Music has always been a big part of my life, and I am never more excited about it than at Christmastime. I would have loved to have been part of the angel choir that announced Christ’s birth that long-ago night. Could you imagine, singing with a whole choir of angels?
My grandfather was the choir director at the church I grew up in, played the organ and had a booming bass voice. My grandmother, an alto, played both piano and guitar. My Dad played the harmonica and sings tenor; mom sings soprano and played piano. Is it any wonder piano lessons were a matter of course for all the grandchildren?
So the music lover in me is absolutely giddy at Christmastime! At our house, it’s all Christmas music, all the time. I especially LOVE belting out the carols with their beautiful harmonies. I’m the one blasting the car stereo as I drive down the road.
This weekend I helped with the Pioneer Garden Club’s Cracker Christmas event at the Silver River Museum. Several local elementary schools performed on Saturday and hearing those young voices made my heart smile, big time.
When the organizers asked if I’d help sing carols on Sunday, I jumped at the chance. There is nothing in this world quite like blending your voice with others. My alto isn’t as tuned as it used to be, but two minutes with other singers and I’m grinning like a kid on Christmas morning.
Music can take us back, too, can’t it? I suddenly got teary in church on Sunday. I could have sworn I heard my Opi’s (German for grandfather) bass in the choir that morning. My Dad’s memory is failing, which is a heartbreak all its own, but all he has to hear are the opening notes of an old song and he remembers every word. When he sings, we get to spend a little time with the man we often miss today.
Music can take us places only the heart knows.
Music also crosses cultural and economic barriers. I’m so excited for the street children who are part of the School in a Cart in Manila. They now have musical instruments and are learning to play. With the help of patient teachers, they are learning new skills, practicing together and even performing in churches. What a boost of self-confidence for children without even the most basic things in life. Seeing their excitement is priceless! (If by chance charitable giving is part of your holiday plan, I hope you’ll consider donating to www.Lift-the-Lid.org which supports the School in a Cart in Manila.)
I am rejoicing in the gift of music this Christmas and singing till I’m hoarse. Hands down, my all-time favorite carol is The First Noel.
What about you? Do you have a favorite Christmas song?