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Below are a couple more entries in the Merry Music contest from my friend, Bonny Moore. Hope you’re in the merry spirit and I really hope you’re being good! It’s Christmas Eve! Listen for sleigh bells!
Now, from Bonny…
Some of my favorite Christmas memories involving music are going caroling with our youth group from the Madison church of Christ and later with my friends from Freed-Hardeman, and still later with the Young Professionals from West Huntsville. Can you tell I love caroling?
One time in particular, a group of friends and I were going caroling in a neighborhood near Freed-Hardeman University where several professors and the president of the school lived. One of the professors was Brother Bob Brown. We walked up to his semi-Victorian style house, nicely lit with white Christmas lights strung along the eaves and around the porch posts, and with a welcoming singing Santa on the porch. We rang the bell, and Mrs. Brown (Mama Joan) came out to greet us. After singing a song or two out in the cold, we went inside and sat in the living room on the couch, chairs, and floor, and sang several carols. I recall seeing Mama Joan’s face glowing with delight and Mr. Brown standing behind her with his hand resting gently on her shoulder.
After our traditional finale of “We Wish You a Merry Christmas,” Mama Joan asked if we would do her a favor. She said she had a Christmas tree that she wanted to decorate in her dining room, but she had not been able to get to it, and she wanted to know if we would be willing to help her decorate it. How could we say “no” to such a request? So, we stayed. Mr. and Mrs. Brown brought out their boxes of ornaments and hooks, and we hung ornaments on the tree for at least half an hour, maybe longer. Some of the ornaments were rather eclectic and eccentric, not unlike Mama Joan herself, so it was quite entertaining. We sang more carols while decking the tree, and the entertainment continued as we tried carols to which some of the group obviously did not know the words. (I mean, how can anyone not know ALL of “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” or “Frosty the Snowman?” It’s a good thing we did not try “You’re A Mean One, Mr. Grinch!”) After we finished decorating the tree, Mama Joan gave us each a big hug and thanked us for helping her. As we stepped back out into the cold, our hearts were warm with the love of friendship and with the knowledge of having done a good deed by brightening the night for a couple who had long brightened the lives of many a college student such as ourselves.
Another of my favorite Christmas memories involving singing is of going to Rainbow Omega at Christmastime to visit with the residents there and to deliver Christmas presents to them. Rainbow Omega, Inc. is a community in Eastaboga, AL, for developmentally disabled adults where they live and work all on the same campus. The residents all worked at the time in a large warehouse-like building, which is where we had our Christmas gathering. It was such fun to re-connect with our old friends, and they were as joyful as children at a Christmas party! We distributed hand-made gifts to each resident, and then we sang carols to them. It was fun to hear them chime in with the carols that they knew. One of the funniest parts was when we sang “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” and one of my friends acted out all of the days in fine, exaggerated form! The residents laughed and laughed at her. While there, we also had a devotional time with them, and it was so heart-warming to witness their sincere love for the Lord and their gentle, child-like trust in Him. It reminded me of Matthew 18:3, where Jesus says, “‘Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.'” What a blessing it was to have that personal contact with living reminders of God’s desire for us.
Thank you for doing this contest and helping me to think back on good memories!
Love in Him,