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Do You Noel?

So often we can sing songs, without fully appreciating the meaning – especially common with old hymns, where the language can be old fashioned or complicated.  Sometimes words are used that are no longer in common use.  Come Thou Fount Of Every Blessing is a good example where we sing ‘Here I raise my Ebenezer’ – not Ebenezer Scrooge from Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, but here meaning ‘rock of help’.

noel

So it got me thinking to the Christmas Carols we sing, in particular The First Noel.

Noel, in simple terms is French for Christmas, as in ‘Joyeux Noel’ or Happy Christmas.  So the first Noel, refers to the first Christmas, or the day of Jesus’ birth.

But buried in the etymological history of the word is another glorious meaning…

“A shout of joy at Christmas for the birth of the Saviour”

What a wonderful word!  So in the same way we can sing and shout hallelujah (praise the Lord) or hosanna (a shout of praise, or ‘he saves’), we can use Noel at Christmas time as a shout of joy, to celebrate his birth.  Joyeux Noel to you all!

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Coming Back To The Heart Of Christmas

One of our worship leaders sang Matt Redmans Heart of Worship this week and changed the lyrics to “I’m coming back to the heart of Christmas and it’s all about you, all about you Jesus”.

Once the interruption to my ‘auto-worship’ mode had settled, the stinging truth of that one-word alteration began to settle in my heart.  And though the lyric change seemed a little twee, even cheesy, at first, it challenged me to the core again, and focused my worship anew.  And I’m thankful for our worship leader stepping out to make that change.

And when planning for our Christmas services, I came across this clip from the movie The Nativity Story, which again moved me to worship, and to focus on Jesus once again during this festive time.  This clip, I believe, is conveyed in a very reverent, worshipful way and hope it moves you to thank God for Jesus again, as it did me.

Remember why we celebrate Christmas, and take a moment to turn your heart back to Him!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zbo1znOG4ts