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Guest post by Lisa Belcastro:
Joy to the World!
It’s Christmas time! My favorite holiday, and I start a month-long celebration the day after Thanksgiving. The first thing I do on Black Friday is break out my Christmas music, and then spend the day avoiding all shopping while I sing as many Christmas songs as I can.
As I was writing A Shenandoah Family Christmas, I needed to find hymns that were sung in 1777. I couldn’t believe eyes when I read that Isaac Watts wrote “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross” in 1707. I love that hymn! I admit that I’d never paid any attention to who penned they lyrics, but I gained an intense interest at that moment. As I researched more on Watts, I learned that he also wrote “Joy to the World.” Wow!
I had no idea that “Joy to the World” had been around for centuries. The song sounds so contemporary, and is on nearly every Christmas CD I own. Talk about learning something new. I have a brand new appreciation for a song I’ve sung since I was a child.
The best part of my Watts discovery was being able to use one of my favorite Christmas carols in a historical novel set during the American Revolutionary War. I think I’ll call that an early Christmas present!
Merry Christmas and blessings to all,
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