I’ve been listening to this song a lot of late… up loud and on repeat.
Perhaps this isn’t the expected good cheer holiday song you’d expect me to be listening to.
However, one of our favorite—at least one of mine—is “A Christmas Carol”.
And I’m thinking the joy of Ebenezer’s redemption at the end is heightened because he was such a loathsome being. He didn’t imagine the fires of hell, he lived them—he experienced them… the burning alive within him until his own bile rose and burned his throat, etching the soft tissues with deep grooves of pain and remorse.
So when he awakes and finds that he has time to change the way and course of his life? Heaven! Pure Joy! Hallelujah!
Our dark angels point out the path of light—no wonder such rejoicing when the prodigal son returns home.
So… what am I grateful for tonight? This song; below.
From the foldings of its robe, it brought two children; wretched, abject, frightful, hideous, miserable. They knelt down at its feet, and clung upon the outside of its garment.
“Oh, Man! look here. Look, look, down here!” exclaimed the Ghost.
They were a boy and girl. Yellow, meagre, ragged, scowling, wolfish; but prostrate, too, in their humility. Where graceful youth should have filled their features out, and touched them with its freshest tints, a stale and shrivelled hand, like that of age, had pinched, and twisted them, and pulled them into shreds. Where angels might have sat enthroned, devils lurked, and glared out menacing. No change, no degradation, no perversion of humanity, in any grade, through all the mysteries of wonderful creation, has monsters half so horrible and dread.
Scrooge started back, appalled. Having them shown to him in this way, he tried to say they were fine children, but the words choked themselves, rather than be parties to a lie of such enormous magnitude.
“Spirit! are they yours?” Scrooge could say no more.
“They are Man’s,” said the Spirit, looking down upon them. “And they cling to me, appealing from their fathers. This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased. Deny it!” cried the Spirit, stretching out its hand towards the city. “Slander those who tell it ye! Admit it for your factious purposes, and make it worse! And bide the end!”
“Have they no refuge or resource?” cried Scrooge.
“Are there no prisons?” said the Spirit, turning on him for the last time with his own words. “Are there no workhouses?”
The bell struck twelve.