O Holy night, the stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of the dear Savior's birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
'Til He appeared and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.
Fall on your knees, oh, hear the angel voices!
O night divine,
O night when Christ was born!
O night! O Holy night!
O night divine!
Hey everybody. Sorry it has once more been too long since my last Adventish post. I have been, getting home pretty late this week, and that hasn't been conducive to writing Advent posts. Oh well, so now let's get on with it. You are probably pretty familiar with "O Holy Night", but it, like some of these other songs we've been through, has [to me] a much more mysterious, joyful, and wonderful, message than we might normally realize. The beginning of this song starts out simply enough be describing the "night of our dear Savior's birth". The next sections here are my favorite parts: "long lay the world in sin and error pining", ever since sin entered the world, we live in a place of sin, broken hearts, broken lives, and lost and confused people desperately trying to make sense of it all and find a place of rest and comfort. Too often, we are deceived into looking everywhere and trying everything to feel good about ourselves, or to "get it right", and we miss the Lord's heart for us and our lives; in fact, what we miss is the whole heart of Christmas. Jesus knew all about this world of sin and error, and then some. He knows how distraught and distressed we feel when we are trying to jump through enough spiritual hoops to reach that ever-elusive place of "okay-ness". While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. And to do that; while we were yet sinners, Christ was born for us. All of this is because; while we were yet sinners, Christ desperately loved us. That's why we have Christmas. Still, it is a very realistic assessment of us and this world to describe us as, "in sin and error pining". If this song ended right here, it would be more depressing than "Auld lang syne"; and we wouldn't have much to celebrate. We know, however, that this is only setting the scene for the most glorious story ever heard of. Take a look at the at the next part of the song, "'til He appeared and the soul felt its worth". What's that talking about? Well, we were at a Chris Tomlin concert last week, and Louie Giglio was talking about this very line. Basically, he made the very good point that our fallen souls have never felt "worth" anything [if anything, we'll tend toward a dooming sense of worthlessness in our own fears and failures], until we hear of the amazing, incredible, unending love of our Savior Jesus Christ. We certainly want to be worth something, some of us dare to hope we are, but we can have no concept of our true worth to until we come face to face with the wonderful reality of God's love. When you begin to understand even a little glimpse of this astounding truth, what can you do but "fall on your knees, oh, hear the angel voices!" and know that this was indeed a Holy Night.