Hope That Can Sustain Us: A Monologue

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In my previous article, I outlined the fitting and advantageous nature of celebrating Christmas in the shadow of an inauguration.

We leveraged this connection in the Christmas production at my local church. We considered renewed Christmas traditions, the constant flood of movie remakes, and backward-looking campaign promises. Thus, personally, culturally, and politically we tend look behind us and wonder: Is the best in the past?

Christmas was always intended to answer THAT question.

The following is a monologue that I wrote as a creative part of that presentation (delivered as a spoken word piece). I offer it to you for your enjoyment, and as an example of how to gently “re-politicize” Christmas.

Before there was a silent night there was a silent plight:
hope was gone — out of sight.

There are shepherds in the pasture.
The shepherds of the past heard the vast herd would be given to a king,
and as pretenders tend his flock
the clock it tick and tocks to the night when the angels sing.

Then Gabriel’s word to the favorable girl,
“The curse reversed through virgin birth.”
Adam, cast out to the east from Eden,
now wise men come from the east to greet him,
and little king Herod schemes to defeat him,
all the while, sheep near the manger bleat him.
Worlds reversed from the day of his birth;
like we give good gifts because God gave gifts first,
and the king was made poor, so that we could be made more

Angels sing “Come on get happy ’cause this is good news:”
that rebels would be saved because the king was bruised;
that we’d be redeemed and that we’d be re-deemed;
that we’d be named “sons” and “heirs” with the king.
And we sing more tunes as he’s reversing fortunes.
Oh for joy! The chosen boy,
proving God is honest
by doing all that he promised.

And we sing of a hope that can sustain us —
not hope from below like the left and right-wing campaigners,
but hope from above like the left and right wings of the angels.
The right man at the right hand of the father left and became the right king in the manger.

Hopefully you’re knowin’ him.
Hopefully you grow in him.
And if you hope in him then hopefully you’re showin him.
Come empty-handed, he’s already paid the debt you’re owin him.

Pa-rum-pum-pum-pum, we have no gifts to bring.
Above the humdrum, still hear the angels sing.

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James Ford

James Ford is the is the operations director for Acts 29 North Atlantic. He is a husband to April, father of Gabriel, and a graduate of Southeastern (M.Div., Th.M.).

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