By G.P. Avants
“But we had to celebrate and be glad.”
Luke 15: 32
Do you remember those words? Yes, it’s a song reminding us that there is a time to cut loose and have a good time.
I think it’s easy to associate celebrating and partying as two things to be avoided. There are certainly times to celebrate. Yes, special occasions are highlights that mark events that we need to look back on. We celebrate a birthday, a holiday, a graduation, or a winning team. These are healthy celebrations that we need to get excited about.
When does a celebration turn into the party atmosphere? When does this all turn into something that is questionable?
I want to stop here and say that this is directed towards those who are believers. Yes, we are the ones who need to be the example at these times of gathering. Jesus didn’t avoid celebrations. He was very much a part of them but, He didn’t compromise himself. Parties get their bad wrap because some cast off self-restraint and do what comes naturally. There is a lack of self-control present that opens the door for problems.
As Christians we need to look for opportunities to spend time with people. Parties and celebrations are great times because people are together. Yes, they hopefully aren’t in a rush and more relaxed. People may be more open to talk about their life and their issues. You need to keep a clear head and an open heart. You might be the witness in what you do at that party.
I really think that where things have gotten crazy are with those who profess Christ. At a party there is no difference between the party-hearty crowd and the believing crowd. That is where people see us really living our faith or divorcing ourselves from it. You can still celebrate and not compromise yourself. I know we all want to fit in and be welcomed.
Please pray that you can get close without the compromise. We all want to be approachable to those around us. Jesus told us to reach out to others in whatever situation we are put in. So, I ask you to pray before you enter a party situation. Determine to be a part of the celebration and enjoy yourself. Pray that you can do so with a clear head and a clear conscience. Think of yourself as God’s representative at this special occasion. Ask yourself, what would Jesus do here? It really works when I am uncertain. I hope it will help you truly celebrate good times.