A.M. – Day 24 – Rocking Carol

Today’s Reading: John 3:16

There were many songs that could have made it to the Christmas Eve Playlist – Still, Still, Still and God Rest ye Merry Gentlemen were the original choices, but this song sung by Julie Andrews that I had never heard before this year, got the nod.  This song has the peaceful properties needed in a time where one can easily become frazzled and distracted.  No, we don’t know exactly when Jesus was born, but we do take time to  celebrate that He came.  The melody is that of a lullaby, but the lyrics sound wishful – like more of a what we wish we would have done, what we wish we could have done.

1. Little Jesus, sweetly sleep, do not stir;
We will lend a coat of fur,
We will rock you, rock you, rock you,
We will rock you, rock you, rock you:
See the fur to keep you warm,
Snugly round your tiny form.

2. Mary’s little baby, sleep, sweetly sleep,
Sleep in comfort, slumber deep;
We will rock you, rock you, rock you,
We will rock you, rock you, rock you:
We will serve you all we can,
Darling, darling little man.

This carol is of Czech origin. It was collected in the early 1920 by a Miss Jacubickova as ‘Hajej, nynjej’ and translated (very loosely) by Percy Dearmer, for The Oxford Book of Carols in 1928. Dearmer was a clergyman and socialist with a keen interest in contemporary concerns, social gospel and rescuing neglected English carols and introducing European carols. The final line of Dearmers’s version has not appealed to everyone, and some have sought to change it, e.g. to ‘Son of God and Son of Man.’ The tune for the carol has a close resemblance to that of another traditional lullaby, ‘Twinkle, twinkle, little star’, and it is possible that this carol originally accompanied cradle rocking, a custom which began in German churches in medieval times and spread from there across Europe. The carol was popularised in the English speaking world by a recording made in the 1960s by Julie Andrews.  This carol is of Czech origin. It was collected in the early 1920 by a Miss Jacubickova as ‘Hajej, nynjej’ and translated (very loosely) by Percy Dearmer, for The Oxford Book of Carols in 1928. Dearmer was a clergyman and socialist with a keen interest in contemporary concerns, social gospel and rescuing neglected English carols and introducing European carols. The final line of Dearmers’s version has not appealed to everyone, and some have sought to change it, e.g. to ‘Son of God and Son of Man.’ The tune for the carol has a close resemblance to that of another traditional lullaby, ‘Twinkle, twinkle, little star’, and it is possible that this carol originally accompanied cradle rocking, a custom which began in German churches in medieval times and spread from there across Europe. The carol was popularised in the English speaking world by a recording made in the 1960s by Julie Andrews.

http://www.hymnsandcarolsofchristmas.com/Hymns_and_Carols/rocking_carol-2.htm

Advent Music – Day 22 – Go Tell it on the Mountain

Today’s Reading: Isaiah 62:11, Luke 2:10

Right now I’m writing this in NYC, but where you are reading it, is probably not. Sending information in our day and age, it takes a key stroke to spread the news in less than a second. And unless reminded constantly, by media – we forget in a second.  Our highly technical form of communication is nothing compared to how God relayed the news of His son’s birth – a sky full of angels, a promise and a charge to some shepherds – tell the world!

 

While shepherds kept their watching
Over silent flocks by night,
Behold throughout the heavens,
There shone a holy light:
Go, Tell It On The Mountain,
Over the hills and everywhere;
Go, Tell It On The Mountain
That Jesus Christ is born.

The shepherds feared and trembled
When lo! above the earth
Rang out the angel chorus
That hailed our Savior’s birth:
Go, Tell It On The Mountain,
Over the hills and everywhere;
Go, Tell It On The Mountain
That Jesus Christ is born.

Down in a lowly manger
Our humble Christ was born
And God send us salvation,
That blessed Christmas morn:
Go, Tell It On The Mountain,
Over the hills and everywhere;
Go, Tell It On The Mountain
That Jesus Christ is born.

When I am a seeker,
I seek both night and day;
I seek the Lord to help me,
And He shows me the way:
Go, Tell It On The Mountain,
Over the hills and everywhere;
Go, Tell It On The Mountain
That Jesus Christ is born.

He made me a watchman
Upon the city wall,
And if I am a Christian,
I am the least of all.
Go, Tell It On The Mountain,
Over the hills and everywhere;
Go, Tell It On The Mountain
That Jesus Christ is born.

Go Tell It on the Mountain” is an African-American spiritual song, compiled by John Wesley Work, Jr., dating back to at least 1865, that has been sung and recorded by many gospel and secular performers. It is considered a Christmas carol because its original lyrics celebrate the Nativity of Jesus. Wikipedia

A.M. – Day 21 – O Come All Ye Faithful

Today’s Reading: Matthew 2:2

How often do I adore Christ, just for being – nothing else?  Do I adore Him if I feel my prayers have not been answered?  Do I adore Him when I don’t understand all that is taking place around me? I think this song is telling us that we should adore Christ simply  because He is, after we have considered all He has done, how can we not?

O Come All Ye Faithful
Joyful and triumphant,
O come ye, O come ye to Bethlehem.
Come and behold Him,
Born the King of Angels;
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
Christ the Lord.

O Sing, choirs of angels,
Sing in exultation,
Sing all that hear in heaven God’s holy word.
Give to our Father glory in the Highest;
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
Christ the Lord.

All Hail! Lord, we greet Thee,
Born this happy morning,
O Jesus! for evermore be Thy name adored.
Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing;
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
O come, let us adore Him,
Christ the Lord.

The text to the Carol O Come All Ye Faithful was originally written in Latin (Adeste Fideles) and was intended to be a hymn, it is attributed to John Wade, an Englishman. The music to O Come All Ye Faithful was composed by fellow Englishman John Reading in the early 1700s. The tune was first published in a collection known as “Cantus Diversi”.

In 1841 Rev. Frederick Oakley is reputed to have worked on the familiar translation of O Come All Ye Faithful which replaced the older Latin lyrics “Adeste Fideles”.