Every once in a while, I run into a Christian single who is chronically drab, dour or otherwise non-celebratory.
Whether because of anger over being single, religious doctrine, personality, rebellion against commercialism and snarled traffic, or bad experiences with other humans (such as bad marriages), they’ve developed the attitude that there is really nothing special to celebrate.
The current holiday season, which includes Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year’s, holds no positive significance to them. Life is a drudgery. They “bah, humbug!” everything.
Yes, sometimes the “holidays” are anything but happy, depending on the weather and the community where you live and work. It’s not helpful that many of us have experienced several holidays with our family of origin that were not ideal. We’re relieved we no longer have to participate in or duplicate them, thank you very much.
However, here’s a suggestion for all of us. Let your decision to celebrate or not to celebrate be the result of thoughtful consideration of your own convictions — not from a negative personality, bad family experiences, a misapplication of what the Bible teaches, agitation over your single status, or an echo of what your church, denomination or favorite pastor teaches.
As believers who are single, we have much to celebrate, even if, right now, we don’t have a spouse but really want one.
Joy is the serious business of heaven. –C.S. Lewis
The joy of heaven transcends our marital status. One day we will outlive our marital status and step into eternity.
We must remind ourselves regularly that the Bible teaches us there are many things to celebrate in life. God commands us to rejoice and celebrate life because He is a celebrating God. The Bible even teaches us that God celebrates us! Zephaniah 3:17 tells us that God rejoices over us with singing. Can you see Him singing over you?
We also learn that the Jewish community, where our Christian faith came from, had many celebrations. Both the Old and the New Testaments encourage, even exhort, us to celebrate (rejoice, publicly proclaim, delight in, cheer on) all sorts of accomplishments and events in life.
The Israelites observed mandates to commemorate and celebrate many historical events and reflect on their personal and corporate spiritual states through feasts and holy days. Just looking at the calendar of Jewish festivals tells me that no matter what stage of life you and I are in, and no matter where we find ourselves on God’s stage, there is reason and room to rejoice, celebrate and be positive.
For instance, every spring, Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread commemorated the Hebrews’ miraculous escape from generational Egyptian captivity. These feasts signify for us the suffering, death, burial and resurrection of the ultimate Passover lamb, Jesus, which set us free from the oppression of demonic slavery. There’s enough in those two holidays to celebrate for years to come!
I rejoice and thank God for my salvation all the time. I thank God for giving me a strong spiritual foundation that enables me to withstand and grow through years of severe spiritual warfare.
I’m also at a different stage in my life now than I was several years ago, or even several months ago. Though I recently retired and am living in a new area of the country, I know He is guiding me and providing for me. I rejoice in that and try to be patient with His timing.
Though I am still not married and might never be, I rejoice in His ongoing presence. If He wants me to have a husband, He will prepare my heart and provide the right man at the right time.
Folks, I have looked all over the Bible and have read it through several times. Nowhere does it say there is room for negativity and bad attitudes in the life of a believer. Though we can’t go party like it’s 1999 every single night, we can rejoice and celebrate Who the Lord is and what He has done in us and through us every single day!
Now look at your life with new eyes.
What do you have that you can thank God for?
What do you not have (that you don’t want) that you can thank God for?
What promises has the Lord made to you from His Word that you can rejoice over because you know He’s good for keeping His promises?
May you be blessed in celebrating your life in the Lord this season. Rejoice. Feast. Be grateful.