His Light In Us, Even When He Is Silent

“His Light In Us” by Kim André Arnesen is a piece intended for Christmas, although its lyrics do not restrict it to this time of year. Here is an excerpt from the lyrics, from the composer’s website:

God’s distant call
flares in the night,
so long expected, so longed for;
and all my life,
Christ called my name,
and now at last, I’ll answer Him.

​Renewed, his hope,
his light in us,
incarnate, fragile,
our Lord appears,
Alleluia, alleluia!
so perfect,
his cry of changeless love.

The piece above (also found again at the bottom of this post in a different format), “Even When He Is Silent,” is a setting of a text found in a Nazi concentration camp after World War II:

I believe in the sun, even when it’s not shining. I believe in love, even when I feel it not. I believe in God, even when He is silent.

The two pieces, settings of very different texts by Arnesen, seemed to me to deserve to be juxtaposed and reflected on side by side. Christmas is an excellent time for exploring not only light, but the interplay of light and darkness.

Arnesen seems to have a particular fondness for creating Christmas music, and so I will share several more of his works in this blog post. If you have been listening to the same Christmas music over and over, year after year and day after day, this should be refreshing. Let me offer as the next piece his “Dormi, Jesu”:

Next, here is his Christmas Interlude:

Another piece that needs to be included here is his Julenatt:

Cradle Hymn is also fitting for Christmas:

You can hear more of Arnesen’s music on his SoundCloud page, his publisher (Santa Barbara Music Publishing), and on Spotify. What are some of your favorite Christmas works that don’t get as much attention as they deserve?

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  • Phil Ledgerwood

    Die Hard.

    (just kidding)


  • Phil Ledgerwood

    In more seriousness, I loved this version of O Holy Night by none other than Steve Camp:


    Now, when I listen to it, I just think of how incredibly 80s it sounds, but it still has a place in my heart, not the least of which that he only keeps two verses: the first verse and the verse that white people ALWAYS cut from O Holy Night.

  • John MacDonald

    – “Christmas is an excellent time for exploring not only light, but the interplay of light and darkness.” (James McGrath)

    – “Let me say emphatically that I know for lots and lots of people Christmas is the most miserable time of year, a time of loneliness, isolation, fragmentation, and unwanted obligation. I think the fact that so many people find it such a happy time is precisely what makes it such a miserable time for others, either for those who have lost their most cherished loved ones, or all their families; or whose families have fallen apart; who have no one to cherish the season with, or who can’t stand either the grotesque materialism or the superficial happiness of it all in the midst of real suffering, or … well or lots of other things. I completely get that.” (Bart Ehrman)