Much has been said around me about when the appropriate time is for the appearance of Christmas music and decorations. Here’s my opinion on the matter. Brace yourself, it might not be conclusive.
I personally benefit greatly from hearing Christmas music. It brings life to my soul even if I am having the most horrible day. I remember working in an environment where not only were many people around me not Christians, but I was legally obligated to not express too much of my faith. (Needless to say, I didn’t last in that environment very long.) I was working during the Christmas holiday, and feeling rather bummed and lonely not having anyone around me who understood the importance of the holiday to me, then it came across the speakers. Christmas music. I let it fill my soul. I’m sure it was one of those moments where the Spirit was jumping up and down inside my heart. First I listened intently. I realized that the very message of this particular song was something that many Christians are chastised for expressing apart from the beloved musical form. I began to sing it, so happy that I could recite these lyrics freely.
Christ by highest heav’n adored
Christ the everlasting Lord!
Late in time behold Him come
Offspring of a Virgin’s womb
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see
Hail the incarnate Deity
Pleased as man with man to dwell
Jesus, our Emmanuel…
It warmed my heart and soul and for the rest of the day I could not be irritated. For the rest of the year I pondered the meaning of all the Christmas lyrics, and fell in love with a handful of them. I’ll post on some of them individually later.
Anyway, that being said, Christmas music has a great power to bring the joy of the Spirit into one’s life. It also bears a very deep theological message, often one that we are not easily permitted to speak in our culture. So I don’t think it could ever be a bad time to sing it. Even in February. We sing hymns about the cross on days other than those close to Easter. Now, please realize I’m talking about the Christmas songs which are truly Christ centered. Maybe the other ones like Jingle Bell Rock, The Most Wonderful Time of the Year, Sleigh Ride and others should be snugly book-ended between Thanksgiving and Christmas. They aren’t bad songs at all. So, there- a compromise. Those which are only about the season can be only sung during the season. Those about Jesus- always and forever enjoyable any day of the year. 😀
That being said, part of what makes something good is often the anticipation of it. Thanksgiving dinner, getting married, having a child… I guess the same could be said for Christmas music. So, if it intensifies the impact of the songs, I am all for waiting patiently for the enjoyment of them.
However, I’m not one for stifling anyone wanting to sing praises about my Jesus, including those about His birth.
Use some discernment in order to preserve the beauty of the season and songs, but don’t shoot me evil glares if I break out into song. 😀