In Like a Lion (Always Winter), Relient K
This Relient K song was inspired by C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe in which the wicked witch has made it such that it is always winter but never Christmas. It is a great metaphor for what the wait for the messiah was (and what the waiting for his return is): a feeling as if all time is out of joint without him.
I Hate Christmas Parties, Relient K
While we’re on the subject of Relient K, “I Hate Christmas Parties” is a great secular song of theirs. It is a broken-heart love song in a Christmas setting, but the title fits how Catholics can feel about many of the premature Christmas celebrations we see around us.
And I must admit, I have other secular songs on my Advent Christmas Playlist. In this I follow my brother’s example. He is often called upon to play piano at social gatherings and refuses to play Christmas songs until Christmas, but sees no problem playing “Jingle Bells,” “Let it Snow” and other nonreligious songs about winter.
My playlist features sad secular songs that look to Christmas with longing: "I’ll Be Home for Christmas," "Blue Christmas," "White Christmas," "Christmas Dreaming," and even "All I Want for Christmas Is You."
For that last one, I tell the kids who the “You” is that we want for Christmas. It’s Jesus, of course.
Tom Hoopesis writer-in-residence at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas.