It's finally here.
All of the anticipation, the hustle, the bustle, the waiting. It's all led up to this very day.
On this day we celebrate the birth of the greatest man who has ever lived. The most important man who has ever lived, and the most humble man who has ever lived.
I love him with all my heart. I know that He is my Savior, my Redeemer, and without Him, I could not and would not be complete.
I celebrate time with my family today and I have that family forever because of His atoning sacrifice.
I have saved the best song for last for this #songsoftheseason series. Thank you so much for taking this journey with me. I hope you have enjoyed it as much as I have, but more importantly, I hope that you have been able to feel the Spirit of the Season in your heart more abundantly as you have listened to beautiful songs that share messages of peace and good will.
On this beautiful Christmas Eve day, I would like to share with you a song and video that has brought me to tears on numerous occasions. It's simple beauty and gorgeous melody is a powerful combination.
Here is "O Come, O Come Emmanuel" performed by The Piano Guys
I can't say goodbye to this blog series without posting one more song by Pentatonix. It is one of the new ones I discovered the other day and it is probably my very favorite Christmas song. (I think I have said that about almost all of the songs, haven't I? Oh well.) But seriously, I think this song is my very favorite Christmas song and Pentatonix did not disappoint in their cover of it.
Hopefully you have all of your shopping and seasonal busyness complete or nearly complete so you can now sit back and enjoy these next few days with your family and friends. If you have just started your shopping, I wish you lots and lots of luck. :)
And now, here is "The First Noel" by Pentatonix
Today's song is from another A Capella group that I love a lot. The group is BYU Vocal Point and if you haven't heard about them...check them out on their YouTube channel. Pretty fun stuff. Especially the Newsies Medley.
I just bought their "He Is Born" album and have only listened to it a handful of times, but I am quickly falling in love with it. The song I want to share with you today is one of my favorite ones to play on the piano. I have a great piano arrangement of it, but I love the words of the song so much that I wanted to share a vocal version of it with you.
Here is "Infant Holy, Infant Lowly" by BYU Vocal Point
and just because I love the group so much, here is a bonus song for you today.
We are down to the wire here! Christmas will be here very soon. Thank you to all of you who have followed this Songs of the Season series. It has been a lot of fun for me and I am glad that I have taken the time to do it.
I feel that it is time to share another song from one of my all-time favorite Christmas albums. The album is "Peace on Earth" by Casting Crowns.
There are so many good songs on this album, it was hard to choose just one for today, but I have settled on "While You Were Sleeping." It's not a traditional Christmas song, but the message that it provides is one that has caused me to ponder a bit.
If I had been in Bethlehem, would I have slept all through that special night? Would I have missed the bright star? Would I have shared a room in my inn or home if Joseph had knocked on my door?
Although I did not live during that special time, I live now, in another special time. And I still have the opportunity to see the star and to make room for the Christ child in my life. It is a conscious effort every single day of my life, but it is so worth it.
I am really opening myself up with today's post and I hope that the song that I am choosing for today will touch your heart as it has touched mine.
This song is very special to me. I have performed it on many occasions and for your pleasure or pain, the version that you will be hearing today was recorded by yours truly.
I am in no way, shape, or form a professional music performer or producer, and while I was recording this song I noticed a couple of things...
1. My house is extremely noisy.
2. I do not enjoy listening to recordings of myself because I am WAY too critical.
Having said those things, I also noticed this...I LOVE this song so much and I love singing it, even if it is not the greatest recording.
I leave you with "Breath of Heaven," which was originally sung by Amy Grant. I hope that as you listen, you will feel the power of the lyrics and that you will be able to feel a little glimpse of what this amazing young woman must have felt as she prepared to be the mother of the Christ child.
Today is a very special day. It was on this day, 18 years ago, that the Love of my Life and I were married for time and all eternity.
It was one of the most beautiful days of my entire life.
I thought that today's song would have to be a pretty special one and preferably one that came out in 1997. Since I already posted the most fun Christmas song from that year (Barenaked Ladies and Sarah McLachlan's "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen), I am choosing one that is a slower tempo- more a love song style.
I had forgotten about this song until my Google search reminded me of it.
Man, I am thankful for Google.
I LOVE this song! I loved it way back in 1997 and I love it just as much today.
I bring you "The Gift" by Jim Brickman with special guests, Collin Raye and Susan Ashton.
It's the perfect love/Christmas song for this most special and lovely day.
