Your Team Has Won – Why Aren't You Celebrating?
I had quite a late night (or should I say morning). You see, I am a massive football fan and with the World Cup quickly approaching, the final qualifiers are well underway. Now I am from Australia, so the Socceroos are who I support (If you don’t follow football, just stick with me – I have an interesting point) had an important game this morning at 2am – if they won or even drew the game, they won their place in the 201 World Cup in South Africa.
Being as the game was so late, concentration was difficult – and my mind started to wander. I starting thinking about how passionate true supporters of sporting teams actually are. Have you ever been to a sporting event live to see the fanatics – you know, the group of people who all dress in team colours, love a good chant and seem to get really passionate about their team? I have! In fact this picture is of me at one of the earlier World Cup qualifiers that I actually got to see live.
Fanatical Supporters Know How To Celebrate
Now you would think that during the game that the supporters got as crazy as they could and then when the game finished they would all just quieten down and head home – not so! When their team scores – there is celebration, when an opposing attack is thwarted -there is celebration and when their team wins, sleeping is the last thing on their mind.
They will billow into the streets dancing and singing, being loud and uninhibiting – AND THEY DON’T CARE! They tell everyone one they meet what has happened – they can’t help it.
Do You Show This Much Passion For ‘Your Team’?
I find it funny, actually quite sad, that as Christians we can get so excited about our local sporting team. We will dance and cheer, scream and yell. But when it comes time to praise God in church, we think we are going over the top with a bit of foot tapping (ok, maybe a slight exaggeration, but you get the point).
We are a part of God’s team! And you know what?
Our Team Has Already Won!
Death swallowed by triumphant Life!
Who got the last word, oh, Death?
Oh, Death, who’s afraid of you now?
It was sin that made death so frightening
and law-code guilt that gave sin its leverage,
its destructive power.
But now in a single victorious stroke of Life,
all three—sin, guilt, death—are gone,
the gift of our Master, Jesus Christ. Thank God!
- – 1 Corinthians 15:56-57 (MSG)
Try and tell me that isn’t something worth shouting about? How can you stand still and not want to jump up and down and dance like crazy when you read those words!
I don’t believe people when they say, ‘That’s just not me. I’m praising on the inside.’
Personally I would consider myself very reclusive. I prefer to keep to myself and am not that out going. But, when it comes to God and singing out what He has done for me and how great He is, I cannot help but to shout. I cannot help but to jump around. It is like something inside of my sparks and suddenly I’m not dancing and shouting in a room full of people, I am worshiping and praising my God at His throne – and that is all I care about.
David Got This
This has to be one of my favourite stories in the bible, and really highlights the two types of people when it comes time to praise God corporately. It is the story of David bringing the Ark of The Covenant back to Jerusalem.
12 Now King David was told, “The LORD has blessed the household of Obed-Edom and everything he has, because of the ark of God.” So David went down and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obed-Edom to the City of David with rejoicing. 13 When those who were carrying the ark of the LORD had taken six steps, he sacrificed a bull and a fattened calf. 14 David, wearing a linen ephod, danced before the LORD with all his might, 15 while he and the entire house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouts and the sound of trumpets. – - Samuel 6:12-15 (NIV)
David had seen the power of the Ark, and how it had blessed Obed-Edom’s household. He was so excited to bring this power and blessing back to Jerusalem. (Something worth getting excited about. Wouldn’t you agree?) And David definitely got excited! He started dancing before the LORD – in his under garments! The Message versions says that David “Danced with great abandon before the LORD”
I love the picture that this scripture paints, because it takes me back to the image of the fanatical supporter after their team has won – running down the streets, dancing and shouting. Letting everyone know that they are celebrating.
That is exactly how we should be!
Acting Like This Will Upset A Few People…
As you continue to read on from that passage another person comes into play, David’s wife Michal.
Let’s take a look at how she reacts to Davids praise:
16 As the ark of the LORD was entering the City of David, Michal daughter of Saul watched from a window. And when she saw King David leaping and dancing before the LORD, she despised him in her heart… vs16
20 When David returned home to bless his household, Michal daughter of Saul came out to meet him and said, “How the king of Israel has distinguished himself today, disrobing in the sight of the slave girls of his servants as any vulgar fellow would!” vs20
Michal didn’t grasp a hold of this at all (Who knows…maybe she is a two-tapping praiser). As she watched David dancing, she couldn’t see his heart behind it all. Instead all she could think was how this was going to affect her reputation, she can already hear her friends gossiping about this.
I think that this is a major reason why a lot of people cannot give God their uninhibited praise. They are too worried about how it makes them look – but it’s not about them. This is why I love Davids reaction.
21 David said to Michal, “It was before the LORD, who chose me rather than your father or anyone from his house when he appointed me ruler over the LORD’s people Israel—I will celebrate before the LORD. 22 I will become even more undignified than this, and I will be humiliated in my own eyes. But by these slave girls you spoke of, I will be held in honor.” vs 21
He knew that the offering of praise that he was giving was only what God deserved, and he was willing to ‘become even more undignified’ to the point of humiliation to praise his God for all that He has done.
David understood that people would not look at him strange, or considering him weird (well not those who understood). Instead they would look up to him for praising God so freely. And I think that as you step into passionate praise that you unknowingly give those around you permission to do the same.
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