I am currently in celebration mode. Just one week ago, son Caleb had an accident. A fluke accident. An accident that has no good explanation.
He and his buddy were out in the evening flying their powered parachutes, just like they'd done many times before. There was no pilot error, no equipment failure, no dangerous weather conditions. Caleb began turning slowly to the right, and half of his parachute folded up into itself.
500+ feet in altitude.
Five seconds of spiraling down, out of control.
Then, the crash.
He should've died. The emergency room doctor and the orthopedic doctors tell us that crash landings from 60 feet usually produce a DOA victim.
60 feet = about 6 stories up
500+ feet = about 50 stories up
There is no explanation other than that it was a miracle Caleb survived, and walked away with only several compression fractures of his spine. I'm convinced that when we ultimately examine the underside of the wreckage, we will see the outline of God's hands or angels' wings.
Yes. I'm celebrating. Although we are all still processing the event, we are celebrating God's goodness and miraculous care.
From what I see in the Bible, it's probably a good idea that we all celebrate more. I think Jesus lived perpetually in a state of celebration.
When he was born, his birth triggered some of the greatest celebrating there had ever been. Angels singing, shepherds providing crowd control to visitors, an entourage of kings arriving from other countries, and gifts.
Later as an adult, Jesus provided on-site parties - massive quantities of food for those crowds of people who followed him. He knew how to fill bellies, add happiness, and make any situation into a celebration of sorts. (See John 6: 9-13.)
He even loved to tell stories about celebrations. Remember the father and his prodigal son? The moment the son returned home, the father arranged for a lavish welcoming party. (See Luke 15: 11-21.)
Even after Jesus was crucified and returned from the dead, he threw a little picnic party - a fish fry on the beach for his guys. (See John 21:1-14.) To the very end, he lived in an attitude of celebration.
Jesus came from a happy place, lived in a happy mode, and knew he was returning to a very happy home. Even though he had hard trials to endure while on earth (as we are promised to have too), he knew how to celebrate.
I believe he wants us to live the same way.
I don't think we always get this right. I remember the first portrait I saw of Jesus. It hung on the wall in my primary Sunday School classroom. I always looked at it with a little trepidation; Jesus looked so somber, serious, and even a bit scary.
Since then I've seen various artists portray Jesus as laughing, and I'm so much more drawn to those renditions. I believe we will someday spend lots of time in Heaven just laughing with our Lord.
How will you find ways now to celebrate more?