We are halfway through Advent, and this is the week to rejoice! However, it’s not the readings from Sunday’s Mass that have me thinking, but rather the Psalm from the feast of the Immaculate Conception: “Sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous deeds.” (Psalm 98)
It can be very easy to just go with the flow of scriptures at Mass, especially when we hear them over and over again. But this time hearing that Psalm, this question came to mind: what new song would I sing for God? One could take that question very literally and think about how to craft a song. However, I am not a songwriter, neither in lyrics nor in melody, so I leave that to the experts. I do believe, however, that we all sing our own unique song to God in the actions we take and the choices we make on a daily basis. Perhaps the song that we create is not so much ours, but rather the effect we have on others. Do others cry out to God against us? Or do they praise Him for our deeds we do in His name? Is it a sorrowful song of lament, or is it a joyous song of celebration? Would there be a way for us to tell or is this song one for God’s ears only?
Another perspective would be the types of prayers prayed make up our song to God. Would the song reflect the angels’ “Glory to God in heaven” or would it be more like the Beatles’ “Help?” What kind of lyrics would it include? A line about a friend who is sick asking for healing or maybe the right plumber to call when the shower doesn’t work? Would the refrain proclaim the “Holy, Holy, Holy” from all the Masses participated in, or the “I don’t want to do that” response to invitations to a deeper relationship with God?
Maybe it’s just me, but I do tend to hum and make up songs, albeit silly ones, when I’m happy. One example is when my cat, Vera, rolls onto her back and shows me her “pretty belly.” I’m not sure which is more annoying to her: me singing about her belly or stroking the super soft fur on her tummy. She’s a good sport to let me pet her before she pulls my hand towards her head to rub there. This is a simple, joyous pleasure to spend a few moments with my cat. That joy is what Advent is all about, seeking God and finding joy in the journey. It’s also about reflecting on our lives and changing our “tune” to be in concert with God’s will for us. Our introspectiveness should result in a new song, especially when it acknowledges all that God has done for us in His “marvelous deeds.”
Rejoice! The Lord is near! Now is the time to seek Him out. Raise your voice in song — by prayer or action. Rejoice always in the Lord and sing of His deeds that are truly marvelous!