December 16, 2014

Isaiah 61:1-3, Romans 8:2-4
O Holy Night

Since the fall of humankind in the garden, chains have marked our lives. From birth to death, we wrestle with the chains and yearn for freedom. Some of us are chained to our choices. We repeatedly choose relationships, habits, and patterns which destroy our souls. We are chained to our past. No matter the promise of forgiveness, we continue to be bound to the burdens we have carried for so long. Some of us are bound to pursuits—money, status, job promotions. We brace ourselves for the blow that comes when others do not accept us or do not love us. The chains may take different forms for each individual, but they are all the same. They bind. They entrap. They constrain. They hurt.

As we celebrate the fulfillment of promises this Christmas, we must remember the promise of broken chains. Jesus has come to bring us freedom—freedom that we will know in part on this earth and in full at his final return. O Holy Night is a poignant reminder of our freedom. Take time to listen to this beautiful hymn and celebrate the freedom that is yours today because of this baby.

A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
for yonder breaks a new and glorious morn!
Truly He taught us to love one another,
His law is love and His gospel is peace.
Chains shall He break for the slave is our brother,
And in His name all oppression shall cease.
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we,
Let all within us praise His holy name!