29 Nov Someday at Christmas (Advent is Here)
I love Christmastime.
I love so much about what this time of year represents. It’s fun to see so many folks finding ways to connect together and celebrate life. For me, the most beautiful aspect of this season is the celebration of advent. The word “advent” comes from the Latin word adventus, which means “coming” or “visit.” To celebrate advent is the representation of the longing for the Messiah, the one who rescues and will restore everything to the way things are intended. There is a beautiful word that represents this restoration; Shalom.
An author and professor, Cornelius Plantinga Jr., shared some profound thoughts about this premise of shalom. He wrote, “In the Bible, shalom means universal flourishing, wholeness, and delight – a rich state of affairs in which natural needs are satisfied and natural gifts fruitfully employed, a state of affairs that inspires joyful wonder as its Creator and Savior opens doors and welcomes the creatures in whom he delights. Shalom, in other words, is the way things ought to be.”
As we have been attempting to “get into the spirit of the season” as a family, we have been listening to a lot of Christmas music. Honestly, it has been a challenge for me because there are so many things going on in our world that, quite frankly, don’t call for celebration. The rumors of war, political unrest, the capture and killing of hostages, the terrible stories of the revelation of abuse, school shootings, and the strong racial tension that is present in America make it difficult to enter into a “festive” and “jolly” mindset. There is one song, though, that I have thoroughly connected with over the past few weeks. “Someday at Christmas”.
The song, “Someday at Christmas” was written by Ron Miller and Bryan Wells for a young Stevie Wonder’s Christmas album in 1967 and has since been recorded many times. It was one of the first Christmas songs to contain a strong social message, standing for peace, equality and compassion. When I listen to the hopeful way in which the song was performed in such tenuous circumstances, it encourages me deeply during these trying times we are in today.
This song reminds me of my longing and prayer for shalom. It reminds me of the promise in Revelation 21:4-5 that in the end, God will make all things new, restoring everything back to the way that He intended from the beginning. The song brings hope to my heart in light of the weight and sadness I feel as I read the news stories every day. This is the point of Advent. To live in the tension of the brokenness of our world and the hope of restoration.
Knowing the hope that this song has brought me lately, I asked a good friend, Jason Eskridge, if he’d be interested in recording a version of it. He graciously did. We’d like this song to be a gift to you in this season. (You can find it at the bottom of this post.) You might be compelled to listen to it with friends and family, or pull away and contemplate its message alone. Our hope is that you’d consider the idea that in the midst of all that is broken in our world today, there is a Living Hope in Jesus.