“‘Till He Appeared, and the Soul Felt its Worth”
-‘O Holy Night
I love music, it’s what moves me. I especially love Christmas music, not so much the contemporary renditions of classic carols, but rather the old hymns that fill me with the excitement and anticipation of who’s to come. I attribute my love of music to my mother. She was a pianist and for years served as the organist for our church back home. She led a full choir, and her greatest performance occurred every Christmas Eve. My siblings and I all had our favorite song, mine was ‘O Holy Night, a timeless carol written in 1847. It was originally written as a Christmas poem to celebrate the renovation of the church’s organ. Perhaps that’s why I loved it so much. Today, its lyrics continue to pierce my heart as I prepare for and await the birth of our savior. His name? Jesus.
Fast forward to December 2014 when I was attending DNG’s year-end Christmas celebration. Under the glow of twinkling lights and the sparkle of tinsel decorating the tables, the worship team began to play my song, ‘O Holy Night. I was immediately struck by this one line: ‘Till He appeared, and the soul felt its worth. Friends, pause right here and let those words sink in: ‘Till He appeared, and the soul felt its worth. Have you ever felt your soul’s worth? I did, for the very first time that day. It was the warmest, safest, and most loved I have ever felt. This moment of time in my spiritual walk was the turning point in my understanding and love for a God whose mere appearance would change my ability to feel worthy.
The first word of the lyric, ‘Till,’ implies that we aren’t able to feel our worth without Him. We need Him first in order to feel purposeful, complete, and adored. And God knew that, so He sent His son into the world in humble surroundings; a son who would take away the sins of the world forever. The Messiah was born and the course of history changed for eternity.
“And He Shall Reign for Ever and Ever”
At the conclusion of my mother’s Christmas Eve services, she would lead her talented choir through Handel’s Messiah, a Baroque-era oratorio written in 1742. I can still hear the powerful reverberation of the organ accompanying a multitude of voices shouting, “Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah!” The King of Kings and Lord of Lords has come and He shall reign for ever and ever! Does your soul stir at the sound of those words? Does a sense of renewed hope fill your spirit? The emotional impact these lyrics have on our spiritual bodies is no less than profound. Jesus, our savior, is here!
I feel closest to God when I am in the presence of His favorite songs. Like I shared, it’s His music that moves me. It builds my faith, it encourages me to spread His good news, and it comforts me through my day-to-day affairs.
As we embrace this Christmas season, which song holds special meaning for you? Which lyrics when sung touch your soul? I invite you to listen to His words spoken through the music of this season and to allow His voice to flood you with the awe of His appearance.
What do you think Jesus’ favorite Christmas song is? It just might be the sound of your voice praising Him in response. Let your heart be filled with song this Christmas season…you are worth it.