When the celebration of that which is sacred is guided by sanctity and holiness for the Person/place/thing deemed sacred, the celebration becomes an act of worship with a message of reverence. Humility and grace are intertwined to form a sweet smelling savor as though it were a sacrifice offered willingly upon an altar. The message of reverence for the sacred is the goal above all, governing the method and manner of the celebration. There is no room for pride of performance or the need to impress. It is a matter of a heart submitted and surrendered. Love can easily be witnessed in every aspect of the celebration. The celebration by its very nature invites and draws others in.
When the celebration becomes a performance wherein the details and the scale of the celebration is the end goal, the element of sacredness begins to be less clear much like when dross infiltrates pure gold. The vision becomes obscured. Unrealistic expectations lead to unrealistic demands. The cost grows exponentially with each thrust of pride and ego, for pride and ego can be witnessed in every aspect of the celebration. Obligation and guilt, manipulation and shame become the motivation for participation. It is as if the celebration is more of an excuse to socialize and becomes a practice for increasing consumption of goods and service. There is no higher goal; there is nothing specific being honored. It is a matter of a heart at war with identity, insecurity and of self-ego.
When a baby is conceived, there is much celebration. When a baby is born, there is even more celebration. But is it a celebration of something sacred? As children mature into young adults, there is much celebration. When young adults move into independence, there is even more celebration. But is it a celebration of something sacred? When adults move from singleness into coupledom, there is much celebration. When couples move into marriage, there is even more celebration. But is it a celebration of something sacred?
When there is a dissolution of marriage, there is much grief and mourning. When there is an end of life, there is even more grief and morning. But is the grief and mourning brought on by the loss of something sacred?
When there is a holiday, there is much celebration. When there is a religious holiday, there is even more celebration. But is it a celebration of something sacred?