I’m watching Santa Paws 2…and I’m weeping.

So…Here was my bright idea.  After a day like this, it seemed appropriate to give in to the girls’ movie choice for tonight.  Sure, Santa Paws 2, how could we go wrong?  These lovable, cuddly, yet predictably mischievous little pups will be be safe.  Or so I thought.

I watch the plot unfold.  The town of Pineville has lost it’s Christmas Spirit.  The Pups have some bright idea to save to the town, and of course, it goes horribly wrong.  The “Christmas Cold” spreads like wildfire and the whole town is engulfed in a thick, selfish gloom.  All that is left of the once thriving Spirit in the town is found in the tender heart of a little girl.

Through her perseverance, slowly the people around her begin to get a hint of hope again.  As the movie moves toward it’s predictable climax…you know.. when the pups realize that they’ve made a hash of it and gain a new determination to fix it… the little girl remembers what had worked in the past to keep the Spirit alive in the town.  They decide to produce a special Christmas radio show.

So…here I sit.  Just minding my own business, watching this movie of all things.  Suddenly, it starts.

The girl steps up to the mic in the small town radio studio…and begins to sing…

O Holy Night

O holy night! The stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of our dear Saviour’s birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
‘Til He appear’d and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.

Fall on your knees! O hear the angel voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born;
O night divine, O night, O night Divine.

So..by now I’m weeping…

Here’s the thing…as she sang, the town listened in.  Radios went on in the homes, businesses, the courthouse, all over.  The hearts of all who heard the song began to warm.  As if waking from a deep slumber, the faces of the people began to change and the hope returned to their eyes.  It was as if the Spirit that had once given life to the town had returned.  The song had cut the darkness.  The ears of all who heard it were opened.  Light was dawning in their midst once again.

I don’t know how the Gospel made it’s way into this movie, but there it was.  In this moment, the whole story about the dogs and the antics and the whatever…it didn’t matter. They had nothing to do with saving this town.  It had everything to do with the child’s song.  It brought the Spirit back.  It simply fell on the ears and brought life.  None in the town wanted it…as if they didn’t even have the capacity to want it.  But this didn’t stop the miracle of new life from being created in them.

Yes, all of this came rushing to me..sitting with my daughters…watching Santa Paws 2…tears rolling down my cheeks.

This town is our town…we don’t have the Spirit…we don’t even know we don’t have it.  We are filled with selfishness and despair.  Our memory of how it once was is gone, covered by the deepest fog.

So what is the hope?  It is not found in foolish antics of trying to fix what we see as the problem.  It is not found in the magic that we will try to conjure.

Our only hope is Jesus.  Not being like Jesus.  Not being inspired by Jesus.  Not even believing in Jesus.  Our only hope is Jesus himself, shining the light of His glory in our hearts.  Only he can cut that darkness so that we see his face.  When we see, we will truly see.  We will come alive, and give him Glory upon Glory. (2 Cor. 4:1-4)

May we Fall on our knees.

May this weary world rejoice.

For yonder breaks and new and glorious morn.

His name is Jesus.

In the midst of our broken world, hurting in so many ways tonight.  I want to encourage all to sing.  Sing of the wonders of God in Christ.  Sing of the beauty of the good news.  Sing in the abiding hope that on the cross Christ took our sin.  Sing that now by His grace alone, through faith alone, we may share in His life.

To the praise of His glorious grace-

Randy

See even the full text of this song and how it can warm this cold night:

O holy night! The stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of our dear Saviour’s birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
‘Til He appear’d and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.

Fall on your knees! O hear the angel voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born;
O night divine, O night, O night Divine.

Led by the light of Faith serenely beaming,
With glowing hearts by His cradle we stand.
So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming,
Here come the wise men from Orient land.
The King of Kings lay thus in lowly manger;
In all our trials born to be our friend.

He knows our need, to our weakness is no stranger,
Behold your King! Before Him lowly bend!
Behold your King, Before Him lowly bend!

Truly He taught us to love one another;
His law is love and His gospel is peace.
Chains shall He break for the slave is our brother;
And in His name all oppression shall cease.
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we,
Let all within us praise His holy name.

Christ is the Lord! O praise His Name forever,
His power and glory evermore proclaim.
His power and glory evermore proclaim.

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