I was away at work one day, and when I came home, my three-year-old son had a new favorite song. Apparently, my wife had shown the video to our son on YouTube and he was singing it nonstop, the parts he could understand as lustily as the parts he couldn’t.
“God’s Not Dead” is the name of the song, by contemporary Christian band The Newsboys. Not long afterward, a movie came out with the same title: “God’s Not Dead.” It portrays a young man, a college student, who was expected to sign his name to the statement “God is Dead” at the beginning of his class, or debate against the professor and try to prove that God is not dead.
The song is powerful. The movie too, because many people believe the opposite. If you studied philosophy, you’ve likely heard of Friedrich Nietzsche, who began quite a movement under the depressing premise that God is dead.
We all have our moments of doubts, or wondering if that in which we put our faith is really worthy of faith and trust and worship. The one who penned the words to “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day” must have had such moments, for he wrote, “in despair I bowed my head … for hate is strong and mocks the song of peace on earth, good will to men.”
He also wrote, “Then pealed the bells more loud and deep; God is not dead, nor does he sleep.”
We can’t always hear them. These days, especially. The bells are strangely silent. But somehow … deeper, louder, in a tone beyond hearing and a tune beyond fully comprehending … the bells ring out the message.
God’s not dead. It rings all around us and nature itself is the choir that refuses to accept the news that God has died.
It cannot be. It is not. “The wrong shall fail. The right prevail, with peace on earth, good will to men.”
Can you hear them?
This reading is taken from Finding Christ in the Carols by author Ian Christopher, a devotional inspired by lyrics from more than 30 well-known Christmas Carols. Available as an e-book on Amazon, Finding Christ in the Carols will help you find moments of personal devotion and reflection during the busy holiday season as you discover “Christ in the Carols”. Throughout the month of December, enjoy a fresh glimpse of those tunes we hear every holiday season. Each daily devotional includes a prayer, as well as lyrics and a short history of the Christmas carol written about.