Tag Archives: Casting Crowns

Michele’s Favorite Christmas Music: I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day – Casting Crowns

Casting Crowns version of the traditional carol.

  • Songwriters: John Mark Hall, Bernhard Herms, Dale Oliver, Traditional

I heard the bells on Christmas day
Their old familiar carols play
And mild and sweet their songs repeat
Of peace on earth, goodwill to men

And the bells are ringing
(Peace on earth)
Like a choir they’re singing
(Peace on earth)

In my heart I hear them
(Peace on earth)
Peace on earth, goodwill to men

And in despair I bowed my head
There is no peace on earth I said
For hate is strong and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, goodwill to men

But the bells are ringing
(Peace on earth)
Like a choir singing
(Peace on earth)

Does anybody hear them?
(Peace on earth)
Peace on earth, goodwill to men

Then rang the bells more loud and deep
God is not dead, nor doth He sleep
(Peace on earth, peace on earth)
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail
With peace on earth, goodwill to men

Then ringing singing on its way
The world revolved from night to day
A voice, a chime, a chant sublime
Of peace on earth, goodwill to men

And the bells, they’re ringing
(Peace on earth)
Like a choir they’re singing
(Peace on earth)

And with our hearts we’ll hear them
(Peace on earth)
Peace on earth, goodwill to men

Do you hear the bells, they’re ringing?
(Peace on earth)
The life the angels singing
(Peace on earth)

Open up your heart and hear them
(Peace on earth)
Peace on earth, goodwill to men

Peace on earth, peace on earth
Peace on earth, goodwill to men

“Ask, Seek, Knock – Matthew 7:7-12

Michele’s Favorite Christmas Songs: “God Is With Us” Casting Crowns

This song is from Casting Crowns Christmas album “Peace on Earth” and has become a favorite of mine.

May you remember the key word in this song is “with.”  

God is with us all day every day. 

Casting Crowns – God Is With Us Lyrics

Artist: Casting Crowns

Album: Peace On Earth

  • Songwriters: Wayne Kirkpatrick

The skies don’t seem to be as dark as usual
The stars seem brighter then they’ve been before
Deep within I feel my soul a stirring
As though my hope has been restored

The shepherds say they’ve heard the voice of angels
Confirming rumors spread across the land
That a child protected well from Herod’s anger
Is our Father’s Son, and the Son of man

Love is raining down on the world tonight
There’s a presence here I can tell
God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel
He’s a Savior we have been praying for
In our humble hearts He will dwell
God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel

I feel compelled to tell all who will listen
That peace on earth is not so out of reach
If we can find grace and mercy and forgiveness
He has come to save, He is all of these

Love is raining down on the world tonight
There’s a presence here I can tell
God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel
He’s a Savior we have been praying for
In our humble hearts He will dwell
God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel

Love is raining down on the world tonight
There’s a presence here I can tell
God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel
He’s a Savior we have been praying for
In our humble hearts He will dwell
God is in us, God is for us, God is with us

You’re the Savior we have been praying for
In our humble hearts You will dwell
You are in us, You are for us, You are with us, Emmanuel

“Ask, Seek, Knock – Matthew 7:7-12

“If You Can’t Be Authentic…”

“…be nice.”

I was in a crowd when I heard someone say this statement.  I thought about it and decided that statement is baloney.

3 Reasons Why

There are 3 reasons why that quote is baloney.

  • Be Nice – Being nice should be a natural part of our authenticity.
  • Can’t – This word needs to be “sleeping with the fishes.”  Say it over and over and see how quickly it grates on your nerves.   Replace can’t with “unable” or “choose not.”  The sentence would then be: “If you are unable to be authentic…” or “If you choose not to be authentic…”  How sad for someone to decided they are either unable or choose not to be authentic.
  • Be Nice – Telling someone to be nice instead of authentic is telling them to lie. It’s telling them to be something they are unable to or choose not to be.

Be

Be authentic 100% of the time, even if it means your dark side shows.  If people do not like your dark side and are unwilling to help lift you up when you are down, that is their problem – not yours.

When you show your dark side and friends/family turn their backs on you, that means they do not have enough love inside them to help lift you back up.  Instead they are and only want to be around “happy plastic people.” (Casting Crowns “Stained Glass Masquerade”)

Do you have the guts to be authentic and to accept other’s authenticity, even when their dark side shows?

Coming tomorrow – “The Dark Side – We All Have & Need It.”

Why Christian’s Faith Sometimes Needs Built Up

Why is it that even Christians sometimes doubt God in times of trouble and need their faith built up?

Because we are human.

Not doubting God when the going gets rough implies perfection.  We humans are not perfect.   If anyone is claiming to be perfect, then the “Men In Black” need called so they can send that person back to their home planet, there is no room on this earth for perfect humans.

Yesterday’s Post

I wrote yesterdays “What Christians Should and Should Not Do” from a position of strength.  I had a “Peaceful Easy Feeling” in my heart while writing it, so peaceful and easy it was hard to put my feelings into words.

“What A Difference A Day Makes”

I write this piece during time of weakness for fear has crept in regarding my career.  I wonder what God has in store for this sinner.  Even though I know He is with me and that He has nothing but good plans for me, I am having a hard time believing some good will come regarding my career.

