The annual test is here again. I have to confess that I was on the verge of failing one more time until a song by Amy Grant popped up on the iPod rotation. The song that played is titled "I Need a Silent Night" and the lyrics were most appropriate.

I've made the same mistake before
Too many malls, too many stores
December traffic, Christmas rush
It breaks me till I push and shove

December comes then disappears
Faster and faster every year
Did my own mother keep this pace
Or was the world a different place?

I can relate to that song a lot easier than Holly Jolly Christmas. But it is my fault if I allow the busyness of the season to rob me of the joy and meaning. Amy Grant offers a solution in her song.

I need a silent night, a holy night
To hear an angel voice through the chaos and the noise
I need a midnight clear, a little peace right here
To end this crazy day with a silent night

All of us could use a silent night or a silent moment to reflect on the meaning of Christmas. I have been very intentional about slowing down long enough to enjoy and reflect on what the birth of Christ means. On that long ago silent night some very common people were given the great news.

That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep.  Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord's glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them. "Don't be afraid!" he said. "I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger."

Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying, "Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased." (Luke 2, NLT)

All of us get caught up in the rush. But this year I have done a little better job of stopping long enough to meditate on that joyous message proclaimed on that silent night. I hope you will find the time to have a few silent moments to remember that a Savior was born in Bethlehem.

Merry Christmas!