Come on ring those bells!
Light the Christmas tree!
Jesus is the King, born for you and me.
Come on ring those bells!
Jesus, we remember it's your birthday!
This song is hands-down my all-time favorite Christmas song. And, I would guess it is my sister's favorite too--if a recent message on my answering machine of her singing it in full to ask me who sings it is any indication. :) (gotta love my sister)
I don't know why we both like it OH SO MUCH. Here is what I reckon, we liked it as children because:
--it is simple and catchy,
--it is a call to worship a child can understand and participate in, and
--it connected lighting the Christmas tree to worship of the King.
And, I reckon we like it as adults because of all of the above, plus the fact that it invokes warm memories of our childhood.
Have you ever heard it? I would suggest you go listen to it on itunes (or your preferred online music resource)--one version of the song is only 48 seconds, listening to the free 30 second sample would let you listen to almost the entire song. :) Of course, you might not "lub-lub" it as much as me and Sarah, and that's ok.
Christmas has a lot to do with expectation and waiting. And, I like the idea of waiting for some of the joys Christmas-time brings--expecting them. So, I have to FORCE myself to wait till the day after Thanksgiving to start listening to Christmas music. Then for 24-7 for the next month, it is non-stop Christmas music. It is something I long for! It is something I love!!
Christmas music is full of memories. Listening to certain songs sung by certain artists invokes special feelings that only come out once a year. The songs bring back great memories of childhood--of innocence, peace, delight, hope, expectation, of being with family and friends.
But, more than being full of warm-fuzzy memories, I like Christmas music because it is worshipful and joyful. It is a celebration. What we have been waiting for--a Savior--has come! It is a time to be rejoice! Strike the harp! Ring the bells! Light the tree! Let's go! Worship the King!!!
In addition to bringing back memories and allowing me to worship the Prince of Peace, Christmas music also lets me witness to my students.
I can teach them Christmas carols and talk about what they mean. We talk about the Christmas story. It is great!! What a blessing to have this tool to use for sharing Jesus!
I remember the first time--oh about seven years ago--when I was in a Taiwanese department store and I heard the Good News through Chirstmas songs being proclaimed over the storewide speaker system. It floored me first of all that they were playing "real" Christmas music. When I recovered from that shock, I was saddened by the fact that those around me had no clue what they were listening to--it was only in English, not Mandarin. To them it was just pleasant sounding tunes.
Michael Haggard, a friend who is also a tentmaking missionary here in Taiwan, blogged recently about this same phenomenon of English language Christmas music in public places--like McDonald's--here in Taiwan.
I invite you to pray for the people of Taiwan during this
holiday season--may they come to know the Reason for the season
personally and join us in worshipping Emmanuel!! And, I hope that as Christmas carols fill your home this season, may you respond to the call to worship "God with us" as you ring the bells and light your tree! :)
This post was submitted to the Carnival of Beauty sponsored by Sallie at A Gracious Home. This week the theme is The Beauty of Christmas Music and is hosted by Susanna at Through a Glass. Join us next week for The Beauty of Salvation.