Christmas Music

It is an interesting time of the year when many secular radio stations begin to play an occasional Christmas song. And, the closer we get to December 25th the more the music is oriented towards Christmas until often in the last week all music played has a Christmas theme. 

In the midst of Christmas music taking over the airwaves, the internet, and most streaming services I have been thinking about what a privilege it is to sing the songs of Christmas – the worship songs whose theme is about the birth of the Christ child. The real message of the season. 

However, we are so deluged by Christmas music each year that we are in danger of not hearing the music or the message at all. It’s like the college student who highlighted every sentence of his textbook as the professor lectured from it in class. By the end of the semester, the whole book was highlighted — and, as a result, nothing was highlighted. When we hear non stop Christmas music in the elevators, in the malls, at church, on the radio, on the streets, and at home, we are in danger of its becoming mere background noise.

But carols are original elements of the nativity story, for the angelic choir composed and sang the first anthem: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” (Luke 2:14). Have you ever paused to imagine what that sounded like? Myriad angels, a multitude of the heavenly host, lifting their voices in harmony, chanting or saying with all their hearts, the darkened skies strangely aglow with their luminous presence?

Every time we sing a Christmas carol, we are reenacting that wondrous scene.

I suggest you make a little purchase for yourself this month — a personal hymnbook or book of carols. Every Christian should keep a hymnal nearby. Older generations of believers thought of their hymnals as almost as precious as their Bibles, and they used them to round out their devotional time. Hymns emotionalize and personalize our doctrine and help our beliefs seep into our souls.

Learn to sing a hymn each day; and during this season, let it be a carol. Let your eyes linger over the words, and let the theology soak into your heart. I’m especially thrilled every time we get to verse two of Charles Wesley’s “Hark the Herald Angels Sing” because of that inspiring line saying, “Veiled in flesh the Godhead see: Hail th’incarnate Deity.” That’s powerful affirmation that Jesus Christ, the Babe in the manger, was the eternal God Himself. He was “born to rise the sons of earth, born to give them second birth.”

Web sites also list the words and music to thousands of hymns, many of which have fallen by the wayside in our popular church culture. Rediscovering them is one of the great joys of worship. When you hear a carol at church or even in the store, pause and sing along, allowing your mind to focus on the words. Fill your home with the carols of Christmas. In so doing, you can enjoy spontaneous moments of worship throughout the day.

Let’s not let the music of this season go to waste. Let’s listen to the words as the carols and songs help us to worship and remember the reason the for season – a child is born and His Name is Jesus Christ and He will save His people from their sins.