Lights from the Christmas tree reflected on my piano’s glossy surface as I opened my new music book, a gift from our church, to one of my favorite Christmas carols, “Silent Night.” My husband wanted to watch the news on TV, so I plugged in the headphones that directed sound from the electronic instrument to my ears only.
This arrangement of “Silent Night” began simply with the soothing melody. Silent night, holy night; All is calm, all is bright…”
I played on, following the written score as it added harmonies, point and counterpoint, when the newscast behind me seeped into my awareness. Some poor soul had been found nearly frozen to death. War erupted in two more areas, details to follow. Financial gurus predicted hardships in the New Year. On and on, bad news assaulted my ears even as my fingers played.
Silent night, holy night; Son of God, love’s pure light
Radiant beams from thy holy face
With the dawn of redeeming grace,
Jesus, Lord at thy birth
Jesus, Lord at thy birth.
The contrast jarred me, and I realized this painted a true picture of the world Jesus came to so long ago. Wars, brutality, tragedy were just as prevalent then as now. The world needed – and still needs – redemption, and that only comes through Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection.
Redeeming grace is God’s gift to us. Hardships and trauma still surround us and affect us, but because Jesus gave up Heaven’s glory to live in our mess, we have hope. What a wonderful reason to celebrate!
The music continued, and joy brought tears to my eyes as I played.
Silent night, Holy night; Shepherds quake at the sight
Glories stream from heaven above
Heavenly hosts sing Alleluia!
Christ the Savior is born, Christ the Savior is born.
Merry Christmas to you and yours.