What are we talking about today?

Some days have themes. I don't necessarily post something in each of these topic areas every week.

Sunday: Church-related or spiritual things.
Monday: Running.
Tuesday: Books.
Wednesday: Transportation.
Friday: Green living.

25 December 2011

In Grateful Chorus

I would be hard-pressed to name my favourite Christmas carol. I like pretty much all of them. But my favourite verse lies hidden at the end of "O Holy Night":
Truly he taught us to love one another
His law is love and his gospel is peace.
Chains shall he break, for the slave is our brother
And in his name all oppression shall cease.
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we;
Let all within us praise his holy name.
Christ is the Lord! O praise his name forever,
His power and glory evermore proclaim.
I thought this was the second verse, but when I went looking to make sure I had all the words in the right order, I found out that it's the third verse. And I don't remember ever hearing the second verse before.

I love this verse for a lot of reasons (I have to say that it's the "sweet hymns of joy" bit that really gets me), not the least of which because it's more or less fiction. Yep, I'm going to be a killjoy on Christmas. Christians have not, alas, lived up to the standard of breaking chains and stopping oppression. We're as guilty as anyone else for starting wars and spreading hatred. And I'm not okay with that.

I'm not exactly setting out on a personal quest to fix all the wrongs in Christendom. Among other things, that's not really my job. I am setting out to be sure that I am doing all I can to live at peace with my neighbour. To love those who don't love me. And to be a light in my little corner of the world. And I encourage you to do the same.

The happiest of Christmases to you and yours. And have a safe and fun week between Christmas and New Year.


Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas

Carol Riggs said...

Lovely lyrics. Funnily enough, on Elizabeth Mueller's blog, she has that VERY song sung by Josh Groban, and I'm listening to it right now! Gorgeous song.

I dunno about the fiction thing--I think it's how you interpret the words. It says chains HE shall break, and thus I think the next line has more to do with God than Christians. We still should strive for things like that, to spread love, etc, but I think the line focuses more on what God was or will be doing. :)

Hope your Christmas was wonderful; a fabulous New Year 2012 to you!! :)

mshatch said...

I think that if more people would truly try to be more loving and understanding there would be less hate and war. But like you said, it has to start with us.

Su said...

@Delores: Merry Christmas to you!

@Carol: That's true. It's the "in his name" bit that I was more ranting about... a lot of bad things have been done in God's name. I don't think that was what he was after.

@mshatch: Yes! Exactly! :)