You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls. - 1 Peter 1: 8-9
Have you taken time to rejoice yet?
I only ask, because here we are just a few days away from celebrating the birth of our Savior, the most significant event to have ever happened, and I’ve realized that I haven’t taken time to properly reflect and rejoice. Sure, I have gone through the normal motions of the season thus far: the tree is up, the well-loved baby Jesus figurine sits in his manger, and I’ve “merry Christmas’d” until my mouth hurts. But have I taken time to reflect, and I mean deeply reflect the wonder that is the birth of our savior? I don’t believe I have.
Having grown up in the church, the seasonal readings of the nativity story are a familiar comfort to me. They are as part of my tradition as gathering with family, hanging wreaths, and singing carols. In this moment, I worry that somewhere in that pleasant, warm haze of “the Christmas season” the truly incredible miracle of my Savior’s birth sometimes gets out of focus.
The good news? If you’re like me and feeling like you need to refocus, don’t worry - there is still time to pause, reflect, and celebrate. And what better way than to do that with music? (Full credits to Adolphe Adam for writing what I consider to be the most moving song of all time)
A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices
For yonder breaks, a new and glorious morn
Fall on your knees, oh hear the angel voices
Oh night divine, oh night, when Christ was born
A weary world rejoices. Our salvation has come.
For many of us, this is the busiest time of the year. But I invite you to slow down and challenge yourself with me: this year let’s listen to the nativity story as if it’s the first time we’re hearing it. Let’s adjust our focus, and let’s rejoice with that inexpressible joy when we acknowledge this truth: that our Savior, born into the most humble circumstances, brought salvation for us.
Oh night divine, when Christ was born.