Celebrating What Really Matters

by Peter Swann

“You are what you celebrate,” the saying goes. It’s one of my favorite sayings, and one of the most profound.

Many times these days, we will talk about cultures around the world. We might also talk about sub-cultures within our own context. Each person has a culture, each entity has a culture, and each geographical area has a culture. We are all composed of layers upon layers of cultures.

The question is of, how to shape culture?

And one answer, I believe, is by celebrating what really matters. The prime values in a people should be those that are celebrated the most. By trumpeting our values in a successful light, it communicates both what we care about and the dedication we are putting behind it.

A church, for example, might claim to care about missions but never talk much about it, rarely

pray toward it, and not have members that live as missionaries. There are no stories of missions or of people changed through missions. In other words, missions is never celebrated. And the culture reflects it.

So let’s be diligent about celebrating what matters. There is much to build out in a church, but a church’s culture should be shaped early on. Key values should always be evident. And that is reinforced not through many programs or smooth performances, but by celebration.

So, let’s be a celebrating people! Let’s look at what we value most, and go big on it. After all, we are what we celebrate.