Christmas Bells – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (and Casting Crowns)

Christmas Bells

I HEARD the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along
The unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Till ringing, singing on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime,
A chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Then from each black, accursed mouth
The cannon thundered in the South,
And with the sound
The carols drowned
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

It was as if an earthquake rent
The hearth-stones of a continent,
And made forlorn
The households born
Of peace on earth, good-will 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, good-will to men!”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men.”

~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

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A bit of a strange post for Compassion Wednesday, for I am not pointing toward ways you can make a difference or highlighting the many who do. However, in the chaos that surrounds us day-to-day, it is easy to forget the source of peace or even believe that peace is but a dream and that hate has triumphed. Hate may win a battle from time to time, but the war has already been decided. Love wins. Compassion wins. Grace and peace win.

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