Saturday, December 19, 2009

Christmas is About the Joy


My friend, Diane, shared with me a story I’d like to pass along here.

As she was driving one day, she heard this live report on the radio. A CBC reporter (Canadian Broadcasting Corp.) was traveling on a commuter train in Quebec and interviewing passengers at random. He came across a priest who was visiting people in the parishes along the way. The priest answered the reporter’s standard questions – “Why are you using the train? Where are you going?” etc. Then, in a very impromptu manner, the reporter said that he didn’t often get a chance to talk privately with a priest, and he had a question that he’d been curious about:

“Do you ever wonder if all this stuff about God is true? Do you have moments of doubt?”

The priest thought for a moment, then answered “Yes. In the middle of the night I wake up and wonder if it’s all a fantastic hoax. But I get up the next morning and I can’t explain the JOY any other way.”

That’s why Christmas is so wonderful. It’s the promise of joy. Eternal joy.

I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet the words repeat, of peace on earth, good will to men.

I thought how, as the day had come, the belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along the unbroken song of peace on earth, good will to men.

And in despair I bowed my head: "There is no peace on earth," I said,
"For hate is strong and mocks the song of peace on earth, good will to men."

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep: "God is not dead, nor doth he sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail, with peace on earth, good will to men."

Till, ringing singing, on its way, the world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime, a chant sublime, of peace on earth, good will to men!

(Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882), 1867)

May the Reason for the season fill your heart with quiet joy this Christmas and throughout the New Year.

1 comment:

Joanna Mallory said...

Ginny, we're thinking alike again... this poem as a carol is my blog's music selection next Wednesday.

Joy to you and yours this Christmas!