For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; . . . And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6 (NKJV)
On the way to Bethlehem perhaps Joseph sang, “Pele Ya’ate, Pele Ya’ate, Wonderful Counselor, Pele Ya’ate.” His song calmed Mary and her unborn baby as she tried to balance between a donkey’s withers and its haunches. Mary needed to hold off the pangs of child birth until their journey was finished.
Today, I imagine this scene as most of us visit friends or go to Grandma’s house. Life is so different. Some people will take cross-country trips via plane or car. True, all basic traveling concerns are the same as Mary’s: pack enough clothes, carry enough food, have enough money and find places to stay. But now we call ahead for hotel reservations; interstates have designated rest stops; and every town has restaurants and fuel stations. The process is much more comfortable and convenient.
Normally, though, trips in the twenty-first century are voluntary, not mandated by government officials. Like Mary, though, travel is difficult because it interrupts normal routine, adds elements of the unknown, and produces cranky people. Kids must be strapped into car seats. Bones and muscles start to ache. Rigid airline agents dislike travelers’ attitudes. Bad weather impedes and changes everyone’s schedules.
What a wonderful change, then, for us to hear someone sing the Christmas songs extolling Jesus, Wonderful Counselor, Prince of Peace, a Son given to us to be King of our hearts and souls. Let us remember the angels’ song, and carry the Lord’s joy no matter where we go, and share it.
Lord, Bless us with thoughts and songs of your joy and peace as we travel this Christmas. Amen.
© 2011 V. Colclasure