My uncles’ favorite chorus is “Bring me flesh and bring me wine.” It’s from Good King Wenceslas which celebrates the Feast of Stephen. Growing up mom would start the Christmas music in small amounts after Thanksgiving and it would reach its peak on Christmas Eve. We listened to quite the mix including The Mormon Tabernacle choir, Harry Belafonte and Tennessee Ernie Ford. Usually I say that I first heard the Gospel in a Mormon household but truth is I first heard it in the Christmas music I listened to as a child.
Growing up on Tennessee Ernie Ford is reason, in part, for my taste in Christmas music. I say, “In part,” because the other piece is just that I’m wired weird. This next is one of the glowing differences between my wife and I. She likes all Christmas music. That means she likes the crooners (Bing and Frank) and the modern, the schmaltzy roasting chestnuts and snow falling stuff. Yeah---not me. I lean strongly to the Christ-exalting stuff especially the hymns, except for one which I’m just tired of.
Little Drummer Boy has been done every-which-way by every artist from Jars Of Clay to Audio Adrenaline. Initially I liked the song. It’s fun to hear each different rendition. It’s just that it’s played every other song on the radio, kind of like White Christmas.
Whatever the tune we enter into the Christmas season celebrating the birth of Christ and the ransom paid for men. Let us sing the hymns loudly and celebrate the seasonal songs. In it all let our hearts and our characters reflect Him whom we sing about;
Therefore, Christian men, be sure,
Wealth or rank possessing,
Ye who now will bless the poor,
Shall yourselves find blessing. ---Good King Wenceslas