I love music for celebrating. Whether it be the Happy Birthday song or Christmas music, it cheers me up. (Except for when the mall continues to play the Christmas music until the end of January). But during the celebration itself, I love it. I have to admit, even the celebratory "We Are the Champions" when my team wins totally makes my day!
I love the example of Miriam in the Bible. After the Israelites were miraculously saved from the Egyptians when God opened up the Red Sea so that they could walk across on dry ground, Miriam led the women in celebrating. First the passage says that Moses and all the Israelites sang and celebrated, but then Miriam stepped up, rounded up the ladies, grabbed a bunch of timbrels (like tamborines) and sang and danced! What I totally love is that the Hebrew people had just left Egypt after being slaves for so many years but that when they packed up their belongings to head out, they packed their musical instruments! You would think they would have packed a little more lightly since they had to walk and didn't exactly know where they were headed.
So Miriam and the ladies danced for joy.
Then Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took the timbrel in her hand; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances. 21 And Miriam answered them:
“Sing to the Lord,
For He has triumphed gloriously!
The horse and its rider
He has thrown into the sea!”
Even if most of us would never sing and dance in front of anyone else because we don't want to look ridiculous, maybe in our private moments of worship we should be singing and dancing to the Lord. Whether we do so literally or not is up to us individually. But either way, giving thanks and praise and celebrating the Lord's goodness in our lives is a fantastic reason for song!