministry at a party in Cana, and the Holy Spirit is like a fire of celebration longing to act in our lives.

So friends, it’s time to stop putting off the celebrations. No matter what you are feeling called to celebrate, do it and remember that the Holy Trinity is celebrating with you! The rest of life will remain. Amen.

- Pastor Stephan


Last Published: February 2, 2022 10:04 AM
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