In Leviticus 23 there is a list of feasts God told His people to keep. Most Christians today refer to these as Jewish Holidays. But we believe that as followers of Christ we are adopted as God's children and so we try to keep these as best we can. This is a very simple explanation anyway. If you want more detail, that's a whole other post. I'm sure some of our readers will say we're wrong to do this. But it's between us and God. We don't for a minute judge you if you don't keep these feasts. My point is not to tell you what to do, just preface the rest of the post so you'll have a clue what I'm talking about.
Toward the end of chapter 23 God tells the Israelites to dwell in booths for 7 days to remember how they had to dwell in booths when God brought the Israelites out of Egypt. The way we read this, God said to spend a week camping every fall. He even set it up to start with the full moon so we'll have a nice bright sky.
My kids say this is their favorite feast of the year. The weather is usually beautiful. They set up tents outside the house and they get to sleep in the tents every night--if they want to. We all ate dinner outside one night, but Roger and I chose not to sleep in tents until the rain passes at least.
A lot of people think we gave up a lot when we stopped celebrating Christmas and Easter. But many Christians believe that perhaps Jesus was born in Autumn. There's actually a lot of reason to believe that it was Sukkot at the time. So this is sort of our Christmas. We remember His birth at this time of year and even plan to make it a family tradition to have a big camping trip each year for Sukkot. And instead of Easter we celebrate Passover, the feast of Unleavened Bread and the feast of Firstfruits which is when He was resurrected. We have longer feasts, more of them, and they are spiritually more meaningful to us than the days we no longer observe. You can ask any of my kids, they don't feel like they are missing out on anything.
I was going to post a picture of their campsite, but I keep forgetting to take the camera out before dark. They've taken scrap lumber and created sidewalks from the house to the tents and between tents. It really worked great to keep their feet cleaner and the mud out of the tents.
Cowboy Sam is getting to finally fulfill his dream of being a real cowboy. As this little 4 yr old will matter-of-factly tell me every night when I tuck him into his bed, "Mom, I have to sleep in a tent because cowboys always sleep in tents." For this week, he gets to do that. And he is the only kid in the family to not come in at all once he gets out there. In fact, today I couldn't find him for a while. I finally found him taking a little nap in the tent. I didn't have the heart to tell him that cowboys probably don't suck their thumbs and need their blankies. He'll figure that part out when the time comes.