(Psalm 42:4) These things I remember, as I pour out my soul: how I would go with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God with glad shouts and songs of praise; a multitude keeping festival.
Several years ago, the Seinfeld show introduced an imaginary holiday called Festivus. It started when George’s father got into a fight over a doll at a local department store. The dialogue…
Frank Costanza: Many Christmases ago, I went to buy a doll for my son. I reached for the last one they had, but so did another man. As I rained blows upon him, I realized there had to be another way.
Cosmo Kramer: What happened to the doll?
Frank Costanza: It was destroyed. But out of that a new holiday was born… a Festivus for the rest of us!
Cosmo Kramer: That must have been some kind of doll.
Frank Costanza: She was.
That phrase, “A Festivus for the rest of us” has been quoted many times and anyone who saw the episode can remember the many laughs the lines produced.
In the scripture today, the Psalmist recalls a time when he led God’s people in a processional to the house of God. The atmosphere must have been electric. Try to picture a multitude of people moving in unity toward a common goal. They were shouting glad expressions and singing joyful songs of praise. He summarizes the scene by explaining that they were “keeping festival.” This is very important because they weren’t just randomly celebrating. The word “keeping” implies obedience to a command. Just like they were expected to keep the 10 commandments, they were also to keep festival. There is no mention of a particular festival. Some scholars suggest that God simply wanted them to remain in a spirit of celebration. So, their actions indicated that they were actually being obedient to the commandment of God to celebrate His goodness.
I sometimes think we forget that Jesus came to provide a Festivus for the rest of us! He has provided a way for us to be victorious in every season of life. “In sickness or in health, for richer or poorer…” That means we should be able to celebrate at all times.
If we could somehow observe the Holy Trinity right now, what do you imagine they would be doing? I think they would be keeping festival because they see the end from the beginning. They already have all knowledge so there would be no need for worry or concern. Remember, their eternal plan for mankind is good, and provides Festivus for the rest of us!
PRAYER: Father, thank You for Your many blessings. I intend to keep festival today by living in a spirit of joyful expectation. Even if my journey is difficult, I’m confident because of Your strong hand that upholds me! Amen.