May the Lord bless you as you prepare to celebrate Jesus’ first advent. May the Lord fill your heart with the joy of the season, a joy built on a hope that rests in Christ Jesus, our Lord and our God (John 20:28). It is a blessed thing to awake each day in this Christmas season and to think about all our Father has done in sending His Son to save many.
From the text of Luke 1, note the lead-ins, from the record of Mary’s great oracle of praise to God in which she spoke of what God has done. Consider the text, and ponder the wonder of it all!
“And Mary said, ‘My soul exalts the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior. For He has had regard for the humble state of His bondslave; for behold, from this time on all generations will count me blessed. For the Mighty One has done great things . . . He has done mighty deeds . . . He has scattered . . . He has brought down . . . has exalted . . . He has filled . . . He has given help” (Luke 1:46-55)
Such wonderful acts by God as He, the Mighty One, worked out His plan to provide redemption to a world lost in sin, to send His one and only Son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16). This great work of salvation, worked out by the omnipotent God, as the old Christmas song notes,
I wonder as I wander out under the sky,
How Jesus the Savior did come for to die.
For poor on’ry people like you and like I . . .
I wonder as I wander out under the sky.”
This Christmas hymn comes from the poor people of the Appalachian Mountains. I say “the poor people” because no one knows from whom it specifically originated. As John Niles trekked the great mountain area of the Appalachians gathering what he could of the words and music of their folk songs, on a particular Christmas he encountered a young girl, seated on a bench, singing an infectious tune . . . “I Wonder As I Wander.”
Out of this greatly impoverished area a song was passed down from one family to another, and it has become one of the most noted of Christmas hymns. Of this song it has been written, “Deeply spiritual, incredibly thoughtful, yet obviously composed by someone of little means and education, the lyrics embraced the joy and wonder of Christmas but also lingered on the sacrifice of a child grown into a man that died on a cross.” Happiness . . .
When Mary birthed Jesus ’twas in a cow’s stall,
With wise men and farmers and shepherds and all.
But high from God’s heaven a star’s light did fall,
And the promise of ages it then did recall.
. . . combined with sorrow . . . “How Jesus the Savior did come for to die” . . . Oh how “I Wonder As I Wander!”
The song ends with the simple recognition of the Savior who Mary birthed, a witness by whoever put its words together, that this Jesus, this Savior, was the King. . .
If Jesus had wanted for any wee thing,
A star in the sky, or a bird on the wing.
Or all of God’s angels in heav’n for to sing,
He surely could have it, ’cause He was the King.
The Christmas season is certainly a time to be in great awe. In our busy schedules, our running to and fro, may the simple words of this seasonal song cause each one of us to ponder the wonder of it all.
Have a good day and, as you wander, wonder at what our Christmas celebration is really all about.
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