O holy night, the stars are brightly shining
It is the night of our dear Savior's birth
Long lay the world, in sin and error pining
'Til He appeared and the soul felt its worth

A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices…weary, much like the world today.

The words for ‘Oh Holy Night’ were written in 1843 as a poem by Placide Cappeau, a French wine merchant & poet, to celebrate the renovation of an organ for a church in his hometown. He wasn’t particularly religious, which I find hard to believe. His lyrics paint the most beautiful picture of the birth of Jesus. Can’t you just see the shepherds and kings falling on their knees at the humble manager that was now the birthplace of this tiny baby that would one day give his life for all of us?

As a young girl my grandfather loved to hear me sing this song, so anything I could do to make him proud and happy I was glad to do it. It’s often part of Christmas cantatas in churches each year and we hear it on the radio and TV shows all season. But this year while practicing the carol for my church program, one phrase, in particular, struck my heart…the weary world rejoices. Weary…much like the world today.

I know you are tired. Tired of not being able to gather with our families for holiday celebrations, in many cases, the only time we see extended family during the year. We’re tired of canceled Christmas parties. We’re tired of not being able to go out to shop for presents. We’re tired of virtual meetings, classes, and church. Weary.

But make sure that you see the last word of the same phrase is rejoices. As the shepherds peered into the barn, they witnessed the birth of Jesus. And exhausted, cold, and bodies aching from literally years of travel, the wisemen appeared. But they knew all along the sacrifices of the journey following the star would be worth it. So yes, this was, even in extreme weariness, a time to rejoice because the day had come. In that time their soul felt its worth. This baby would one day rule the nations. The King of Kings, the Savoir of the world. He would be healing, salvation, peace, and hope, all for a broken world…much like the world today.

We pray for you and your families during this Christmas season. We hope as you reflect on the year that you focus on the parts that gave you hope. Times where you were blessed or had an opportunity to bless someone else. Dwell on the precious times. Consider the times where we were forced to slow down. We pray you truly reflect on the real reason for Christmas. The celebration of the miraculous birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Let all within us praise his Holy name. His pow’r and glory, evermore proclaim.

You are loved,

Merry Christmas

Tonia Ray, Director of Marketing

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