I've never really been a fan of Christmas music. Just ask my former roommates my reaction if they played or sung Christmas music before December 1. But over the past few weeks, I've found myself choosing to listen to more of it than I have in the past. It's prompted me to think about why I'm not really a fan of Christmas music.
I think one of the big reasons comes from being in band from grade seven through to grade twelve. We started working on Christmas music by the beginning of October. Long before the Christmas concert date came and very long before Christmas actually came I was tired of the same songs. I don't think it helped that we seemed to play the same songs in band every year - just different arrangements of them most years. And even though the selection of songs was limited, I just grouped everything into the same category.
But ten years past my last band Christmas concert, I would hope I was over the majority of that. (But, if I hear "Carol of the Bells" more than once over the Christmas season, I will still run screaming from wherever that place was. I can still play that one in my sleep. I don't know if I'll ever get over being tired of that song.) So I've been pondering to see if high school band was the only reason for my dislike of Christmas music.
I've noticed that while I'm listening to more Christmas music this year, it's all of a limited portion of the Christmas music options av available. I'm still driven crazy by the songs about Santa or what we want for Christmas or white Christmases or things along those lines. I have nothing personally against any of it, but there is so much more to Christmas than that. The songs that don't drive me crazy and that I enjoy listening to are the one's that speak of Jesus' birth and what it means for the world that the Messiah has come. There just seems to be something to those songs that the other songs don't have in them.
Surrounded by a world that focuses on materialism and getting what we want at this time of year it's easy to lose focus on what we're actually celebrating as followers of Christ. And music can easily turn our thought - sometimes without us knowing it has done so. That's why I think I get so easily frustrated with Christmas music. Music definitely influences my thought and I want them to be focused on the right thing at this time of year.
I've never understood some of the really sappy songs that come out at Christmas either - some from Christian groups and some not. I don't understand how they fit. Sure it's a time we often spend with those we love and care about. Maybe I just don't get it because I spend time with my family year round and feel the same way about them all the time. I don't know. That part of Christmas music just doesn't make sense to me.
So, I guess I don't really dislike all Christmas music as much as I thought I did. I just don't like some of it. And maybe I don't need to try to avoid it like the plague for as long as possible as Christmas draws near.