I know we’re in the waiting season still, but many churches and communities are knee deep in straw and tinsel for carol services. Here is a Christmas carol I wrote some years ago reflecting on the various themes of waiting:
- Mary waiting for the birth
- the shepherds waiting and being sent to the baby
- the Magi searching for ages for what the star meant
- ourselves waiting for justice and peace
The folk tune Scarlet Ribbons works well with the text or you can use the melody from the 1960s pop song The Carnival is Over. As it’s an 8787D (for those who understand hymn metres) it will work with lots of other tunes too.
Mary in the stable waiting.
hears again the angel’s voice:
‘favoured one the Lord is with you,
all Creation sings: ‘Rejoice!’
Mary waits, and heaven wonders,
at the Prince of Glory’s birth
from her womb, inside that stable,
heaven’s waiting room on earth.
Shepherds waiting on the mountain,
Wise Men searching for a sign,
hear that outcasts can be welcomed
at the baby Jesus’ side.
So the earth’s unlikely pilgrims
find themselves upon their knees
and a teenage mother watches
as they hail a refugee.
Son of God and hope of heaven,
with the waiting ones on earth,
we expect a world of diff’rence
when your justice comes to birth.
So the world is waiting, hoping
for the promised day to dawn;
when our longings find fulfilment
through the babe in Bethlehem born.
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