Now that Christmas is past, I will miss the music. When I was growing up, my parents would keep the Christmas music playing on our home stereo console, or on the car radio. Except when one particular song would play. My father, without a word, would instantly switch it off. Nothing was ever said until I later asked him about it. The song was written by Gannon and Kent in 1943 to honor the soldiers serving in WWII. Sung by Bing Crosby, it became a top ten hit and played routinely on the radio. It was titled I’ll Be Home for Christmas.
My father said it was one of the cruelest songs ever written. The lyrics are:
I‘ll be home for Christmas
You can plan on me
Please have snow and mistletoe
And presents by the tree
Christmas eve will find me
Where the love light gleams
I’ll be home for Christmas
If only in my dreams
My father was Cavalry for the 20th Armored Division (The Liberators) in the European Theater of Operations. The war was raging on, and its end was by no means certain. He was a teenager with no guarantee that he would survive to make it home. He could see his loving parents, sister, relatives, and friends. But only in his dreams. So, this song, at least for him, brought back memories of his war experience that he would rather not relive.
Many Veterans, and their families, carry memories they would rather not relive. To each of those great Americans God offers this great promise,
“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10).
To those Veterans and families who are struggling with bad memories of experiences know that you do not have to go through this alone. The Lord is there beside you. The Armed Services Ministry would also like to come along side of you as well. Visit our website and check out our free online programs called God Understands and Never Alone.
My Heavenly Father, thank you that I do not have to go through tough times on my own. I need you to uphold me and those that I love. Show me the way of hope and healing. Amen.
Rev. Art Pace
CH (COL-ret), USA