I used to think they were an obligation, one of those unpleasant expectations you do so you can get on with the rest of your life. Baby blessings, baptisms, graduations, weddings, and funerals were long boring ceremonies that kept me from cleaning my garage, pressing shirts, or grocery shopping. Somewhere along the line I've changed my mind.
Last week as I celebrated my little friend Hailey's baptism with their family, I pondered on the joy it was to celebrate this moment with people dear to me, to be there for the exclamation points in the lives of those I love. As her excitement spilled over into hug after hug, I celebrated with her.
Briz and I babysat Emily when she was a young child. I've been there for most of her siblings baptisms, one of their births, and many other milestones. They've laughed and cried with me with each child, birthday, and heartache. Tonight is just another snapshot of our interwoven connection. I met Emily's new young man. I can now add to our mental scrapbook, that I have met her future husband, though she doesn't know it yet, and will soon be witnessing her wedding.
The lawn didn't get mowed last Saturday afternoon. The bathrooms didn't get cleaned. I sat with 3 young children in Friday night rush hour stand still traffic last night. Yes, the mundane suffers from these moments. But though life is filled with laundry, slugs, and oil changes, these things are not life. Watching Dan look down at Emily and witnessing the blossom of real love in my friend, watching Hailey consciously choose a life as Christ's disciple, these moments make the rest worth while.
Someday, little Hailey will come again for a hug... it will be after her wedding... then her first baby. I want to be there for all these moments that say, "Yay!" Life is a celebration and I celebrate with you! I'm there for your bad times, I certainly want to share the good.