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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Celebration comes out of sacrifice

by Pam Roth
When you hear the word “celebration” what picture comes to your mind?  Whether it be a wedding, birthday, graduation, an anniversary, Christmas  or Easter - all of these events call for a time of celebration; and no event comes without some kind of personal sacrifice.

In many of the events mentioned the investment of time and money are vital; and in all of the events - dedication, perseverance, and a sense of commitment play a major role.  Likewise,  a whole gamut of emotions are usually experienced and expressed during a time of celebration.  So, let me pose a question…“What is more significant, the process leading up to an event or the celebration itself?”  In other words, “What brings us the greatest sense of satisfaction and pure joy?”

Ideally, we would all like to experience a time of “celebration” without sacrifice; however, Larry Crabb in his book Shattered Dreams states, “Happiness must be stripped away, forcibly, before joy can surface, before we will value and pursue dreams whose fulfillment produces true joy.”

And in James 1:2-4, we read, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers (and sisters), whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.  Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”  

As I write these words, I think about how many of the members of our family have over the past few years gone through the process of “stripping away happiness” as mentioned in Shattered Dreams.  Some have made a major move across the country and others across town; and with that move came the sacrifice of leaving behind homes filled with memories, friendships, connections and positions that no longer exist.  For some, there have been times of celebration and for others, they are waiting on “the fulfillment of their dream when they can celebrate with true joy.”  

So, let me ask you a couple of questions:

  • What are you sacrificing today in order to celebrate later?
  • Who or what are you investing in, today?
  • What’s the dream you are pursuing?
  • Who’s your inspiration?

We would love to hear your comments.  

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