Out Of Faith

I have signed up for the 2012 Social Media Success Summit on faith.  Faith that learning all about social media from the big names in the industry (Chris Brogan, Michael Seltzer, Jeremiah Owyang and others) will help me in my job search.  After all social media is here to stay and companies need people who understand it and can implement policies to help companies grow.  Maybe because of this I start my own business advising companies about their social media marketing strategy.

Or maybe through this course I will figure out another way to use social media to help women who suddenly became widows.

Good And Evil

Even though there is a lot of good in this world, there is also a lot of evil in it. Christians are constantly under attack from unbelievers.  Occasionally the armor needs reinforced through prayer, daily devotions, hymns and praise songs, and talking to other Christians.

These are just some of the things that can be done daily to help strengthen one’s faith.

Evil Is Strong

But there will be times when the attack from evil is so strong that faith needs reinforced.

For Jesus Christ said:

“…In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

John 16:33

He knew we would experience tough times and that our faith would need reinforcing during such times.   During those times we need to remember Jesus overcame the world and hang on to that fact.  Yes, it is tough to hang on at times but we must.

We need to remember that God is with us and has a very good grip on us.  Even if we let go, He will never let go of us.

 Epilogue -Don’t Worry About Me

I started out writing this post while weak. Right now I am tweaking it and am feeling strong, hopeful and optimistic about my career.

Part of the reason I am feeling strong is because of the songs playing on my computer while writing this post:

  • God Is With Us – Casting Crowns
  • Blessings – Laura Story
  • El-Shaddai – Amy Grant
  • This Little Light Of Mine – Addison Road
  • I’m Letting Go – Sally Colon–Petree
  • Praise You In This Storm – Casting Crowns
  • Grace Like Rain – Todd Agnew
  • How Great Is Our God – Don Moen
  • Lifesong – Casting Crowns

“Song-Which-Must-Not-Be-Named”

(Author’s Note:  Todays post is more of an educational post for those not grieving.  It is designed to teach one of the main things about Christmas that for a lot of widows/widowers is not joyful. 

Yes, I am ripping off “Harry Potter” but boy is it appropriate.  If you are a widow or widower, you will agree with me.  If not, then enjoy the “song-which-must-not-be-named” because there will come a time in life when it either brings pain or only a teeny tiny bit of joy.)

Scripture:

When I am afraid, I will trust in you.

Psalm 56:3

Now I will not say I am afraid to listen to Christmas Music, but it is the most consistent cause of meltdowns during the holidays.  I have not had one yet this Christmas season and hopefully any meltdown will not last as long as it did last year. 

Christmas 2008

Christmas 2008 was torture.  Everywhere I went  the “song-which-must-not-be-named” would be played over the loudspeaker within 30 seconds of me entering the store.   

In fact, I was talking to a widower the other day.  Last Christmas bothered him but not a whole lot.  That is due to the numbing and protective bubble God provides the first year.  My friend was finding this Christmas harder to manage, especially the music.  He stated “Do you know how many times they play the “song-which-must-not-be-named?”  I can relate to what he is experiencing. 

The “song-which-must-not-be-named” is played over and over and over and over again because it was recorded by every musical artist of the 20th and 21st Century. 

Last Christmas Dinner

My brother-in-law forgot to turn on the radio so we would have Christmas music during dinner last year.  Sure enough the “song-which-must-not-be-named” was playing when he turned the radio on.  I said to myself “Alright Joe, I hear you. Now shut-up!”

Joe’s Wish

Every time I heard the “song-which-must-not-be-named” I figure it is Joe telling me what he wants for me. 

I expect every time I hear the “song-which-must-not-be-named” that Joe is wishing me a Merry Christmas even if it is 10 years from now.  Oh Lord, I hope not to have the same feelings about that song 10 years from now. 

The Reason

God had Ralph Blane and Hugh Martin write the lyrics and music so widows and widowers would have a message from their spouse during the Christmas season. 

Maybe it will not be so painful to listen to if I remarry.  If that is true, then somebody better put a ring on my figure soon.

Trusting God

Every Christmas I have to trust God will help me deal with Christmas music when I am someplace where I have no control over what is played  I find joy in trusting God but the sooner it is easier to listen to Christmas music, the better I will feel. 

As I write this post, I am listening to “Peace On Earth” by Casting Crowns.  I am not having any issues with them, but they are not singing the “song-which-must-not-be-named” either. 

Recommendation

“Peace On Earth” is a beautifully done CD and one I recommend for your collection whether or not you are grieving.

“Song-Which-Must-Not-Be-Named”

What is the “song-which-must-not-be-named?”

“Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”

Ralph Blane/Hugh Martin

Sung by Judy Garland in “Meet Me In St. Louis”

I would attach a link but that would be cruel and unusual punishment to anyone reading this post who is experiencing grief.

My Wish

If you are experiencing grief this Christmas, hopefully the music will not bother you.  If it does, just ask and trust that God will help you manage. 

May trusting in God bring you joy, even if it is just a little bit.  

Also, take heart in knowing listening to Christmas music does get a little easier each year with God’s help.

Quote:

“God is in us, God is for us, God is with us, Emmanuel”

“God Is With Us”

Wayne Kirkpatrick

“Peace On Earth” CD

Casting Crowns

To Do:

Repeat the above lyric over and over again.  Use it as a mantra to get through the Christmas season.  I know that is what I will be doing upon hearing Christmas music this year, especially the “song-which-must-not-be-named.”

P.S.  Don’t get excited about a ring on my finger.  Once again, I will not be spending time under the mistletoe with anyone  😦