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Do you ever wonder what God finds funny? I think there are a lot of things that give Him true humor, and I am fairly certain that I am one of those funny things. Especially at Christmas. Especially for a specific reason. Especially this past Sunday.
You see, I hate the song "Joy to the World". Yes. I know. I am not the normal, All-American girl that I appear. I understand this. I think if the world could embrace my "not-normalness", the rotation of the earth on it's axis would be just that much smoother. But no. I am not normal. Here are a few reasons why:
1. I was born and raised in Tennessee and hate all things orange and white. I am not a UT fan. I am an anti-UT fan. I hope that everyone who plays against UT in everything will win! Including ladies field hockey or their chess team! (Do they have a ladies field hockey team? I don't know... I just hope they lose.) When they play another team I don't support, like Arkansas, I hope that something odd happens and both teams lose. I'm vindictive like that.
Who is my favorite team? Kentucky Wildcats. Why? Because I was raised right.
2. I hate pot roast. Yes, America. I hate pot roast. I ate pot roast every Sunday after church my entire young life. I never liked it. Finally, at the age of 18, I emancipated myself from eating foods that I did not like. I was an adult. I did not have to clean my plate. I did not have to eat pot roast ever again, if I didn't want to. And I don't. Green peas went on the list with pot roast as most despised food. Some people see this as an act just below the level of communism. I disagree. I will eat hot dogs at a ball game and apple pie, and I've owned two Chevys in my life. I am just as American as the next American. But, I won't eat pot roast. Now, when I go somewhere (like a funeral wake) where there are 14 different versions of pot roast, I happily walk right past it to the dessert table. And smile.
3. I don't like country music. No, it doesn't matter that I have lived almost my entire life right outside of Country Music, USA. I still don't like it. No, it doesn't matter if country music has come a long way, baby... I don't like country music. I once tried to like country music because a guy I was dating liked country music, and I wanted to impress him. I ended up with a bad case of heartburn... probably from all the country music that flowed into my pores. And it doesn't matter that Nicole Kidman married a country music artist. I will go see her movies, but I won't listen to his music. Why? Because I don't like country music.
Southern Gospel music fits this category as well, because to me, it is just country music with nicer lyrics. Well, they are usually nicer. They can be silly. But they are uplifting. Case in point was the song that a quartet did at my church this past Sunday. The basis of the song was to be more giving. But what did I really remember about the song? That somebody's pappy told somebody's uncle Sam that the corn he was picking from the garden would make a good supper.
I'm. Not. Kidding.
4. I hate the song "Joy to the World". I really, really don't like it. It doesn't really matter if the arrangement is different. It can be very "high church" or it can be jazzed up. I still won't like it. It can be sung by a black gospel choir, or by Mariah Carey. I still won't like it. And yes, I don't care for it even as an instrumental piece. Why? Because I think that Joy to the World is the "Chopsticks" of Christmas songs. It has that same choppy feel to it. Anyone can bang it out on the piano, and it still feels choppy. It grates on the nerves and gives me a headache.
Everyone knows my disdain for this song. Choir members apologize to me when they know we have to sing it in church. One year... one brief Christmas season, my friend the Right Reverend Dean, who was Minister of Music at the time, went an entire holiday season without singing that song. Not even once. He did it for me and I loved him for it. I think I told him often how much it meant to me that he would go the extra mile and not plan that song for one entire Christmas season.
This year is making up for that wonderful season. Are we singing the mass/choral/jazzed version next Sunday night in our Christmas program? Yes we are. Did the strolling carolers at the mall on Saturday stand right in front of me and sing three verses of it? Yes, they did. Did I make my return to the praise teams this past Sunday morning? Yes I did. Did I have to sing all four verses of this song? Yes. I. Did. Was I happy about it? Not so much.
Why? Because after I sang said four verses of Joy to the World, I had to sing backup for the men's quartet who sang about giving Pappy's good corn away to Uncle Sam, who, I am certain, ate well that night.
Yep. I'm pretty sure the Lord was on His throne getting a good chuckle out of me on Sunday, and that's okay... 'Tis the season...