The LORD your God is in your midst … he will exult over you with loud singing. (Zephaniah 3:17)
One of the biggest blessings of Christmas is the ability to sing carols together (remember a few years when we couldn’t?). The words of the carols are so incredibly valuable and there is something heart-warming about singing praises with others.
As we read the story of our Saviours birth, we see how fitting it is that we sing so much in our Christmas celebrations – praise and singing were a key part of that first Christmas. You only need to think of Elizabeth meeting Mary, Mary singing her hymn of praise, or the angels with the shepherds. And it’s hard to imagine that the shepherds themselves, and Simeon and Anna were not singing with joy after meeting the baby Jesus. Joy is so much a part of Christmas and singing follows naturally as we think of the coming of our King and our salvation.
Although so many people were singing on Earth during that period 2000 years ago, we know that there was singing in heaven too. Yes, the angels were singing, but I think someone else was singing – God the Father himself!
The fact that the verse above is included in the Bible is a matter of sheer wonder as it opens the door to the heart of our God. The coming of the Messiah to redeem us not only brings joy to us, but also brings joy to God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as He exults in a restored relationship with his people. Is it therefore not fitting to think that God the Father was singing as the plan of his great redemption dawned on our Earth?
Let us sit back and think about that for a few minutes! We bring joy to the Lord himself. Although we often fail, when we respond in faith to God’s love and redemption, God experiences joy. This is not just a small joy, it is a joy that is so deep that it wells up from his heart in song. He sings! What a privilege! What a wonder! If you haven’t experienced a living relationship with your Creator – turn to him today, ask him to forgive your rebellion and make himself known to you. He wants you to return – He is waiting to break out in song.
We receive so much from God, but perhaps the greatest joy we can experience is seeing the joy we give him. As Paul said, ‘For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them’ (Ephesians 2). And this makes God sing!
Thank you for your prayers and support this year and may you know the Lord’s rich blessing this Christmas,
Assistant General Secretary, on behalf of the EMW team
P.S – The Office will close today until 2 January 2024