We live all year for these moments – these special Christmas moments. Whether in the hearts of children looking forward to Christmas plays, cookies, and visits from Santa to load the tree and stockings. Or whether in the hearts of compassionate adults looking forward to time with family and friends, special songs, and thoughtful giving to those who are less fortunate. These longings, traditions, and special celebrations are what we measure a year by sometimes. The waiting makes them both fleeting and precious. Sharing a smile and a surprise is the fun part. We spend time in labors of love by baking, shopping, wrapping, decorating, and random acts of kindness.
All this joy, and yet it is not enough.
Because Christmas, while it is celebrated in these and many other ways, is not complete until we reflect on the TRUTH. Take a moment or two as you hustle and bustle about your day to remember why we even have this holiday at all. That tiny baby, born so long ago with one purpose – to redeem and save the souls of mankind. With reverence for the season, I share with you 2 great songs – from a parent’s perspective.
With all you are and with all you do and believe, I pray that you be blessed. Merry Christmas!
Today I was in the office and my cube-mate was playing some holiday music by consent of our small group. Most were happy and light and it was fun to hear them. Then one song came on that made me stop. I’ve heard it many times but for some reason in that moment, I found myself really, really listening as if for the first time. It was Josh Groban singing O Holy Night. His voice reverberated all the way to my soul and I was engulfed in a wave of praise and prayer. I had goose bumps and I could almost see every angel drop to their knees and join in the song. It was a tender, precious, holy moment in remembrance of an even greater holy moment.
I couldn’t pass up the chance to give you the same opportunity. And for my non-Christian friends, I hope you can simply enjoy the instrument that is his voice.
Last week I was watching a TV program with the lighting of the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center in NYC. That tree is an iconic symbol of the season in the US and over the years the lighting ceremony has turned into quite the celebration with the songs of the season. I saw some favorite singers and some newbies that come from the various singing competition shows that are ever so popular these days.
What struck me that night was that this time of year is even more joyful as it allows for songs of faith to ring out from every corner of our culture. What a blessing when I hear praise and glorification going on by some of the most famous of people. Some even unexpected people.
Recently this video has been going around FB and I wanted to share it here for your enjoyment as well. I must say the ending gave me shivers and my heart was moved – be sure to stick with it until the end!
Enjoy this medley of lovely Christmas songs and be blessed!
In a crowded town on the first day of December the weather was unusually warm here. The sun peeked in and out and I found myself grabbing over and over for the protection of my sunglasses. It doesn’t feel like the 3 weeks leading up to Christmas. Oh, the Christmas music is playing on all my favorite radio stations. And the shops are decorated and the billboards are touting the season. But something was amiss today.
After some welcome reflective time spent in community, I realized as I turned to go home, that the emotion closest to the surface was loneliness. Not because I am physically alone in the world – I have my wonderful children, friends, and family who love me. But a deeper melancholy – one that speaks of the soul. One that soaks in the realization that in spite of what I own and who I know, I am travelling on this life journey alone. I am influenced by others and seek to do the same. But I am learning my lessons, one at a time, on my own. I am opening my heart to greater awareness in solitary cadence and with a rhythm all my own. This is not the loneliness of the heart, this is the loneliness of the mind when we realize that we are surrounded by a voice, our own voice, narrating our life one thought at a time.
Perhaps I am alone in these thoughts as well. In that moment I knew that I had a choice to make. I could focus on the solitary emotions of the journey or I could relish the connections of the heart. And that is what I chose. I chose to connect with the woman at the restaurant where I picked up my dinner. I chose to connect with my son who is rarely home when I am. I chose to connect with my dogs who make home just a little bit warmer. And now, I choose to connect with you. This is the only thing – the touch of other solitary travelers, that chases the loneliness away.
On your solitary journey, when the melancholy sinks in a little too close, reach out and connect and be blessed!