A Sublime Song | Independent Ledger – Maysville Online
“Oh, so that I may have my request, God grant what I hope”, Job 6: 8
“And the Lord has granted me what I asked of him.” 1 Samuel 1:27
“Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift! »2 Corinthians 9:15
In 1863, in the grip of despair, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote the poem “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day – Hope Surfaces from Despair”. Casting Crowns now sings a version of this poem.
‘I heard the bells on Christmas day / Their old familiar Christmas carols play, / And wild and sweet / The words repeat themselves / Peace on earth, goodwill to men!…
And in despair, I bowed my head; / “There is no peace on earth”, I say: / “For hatred is strong, / And laughs at song / Of peace on earth, good will to men!”
Then the bells rang louder and deeper: / “God is not dead; neither does he sleep! / Evil will fail / Law will prevail / With peace on earth, good will to men!
This poem is a beautiful reminder that despite the tragic things we might have to endure in this life, God is alive and keen to restore us. God is sovereign. God is the support of every man. God has the supernatural power to deliver us from the darkest darkness. In the song Casting Crowns, the lyrics are:
“But the bells are ringing / Like a singing choir / Does anyone hear them? / Peace on earth, benevolence towards men”
These lines are striking because the narrator, who has just breathed words of despair, despair and doubt on humanity, hears the gentle call, the positive attraction, the sublime song – “peace on earth” . The narrator, plunged in despair, could easily have turned a deaf ear to the song of hope. Could have fought off the praise. Could have defied the sound indignantly. Yet instead of ignoring the sound, he listens to it all the more. He asks does anyone hear? He calms down and invites others to meditate on a song of hope. While facing personal mourning, the narrator looks beyond himself and extends the gift of hope by inviting others to meditate on the mercy of his good Lord.
We cannot decide what will happen to us along our journey. Some of us, most of us, have heavy burdens to bear and wounds to mend, but as Longfellow realized, our hope does not lie in our circumstances or in our ability to plan for events. of our life. Our hope is in the man who has not sinned, the one who took our sins upon himself, the one who died and rose again, the one who is coming back. The one who left everything for us. The one whose love is endless.
Christmas is generally a jovial time. But, for some, this period is painful and lonely. For those who feel the despair, look at who is the author of Hope. Look into the light. Look at the one who passed from death to life. He is not dead and he is not sleeping! He sees when you smile and when you cry. His words are the lifeline when your waters are shallow or deep.
Our Lord sees you. Our God loves you. Our Father holds you in his hand. Hear the whisper of hope that resonates even in the darkest of times. Concentrate on the song that sings its praises and remember its faithfulness. Hear the truth that says his peace is enough.
I pray that everything that threatens to steal your peace this year will be silenced by the hope that abounds and the joy that accompanies the light of Jesus. I hope you can join in choral singing, peace on earth, benevolence towards men, and be a beacon of hope for those around you.
There are gifts that only God can bestow: this hoped-for child, this restored marriage, this healing from sickness, this reunion with a prodigal son, this deliverance from addiction, this respite from grief. Our God knows how to give good gifts. Stay rooted in Him. Stand firm in your faith. And never give up hope. Our God is faithful. As Longfellow wrote, hope emerges from despair, and that hope comes from our Lord. He is the reason we have this hope.
“Many say of me,” God will not deliver him. ” “But you, Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, who lift up my head. I call on the Lord, and he answers me from his holy mountain. I lie down and I sleep; I wake up again, for the Lord sustains me. I am not afraid that tens of thousands of people are attacking me from all sides. Psalm 3: 2-6
“In all of this you rejoice greatly, although now, for a little while, you may have been grieving in all kinds of trials. “1 Peter 1: 6
Judith Cooley teaches language arts and drama. Follow his @pondervotional Facebook page for more encouragement.