Music tends to take center stage in this season of the year more than any other, and rightfully so. Some messages are simply best conveyed in song. Spoken words are hardly sufficient in conveying the good news of Christmas. Perhaps that’s why on the night of Jesus’ birth when the Word became flesh, the message was conveyed in angelic song.
I’ve noticed how even the prevailing culture has recognized this truth. The holiday channels have been up on Internet radio channels for weeks and I even noticed that the background music playing over shopping center loudspeakers has had a yuletide ring.
In one church I served where Advent was a recent innovation, I had a church member complain about the “depressing Advent music,” as she phrased it. Though I did my best to explain the purpose of the melancholy tunes (Advent is a “Little Lent,” after all), I didn’t get very far, and finally realized that once the calendar page turns to December most people are ready for carols and a little Christmas cheer.
If that’s your heart, then this Sunday is just the gift you’ve been waiting for. In the 9 a.m. service, our Sanctuary Choir will present their Christmas musical, “My Lord Has Come.” The music will focus our attention on the real message of the season, which is God’s drawing near to us through the Bethlehem Baby. Then that evening, our children will present their Christmas Musical in Heritage Hall, at 5 p.m. As beautiful as the Sanctuary Choir's performance will be, the children’s renditions will also touch our hearts in equal ways. Best of all, both experiences will have places in the program where we also get to lift our voices in joyful song.
I’m reminded of something Isadora Duncan, the famous dancer of the last century, is said to have answered in response to a request to explain one of her performances. “If I could tell you what it meant, there would be no point in dancing it.” If I could paraphrase Duncan, I would say that if one could adequately explain the significance of Christmas with words alone, there would be no point in singing it. But of course, we get why song is necessary. Some things, like Christmas, must never be allowed to go unsung.
So, join us for both opportunities this Sunday. You’ll be certain to leave with both a song on your lips and a song in your hearts, and be more ready for Christmas in the process.
"'Sing and rejoice, O Daughter of Zion, for behold, I come and I will dwell in your midst,’ declares the LORD” (Zechariah 2:10).