After Christmas Musings

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We had a quiet Christmas with our family this year. We had Christmas with my folks a couple weeks back, before they left town for warmer climes, so we didn’t have anywhere we had to go.

We did go have dinner at church, they provided ham sandwiches, and everyone else brought side dishes. It was a fun little potluck, only enough of us there to fill two tables. I think other years they have had a lot more people there.

The snow from last weekend is mostly gone now. On Christmas it was still everywhere, though so covered with animal tracks that it wasn’t quite the blanket of white that you usually think about. Now it’s mostly left on the northern slopes. And roads like ours are still mostly snow-packed. Though even those are much melted.

We’re seeing more and more deer every year. It’s getting so that they come out in the daylight, not just in the early morning, late evening. Christmas night, I saw three of them, which scattered before I could show them to the family. Then a few minutes later, we all looked out the window, and there were six of them, digging through the snow and leaves to get through to whatever grass they could find. These ones didn’t scatter, until the dog stood up to look through the window, and barked at them. They scattered, and disappeared into the woods at that, but not as if they were in any great hurry.

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A Pause

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After presents, after the tree,
Families return to their homes.
A pause to reflect, to remember and think,
A time to rest from our roams.

The snow is gone, soon to return.
The brown grass lies under the leaves.
The trees are bare, their branches show
Starkly as they dance in the breeze.

A pause for thought, before life returns
To its normal, hectic pace.
A pause to consider, to plan anew,
A pause to rest for the race.

Soon the new year will begin,
Back to work and school.
No more to gather with family and friends,
Facing the year’s renewal.

Christmas Lullaby

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Hush little baby,
Sleeping in the hay.
Mary’s resting near you,
Pondering the day.

Angels sang your glory,
Shepherds marked your birth.
The tiny baby Jesus,
God come to Earth.

Hush little baby,
Sleeping in the hay.
Mary’s resting near you,
Pondering the day.

A world awaits your coming,
The Earth paused in praise,
So rest, baby Jesus,
Newborn Ancient of Days.

Hush little baby,
Sleeping in the hay.
Mary’s resting near you,
Pondering the day.

Magi came to honor,
Delighted by a star.
Wise men came to worship
The king that you are.

Hush little baby,
Sleeping in the hay.
Mary’s resting near you,
Pondering the day.

The world can not contain you,
Tiny baby boy,
Resting in a manger,
While angels sing your joy.

Hush little baby,
Sleeping in the hay.
Mary’s resting near you,
Pondering the day.

Advent 4, The Wooden Nativity

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We take each piece,
Unpack each part,
Place it firmly in the tableau.
We set the scene,
Arrange the stage,
To remind us of long ago.

Angel, shepherd,
Sheep and cow,
Camel, donkey, wise men three,
Mary, Joseph,
Manger, child,
Neatly set for all to see.

The star is shining
From high above
On this wooden nativity,
As we remember
The Lord of Love
Who came to earth to set us free.

We sing the songs,
The carols raise.
Repeated each from year to year.
Glorias,
Like angels sang,
We sing on earth for all to hear.

“Welcome, Jesus!”
Now we sing,
The carols learned from long ago.
The manger child
Was born a King.
Remind us still through this tableau.

The star is shining
From high above
On this wooden nativity,
As we remember
The Lord of Love
Who came to earth to set us free.

Advent 3 — Riding Down to Bethlehem

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Riding down to Bethlehem
Joseph and Mary went,
There to be born in Bethlehem
The babe whom Heaven sent.

Riding up to Jerusalem
The King whom Heaven adored.
There to die in Jerusalem,
The ever living Lord.

Riding down to Bethlehem
Upon a donkey’s foal
Seeking shelter in Bethlehem
For the one who sheltered all.

Riding up to Jerusalem
Upon a donkey’s colt.
They laid their coats in Jerusalem
So his feet would feel no jolt.

Riding down to Bethlehem
They found a manger stall
And shepherds came to Bethlehem
To worship the Lord of All.

