Ok, politics is all done whether we are happy or not. And now it is time! This may seem early to some of you but from now until December 25th is my prime time for listening to CHRISTMAS MUSIC. (The crowd cheers, at least in my head) After all, how long did I have to sludge through ads about how bad another person is so you have no other choice except to vote for “me?” Now that started way too early.
Christmas music. When I hear it I smile, I sing along and yes I cry as I listen, no, thrive on this music. But it is not the memory of Christmas when I was younger that still thrills me. And it is definitely not an escape from a world that so often can cause dismay. It is because, well wait a bit …
I need to qualify what I consider to be Christmas music. It does not include words or phrases like white Christmas, silver bells, a reindeer with any color of proboscis, a red suited male kissing my mother or checking a list of any type. It is not even just about the presents and the family gatherings or the lights or the carefully crafted trees. That is what the world has so carefully redefined as Christmas.
Rather it is the message wrapped within what I consider real Christmas music. That is what fills me with the need to be immersed in the truth about that day. The enduring words of Joy to the World, Silent Night and Hark the Herald Angels Sing point the singer to something other than a life here on earth. Those hymns center on why Jesus was born. It goes beyond that emotion-filled picture of Mary and Joseph gazing with complete parental love at a newborn.
Those Christmas hymns all point toward why Jesus was born. He came to do what I could never do–live a perfect life. And then he needed to die to take all the punishment that I deserved because of my sins. That is true Christmas love.
I also find myself drawn to more contemporary Christian music that clearly points me to why I need to celebrate Christmas. The message is often more direct than this old grey, well, white-haired guy hears in those more traditional hymns. Words like:
It’s about the cross It’s about my sin; it’s about how Jesus came to be born once so that we could be born again. It’s about God’s love nailed to a tree, it’s about every drop of blood that flowed from Him when it should have been me. (It’s About the Cross Go Fish 2012)
These are not the lyrics that will bring visions of lit trees or sugar plums or presents to the mind of those who hear them. Those are things that will all end. Rather the message is one for eternity and what Jesus gave up so it could be mine. That is Christmas to me.
So here the Christmas music is already playing. And I can just see my kids rolling their eyes. But it is part of my faith and who I am. Even as my age advances, the thrill just does not fade. Although I do wonder if I will eventually have to find Christmas music that is signed.
I included a link to a video of the song “It’s About the Cross.” Yes, there are trees and presents and children and other parts of what this world considers a traditional Christmas. It also includes the reality of why I celebrate. The love of Jesus that is there for all. As you will see, it cost him a everything.
I plan to share links to some other of my new favorite Christmas music in future posts. No, the subject of those posts will not be about Christmas–maybe. I guess you will have to come back to see. I will wait you.