Tamara's Journeys

Journeys as great as the destinations.

Time For Christmas Music: Away In a Manger

December 25th, 2014

The popular Christmas Carol Away In A Manger was published in 1884 in Boston, Massachusetts with the heading “Luther’s Cradle Song”. It was later published in 1885 with simply Away In A Manger.

The earliest publication refers to Martin Luther, referencing his 400th birthday in 1883. The claim was that he composed the song for his children. However, the claim appears to be false. No records of the lyrics have ever been found among Luther’s work.

Regardless, the song has remained very popular since it’s beginnings. Away In A Manger appeared on the US chart twice, first by Reba McEntire and then Kenny Chesney. In 2013, popular TV series Glee covered the song and most recently Sadie Robertson recorded the song for her family’s Christmas album, Duck the Halls. And did you know Francis of Assisi gets credit for the first Nativity scene in 1223?

For unto us a child was born, far away in a manger …

Away in a manger, no crib for a bed, The little Lord Jesus lay down His sweet head. The stars in the bright sky looked down where He lay, The little lord Jesus asleep on the hay.

The cattle are lowing, the baby awakes But little Lord Jesus, no crying He makes. I love Thee, Lord Jesus, look down from the sky. And stay by my side till morning is nigh.

Sweet bells they ring, they ring out the news today, That Christ was born, was born on Christmas day, Be near me, Lord Jesus, I ask Thee to stay Close by me for ever and love me, I pray.

Bless all the dear children in Thy tender care And take us to Heaven to live with Thee there. Sweet bells they ring they ring out the news That Christ was born, was born on Christmas Day, That Christ was born, was born on Christmas day.



Remembering the True Meaning of Christmas

December 25th, 2014

As a culture we place a lot of expectations on the holidays. As kids we always looked forward to Christmas: all the cool toys we would get, all the delicious food and treats, and lots of time to just enjoy life and have fun since school was out for a few weeks.

These memories are imprinted into our mind and are revived every year with the sounds and sights of the holidays. To most it’s a special time of year, one in which we celebrate and connect with those closest to us. A time we remember life isn’t measured by how many breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

However, for some it’s a first holiday without that special someone to share Christmas with. For others, they may have moved away from their family and don’t know many people in their new city. Maybe they’re in a hospital bed unable to be with family. Or even just caught up in the rat race of having to keep up with this world.

Most of you reading this won’t have this experience this holiday season, but for those that do, I promise they would always remember being invited into your home to share with them the closeness of friendship.  This could be a co-worker, neighbor, relative, or friend. Regardless, this is the most significant gesture of the Christmas Spirit you could give this year. Presents are fun to give and receive, but the true nature of giving is really from the heart.

I know because I am new to Reno, and didn’t have anyone to share this Christmas with. Yet, I was invited to share a very special family Christmas Eve celebration with the Drendels. The home was filled with genuine warmth and kindness that will never be forgotten. Tonight I experienced a family that enjoyed being together and sharing time together in the real spirit of Christmas.

I want to thank the entire Drendel family for opening your home to me and being living testimonies to the real meaning and joy of Christmas.

Tamara's Journeys

Journeys as great as the destinations.