How an Old Holiday Song Gave Me HopeMonday, December 19, 2016
'And in despair I bowed my head;
"There is no peace on earth," I said;
"For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!"
Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
"God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men."'
I've never been a fan of this Christmas song. It always seemed like such a boring Christmas hymn that we had to sing in church around the holidays. Even when famous musicians would perform it, it just seemed dull and lifeless. Recently, as I was driving to work, this version came on my radio, and I stopped ignoring it and listened.
The lyrics, penned in 1863 by American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, were simple and powerful. They reflected these crazy times -- where the world seems to have lost the ability to do good, and to care about people instead of things. Every which way I turn lately people are fighting against hatred, or spreading hatred. Almost everyone I know is carrying a heavy load, and it doesn't seem like things are letting up anytime soon. Bad things are happening, and it seems lately the volume of them is increasing.
Something about the lyrics reminded me that regardless of how doom and gloom things have felt, especially since the election of a madman into our country's highest office, we are going to be ok. Regardless of the fact that everywhere you turn there are hard things happening, things that seem dark and full of hate, there is still love in this world. It reminds me that despite the way things feel, we can look for the good, for the love that exists, and find the good going on. If you look, it is there.
Love will always prevail. As long as we have love for this world, for other people, and everything here, and as long as we willingly put our love out into the world, the good shall ultimately prevail.
Something tells me we're all going to be alright eventually.
What a beautiful Christmas message.