Christmas is just about a week away, and the snow and the tree (along with the stress of things procrastinated) are making it feel so. I'm trying really hard to keep my eyes on the prize, on the reason for the season.
Some of my favorite ways of doing this are by reading the daily Mass readings, saying the Rosary when possible, praying a Christmas novena, and through Advent and Christmas songs. My absolute favorite, O Come, O Come Emmanuel, is sung at my parish almost every Sunday of Advent (which is actually six Sundays in the Maronite Church, just a little trivia for you). I find the words, sung or read, to be a most beautiful and comforting meditation for the hectic days of the season.
- O come, O come, Emmanuel,
- and ransom captive Israel
- that mourns in lonely exile here
- until the Son of God appear.
- R: Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
- shall come to thee, O Israel!
- O come, Thou Wisdom, from on high,
- and order all things far and nigh;
- to us the path of knowledge show,
- and teach us in her ways to go. R.
- O come, O come, Thou Lord of might,
- who to Thy tribes on Sinai's height
- in ancient times did give the law
- in cloud and majesty and awe. R.
- O come, Thou Rod of Jesse's stem,
- from ev'ry foe deliver them
- that trust Thy mighty power to save,
- and give them vict'ry o'er the grave. R.
- O come, Thou Key of David, come
- and open wide our heav'nly home;
- make safe the way that leads on high
- that we no more have cause to sigh. R.
- O come, Thou Dayspring from on high,
- and cheer us by thy drawing nigh;
- disperse the gloomy clouds of night
- and death's dark shadow put to flight. R.
- O come, Desire of the nations, bind
- in one the hearts of all mankind;
- bid every strife and quarrel cease
- and fill the world with heaven's peace. R.
- Whatever the troubles in your life, the anxieties in your heart, remember that we have a God who is with us, who wishes to comfort, to guide, to deliver, and to cheer. So let us rejoice!