Christmas day

I always think it is appropriate when Christmas day, December 25, comes on Sunday. What better time to honor the gift of salvation we received than with Christian brothers and sisters, a little foretaste of heaven, maybe? I told LeRoy on the way to church this morning that I hoped we would sing Christmas carols and that’s exactly what we did. This particular church uses praise music mostly and I enjoy those worship songs, but there’s just something about the old carols that I have been missing this year. We’ve listened to Christmas music on the radio and in stores, but it is mostly secular songs.

Two carols in particular have been very meaningful to me this year. The first is O Little Town of Bethlehem and I fell asleep last night thinking about these words: “Yet in thy dark streets shineth the everlasting light. The hopes and fears of all the years are met in thee tonight.” Not just the fears, but the hopes! And today Christ is here to answer both of those for me.

The second, I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, was one of my least favorite for a long time. I think what made the difference was that I really heard the meaning, not just memorized words that Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote. Each verse carries on the story from the one before it.

I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day
Their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

I thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along the unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

And in despair I bowed my head:
“There is no peace on earth,” I said,
“For hate is strong and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth he sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail,
With peace on earth, good will to men.”

Till, ringing singing, on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime, a chant sublime,
Of peace on earth, good will to men!

I can hardly read the words, much less sing them, without tears. “God is not dead, nor doth he sleep; the wrong shall fail, the right prevail.” What wonderful meaning for me! I have e-mails almost daily about the terrible state of our nation and our world, but the truth of that carol is evident–God can handle it!

Merry Christmas and best wishes for a year of Emmanuel, God with us!

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4 Responses to Christmas day

  1. I so enjoyed your blog today.Couldn’t have said what was in my heart any better than you did. L ooking forward to seeing what the Lord has in store for us this coming year.

  2. Karen & Johnny says:

    Anne, Very well written! “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day” has been my favorite since high school days & it is because of the hope in the last verse! God is alive and there is hope in the Lord for Peace on Earth! Merry Christmas & Blessings in the new year! Love you!

  3. Larry Kinser says:

    Thanks for sharing so much of your lives with us, even though you are far away. LK

  4. Deb Farnham says:

    Love it! Thanks! -Deb

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