Merry Christmas from Jor-El Godsey, Heartbeat President

Did you ever stop and think of Andy, Brenda, Jose, Bobby, and Gene around the Christmas season?

Me neither.

But they have helped me celebrate the “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” for many decades now. (I’m old.)

Who are they? If I add Bing and Burl you might’ve guessed sooner. Each of these are artists who have gone before us using their singing talents to release Christmas tunes that went on to become holiday classics and treasured songs for generations now. While these artists have faded in familiarity to the new generations, they are consistent contributors to the loop of the soundtrack of the Christmas season.

That’s what happens. The generation before sows into the next generation and the ones to come.

As Heartbeat International is finishing our 49th year and eagerly anticipating celebrating our 50th – our year of Jubilee, if you will – I’m reminded of those that have gone before us. Those whose “songs” we sing still today even without knowing the one who sang it first. Or if they didn’t sing it first, they found a way to sing so many would know… and remember.

At Heartbeat those names would include John, Lore, Esther, and Paula. Peggy, our current Board Chairperson and the 1st President of Heartbeat, sang with our founders for a time. Sister Paula still sings the pregnancy help song of compassion and courage today. Each “sang” of their vision for a network of pregnancy help that loved moms into life-saving decisions. One of Peggy’s best-known and widely used, among the pregnancy help community, “songs” is the LOVE Approach.

Perhaps you can think of names from your own organization’s earlier years that helped write the original melody that everyone on your team sings today. Others have joined in over the years to make the song richer and fuller. Like the Christmas tunes on our playlist today include Mariah and Michael who introduce new arrangements and even new songs that celebrate the very same season. With our own new faces and new songs we become a symphony of servants performing a concert of the Christ-child!

Even as our song selection grows, new voices rise to sing with us today. All singing with the same purpose that the manger reminds us of every year. That the precious Gift of Life is given to all of us for a greater purpose than that one moment realizes.

Take heart in joining the chorus this Christmas and throughout the year.

May God bless you and send you a happy new year.

In case you were wondering, the songs I was referencing are below.

Andy Williams, “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year”

Brenda Lee, “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree”

Jose Feliciano, “Feliz Navidad”

Bobby Helms, “Jingle Bell Rock”

Gene Autry, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer”

Bing Crosby, “White Christmas”

Burl Ives, “Holly Jolly Christmas”

Mariah Carey, “All I Want for Christmas”

Michael Bublé, “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas”