BRINGING HOME THE FEAST
Our Easter celebrations focusing on the death and resurrection of Jesus may be over for this year, but May brings two more important festivals to think about: The Ascension on 18th May, and Pentecost on the 28th. Many Christians mark Pentecost with a special church service, but few outside the liturgical churches commemorate The Ascension. And fewer still make these make these special days of celebration at home—especially if there are no children in the house.
While there is no requirement on Christians to keep any festival [Colossians 2:16], it is worth considering making these occasions a focus for our personal worship during the next few weeks. Even if we don’t belong to a liturgical tradition, marking the significant events in the Gospel message, and revisiting the profound truths they represent in a planned way is really valuable—and important in our pursuit of God’s rest. And of course, it makes sense to do this when other Christians are celebrating the same things.
Regular festivals give a rhythm to the year, and a balance in our workaday lives, not to mention a creative opportunity to explore special foods, decorations, and activities—in addition to reflection, worship and prayer. And it is my experience that all of them can be celebrated at home—even if we live on our own—as a way of living more profoundly throughout the year. The expression of these home-based festivals can be as varied as there are people, for each can celebrate according to their particular gifts and interests. One might emphasise a day’s retreat for prayer and fasting, another a special meal with friends, a third, a neighbourhood prayer-walk and another a creative project…
TIME TO PONDER...
However, in order to get the most out of any of our Christian festivals, we need to take some time to ponder; we need to take time to consider why we are doing it and what we are expecting…
The SPIRIT-LED CELEBRATION: THE RHYTHM OF FESTIVAL page on this website offers some more thoughts on this, and invites us to go deep:
True Festival is a Spirit-inspired response to the specifics of God’s provision; it’s celebrating God’s story; what we have received, what has been done for us, and allowing that blessing to flow out to others..
Celebrating the Lord’s provision in Jesus, as well as providing colour and creativity to our year, can also be the means of powerful encounters with the Lord—even in the home context—if we approach them with expectation and faith.
Something to bear in mind as we approach Ascension Day and Pentecost!
NEXT WEEK: CELEBRATING THE ASCENSION PART 1
Preparing to celebrate the Ascension of the Lord Jesus by meditation...
GET IN TOUCH!
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