[Originally published as Be Celebrated]
When was the last time you felt celebrated? I’m talking about a time when you believed with all your heart that your presence mattered. Can you think of that moment? Some can and some may not. Regardless, let’s address the idea for a moment.
God celebrates your presence and mourns your absence.
Matthew 18:10–14 shares Jesus’ parable of the Lost Sheep. You know the parable well.
Do you know its truth as well as its content? Can you feel the sincerity of the love and security of your Savior’s embrace? Can you recall a time when you have been pursued by grace and tracked down by mercy?
Luke 15:11–31 (the prodigal son) reveals our Father’s heart for us. He longs for our presence. And when the hour of reunion comes, He prepares the fattened calf for our party. You are celebrated by a host of angels when you pray. Your sacrifices made for the kingdom create such a raucous in the heavens that the demons tremble. God celebrates you with a fervor unmatched by any earthly affair!
Imagine for a moment what your entrance into heaven will be like.
How will God respond to your presence? A group of students practiced this longed-for event one crisp morning in Wisconsin. I lined them up, facing each other, forming a bit of a gauntlet. At one end stood our Savior waiting to receive the arrival of the saints. One by one, every student had the opportunity to be celebrated as they made their way to the one representing Jesus. They did flips, cartwheels, chest bumps, high fives, low fives, and some just slowly walked with a grin of joy.
Regardless of how the students made their way, they were received in celebration and a genuine embrace. God celebrates your presence and mourns your absence.
Canyon Ministries celebrates people.
We have often discussed the importance of providing our guests with something they cannot receive on their own. We want everybody to walk away thinking they received something unexpected.
People expect Grand Canyon to be spectacular, and it does not disappoint. People expect to receive well-spoken instruction on the formation of the canyon and its correlation to the Genesis flood, and they receive it. But what people cannot do on their own is encounter Grand Canyon within the context of the body of Christ.
The greatest surprise of a Canyon Ministries tour is the people it involves. We love to celebrate you. We love to see the relationships that form quickly amongst fellow followers of Christ. Every tour we provide (whether on the river or on the rim) is purposeful in providing an opportunity for you to connect with other believers. We want you to be celebrated and honored.
God thinks you rock!