Glories stream from heaven afar
I didn’t for most of my life! Because I am a visual learner, as a little girl I pictured scenes in my mind while I learned songs. Often I strung together meaningless syllables and simply stumbled over sounds.
Other times I plugged in words I thought I might be hearing.
For instance, when singing the alphabet song- L,M,N,O,P I sang, “ elominop.”
Get the picture?
Each year Christmas rolled around and I tried to make sense of the many carols.
I couldn’t picture reindeer paws. I thought they had hooves!
And when the lyrics about Rudolf said he would “go down in history” for being so famous, I thought Santa was rewarding him by saying “you go down and get a story.” I know there were too many syllables, but somehow I made it work! I thought getting a story as a reward for working so hard, you know, lighting the way all through the night, was the best bonus ever. As a girl, having a story read to me was the best!
I liked singing Silent Night with all the candles lit, who doesn’t! I had no idea was virgin was, but that didn’t matter because I knew the song was about the “round young” mother of Jesus the child.
Wait! What were glories?? They had to be something the shepherds saw because the word sight was in the song. I knew they had heard and seen angels, but angels were angels and glories were glories. But what were glories? I lived forever before I saw a glory.
Then one day a florist delivered a lovely Christmas arrangement topped with… glories.
Yes. Now I know what the glories are: magical golden swirls of spiritual dust being sprinkled from heaven. Maybe glories are God’s breath. Maybe glories are the visualized voices of the angels.
Whatever they are, I have captured them. I use them to decorate my house, reminding me of the magic of childhood. Childhood, a time when, even if we don’t always comprehend, we’ll sing anyway. We sang because we were children, innocent, trusting, longing to please, and forever able to find joy in the simple, refusing to allow the difficult and complicated to deter our awe and wonder.