Bells that peal with Christmas joy

Many years ago I knew a Unitarian minister whose favorite Christmas carol was Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day.” This carol had never stood out to me, so out of curiosity I looked more closely at it and found that it had seven verses, was written around the time of the American Civil War, and dealt with finding peace during the most difficult times. It quickly became one of my favorite carols, as well.

Some years after this, I was visiting some family at Christmas and felt a great need for peace, rather than dysfunction. I had been playing this carol on the piano earlier that day, and, late that night, after all was quiet, the following two verses from the carol came to thought:

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On the wings of Love
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High above the mist
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Work worries crumble
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"Where did the dark go?"
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You are essential
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Performing with our divine director
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God's love in times of distress
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The 'chrysalis' concept
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Nothing is hidden...not even a passport!
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Bells that peal with Christmas joy
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A dependable logic
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A conversation starter
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Daily goal of gratitude
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180 grateful steps
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'Once upon a time'
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Art projects and prayer
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Following Naaman's example
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A story of dogs and rattlesnakes
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Afraid of heights? Who says?
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Expect good!

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