I’m not sure how many times I’ve sang “O Come All Ye Faithful”, but let’s just say a lot. Honestly, I’ve never really thought about the words. As I’ve stood in church as a child at Christmas time, hoping for the gift I asked for, or as an adult hoping I’ve not forgotten a gift for someone,the carols have become just tradition. It’s almost as if all the songs, wrapped up together are just a given part of Christmas like Christmas trees and presents. 

As we sang that familiar song on Sunday, I searched for meaning, for Jesus, for my place in all of this celebration. Suddenly, I realized the song was about me, about us coming to worship, and the words that pierced my heart were “joyful and triumphant.” Why had I missed these before?  These words are describing those who worship Jesus. 

Whoever wrote this song calls us Jesus followers joyful and triumphant. As I did last minute shopping yesterday, among all the other crazies, I saw many faces. Some I knew. Most were strangers. All were tired. Joyful? Triumphant? I don’t think the writer of this beloved carol was singing of the triumph that comes with finishing our list or making through the holidays. He wrote about joy that is ours, not because of gifts, good food, or even family. 

He was calling us to faithfully, joyfully, and triumphantly come. Where? To Bethlehem, to Jesus. 

Come and behold him. O come let us adore him. Crazy how in the midst of a holiday created to honor Christ, we are struggling to find a silent night, a way to focus on our Savior. 

Why is it so hard to “come”? It has been the invitation of Jesus from the beginning. He invites us into his joy, his triumph over pain and death. Yet, everything in this world pulls at us, screams for our attention, and draws our focus away from worship. If we can still ourselves, we can hear his whisper to “come”.  A sweet invitation into a divine relationship with our Creator and Savior. 

O come let us adore him.

Matthew 11:28-30

New International Version (NIV)
28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”