Celebration of Grace: The Amazing Goodness of God - 17 May 2019

Louise Gevers

“They will celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness. The LORD is gracious and compassionate; slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made.” Psalm 145:7-9

God’s goodness and righteousness give us grounds to celebrate every day. We need, and receive, His unfailing compassion and kindness that is fresh every morning; (Lamentations 3:22-23) He gives us a brand new start. We have the opportunity to acknowledge the good things that make us happy to be alive: we love and we’re loved; we confess our sin and receive forgiveness freely; we have free will and a purpose in life. We never face difficulties alone because He’s promised never to leave us.

Good things happen to us in life that make us want to reach deep into ourselves to celebrate and rejoice with others as we share food, love and laughter, and dance, and make memories. Our joy overflows as we thank God, because this delight goes far beyond our own making. These celebrations, whatever their form, bring rich memories that bind us together and become a part of who we are.

This element of pure delight and abandon is seen in the description of David, “dancing before the LORD with all his might, while he and all Israel were bringing up the ark of the Lord with shouts and the sound of trumpets”. (2 Samuel 6:14-15) It had nothing to do with David’s importance, or with being inebriated. It was an extravagant celebration of God’s greatness that brought awe-inspiring joy to the Israelites, and led to David giving gifts of food to every person in the crowd, before returning home to bless his family.

Isn’t this scale of David’s generosity of spirit in response to the “abundant goodness” of God very much like what we experience at Christmas time? The King of kings being born into the world calls for an extravagant celebration of Christ’s birth around the world, as innumerable lives are touched and enriched by this season of love and generous giving, in response to the magnitude of God’s priceless gift. We experience the truth of Jesus words: “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35), we and celebrate His grace.

These religious festivals and holidays are special times of merry-making that we spend much money and effort on, but simply sharing a meal with family around the braai can be an equally rich celebration of our love for each other, and the values we share. Because true celebration comes through God’s goodness, it has very little to do with our resources, and everything to do with His outpoured grace which everyone can experience.

Prayer: Dearest Father, every good gift is from You. I rejoice because you bless me so abundantly and fill my life with celebrations of Your endless love and grace. Amen.

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