Choose to Celebrate In Faith

By Esther Karram

The church service was long over when I found my high school self in the quiet of the hallway. I looked up to see my worship pastor walking toward his office when he saw me. “Beautiful job singing today, Esther!”

I ducked my head with a smile and quietly responded, “Praise God.” That was the standard reply at my Baptist church. I thought that was what good Christians were supposed to say whenever someone complimented you.

“Praise God” became my refrain. It sounds good in theory. The reality, though, is that I was not “praising God.”

So I tried to clamp down my joy and brush off any praise, rationalizing that it was wrong to enjoy the nice things people said or the shiny trophies I held in my hands. But I’ve come to learn that when you don’t celebrate… you lose. You lose the gift of joy. You lose the gift of affirmation. And you lose the chance to encourage the future-you. You also lose the opportunity to give God glory.

Ebenezer Stone

Celebration is a victory shout, an exclamation that God is directing this calling on our lives and that the enemy’s plans to thwart that calling haven’t won. When we choose to celebrate, we declare that all our hard work, late nights, constant emails, and phone calls were worth it. We are planting a flag in the ground, setting up an Ebenezer stone, something we can look back on and say, “The Lord helped me every step of the way with this thing… and He’ll be faithful again.”

6 Ways To Celebrate

  1. Praise God, as it is essential to remember and express gratitude for His blessings.

  2. Do something special, something a little different and a little fun as your mark of celebration.

  3. Tag your celebration committee. Celebration is part of building each other up, and it is also great accountability. Because when things get tough later, the same people who celebrated with you can remind you of the good stuff God’s already done and that He’s not finished with you yet.

  4. Enjoy the flowers with Him. What does that mean? It means celebrating the gifts, the successes, the moments of joy with God. It means replaying those moments in your mind with Him and telling Him how amazing they were.

  5. Write it down. Anytime something happens that makes us want to celebrate, write it down and put it in a blessing box. You can take out the pieces of paper whenever you’re discouraged and feeling like you aren’t getting anywhere.

  6. Celebrate anyway. I’ve started to clue into the fact that if I wait to celebrate until everything is perfect, I’ll be waiting my whole life. So celebrate anyway. Even if it’s not perfect. That doesn’t mean ignoring the pain. It just means not ignoring the joy because of the pain. It’s holding both with equal weight.

So celebrate, friend — celebrate all the good, beautiful gifts. All the late nights of hard work that are finally paying off. Celebrate the sale, the new website, the book deal, the expansion, the new ideas. Celebrate the big, and celebrate the small.

This is an excerpt from Esther Karram’s article Choose to Celebrate, first published in the CELEBRATE issue of Grace Go Bloom. 

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