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born this happy morning

As much as I like Christmas music, I am not always a fan of singing them at church for six weeks up until Christmas. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because they play on the radio over and over. Maybe because they have been cheeese-ified by so many artists. Regardless, it’s hard for me to connect with them in the holy space of church, even though that’s the place we should be singing those Christmas hymns with all the might we have.

Last night, my friend Sam and I went to the evening service at my church, Common Ground, and during worship, there were Christmas songs. They actually weren’t half bad, but the few songs in between that were not related to Christmas really touched my heart. I feel like they made me consider more the heart of the Christmas hymns.

Just before the sermon, we began to sing “Oh Come All Ye Faithful.” Singing it last night felt different. I was focused on the words and what they meant.

Oh come all ye faithful, joyful and triumphant, come ye oh come ye to Bethelehem.
Come and behold Him….born the King of Angels.
Oh come let us adore Him.
Oh come let us adore Him.
Oh come let us adore Him.
Oh come let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.

I guess I am so used to my relationship to God as a sinner, that I don’t often consider the other side. Or at least I don’t always identify myself as such: as loved, precious, triumphant. Regardless of what life holds for me, I have overcome because of Jesus. Despite any losses, trials, or weaknesses, I can still come triumphant.

In my mind, as I sang, I heard this: Come, you who love God and have not turned away. Come, those who have received his peace and his joy; those who, because of God, daily choose joy over despair, gratitude over misery, and peace over distress. Let us love Him back. Let us point all of life back to the Giver of it. Let us pour out our gifts and love and energy towards others and towards God in gratitude for the way He has rescued us.

I couldn’t help it. Tears welled up in me, and I truly felt blessed. And I felt relief. Relief because no matter what I hear on the news, no matter how much it seems evil is rampant and victorious, no matter how unfair life may feel, it’s just not. God gives us access to so many gifts, and too often we let them collect dust on the shelf. We le the world get the best of us and make us believe a lie: that we cannot bring enough good to outweigh the bad.

I felt this song was a nudging from God to wake up…wake up, grow up, and live into our lives and be aware of Him all around. Crack open our hearts and know that we are capable of so much.

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