I have these rules, 27 so far, this is number three. Celebrate everything (even the small stuff). Yeah! Fist bump time. Celebrations are important. They may mark milestone events – Birthdays (especially those that end in zero), weddings, important anniversaries, the birth of a child, a new job, retirement, graduation, or the completion of some large goal. Those are the huge celebrations. There are also the many moments of celebration when we stand, cheer, clap, dance, and generally make a fool of ourselves. Go Cubs! WooHoo!
Notice the tagline for this rule – even the small stuff. That’s the part most people miss. The small stuff are the victories, blessings, accomplishments, and welcome surprises that cross our path each and every day. Granted, these celebrations are not as elaborate or foolish as celebrating the big stuff. But they are still worthy of recognition, of a laugh, a smile, a woot, a clap, a yeah, a high five, or even a simple “thank you.”
Celebration reminds us that life isn’t always boring, bad, or futile. Consider this for a moment. Perhaps the wisest person in ancient history was King Solomon. At some point, he delved into the meaning of life and concluded, “Everything is meaningless,” says the Teacher, “completely meaningless!” (Ecclesiastes 1:2, NLT) Nothing changes, history repeats itself, there is nothing new under the sun. From a purely humanistic view of the world, King Solomon is right. That’s depressing.
The book of Ecclesiastes recounts Solomon’s journey to find meaning. He tried wisdom, pleasure, political power, wealth, work, and found them all futile. Solomon observed the many seasons and injustices of life. Seeing the oppression in the world he concluded that the dead are better off than the living. The only glimmer of meaning Solomon found was in God, “Don’t let the excitement of youth cause you to forget your Creator. Honor him in your youth before you grow old and say, “Life is not pleasant anymore.” (Ecclesiastes 12:1, NLT)
For me, celebrations large and small are forms of honor and praise to God. They are my thank you to Him for the good moments. You see, I don’t agree with Solomon’s conclusion that life is meaningless. Meaning is found in the infinitesimally small moments of being and the everlasting eternity of God. A single drop of water landing on stone seems futile and meaningless, but add patient repetition and the stone changes shape. Each splash seems futile but their cumulative effect is powerful.
It’s the same way with celebrating everything (even the small stuff). This may seem meaningless, just a feel-good move, but the cumulative effect is powerful. Celebration changes the meaningless to significant, the momentary to eternal, and the mundane to something special. Celebrating everything (even the small stuff) changes everything through a constant flow of laughs, smiles, woots, claps, high fives, and thank yous.