I seem to do a lot of thinking and praying in my car. And on one particular morning last week, my thoughts turned to the confusion that so often surrounds us in this life. I thought of the troubles that face this generation and the emptiness I know so many people feel, especially at this time of year. With memories of recent stressful events still lingering beneath the surface of my own heart, I wondered at the pain in this world. How could there be so much darkness when Jesus is the Light? But, as a cloud threatened to descend upon me, I heard a familiar song come on the radio. I paused at the profound impact of its message. Through the words Henry Wadsworth Longfellow penned in 1867, my thoughts were clearly echoed -

“I heard the bells on Christmas day
Their old familiar carols play
And mild and sweet their songs repeat
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”

Sometimes it does appear that the events in this world mock the message that Christ so clearly brings us. There are tragedies and sorrows that we will never fully comprehend, but our God tells us that we can have peace in Him. “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).

The good news is that we are not left without hope. God will guide us as we navigate through the difficult times for He has given us the ability to overcome the troubles of this earth. In 1 John 4:4 we are reminded that “…the One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” Praise God! At that moment I realized that my eyes and ears needed to be adjusted. Where was my focus? Was I only seeing the stresses and troubles in life rather than counting my blessings? Was I listening to the enemy’s lies rather than the song that God is singing every day? As the music on the radio continued, I smiled and my thoughts turned to praise.

“Then rang 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”

God's song rings louder than the noise of this world.  He is here, all around us...we just need to turn our ears to Him and listen.  I am listening, God. My heart is open to You.  I hear you…and the bells are ringing.

Praising Him this Christmas,

P.S.  If you have a moment, please check out the "Advent of Christmas" tab at the top of my blog.  Blessings to you!


  1. What a moving post Joan.

    I appreciate you and your words today.

  2. He has brought me through so much hardship, so many riptides.

  3. Amen to this! The only true peace we can have is in a personal relationship with God through Jesus. Despite the trials and challenges, that alone providees me with peace.

    I've missed emailing you lately Joan. Sending you a blog hug today.

    Love you,

  4. Thanks friend for standing with me. The mountain is moved!

    Always a joy to splash around with you friend.

    Also wanted to invite you to a to a water buffalo party for India. No formal wear required, just stop by and visit


    Be blessed bunches,

  5. I'm glad you added that last verse at the end. I was waiting for it... my favorite part of the song. Actually, one of my favorite Christmas songs. I, too, often wonder about all the darkness in this world and want more of God's light to shine through in obvious ways. There seems to be more questions than answers at times, and our hearts hurt. But regardless of the questions, Jesus is the answer.

    It's just as simple and beautiful as that!

    Merry Christmas, friend.


  6. Only through Him do we have true peace and contentment. I thankful for His gracious Gift. Have a Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year.


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