In chapter 16, the Israelites were told they were to celebrate three different festivals-Passover, the Festival of the Harvest, and the Festival of Shelters. The Passover was God's way of helping the people remember their salvation from the Egyptians and a foreshadowing of the Messiah to come. The other festivals were also God's built in reminder for the people to stop and remember how God had provided for them in the past and that year. They were to celebrate. In vs 14, it even says the Festival of Shelter was to be a happy time for all. We have a God who likes for us to celebrate especially when we celebrate God's blessings to us and give Him the credit for the successes in our life. After reading this chapter, it reminded me that I need to not just go through the motions on holidays but to take time to reflect and celebrate God's goodness including my family in the process. This chapter also highlighted the importance of giving God the credit for all the blessings He freely gives.
Ramadan starts this week where I live. Many people will be fasting and seeking God. Some will be going through the motions and others will be truly seeking. At the end of the month of fasting there will be three days of celebration when families and friends will gather, eat lots of food and celebrate the holiday. Would you pray with me that God will speak to those who are seeking during this time and that God would bring them healing through Jesus? Pray also for opportunities during the three day celebration to get to know the people better.
Dear God, Thank you for make time in our lives for holidays. May we use those times to celebrate you but also to rest and deepen relationships with friends and family. May you prepare us for the ultimate celebration in heaven when we celebrate the ultimate victory of the Lamb over all evil. Amen