The Cruciality of Caroling [Day 16]
- December 16, 2019
- Esther Followwill-Johnson
Everyone is preaching the gospel this time of year. Everyone. People of all creeds robustly belt out Christmas carols when they come on the radio at work, or while driving alone in the car. Whether absent-mindlessly or simply doing so for nostalgia’s sake, everybody is testifying about Jesus.
I’ve come to see how desperately we need these Christmas carols. I am not talking about kitschy tunes we know and love (here’s looking at you, Bing Crosby). No jingling bells, sleigh rides or hall-decking— those Christmas songs are all generically festive. But carols are profound because they peach the gospel that Jesus saves.
And for ONE measly month a year, people actually tolerate (and even croon along with) that glorious song of old.
Have you read those words or really listened to them lately? Hark! The Herald Angels Sing will blow your mind with eloquent poetry, fused with sound theology:
“Veiled in flesh, the Godhead see;
Hail, the incarnate Deity:
Pleased, as man, with men to dwell,
Jesus, our Emmanuel!
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the new-born King!”
Honestly, that one makes me weep every time. Today I watched my brother play young Ebenezer Scrooge in the Charles Dickens classic, “A Christmas Carol.”
The whole show was stellar— utterly brimming with joy, hope and merriment because of one simple fact: the entire play was a symphony of carol singing!
Every other scene, a chorus would pipe up with a glorious Christmas refrain, proclaiming hope in the darkness.
Don’t settle for less than that this season. I like chestnuts roasting on the open fire, or dreaming of a white Christmas as much as anyone. But don’t forget to play the *actual* carols. Teach your children the words— ALL the words, and sing them as often as we can. Who knows how long it will be before they may be censored.
“…speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord; -Ephesians 5:19
Let heaven and nature sing!