Home christmas how silently, how silently the wondrous gift is given

how silently, how silently the wondrous gift is given

by Shawni

As I sat in church a week or so ago my heart was churning. The world was spinning around me as I thought of all my “to dos.” So many “fires” to put out that day. With Relief Society. With Christmas prep. With my family needing me to “be there,” but everything else on my “list” needing me to be there too.

So I pulled out a hymnbook (that had been tucked away since we can’t sing in church these days, even with masks). I needed to feel the words of this Christmas season wash over me (inspired by the words of Oh Holy Night that my brother reminded me of a couple weeks ago that I wrote about that back HERE).

Those words that filled up the pages of the Christmas carols brought me to tears as I sat there pouring over them.

So I wanted to share some of my very favorites.

These are the ones my brother shared that I talked about back in that post:

A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices,

For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.

Oh Holy Night

Another oh, so simple line that I found:

Oh come, let us adore Him.

Angels we have Heard on High

Oh how beautiful that short little phrase is! How often do I needed to be reminded to “come!” and adore Him. Rather than letting the world get in the way.

How beautiful is this phrase?:

Radiant beams from thy holy face

With the dawn of redeeming grace.

Silent Night

I loved picturing those radiant beams lighting up the world around Him…with the dawn of the beautiful gift His birth would allow. And I thought this painting went so beautifully with that thought:

artist info: https://www.instagram.com/kellyjaneart/

Be near me Lord Jesus, I ask Thee to stay,

Close by me forever, and love me, I pray.

Away in a Manger

Isn’t that what we all yearn for?

Stay.

Love me.

Unconditionally.

And sometimes I think we forget that’s exactly what we get with Jesus: Unconditional love. The whole reason for the birth of that little Baby in that stable all those years ago.

But of all the carols I read through, this one hit me the hardest:

How silently, how silently, the wondrous gift is given…

…No ear may hear His coming, but in this world of sin, where meek souls will receive Him still,

the dear Christ enters in.

Oh Little Town of Bethlehem)

I just loved the thought that that “wondrous gift” is given so silently.

There are no blaring trumpets to announce it’s beauty. No advertisements. No high-pressure salesmen.

Instead, it is quietly there for the taking: that wondrous gift of our Savior.

We must request it, reach for it, let the Light in.

“No ear may hear His coming”…but “meek souls will receive Him still.”

And how I prayed, sitting there that morning on my folding chair with my mask filling up with tears, that I can be one of those “meek souls” who “will receive Him still”…even acknowledge that He is there to let Him become “my Jesus.”

That I can let that “dear Christ” enter in. That I can make Him “dear” in this world of so many distractions.

Especially at this time of year when the world piles up in “to dos” and celebrations.

I’m trying to be still enough to receive that silent, wondrous gift we celebrate this week.

Merry Christmas to all.

May we find the stillness and joy and beauty of what this is all about.

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9 comments

Julie December 23, 2020 - 12:09 am

Hi Shawni,
Thank you for this. I love the words of the carols, they are so meaningful.

Thank you for a great blog.

Happy Christmas to you & your family. I hope you have a great time. x

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Valecia December 23, 2020 - 12:35 am

Beautiful thoughts! Thank you for the goodness you put out in the world. My daughters and I, plus help from a whole lot of other people, just released a music video along similar lines as your “Angels Among Us” post. It turned out beautiful, unique, and full of hope at the end of a difficult year. We would love the video’s message that God is aware of us and often sends his angels to help to reach as many as possible. I believe it is something your readers would appreciate. We would feel honored if you would share it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pNfXnmWrazg

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Jen December 23, 2020 - 11:05 am

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=OC2oE2iCvo4

My new favorite Christmas song is “Where Shepherds lately Knelt“. I first heard it at a BYU devotional. The lyrics are amazing. Try it! I know you’ll love it.

1. Where shepherds lately knelt
and kept the angel’s word,
I come in half belief,
a pilgrim strangely stirred,
but there is room and welcome there for me,
but there is room and welcome there for me.

2. In that unlikely place
I find him as they said:
sweet newborn babe, how frail!
and in a manger bed,
a still, small voice to cry one day for me,
a still, small voice to cry one day for me.

3. How should I not have known
Isaiah would be there,
his prophecies fulfilled?
With pounding heart I stare:
a child, a son, the Prince of Peace for me,
a child, a son, the Prince of Peace for me.

4. Can I, will I forget
how love was born, and burned
its way into my heart
unasked, unforced, unearned,
to die, to live, and not alone for me,
to die, to live, and not alone for me?

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Janice Robinson December 23, 2020 - 8:01 pm

love your words and well spoken as always. On another note, I think I recently read on your blog about a sauce that you loved that was a great hot fudge sauce too. I wanted to make it, but I have had no luck finding it today. I don’t think you posted it as a recipe but just as part of the text you wrote. I remember there was brown sugar in it. Can you share it again?

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Mparker December 24, 2020 - 11:55 am

Merry Christmas! Thank you for this beautiful post.

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Charity Wright December 25, 2020 - 3:06 pm

Shawn! I spoke in church on Christmas Sunday and read the O Little Town lyrics as part of my talk. They touched me so deeply. Silently is how God imparts to human hearts the blessings of His heaven. The fourth verse is also so so good. We were both drawn to those words, I love that, sister. Miss you.

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Hailey December 25, 2020 - 7:20 pm

I love this post and your testimony of Christ! Have you seen the show The Chosen? I loved it and how it made Christ come alive for me in a new way.

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Janan W January 3, 2021 - 4:52 pm

Loved this! Music has always been such an inspiring thing for me. Merry Christmas!

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Mom January 3, 2021 - 5:07 pm

Maybe it was something about not being able to sing the hymns in church this year that made me realize that I’m thinking too much about the melody and not nearly enough about the words of our beautiful Christmas Carols! Loved you inclusions and the comments here because those same words have come to my mind over and over again throughout the season. I got to give a short Christmas message at our worship service last year that centered on “Oh Come Let Us Adore Him” which has stayed with me all year. It is such a joyous call to action! I have loved watching so many dear friends and family members and giving, loving, sacrificing people all over the world show their adoration through their actions during this challenging year.

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