This autumn has been one which has prompted me to think about what is really important in my life. Some of my previous blogs will give some hints as to why this is particularly poignant at the moment. This question has been one that has shaped me for over twenty five years since reading Tom Sine’s book although I think there were echoes of this thinking earlier in my life as I made choices which perhaps others didn’t understand as I sought to follow Jesus.
One of the significant thoughts from the book was the importance of celebration and although if you know me in real life you will know that I am not the life and soul of a party type person, I see importance in celebrating together. The church year enables us to punctuate “ordinary” time with special celebrations and many of us will have particular family rituals associated with different occasions – pancakes with my adorable nephew is one of mine. Going on retreat with our church was another celebration of God’s creation and goodness and I remembered again the value of spending more time together than is possible on a normal Sunday morning. Celebrating the Eucharist on the beach was a memory that will continue to nurture me for a long time. We have planned a get together for a couple of weeks time and for me that will be an opportunity to celebrate what God has been doing since the retreat as I try to put into practice some of those things which emerged out of it.
Celebrations are a time for testimony, many times life can be hard and we can feel weary and it is important to be real about the more difficult aspects of the journey but if we sit down and think there is usually some element of God’s goodness and graciousness that we can celebrate together. I love the new Eucharistic prayer where children ask questions which has echoes for me of Passover meals I have celebrated in various settings. I think I have had a growing appreciation over the years of the Eucharist as it is a mini celebration each time and a foretaste of a greater celebration to come.
At work we are always excited when chocolates, biscuits or cakes arrive at coffee time to celebrate someone or something and as I felt prompted to write this blog so I feel prompted to look for more opportunities to celebrate and to not miss God’s best.
Tom Sine Why settle for more and miss the best? Word, 1987.