Jan 7 2021

Celebrating too Soon or Not Enough

Pastor Dave Koppel

Nine years ago, the famous Italian motorcycle racer Riccardo Russo led the pack in the 2012 Yamaha Team Italia FMI R6. He was three bike lengths ahead when he passed the marker for the final lap.

He began pumping his fists in celebration. He slowed down and threw his arms up in victory. Then he stood on the foot pegs of his bike and pumped his fists some more.

He basked in what he believed was his well-deserved glory, not realizing that there is one more lap to go. The other riders flew past him. He had no idea that there was one more lap to go, and he just stopped to celebrate.

He just celebrated too soon. He ended up finishing fourth. (Source: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/premature-celebration-loses-race-italian-motorcycle-champ-article-1.1114062#ixzz20zKHdVxx)

Here we are in 2021. It’s got to be a better year than 2020. We are tired of zoom. We are tired of masks and social distancing. We are ready to celebrate a new year, but…there may be one more lap to go.

We may be close to the finish line, but we haven’t crossed it. The vaccine is here, but many people can’t get it yet, and we have a ways to go.

We can’t stop to celebrate; we have to finish the race. We have to stay with the masks and social distancing and zoom meetings because the race isn’t over yet.

There are times in life when we celebrate too soon.

But…there are times we don’t celebrate enough. We just finished the 12 days of Christmas, and we are getting back to normal (or at least as normal as we get right now).

But Christmas made all the difference in the world. It didn’t just come and go; it has made a massive difference in history and for all eternity.

As followers of Jesus Christ, we can celebrate every day–and we can live our lives like Jesus Christ really won. He beat death forever, and because He did, our future is assured.

This year, especially this year, let’s not let things go back to “normal.” Let’s celebrate. Let’s live as if we truly believe that Jesus has made all the difference. Let’s be kind, forgive, not hold grudges, and help each other. Let’s pray for each other. Let’s live as if we have the values of Jesus.

COVID19 isn’t over. But it will be. Jesus’ reign isn’t over. It never will be.

In His grip,

Pastor