Let all mortal flesh keep silence,
and with fear and trembling stand;
ponder nothing earthly-minded,
for with blessing in his hand
Christ our God to earth descending
comes full homage to demand.
King of kings, yet born of Mary,
as of old on earth he stood,
Lord of lords in human vesture,
in the body and the blood,
he will give to all the faithful
his own self for heav'nly food.
Rank on rank the host of heaven
spreads its vanguard on the way;
as the Light of light, descending
from the realms of endless day,
comes, the pow'rs of hell to vanquish,
as the darkness clears away.
At his feet the six-winged seraph,
cherubim with sleepless eye,
veil their faces to the presence,
as with ceaseless voice they cry:
Alleluia, Lord Most High!"
There's a beautiful recording of this hymn by the group Ordinary Time. Banjo, violin and piano accompany human voices in a musical journey through the mystic, haunting and hope-filled story it tells. A story we can't hear enough.
Time and time again God made covenants with us, such as that which he struck with Abram. But sadly these promises weren't enough. Humanity proved too fragile to uphold them. And so God did the unthinkable. God came as the Word, Jesus Christ, and entered our world wrapped in nothing but human skin. And he chose to come, as we all do, through the vessel of a mother. Why? To save us from death, granting us life by offering himself, in order that it might be possible for all the ends of the earth to find their way to God.
Christ our Savior, your wisdom comes to us through word, deed, sound and song. May we slow down enough in our busy lives to remember your story, hear your promise and revel in your love each and every day. Amen.