God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
I will admit that I didn’t understand the title of the carol, God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen until just now. It sort of sounds like an invitation to take a nap! It’s not a Christmas carol that I remember singing a lot. It stuck in my mind because a couple of weeks ago a group from the church went caroling and we sung this song and one of the stanzas attempts to rhyme the words “mind”, “wind” and “find”. Now, the word “wind” is not like winding a clock but rather the wind of a storm…so the words don’t rhyme…but I sang “wind” like it did rhyme…and received a couple of strange glances. However, I’m used to receiving strange glances, usually deservedly so. But I never paid attention to what the title meant. But it’s pretty clear from the first stanza: “God rest ye merry gentlemen, let nothing you dismay, remember Christ our Savior was born on Christmas day, to save us all from Satan’s power when we were gone astray, O tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy, o tidings of comfort and joy.”
Because of the baby in a manger who grew to be revealed as our Savior we can “rest”…we don’t have a reason for dismay. That’s the point of the Christmas carol. It goes on to tell the entire Christmas story as each stanza ends with “tidings of comfort and joy”. I hope that the baby in a manger brings you comfort and joy. I hope that His birth has moved you to be born again into His kingdom where there is no reason for dismay but rather there is incredible reason for “rest”. So, merry gentlemen and ladies, in Jesus you can have rest…even though there is only one shopping day left until Christmas!