Today is December 2 and I don’t know anyone who doesn’t consider post-Thanksgiving and into December as an acceptable time to begin playing Christmas music around the house. Yes, I know there are a few of you who listen to it all year round. It’s OK. You are loved. (*backs away slowly without sudden movements*)
In our day and age of modern mass communication and social media, we find ourselves living in a technological world flooded with “Christmas music.” Musicians with various motives and styles have pretty much covered the theme of Christmas with about any and every take on the holiday season that mixes Christian, cultural, pagan, and seemingly every possibly conceived positive and negative take on what has been made into a truth-tale-triumph-tragedy train wreck that resembles a Steinbeck jalopy Grapes of Wreaths. (much like this last epic jalopy sentence)
If anyone is like me, just thinking about this fact reminds me of why every year I end up anxiously putting away all the Christmas decorations and playing something, anything, but Christmas music. Even so, every year, I vow to try again. I start by trying to clear my mind of the things that aren’t the main things and to hold on to that which is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, and excellent. And that doesn’t apply to just music, but to all that is what Christmas is or at least seems it should be.
Let me share with you an album that is a relatively recent Christmas favorite. Andrew Peterson has captured the Christmas story and spirit in a way that few modern artists have done. If you’re not familiar him or his album “Behold the Lamb of God,” make it one of your destinations for Christmas music this season. Don’t wait! You might be disappointed that you waited. You can listen to the whole thing on YouTube. I recommend buying it so you can take it with you and to help support a Christian artist.
I can’t embed any of these videos, but here are the YouTube links to “Gather ‘Round, Ye Children Come” (the first song on the album) and also to “Matthew’s Begats” (because who else sings what many of us thought we should skip when reading the book of Matthew for the first few times?). These aren’t my favorite songs on the album, so if you aren’t “getting it” from these, give the whole playlist (12 songs) a listen. If you listen to the whole thing, and then you don’t like it or don’t get it, it’s OK. You are loved too. (*backs away even more slowly without even taking a breath*)