In 1865, William Chatterton Dix,
manager at a Glasgow insurance company,
fell desperately ill: depression,
raging infection, isolation—
this man, dedicated to insuring
the lives and livelihoods of others,
languished, near death.
Then, Dix rallied, experiencing
vibrant spiritual renewal, and
from his suffering he bequeathed us
words for one our cherished carols:
“What Child Is This?”
This Christmas, amid global depression,
raging illness, and isolation,
let’s remind one another
that Emmanuel, God with us,
has come … and will return.
“How beautiful on the mountains
are the feet of those who bring good news,
who proclaim peace,
who bring good tidings …
who say ‘Your God reigns!’
“Watchmen lift up their voices;
together they shout for joy …
for the Lord has comforted his people …
and all the ends of the earth
will see the salvation of our God.
“Jesus himself said, ‘I was born for this:
to tell people about the truth.
That is why I came into the world.’
“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news!”
Have any good news to share? We’d love to hear it and rejoice with you . . .
Alternatively, this is a season of “mean estate” for millions. We’d be equally honored to pray alongside you . . .
“What Child Is This,” traditional English folk song, lyrics by William Chatterton Dix, 1865. Public domain.
Reading: Laurie Klein
Music arranged and performed by Bill Klein