I’ve sung the word a thousand times. Maybe more. I can recall many moments, the carol rolling off my lips. Standing outside homes in the chilly night, singing inside nursing homes to old men with welling tears, or in darkened santuaries. Angels singing, imploring the shepherds, and us to “hark.”
All of these years, and I never really thought about the word.
Today’s Christmas season is all about noise. The sounds of the season come on the airwaves, Bing singing White Christmas and Alvin and his chipmunks trading high pitched barbs. The Salvation Army volunteer ringing bells nonstop. Even in July, I can hear Christmas in my head.
But the other night I stood out in the cold just before dead. A million – no a billion stars poked through the blanket of dark. My breath hung heavy and I was struck by the silence.
What is there to hear to when there’s nothing to hear?
What am I supposed to be hearing these next days? What is God saying, and I’m not hearing? Can I hear the cries of the oppressed, the sadness of the lonely, the yearnings of the lost?
What are you hearing?