A Humble Hymn

Lovely Child, holy child, gentle, mild, undefiled;
Infant King, fairest King, gifts we’ll bring and anthems sing:

Alleluia, alleluia

Alleluia, alleluia!

Child of light, born tonight, our delight, promise bright
Child so fair: see him there; now declare him everywhere:

Rest your head, sweetest head; gifts we’ll spread at your bed.
Jesus Lord, be adored, may this word now be outpoured:

To this boy, our great joy, we employ hymns of joy;
Child so fair: see him there; now declare him everywhere:

Alleluia, alleluia

Alleluia, alleluia!



The lyrics of this song are simple. So simple really, that on first reading them, they might sound childish to you.

I like this Christmas hymn for that very reason, though. It walks us through the attributes of the newborn Christ in the same way a teacher might illuminate details for a pupil, or a parent for their young child.

Who is this child?

He’s gentle and lowly in heart (Matt. 11:29).

He is the fulfillment of a promise (Luke 2:28-32)

He is present with us (Matt. 1:23).

He is worthy of our hearts and our lives (Rom. 12:1).

Like the shepherds near Bethlehem, we’ve been given great news. The Luke account tells us, “all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds had told them” (2:18). They couldn’t keep this news to themselves; they were eager to declare it. They were likely men without a pedigree, or much theological knowledge. But they had eyes to see; they saw God’s salvation in the birth of Christ, and they couldn’t hold back their worship.

This hymn is a reminder to me: the best theology of worship is to approach Jesus with a humble heart: as an unassuming shepherd, or a child learning to identify and name things. Name what you see, look for God’s character in the things that surround you, in the details of the story you may have grown too “adult” to note.

For with the salvation of God in Jesus, there is so very much to see. Don’t stop looking, wondering, and raising your voice to the praise of his excellencies. No matter how simple the song.

– Breanna Randall


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s