Two Reasons to Celebrate Life!

Tyler and me! Empty cave in the background.

An empty cave!

It’s Monday as I write this post.  The future is filled with many personal and corporate challenges, but as I prepare to face tomorrow I am overwhelmed with a sense of hope and celebration.  Why?  Last week we explored a cave with my grandchildren.  Centuries of erosion have left a big beautiful room carved in the rock.  It is also scary, cold and without light.  Tyler my grandson walked with me into the cave.  His eyes were so big I thought he might develop night vision on the spot and he held my hand with a vise-like grip as we eased our way deep into the darkness. More than once he wondered out loud if there was anything in the cave, monsters, wolves, bears?   Once we were back outside he embraced me and thanked me for showing him the EMPTY cave.  No monsters, no demons, no wolves.  EMPTY.

I want Tyler to know that the empty cave is one of the reasons to celebrate life.  That cave is not unlike the tomb where Jesus was buried.  Oh how scary and nightmarish our life would be without the knowledge that He is risen!  What great hope there is in the fact that the same power that raised Jesus from the dead is available to help us face tomorrow.  I want my life to demonstrate that there is no fear of the CAVE!  It is empty.

The power of love!

There are occasions when I live my life as though I have no power.  There are times when the challenges of life cast scary shadows on the walls of the cave and I retreat in fear or give in to some temptation. Yet, His love never fails.  I don’t understand it!  But I believe it. And in believing I find hope for tomorrow.  He lives and He loves me no matter what.  How can I not celebrate today and look forward to tomorrow.

There is not a material possession that could outweigh the value of those tiny arms around my neck.  There isn’t a lottery ticket or earthly pleasure that makes my spirit soar higher than the words “I love you.” whispered in my ear.  And I find that in these days of my life, it is loving other people and showing them the empty cave and the power of God’s love that drives me.  My career, my possessions, my health and talents are only tools to help me share with my family, my friends, and the people I meet something of greater value; the love of God that has been poured out on me.

So a wide eyed little boy, the unrestrained love expressed by six little bread snappers, an empty cave and the power of love drive me to live fully alive on this Monday and I couldn’t keep it to myself.

What is it that brings you hope for tomorrow and makes you celebrate life?

 

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12 thoughts on “Two Reasons to Celebrate Life!

  1. Thanks Ken! I loved this one. Before I even read it, I had thought of the empty tomb. Great coralation. Keep on, my friend! You are a Blessing! 🙂

  2. Thanks for this, Ken. Just want you to know I’m praying for you at this time.
    God bless you BIG and thanks for your celebration of Him and encouraging us to do the same.
    Debbie

  3. There is always light at the end of the tunnel. Life offers many dark moments; but knowing that my God is there with me during those times is my reason to celebrate. I am never alone, even in the darkest caves of my life.

  4. What brings me hope is pure child-like laughter, innocent and truly from the gut and bubbling out into the air, soaring up and swirling around the head of God. I showed my niece and nephew, 14 & 16, a small video on YouTube of Captain Kangeroo and Mr. Moose dropping ping pong balls on his head (something as a child I watched with delight and it can still make me laugh in wild abandonment). These two teens, who spend far too much time engrossed in video games of blowing up something or someone, and trying to find their way through a materialistic high school filled with temptations at every turn, looked at me surprised and then they too laughed with child-like delight. Pure, happy laughter at something simply because it was funny. No sexual innuendo, no violence. Pure innocence. It made my spirit soar.

  5. Bread snappers? I’ve not heard that one, but it brought a smile to me this morning, as did the entire post.
    Everytime I have my seven “bread snappers” around me, like Easter Sunday, I think to myself – we are making memories. When these young ones grow up and have families of their own, these experiences and the loved ones around them, are memories they will have in their hearts.
    I praise my God for the memories he has given me of Thanksgiving at Grandma’s house. Playing marbles on the oriental rug in the livingroom of the little house, with my brother and cousins surrounding that beautiful pattern. Grandma kept the marbles in a little galvanized bucket under her kitchen sink. It never failed to be there when we visited, and it never failed to bring a simple joy.
    Easter in my world is much the same. After church services and the egg gathering outside, we return to the house and have a sumptuous dinner & egg hunt there, too. My g’kids range in age from 21 to 8, but the joy of having the group together making memories is beyond my abilities. It’s a God thing.
    I pray that God will continue to bless them as he has blessed me.
    Thanks, Ken, for making memories with your six. And for explaining the “empty tomb” as a symbol of love.
    God Bless You,
    Claudia

  6. Thanks for sharing this. I also thought of the empty tomb as i read this. How wonderful to share this with your grandson.
    My husband and I have listened to you for many years now. On a cruise with you in 2008, we saw you in the hallway looking for a way to the stage. You seemed lost so my husband ask if he could help. You said “I can’t seem to find the entrance to the stage.” My husband pointed the way and we smiled and talked about how really funny you really are. It’s not an act. We love your wonderful sense of humor.

  7. I loved this blog. We all go into the empty caves in our lives and thankfully because of Jesus we can come back out victoriously.I grew up in WI. and sometimes exploring the woods we would find caves. Sadly my parents and grandparents where never with us what a great memory you brought back to me today. I live in west Texas now but I will have to look for some small caves to explore with my grandchildren. Thank for the reminder of Jesus and the forgotten memories. Cathie

  8. “He lives and He loves me no matter what. How can I not celebrate today and look forward to tomorrow.” Thanks so much for the blog! I was sharing “aches” with a dear Christian friend & she gave me these same words only 2 days ago. “You are His child & He loves you! This is why we can have joy today & look forward to a wonderful tomorrow.” Thanks Ken for being used of Him to encourage me today!!

  9. Your post brings to mind what a sad example of a father was. Oh to have my time again, only this time knowing Christ and teaching my children about the empty tomb, building the precious memories that we could share when we are together. One day Christ will touch their lives just as he touched mine, I know this because I ask Him every morning and every night, and He is a faithful God, despite what seems to be my best efforts to turn Him away from me.