It Came Upon A Midnight Clear

23 Dec

There was a time when I hated Christmas. I’m sure I’m not alone in this sentiment.

As a child, Christmas filled me with wonder. It was a happy time in my family and occasionally, there would be the excursion to my grandparent’s house in the Midwest where the experience was straight out of the current Apple commercial. A modern tableau lifted from Currier and Ives.

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But then the serpent force fed me the apple from the Tree of Knowledge and I experienced the Fall.

By the time I was an adult the holiday brought only torment. Did I call my dad despite being estranged from him? Did I visit my mother in jail and have to bear seeing her in an orange jump suit and her terribly sad eyes? I hated waking up alone in a house with no husband or children of my own and trying to figure out whose family I could insert myself into. And I hated what seemed to me an obnoxious display of American materialism.

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But then it came upon a midnight clear… That week my mom took her life.

Suddenly the heavens pierced through my darkness, stunning me with its Light.

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And I knew without a shred of doubt that Jesus had gathered my mother and myself in his arms.

“Peace on the earth, good will to men, from heaven’s all-gracious King.”
The world in solemn stillness lay, to hear the angels sing.

This time of year can be one of profound anguish. Without a doubt this life can be hell on earth.

Til He appear’d and the soul felt its worth.

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A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.
Fall on your knees! O hear the angel voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born;
O night divine, O night, O night Divine.

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