Seasons and celebrations

December 4th, 2019

Most people are excited by a great celebration — particularly, those celebrations which include delicious food, party favors, decorations, games, door prizes and good company. However, excitement should not be confined to only celebrations with a party atmosphere. Christianity has many faith celebrations. Some are festive and some are solemn, but all should inspire excitement.

Some Christian denominations, such as United Methodists, celebrate the liturgical seasons and are excited to do so. For example, Advent is a time of anticipation and eagerness for Christmas to arrive. It begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas Day. The liturgical Christmas season begins at sundown on December 24 and lasts through January 6 (Epiphany). These are the twelve days of Christmas. Ash Wednesday begins the season of Lent which lasts until Easter. Lent is not considered a festive celebration, but is a time of self-denial and self-examination. The beginning of the Easter season depends on when the first full moon after March 21 occurs, because Easter Sunday begins the first Sunday after that full moon. The Easter season lasts fifty days. There are lesser emphasized liturgical seasons but actually all of them should be celebrated with excitement, because together they remind us of the life and mission of Christ.

Living with excitement

Liturgical seasons are not the only faith celebrations to generate excitement. The sacraments of Holy Communion and baptism are celebrations of faith. Mission projects, whether hands-on or support-based, are also celebrations of our faith. Weddings, funerals, sick and shut-in visitations and many other activities are faith celebrations as well.

Think about it. Our celebrations of faith are celebrations of life. They are not only about the life of Christ but also our lives in Christ. Jesus stated in John 10:10b: “I came so that they could have life — indeed, so that they could live life to the fullest.” Let’s commit ourselves to living a “life to the fullest,” filled with excitement and passing on that excitement to the next generation.

Question of the day: What excites you about faith celebrations such as Advent?
Focal scriptures: Matthew 1:18-21; 2 Thessalonians 2:15-17; Psalm 78:1-7

For a complete lesson on this topic visit LinC.

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