At the end of the first lesson, someone asked what we are supposed to do now that we know about the significance of the feasts. Are we now supposed to celebrate all of them? I have an answer that God has been growing in me over the past several years.
You see, I have watched my life change as I have embraced behaviors called for in the Old Testament. I started by telling God I will do what I can (I'm currently limited by health constraints), and I started by giving up pork.
Now I'm not a big fan of most pork products but I love sausage and I especially enjoy pizza with sausage and pepperoni, so there was some sacrifice involved with this, although not as much as if I had loved bacon and ham. Within a few weeks of giving up pork, even though it felt like I hadn't actually had to give up anything yet, God broke my addictive craving for ice cream. It just went away. The only reason I could see for this release was my yielding a portion of my eating to the biblical mandate.
Then another huge diet change occurred. A little over a year ago God asked me to give up sugar for six months. I wasn't able to give up all sugar but I cut out everything I could that wasn't specifically tied to my health. I call it cutting out sweets, as I am still eating sugar, but I reduced my sugar intake by probably 50% at the outset. And I've been able to maintain that reduction in sweets and remove even more of the sugar from my diet. Happily, I've been maintaining this new diet for over a year and a half now. I have a ways to go but the ease with which I'm able to maintain at this level is truly miraculous.
From this and other evidence I've come to an understanding that everything we yield to God, every Old Testament ordinance that we obey, is like opening a door in our lives that God can now work through.
So when my friend asked if we needed to obey all of the feasts, my answer was 'yes, to the best of our ability.'
I explained to him my new understanding and then I told him that it was like him making sure to take his wife out for Valentine's dinner. This couple acts like newly weds; they are obviously very in love. His wife very much wants to go out for Valentine's Day each year and he makes it happen because he loves her. God, when He gave us the feasts, was telling us what He really wanted and if we very much love Him then we will work hard to give Him what He very much wants, just like this man does for his wife. It was very sweet to see their reaction as they connected what God was saying with their own experiences and understanding.