In the stage play of Peter Pan…probably in the book also, although I haven’t read the book…..there’s a scene where Peter’s friend, Tinkerbell, is dying.
She’s been poisoned by Captain Hook and is dying.
Tinkerbell’s a fairy, and she’s losing her light…and soon she’ll be gone forever unless Peter does something.
Of course, Peter is freaking out. He doesn’t want his friend to die. He doesn’t want to live without her.
So he asks the audience to just “clap if you believe”…and the audience claps and Tinkerbell regains her strength and all is right again in Peter’s world.
“Clap if you believe…”
I don’t know that it works that way with God.
I don’t think that we’re the ones keeping God alive.
The Bible says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
I don’t remember any part that said, “Clap if you want to save God…or clap to keep God alive…”
( It’s really early, I’m about to drink my first cup of coffee, and I’m trying to figure out some of these deep things…even though I’m better at drinking coffee than I am at figuring anything out. Bear with…or ignore…me.)
“Is” whether we bring a “successful” effort at worshiping Him to the table or not.
Which doesn’t mean that we should lay back and let God become like the uncle who we mean to write to sometime…but somehow never find the right moment to get out the pen and paper to do it with.
We worship because we recognize somehow that God is something that inspires worship.
Somewhere along the line…in something we see in the natural world…in something that someone around us does…or something that we feel in our “spirit”…we are reminded that we need to celebrate God.
God doesn’t “come to life” because we do the right thing, or celebrate in the correct sequence, or “clap loudly”.
We want to do the right thing because we love Him.
Now, somehow, there is a measure in the world for everything.
We strive for success in what we do, for the most part, even if it’s success in something that only makes sense on a very shallow and personal level.
We measure what other Christians are doing…make our marks on the wall to see how we’ve grown…and sometimes come to the conclusion that “We’re alright! That was a good thing that I did for God!”
“I clapped…and look how brightly His light shines now!”
Even if we keep it to ourselves, and our spiritual walk is only an internalized source of pride, it’s hard not to measure our progress against someone else who may not be walking the same path….at the same time.
(Ahhhhh, coffee! First sip from the french press…and now you are probably thinking, “Why does the last part make sense? I don’t get it…what happened with the first part of this thing? What’s going on?)
God is and will be.
We are all just temporary bundles of possibility…loose on the world and on each other.
We love because we love Him. We love because He loves us.
We love because He shows us how to love.
And sometimes we love each other because we just don’t know any better. We love “just because”.
That is something to clap about.