We’re tired of being isolated. We miss being part of a community. We need something to look forward to. We need a reason to celebrate.
I gathered this week with 35 of my daughter’s friends to celebrate the upcoming birth of our first granddaughter. It wasn’t the same getting together on Zoom; we couldn’t enjoy a decadent cake and other treats reserved for special occasions. There were no decorations and balloons worthy of a photo on Pinterest.
But it was a celebration.
The silver lining was we were able to include friends from five countries and ten states, which wouldn’t have happened minus COVID-19.
My youngest daughter graduated from university today. It wasn’t the fanfare she’d anticipated with all her classmates and there was no inspirational message from a well-known Moody Bible Institute grad. Instead, she was celebrated by people who happen to live in her sister’s neighborhood, where she moved when her school closed down due to COVID-19.
They had known her less than a month, but when they found out she was graduating, they got busy planning a surprise party for her. The text went out the night before for anyone who wanted to help decorate the special chair to show up at Judy’s house at 8pm. The next morning, they showered her with cards, gifts, flowers and balloons. An especially introverted gentleman in his mid-70s, who rarely interacts with the other neighbors, literally lit up with a huge smile on his face as he handed her a sweet card with a gift card tucked inside.
Big or small, we’re all looking for a reason to celebrate.
We said farewell to a friend this week with a parade of 15 cars decorated with balloons, posters and honking horns. She stood on the sidewalk and cried the entire time. (Some of us did, too.)
Today we welcomed home a fellow airman who’d been gone six weeks longer than his six-month deployment was supposed to be.
We’ve been physically and socially separated for many months. We crave community and are desperately looking for ways to stay connected.
Reasons to celebrate are all around us. Some are more obvious than others. Regardless, let’s take a peek into others’ worlds to see how we can help them celebrate.
“Rejoice with those who rejoice.“ (NIV, Romans 12:15).