Sending much love to my sweetheart today. xoxo. Let the celebration of the beginning of the Mark and Desirae Ogden family begin. :)
The closer we get to Christmas, the more I start thinking and wondering what it must have really been like on that night.
I have had 4 children. All of those children were born in hospitals, and I was surrounded by knowledgable doctors and nurses who were there to help me if anything went wrong. I had the modern convenience of a bed, warm blankets, and medication to ease the pain. During each of those births, I was also just an arm's length or so away from my husband, my mother, and other family members who were there to love and support me.
What did Mary have that night?
Mary had her husband, Joseph, and the knowledge that she was about to bring forth the most important human being who ever set foot on this earth.
How does one process information like that? I know that as a mother, my number one concern is that I just don't screw any of my children up too badly. They belong to our loving Father in Heaven, first and foremost, and He has entrusted them to me. That is a scary thought sometimes because I am extremely imperfect and fall short a lot. I cannot imagine knowing that my child was the literal Son of God and that He would carry such a great responsibility. Talk about pressure.
Did she really know and understand? Maybe not entirely. Maybe she was like the rest of us who learn things bit by bit and line upon line. I do believe, however, that Mary trusted in God completely. I believe that He was with her on that special night and He blessed her with strength and courage to do this very hard thing.
I like to imagine what it was like after Jesus was born. In my experiences, the moment each of my children were born, I was filled with such immense feelings of joy, love, and relief that the birthing process was over. Then I was immediately filled with concern and hoped that they were healthy. The atmosphere was slightly chaotic as the doctor and nurses finished their tasks and as Mark and I rejoiced in the newest member of our family.
But in Mary's case? What were those moments like, I wonder? I am positive that she probably experienced those same feelings of joy, love and relief. But then, I am sure that it was just still. The only sounds were probably the sounds from the animals that surrounded her, but I imagine that there was just a sweet stillness that enveloped the little family.
In those quiet moments, I like to imagine that Mary was being taught by the Spirit. She was probably pondering her responsibilities, maybe even feeling a bit overwhelmed, but I firmly believe that God was with her and that He was teaching her and comforting her.
I leave this post with one more song, a little bonus, if you will. It's one that you may have not have heard before. It's a beautiful lullaby, written and performed by the talented Cherie Call. The title is "I Just Knew." The lyrics are thought-provoking and the melody is beautiful.
I hope that as you listen, you will open your heart to the Holy Spirit. I also hope that you will take some time during this next week to ponder as Mary did; to ask God, "How can I do this?" I know that even though we have not been asked to bring forth the Son of God, we all have special and unique purposes to fulfill. God can help us fulfill those and He can help us to truly know what it is He needs us to do.
Lyrics for "I Just Knew"
He’s the son of a king, but He came to us with nothing
No purple robe, no crust of bread
With His soft tiny hands, He reached out for me to hold Him
There was no crown upon his head
So I guess that I should not have been surprised
When I saw the human tears in His holy infant eyes
And no one ever taught me how to sing
A lullaby for the son of a mighty king
But when I held Him in my arms
And I rocked Him just the way that mothers do, I just knew
Just as we knew he would be, He lived so selflessly
He was a legend in the land
People came from far and wide, they looked at Him with pleading eyes
Longing for the healing in His hands
And in those endless busy days
He still had time for me, He always found a way
And no one ever told me how to love
A healer and a teacher sent from up above
But when He cared for me and helped me
In the tender way that only He could do, I just knew
In sunlit moments I could see me in the traces of His smile
I know He came from me
But He was better than this world would allow
I could not save Him when He died
Now it seems that He’s the one who holds me when I cry
And everybody asks me how I’m sure
That the little boy I raised is our Redeemer
I could list the dreams and prophecies
And miracles that prove His mission true
But in all honesty
Every moment I was with him, I just knew.
GUYS!!! GUESS WHAT!!! I discovered something so amazingly wonderful this morning! Pentatonix has NEW Christmas songs! NEW SONGS!!! (Can you tell that I am a little bit excited about this new development in the world of Christmas songs? I don't think anyone ever used so many exclamation points in such a short amount of text...)
Man, it was so hard to choose just one song today because the new songs that I discovered are both awesome. To make matters worse, I stumbled across these new songs because I was going to post one of their other Christmas songs which is also awesome. Decisions, decisions.
If there is one thing I have learned throughout my life, it's that PATIENCE is a virtue and right now, you and I will have to be patient. There are plenty of days left to share the other songs, so for now, sit back, (or stand up because this song is FUN...) and enjoy a little :Joy to the World" Pentatonix style.
I am loving my second chance at life.
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