Long lay the world in sin…,
Till He appeared and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope…
Cynthia Clawson’s Christmas album was recorded in New Mexico. Her producer found software that put her voice in major European cathedrals. As she sings O Holy Night, you can hear the sound delay as her voice echoes from wall to wall. As I listened to her magnificent voice with the unique, huge sound, the words carried meaning I don’t always hear.
I doubt that generally “the world lying in sin and error pining.” I didn’t see anyone in line at Walmart overcome with an awareness that it was their sinful status that Jesus came to earth to address. If research is accurate, the post-modern culture doesn’t think about personal sin very much, except to explain it away and discount it. Come to think of it, I wasn’t exactly weeping over my sin, either.
From whatever cathedral the voice was currently in, Ms. Clawson sang a truth into me. The acute desire is that our soul might feel its worth. During most of Advent my mind went to the huge market for encouragement. You and I are empowered to speak for Jesus as we announce to people in our areas of influence—“You have worth—you are valued! No matter the long litany of rejection and criticism, I see you as valuable.”
A friend described her Christmas Eve to us. She opted for a bar instead of a church service. At the close of the evening—“I’m feeling hope for the first time in a long time.” That’s not the last line of a story I would have written.
Til’ He appeared and the soul felt its worth.
Jesus appeared. He spoke. And through those who probably didn’t have a clue they were Jesus’ “conduit” they told someone they care about—“You have value. God didn’t make a mistake when He made you a living soul!”
One of my favorite Christmas songs is “I Want Your Presence for Christmas.”
The second verse says, “When the holiday is through, and the year is fresh and new….” I’m going to be on a diet and the house will be stripped bare of cookies. I promise you the one thing I want you and I to carry out of these days—the warmth of His presence and…
A thrill of hope.
It has a direct link to that miraculous assurance that we have worth—therefore, we have hope!
©2014 D. Dean Benton—http://www.bentonministries.com
Writer, Wonderer, Listener