24 December 2010

Upon this nativity I do behold

Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
You've probably heard this dozens of times if you watch Charlie Brown Christmas. Linus takes the spotlight and tells Charlie Brown (and everyone else) what Christmas is all about. I have seen it 3 times this year and it doesn't get boring. Hulu is still streaming it until the end of the year.  A Charlie Brown Christmas is short and to the point and doesn't follow too many rabbit trails. Short summary- Charlie Brown is stressed by Christmas. He seeks help which send him in a different direction. Linus sets it straight (or should we credit the King James Bible?) and Charlie Brown changes his viewpoint.
I like how Schulz was already contrasting the befuddled Charlie Brown with the "give me" attitude of some of the other characters- something that still rings true today about our celebrations in the West.
So should I bemoan the reality that much of the world around celebrates things which are symbols of Christmas?
Gifts, parties, Santa, and the like all fit into the celebration of Christmas but really are not what Christmas does commemorate. Throw in the whole Saturnalia  and yuletide stuff and you got a real misshaped holiday.
It does come to the question- did God come or was it an elaborate hoax?
The Jamestown (ND) College choir put on a real excellent program a few weeks ago. Their program drew upon the theme that before the Christ child came, the world was in darkness. The Finnish folk song "Lost in the Night" expresses that theme.

Lost in the night doth the heathen yet languish,
Longing for morning the darkness to vanquish,
Plaintively heaving a sigh full of anguish:
Will not day come soon? Will not day come soon?
Must he be vainly awaiting the morrow?
Shall we who have it no light let him borrow?
Giving no heed to his burden of sorrow:
Will you help us soon? Will you help us soon?
Sorrowing brother, in darkness yet dwelling,
Dawned hath the day of a radiance excelling,
Death’s dreaded darkness forever dispelling:
Christ is coming soon! Christ is coming soon!
Light o’er the land of the heathen is beaming,
Rivers of life through its deserts are streaming,
Millions yet sigh for the Savior redeeming:
Come and save us soon! Come and save us soon!
 The choir also performed a song we also did for the Christmas radio at HCC: Night of Silence. I did that song in high school as well.

May all the blessing of the nativity be yours.



How?

No comments: