39 “‘…after you have gathered the crops of the land, celebrate the festival to the Lord for seven days; the first day is a day of sabbath rest, and the eighth day also is a day of sabbath rest. 40 On the first day you are to take branches from luxuriant trees—from palms, willows and other leafy trees—and rejoice before the Lord your God for seven days. 41 Celebrate this as a festival to the Lord for seven days each year. This is to be a lasting ordinance for the generations to come; celebrate it in the seventh month.
Maybe like me you sometimes look at Leviticus and see it as a stuffy book of dreary rules. If that is you, maybe a read of these verses describing the Festival of Booths or Tabernacles might change your mind. God instructs his people (that doesn’t sound like a good start) to celebrate (sounding better) a week long joyful festival, beginning and ending with the Sabbath. This isn’t stodgy worship, but a week long Bank Holiday of partying, feasting and enjoyment in response to God’s generosity and in his presence (do you need to be asked twice?) At our church meeting the other night it was suggested that we ought to have a party in response to God getting us through the pandemic. Sounds to me like that is a totally appropriate response, because our God is a partying God!
Have I made following you a stodgy, serious duty? Have I become the older brother of the Prodigal Son, forgetting that you are the Father who called for a feast when his Son came home? Let’s put on the music, lay the table, and enjoy you!