One of the first things we think of when we think of Christmas is music. Love it or hate it, we all associate music with Christmas. Think about it, Christmas is the only season that has its own soundtrack.
Entire radio stations spring up each year devoted exclusively to running Christmas music into the ground. Four of the top 10 selling albums on iTunes this week were Christmas albums. Some people are so crazy for Christmas music they go caroling! What?! What other time of year is it socially acceptable to stand on someone's doorstep and sing to them?
There's just something about Christmas and music.
If we're honest, however, there's a bunch of songs we sing and don't really understand many of the words we're singing. When was the last time you used words like hark, gloria, or noel in a sentence? Um, the answer is NEVER.
In fact, I gathered a highly qualified focus group recently to discuss our confusion with so many of the details of the Christmas story. Watch:
It's one thing that we don't know what a few words mean in a song; it's something altogether different when we forget the story these songs tell.
To remedy this, I'm currently teaching a series called "Christmas Carols" at Redemption. It's all about the Story behind the songs we sing. My first sermon was from Luke 1:1-25, entitled "Trusting God's Promise." I focused on the examples of Zechariah and Elizabeth and how they teach us that our limitations, fears, and doubts can't hinder God's plan.