Learning To Love Christmas Music || O Come, O Come Emmanuel

My husband and I recently had the opportunity to drive in a much newer car than either of us is accustomed to. One of its features was satellite radio, with its thousands of stations we never would have even thought of had the screen on the dashboard not mentioned them. We had fun perusing them, lingering on some longer than others and singing to songs we never otherwise get to hear.

Our favorite station, though, was the one that played music from the 90s…all the time. With nearly every song we’d I’d get extremely excited, bouncing a little in my seat and turning the volume up so I could belt it out and ignore what my husband might be thinking about me and my love for old Madonna and Cher songs. Those songs were priceless. Just a few cords could evoke the entire emotional spectrum from the time the song first came into my life, and once or twice I had to change the station because the feelings swelling in me were more than I was prepared to handle at that moment.

One interesting thing about listening to all of those songs was our discovery of lyrics we didn’t remember. Every teenager, I think, has the experience of wondering why his or her parents have such strong objections to the music they listen to; my husband and I were no different. It wasn’t until the span of 20-plus years separated us from our teenaged years that we were able to see why. Some of the lyrics were…well…questionable, at best. As teenagers, we had no real awareness of the words we often sang. The beat was catchy and everybody liked the song and if the volume was loud enough we could tune out the world. That’s all that mattered to us then.

Songs are often that way, especially once we’ve heard them a thousand times and have really internalized the words. Our mouths sing the words without our brains ever having to do any work. I’d say that usually that’s okay….but when the songs are filled with powerful Truths, it’s a shame that the deeper meaning is lost as we robotically sing the words over and over.

I’m ashamed to admit that Christmas music – secular and otherwise – has become that way for me over the years. I would sing the words because the song was playing, whether in the car or a store or in the background while I cooked. And because the songs were always playing, I was always singing them….and as a result, by the end of the season I was D.O.N.E with the Christmas music, already. It was nothing more than obnoxious background music, and it was horribly annoying to me.

But things are changing. Christmas music has actually been powerful over the past several years because I have actually paid attention to the words I’m singing. When the lyrics pop up on the screen at church, I read them – even though I could easily sing the song without any reminding of the next line. And what I’ve found is that the words are incredible, y’all. Songs I never really liked as a kid have become my favorites, simply because of the personal way the message of the song applies to my life.

(I’ve even developed a distaste for “Christmas carols” that have nothing to do with the meaning of Christmas. That’s another post for another day.)

For the next couple of weeks, I want to share some of the more powerful Christmas carols I’ve rediscovered, and possibly introduce you for the first time to the amazing messages they hold. I was going to elaborate on the lyrics today with my own thoughts and interpretations, but I’m going to let them speak for themselves.

Today, one of my current favorites, as sung by Sovereign Grace.

O come, O come, Emmanuel
And ransom captive Israel
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear

O come, Thou, Dayspring from on high
And cause Thy light on us to rise
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night
And death’s dark shadow put to flight
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel

O come, O come, true prophet of the Lord
And turn the key to heaven’s door
Be Thou our comforter and guide
And lead us to the Father’s side
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall by His word our darkness dispel

O come, our great High Priest, and intercede
Thy sacrifice, our only plea
The judgment we no longer fear
Thy precious blood has brought us near
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Has banished every fear of hell

O Come, Thou King of nations bring
An end to all our suffering
Bid every pain and sorrow cease
And reign now as our Prince of Peace
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come again with us to dwell.

Sing that in your hearts this weekend, friends. God is with us.

Sign up for exclusive content and monthly pick-me-ups!

We all need a friend on the journey.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This