~By Sharon Czerwien
My goodness...I have waffled back and forth about this Christmas-themed blog!
I have thought to myself:
Do I make it extra cheery? Should I keep it low-key? Should it have any humor in it, or should it be solemn?
The only thing I knew was that I wanted to keep the overall theme of “Hallelujah" in it in some way.
I have personally enjoyed hearing the Hallelujah Chorus over the last several Christmas seasons.
There is something amazing about Handel’s lyrics:
For the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth…Hallelujah! Hallelujah!
Our All-powerful God reigns! PLUS, it is incredibly amazing that our God came down and was born in human flesh—ultimately making the way for us to have a personal relationship with Him.
Luke 2 Praise
In the Christmas story, we find the following account of the shepherds praising God in a hallelujah kind of way!
Once the shepherds had found Baby Jesus (God in human flesh!), they returned home and praised God for what they had seen and heard (Luke 2:20). This praise reminds me of a good ‘ole hallelujah.
We do not know these shepherds names, but they were very privileged to have been one of the first to see this special gift—the promised Savior of the world, in human flesh!
Yes, Christmas is an excellent time to praise God. YET, I also know that Christmas can be a time of intense heartache for some.
Just this year, I have learned of two intense heartbreaks for people I care deeply for. *Crushing* things…
This Christmas is the first for these friends to go through after their intense trials.
It is for this reason that I waffled on how to approach this Christmas-themed blog.
Then, I thought of another “Hallelujah” song that is just as appropriate as the Hallelujah Chorus.
A Broken Hallelujah
The song is called Broken Hallelujah by The Afters.
The song is a true tear-jerker, but it is filled with an incredible sacrifice of praise.
I’ve seen joy and I’ve seen pain. And on my knees I call your name….With nothing left to hold onto, I raise these empty hands to You. Here’s my broken, here’s my broken hallelujah…
For those who (understandably) struggle with intense sadness over the Christmas season, a broken hallelujah is still truly God-honoring.
I offer no advice about what a proper response should be this December 25. Some hearts are overjoyed, and some hearts are extremely heavy.
What I do love (and want to proclaim) is that a broken hallelujah is truly good enough. In fact, Hebrews declares that the fruit of our lips is a sacrifice of praise (Hebrews 13:15). Did you catch the sacrifice part?
A sad heart, mixed with a broken hallelujah, is a sacrifice and an offering to God. A sacrifice of praise honors God -- what an incredible thought!!
Here is a YouTube link to the song, Broken Hallelujah.
God bless, and Merry Christmas. Your sacrifice of praise and your broken hallelujah are enough!