Why this song?
Why suggest one of the most famous and popular Christmas songs of all time?
First of all, I find this song doesn’t show up in many hymnals, so many congregations may have to look elsewhere for resources for it. I wanted to provide those resources (the lead sheet for this song is free).
Secondly, it’s a song that can be performed in a number of different styles and arrangements and I wanted to share one of my favorite versions by Josh Garrels.
A few years ago, the Christmas Eve sermon at Illumine centered around a phrase from the first verse: “Till he appeared and the soul felt its worth.” That’s this song in a nutshell.
The song, both lyrically and musically, does an excellent job of capturing the broad range of emotions associated with the birth of Christ. There are quiet contemplative moments and there are massive joyful moments.
When we fully understand and appreciate what happened when Christ came to earth, we can’t help but (as the chorus says) fall on our knees. Out of shame. Out of joy. Out of sorrow. Out of thankfulness.
Use in Worship
Admittedly, this song has a fairly narrow range of uses. While you could certainly try to use it sometime other than Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, it would certainly be a little strange.
While it may lack in occasions for use, it does not lack in arrangements. We have provided the free lead sheet that Illumine uses when performing it, but the lead sheet does not limit the different styles and instrumentations you can use.