By: Alice Ann Johnson, Director of Music and the Arts
We all need comfort in our lives. There are skinned knees, illness and disease, death of a loved one, job loss, divorce……many sad times in our lives that we covet a comforting embrace, sympathetic word, visit from a friend, a mother’s kiss. Our scripture for today tells us that the way is being prepared for us to come out of the darkness into peace and tranquility.
The text for one of our Advent anthems is based on Isaiah 40:1-4:
Comfort, comfort ye my people,
Speak ye peace, thus saith our God;
Comfort those who sit in darkness,
Mourning ‘neath their sorrows load.
Speak ye to Jerusalem of the peace that waits for them;
Tell her that her sins I cover,
And her warfare now is over.
(Johann G. Olearius, 1611-1684)
This same text was used by George Frideric Handel to begin his masterwork oratorio MESSIAH. What a powerful start to this beloved musical setting of the life of Christ!
John 3:16 tells us "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." May we all take comfort from these words.
Please be with all who are in need of your healing comfort, Creator God. Amen.