I was playing the piano while our community group sang “We Three Kings” at a local retirement home. The children had just acted out a portion of the Christmas story, crooked little halos and all. Little Calvin, one of my charming grandsons, eager to help me play, was whisked away from the piano by his daddy.
I had mixed feelings about coming back to this home. This was where my mother chose to live during her last years with us. Our family spent many hours walking the halls with Grandma Muffin, talking to people, bringing them bouquets from our garden, and playing music for them.
It’s been seven years since my mother and daddy died within two weeks of each other. We’ve hosted a couple Christmas Eve services at Grandma’s old home since she moved to heaven, but it’s been several years since we’ve been back in the building. I knew it was going to be hard. Besides my mother not being there, most of her friends were probably gone as well.
We had walked past the familiar mailboxes, the announcement board, the elevator that always took us up to Grandma Muffin’s second floor room. I recalled putting the Christmas tree out on her deck so she could enjoy it without it taking up all the space in her room, and her pride when her grandchildren would come and play old-time music for the other residents. I missed her.
So it was one of those “aha moments” as we sang our way through “Hark, the Herald Angels Sing”. I heard these words in a whole new way as I played:
Mild He lays His glory by,
Born that man no more may die,
Born to raise the sons of earth,
Born to give them second birth.
These words lined right up with what we just studied in Philippians 2. Jesus willingly chose to set aside His glory in order to become a man.
He was born so that man would no longer die.
He was born to raise the sons of earth.
He was born to give us second birth.
Hail, the heaven-born Prince of peace!
Hail the Sun of righteousness!
Light and life to all He brings,
Risen with healing in His wings.
Glory to the newborn King! He’s won. Death is swallowed up in victory.