Saturday, May 18, 2013

Redefining "Holidays"

In the past, I used to celebrate the same holidays as everyone else I knew. I did not know any Jewish people, so I did not know about their holidays. I did not know any Muslim people (I did not even know what a "Muslim" was, to be quite honest.) I only just found out about Jehovahs' Witnesses and Seventh Day Adventists when I was in high school.

To say I led a sheltered life is probably a cliché, but I honestly was not aware.

Now, as I am older, I have had opportunities to meet different people and explore the fact that not everyone comes to the table with the same plate. And that has given me the gift of being able to examine the things I grew up with so that I could decide if I wanted to keep them for my own.

One of those "things" is the way I celebrate holidays... or even how I define "holidays". And something I have added to my plate is the celebration of what many people refer to as "Jewish holidays"... when in fact the Bible refers to them in Leviticus 23 as "The Feasts of the Lord."

I am still learning, and since I am not Jewish, I cannot celebrate them in the same way that a Jewish community might. But that does not mean I can't learn about their origins and significance and apply them to my life.

This year, I hosted my first Passover. I downloaded a "Messianic Haggadah", some kosher recipes, cleared the furniture out of our living room, filled it up with banqueting tables, and invited some friends. We had a delightful, meaningful evening... the first of what I hope are more to come.
What I have learned by doing this is that there is a deeper richness to my faith that has still to be explored.

When you grow up in the Evangelical church, you can sometimes tend to miss the "why" behind the "what" in the things you do in life.
Passover 2013