W H O W I L L B E YO U R C H R I S T M A S N U M B E R 1 ?

Do you have a favourite Carol?
...Carol Vorderman? ...Carol Jackson? ...Andy Carroll?
Christmas is full of songs. Carols too. In shops, on the radio, in churches. And the first Christmas was like that. You’d have heard angels sing. An old man sings. A simple young girl from a small ‘nowhere’ town called Nazareth sings.

Sounds like X Factor, doesn’t it?
What would Gary Barlow or Louis Walsh have made of Mary’s performance? We don’t know, but even 2000 years later the words strike a chord with us. Take a look at two lines:

glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour *
(recorded for us in Luke’s book about Jesus, chapter 1 verse 46-47)
www.bostinnews.com for the whole song

My soul

Mary’s Song
Mary sang to express her deepest emotions - just like we do. Mary sang because she was made to know and to praise God. And like Mary we also have this privilege and this is what sets us apart from every other creature on the planet. Mary sang because she’d just heard the best news that any sinner can hear - God is the Saviour of all those who trust him. Now that makes you think. Each of us is in the wrong with our Creator. But here’s something really worth singing about. The Saviour has been born. God with us. Jesus, who lived, died and was raised to life again to save all who will turn to him. We asked two members of our church to tell us about their favourite Christmas songs. This is what they said:

I have led several choirs and taught music for 20 years in Tipton (1965-85), at Park Lane Girls’ and Willingsworth High. I love Christmas and have so many favourites. But the one in my mind at the moment is ‘Silent night! Holy night!’ The bit that always stands out to me is:

Love is shining from thy face, strikes for us now the hour of grace, Saviour, since thou art born!
It was back in my childhood that God’s grace in Jesus first ‘struck home’. Even then I realised my need of Jesus as my Saviour. I recently passed my ‘three score years and ten’ and am more aware than ever of my sinfulness and so more and more grateful that Jesus was born to bring forgiveness of sin through His death on the cross. That’s why I sing ‘Silent Night’ with even greater enthusiasm the older I get!

I haven’t got any musical qualifications but I love music. I am continually singing or humming all day every day! Two carols stick out for me. The first is ‘See him lying on a bed of straw’. It’s an up-tempo song (which fits the joy of the Christmas message really well):

Mine are riches, from your poverty, from your innocence, eternity; mine forgiveness by your death for me, child of sorrow for my joy.
This reminds me of what God sent His Son, Jesus, to do. I am rich because Jesus suffered for me, I have eternity because of Jesus’ innocence, I am forgiven because Jesus died for me and Jesus faced sorrow so that I could know real joy. How truly incredible is that!?

The second song is ‘O little town of Bethlehem’. I particularly enjoy the last verse, as it can be sung as a prayer - a prayer anyone can pray at any time:

Cast out our sin and enter in; be born in us today.
Don’t take their word for it. Look at one of the true records of Jesus’ life . You can get a FREE copy via www.bostinnews.com as well as finding lots more good news for Tipton! Or join us at one of our Carol Services. There’s no surprise: we’ll be singing and also hearing about this Jesus who was born to be the Saviour of the world.
Known as the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

Carol Services
You are warmly invited to join us for our Christmas Carol Services at Grace Community Church, Newhall Street on Sunday 23rd December:

10:30am Family Carol Service 6:00pm Carols By Candlelight
Both services will be followed by festive refreshments

Grace Community Church, Newhall Street, Princes End, Tipton, West Midlands, DY4 9HL www.gracecommunitychurch.co.uk