Michael Dewar, author
Director/Dwelling Place Cleansing
A Time to Celebrate
The wise King Solomon reminds us that there is a time and a season for everything, and we have the power to bring that season about (Eccl. 3:1-8). Christmas and the New Year are times of peace and joyful celebration. Christmas is the season when the Creator of the Universe clothed Himself in a human body as the Prince of peace, and pitched His tent among us as our Savior and Lord (John 1:14). According to Luke (2:8-20), His first crib was the feeding trough in a manger. That’s certainly not the red carpet welcome.
Most of us would prefer being born at the downtown Cosmopolitan Hospital, rather than a manger under the curious gaze of sheep and donkeys. These animals were no doubt wondering, what in the world was going on! The manger is a birthplace we would rather keep quiet about. Middle school and high school friends could be mighty cruel had they gotten wind of it. Our little secret would be all over social media. But in spite of such lowly birth, the baby grew up to change the world and divide history into BC and AD.
We may not be proud of our grand entrance into this world, but we are not to be blamed for that, nor should we allow it to rob us of the joys of life. Perhaps, our parents did the best with the cards they were dealt, so don’t be too quick to fault them either. The manger story tells us we can overcome the circumstances of our birth and make good of life.
Life is a gift to celebrate, even if all you can afford is one cupcake and a mini candle. It is your attitude that the divine looks at. Trust me, celebration of life is better than being bitter and angry. Celebration not only generates endorphin in your body, making you feel better, it will turn things around beyond your wildest dream. It is the kind of thing heaven takes notice of and rewards.
Every people group on earth has at least one event that they celebrate each year. In ancient Israel, the Jews had seven feasts they celebrated each year; just about all seven feasts were divinely appointed. They were directed to celebrate joyfully before the Lord. That says, a lot about God. He is not this mean, sad, bearded, old man who is read to get you for stepping out of line. He likes a good party! May be that’s why the first miracle Jesus did was at a wedding feast, where he turned water into wine and kept the celebration going (John 2:1-11). He was fun to be around. Religious folks didn’t care much for Him and the feeling was mutual. They thought He celebrated too much, that He hang out with the wrong crowd. They called Him a glutton and a wine lover.
In spite of what the Jews have suffered throughout their history, they still celebrate most of the ancient feasts today. They take time for meaningful celebration. They work hard, they celebrate before God, and they prosper. Rather than hating them, perhaps, there is something other people groups can learn from them. And don’t forget that Mary and Joseph were Jewish, and the Son that was born in a manger grew up to become the Master Teacher, a rabbi.
Add A New Celebration
Beyond work for peace, I want to invite you to do something different at your house with your family in 2017. Add a new celebration to your calendar. Lets call it, my dwelling place anniversary celebration. Do it and watch things turn around for you and your family for the better. Conduct this celebration anytime in 2017 but before December. My reasons and instructions for this new celebration is in the book, Dwelling Place Spiritual Cleansing. Get it here or Amazon or Barns and Noble.