A Few Words for Christmas

A ministry colleague of mine, Frank Riley, wrote this reflection on the song “I Heard The Bells on Christmas Day.” A gift of hope for Christmas. Blessings and Merry Christmas!

The year was 1863, a year of ongoing loss as war and disease ravaged a nation. Coming to Christmas, a father fearful for the life of his critically wounded son penned the words —

“I heard the bells on Chrismas Day

Their old familiar carols play

And wild and sweet the words repeat

Of peace on earth good will to men”

For that father in that day — the future was unknown. Would his son live? How long would the civil strife continue? Could he endure? But these things in other times and places had occurred before, and people of faith together with the message of Christmas had endured

“I thought how, as the day had come,

The belfries of all Christendom

Had rolled along

The unbroken song

Of peace on earth, good-will to men!”

Yes unbroken……Yes unchanging……and yes still to a broken world the song has moved through the ages never quite realizing what might have been…..

“And in despair I bowed my head

There is no peace on earth I said

For hate is strong and mocks the song

Of peace on earth, good-will to men!”

Still through the ages, for all of us in our times of despair, grief or fear, the message of Christmas is still assurance for the future — yours and mine — come what may ……

“Then pealed the bells more loud and deep

God is not dead nor does He sleep

The wrong will fail, the right prevail

With peace on earth, good-will to men!”

And that is it isn’t it? No matter how dark the days around us. No matter how evil may seek to find its way — from that first Christmas to this — irregardless of time, of race, of status, of national origen or local culture — the proclamation of Christmas rolls along – the unbroken song, in and through our very souls as we bring the story of the ages forwardFear Not! For I bring you tidings of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David, a Savior, He is Christ the Lord…….And suddenly there as with the angel a multitude of theheavenly hosts, prising God and saying…..

Glory to God in the Highest Peace on earth, good-will to men!

About Pastor Jesse

I am someone loved by Jesus - a disciple, husband, father, pastor, and engineer. God has a mission and invites us into it. I want to do my part to encourage and equip people for life on that mission!
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