Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Music of Christmas

"O come, all ye faithful . . ."

"Hark the herald angels sing . . ."

"O little town of Bethlehem . . ."

"Silent night, holy night . . ."

Can you hear the melodies as you read those lines?

I imagine you have a favorite Christmas carol or song. Every year, new Christmas songs are written and recorded. Some will become classics like "Breath of Heaven" or "Mary, Did you Know?". Are you familiar with those? My mind immediately slips into the mode of recalling the words as well as the emotions. I think that's why we enjoy music. It touches our hearts.

That's why I love the music of Christmas.

My favorite Christmas hymn? "O Holy Night."

One year, nearly twenty years ago, my husband and I sang this as a special for a church near our home.

Before we began our a capella (accompaniment-free) rendition, my husband played the notes we'd start on. Mine first, then his, separately. For some reason, my mind clicked on his note, a third higher than the key we'd practiced in. Uh-oh.

That song goes super high (calling all singers--can I hear an "amen"?). So there I was, up in the rafters with the highest notes. Because of my mistake, my poor hubby had to ad-lib his harmonies on the spot. I wondered why he wasn't singing along like we practiced. Oops. We finished though, and people's comments were complimentary afterward. (Whew!)

I love the holiness inherent in Christmas carols. A hush falls on the gathered ones who stand holding lit candles and raising their hearts to the Lord. It's enchanting. Magical. Beautiful.

This week we'll attend a school band concert. One of my kiddos plays the flute. Next week we're off to a choir concert because one of my daughter participates in two school choirs. I love attending and listening to the well-practiced harmonies.

What's your favorite Christmas song or hymn? Why?

Enjoy the music of this season. It's a once-a-year gift.

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