Our hearts can be filled with music year-round as we contemplate and rejoice in the birth, death, and resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ. May yours be filled this season of love and hope.
Eternal Perspectives by Sally Bair
Ever since I attended a youth symphony concert as a sixth-grader, I’ve considered classical music one of my favorite forms. I especially enjoy the old compositions, including The Messiah, my all-time favorite.
George Frideric Handel composed his famous work following a series of adversities. He suffered a stroke which rendered him unable to play an instrument because of a paralyzed right arm. The stroke also left him with blurred vision. Over several years he fell in and out of favor with English royalty. In debt and depressed, he came across a piece of music composed entirely of Scripture portions, mostly Old Testament.
It affected so him deeply that it inspired him to create the oratorio, The Messiah. Its three-part composition includes prophecies of the coming Messiah, taken mainly from the book of Isaiah; the birth, life, ministry, death and resurrection of Christ; and the end times with Christ’s final victory over sin and death as told in John the Apostle’s book of Revelation.
In 1741 as Handel wrote his piece, he is said to have been in tears as he composed the final Hallelujah Chorus, stating “I did think I saw heaven open and saw the very face of God.”
Such is the power of God-inspired music. As we listen to The Messiah and other great
music about the Lord, we can envision angels singing along with the choirs. And the best
part is that we can join in. The Psalms are full of references to singing and playing music to God
with our voices and various instruments. Paul tells us to “… be filled with the Spirit,
speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in
your heart to the Lord …” (Ephesians 5:19)
Our melody to our Savior must come from the heart, the center of our being, the deepest part of our existence. Rather than allowing our hearts to be anxious, fearful or bitter, may they make music of praise and thanksgiving, love and worship. The Christmas bells of joy from our hearts can ring out to reach every person around us, like ripples of sound waves.
Lord, thank You for making us an instrument of praise to You. As we worship You and meditate on the wonder-filled Word about Jesus’ birth, may we exude music that will glorify You, giving You and others joy. In Jesus’ name, amen.