In many of our worship services this weekend, we’re celebrating our class of 2020. It can feel really hard to celebrate during these times, but during these past 7 weeks, and in the weeks to come, there have been and will be birthdays, anniversaries, and graduations. So how do we celebrate, and live joyfully in God’s goodness when we are so surrounded by loss?
Ask (All Answer):
- What is something from these past 6 weeks that has made you sad?
- What is something important or special that you have missed?
- What is something important coming up?
Say: This week, we’re going to talk about celebration. Over these months, every family will have events that they were looking forward to that they won’t get to celebrate the way they thought (birthdays, end of school year, anniversaries, etc). So what does God think about that? How are we supposed to feel?
Say: In our church calendar, there are times where we’re supposed to be celebrate, and there have always been years where God’s people just didn’t feel like celebrating. In Jeremiah 29, God’s people have been kicked out of their homes, and are missing out on their normal lives and everything they loved. They don’t want to do their religious festivals in this place where everything feels so wrong, they just want to go back to normal!
Here is God’s message to them: Have someone read Jeremiah 29:4-7
Adults – rephrase or paraphrase this passage to younger people in your family. What does God tell them to do?
Ask (older children):
- How can you imagine the Israelites felt? Is this what they wanted God to say?
- If God sent this message to you, right now, to get used to life like this, how would you feel?
- Have you ever considered celebration, weddings and harvests, part of the call of God on our lives?
- What is a time in your life that you had an imperfect celebration (holiday gone wrong, etc)?
- Where is God in the act of celebration?
Ask (younger children):
- How long do you think we have been like this? How much longer do you think we will be?
- What have been the most fun parts?
- What is something you are looking forward to?
As a family pick a big celebration coming up that will likely happen while we are still in the pandemic (end of school year things like field day, mother’s day, a birthday, etc, something you would have normally celebrated)
- How can we make this event special?
- Are there special foods we can make?
- Special clothes we can wear?
- Decorations we can put up?
- Activities we can do?
- What parts can we all help with?
Make a commitment as a family to celebrate the holiday, even if you’re not feeling like it that day. Put it on the calendar, plan for it, take pictures.