Riding up to Jerusalem
The crowd would not be still.
But if no one spoke in Jerusalem,
The praise would ring out still.

Riding down to Bethlehem
Magi and wise men came.
Gifts they brought to Bethlehem
To the one who’s ever the same.

Riding up to Jerusalem,
He wished to gather them
Under his wings in Jerusalem,
Just like a mother hen.

Riding down to Bethlehem,
Mary pondered what she saw.
Wondering in Bethlehem,
What would come of it all?

Riding up in Jerusalem,
The crowds faded away.
But Judas stood in Jerusalem,
Making a choice that day.

Advent 2 – The Shepherds Waited in the Fields

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The shepherds waited in the fields,
Watching their sheep by night,
When suddenly an angel came,
Glorious in their sight.

“Fear not, men!” the angel called.
“Good news is coming your way.
For up in yonder David’s town,
A saviour is born this day!”

A saviour is born in Bethlehem.
Hear what the angels say:
Worship the King born in a stall,
Bow down to him this day.

And with the angel then appeared
A host, a heavenly crowd,
Who joyfully shouted o’er the field,
And praised the Lord aloud.

“Glory be to God on High,
The King of Highest Heaven.
And peace to men who dwell on Earth,
To whom his favor is given.”

A saviour is born in Bethlehem.
Hear what the angels say:
Worship the King born in a stall,
Bow down to him this day.

The shepherds heeded the Angel’s words,
And ran to David’s town
And bowed to the babe in a manger laid,
And spread the news around.

Mary heard the shepherds’ tale,
And pondered what it meant.
That angels would declare her child
A king from heaven sent.

A saviour is born in Bethlehem.
Hear what the angels say:
Worship the King born in a stall,
Bow down to him this day.

Carol of the Bells

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One of my favorite carols.

Be Swift, Be Precise

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Hark, how the bells, Sweet silver bells,

All seem to say “Throw cares away”

Christmas is here Bringing good cheer

To young and old, Meek and the bold.

Ding dong ding dong, That is their song,

With joyful ring, All caroling.

One seems to hear, words of good cheer,

from everywhere, filling the air.

O, how they pound, Raising the sound,

O’er hill and dale , Telling their tale.

Gaily they ring, While people sing

Songs of good cheer, Christmas is here!

Merry Merry Merry Merry Christmas,

Merry Merry Merry Merry Christmas

On, on they send, on without end

Their joyful tone, to every home.

Hark, how the bells, Sweet silver bells,

All seem to say “Throw cares away”

Christmas is here Bringing good cheer

To young and old, Meek and the bold.

Ding dong ding dong, That is their song,

With joyful ring, All caroling.

One seems to hear…

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Waiting (Advent)

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Through the ages, the world waited,
Not knowing what was to come.
Springtime, harvest, heat and snow,
Looking unknowing for the One.

Songs and psalms and verses
Proclaimed his coming days,
Though few could understand them,
Or see his coming ways.

In slavery, they raised their heads,
In exile, in fear, oppressed,
Seeking the sword that would free them,
And bring them peace and rest.

But instead there came a child,
Born into a manger stall.
Shepherds came to worship
The babe who was Lord of All.

Who can understand it all?
A poor child, not a king.
What difference could this child make?
But to him the world still sings.

The Day before Christmas

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The day before Christmas,
The shopping’s all done,
The wind’s strongly blowing,
And there is no sun.

No snow is falling,
The roads are all clear.
The house is all cheery
For Santa is near.

The kids may be bored,
But they won’t complain.
“This is more fun than school,”
They’ll gladly explain.

On their computers,
They’ll play and explore,
Hoping that Christmas
Will help them buy more.

And families will gather,
And all will have fun,
Tomorrow, when Christmas
Is here and is done.

The stockings will fill
With candy and treats.
The tables all loaded
With good things to eat.

And will any remember,
Midst comfort and joy,
That this all was started
By the birth of a Boy?