John Lamberton Bell, a Church of Scotland minister and an activist, wrote this hymn. He is a member of the Iona Community, and has been the subject of some controversy.

This song is about Mary, whose story is often told during Advent, either in the Magnificat or in a ballad form like this one.

No Wind at the Window

No wind at the window, no knock on the door
No light from the lamp stand, no foot on the floor
No dream born of tiredness, no ghost raised by fear
Just an angel and a woman and a voice in her ear

Oh, Mary, Oh, Mary don’t hide from my face
Be glad that you’re favored and filled with God’s grace
The time for redeeming the world has begun
And you are requested to mother God’s son

This child must be born that the Kingdom might come
Salvation for many, destruction for some
Both end and beginning, both message and sign
Both victor and victim, both yours and divine

No payment was promised, no promises made
No wedding was dated, no blue print displayed
Yet Mary, consenting to what none could guess
Replied with conviction, “tell God I say yes.”

The tune is “Columcille,” a traditional Irish tune named for St. Columcille of Iona, which seems appropriate.

I went to and enjoyed an office party this evening. #1 daughter and I went together. It was in a steak house decked out in pheasant feathers and coppery ornaments — a color scheme I’m finding particularly appealing this year. We had the chance to talk with some nice people, and I enjoyed it. My dinner was beef tenderloin and Roasted Garlic and Gournay Whipped Potatoes, and #1 daughter had salmon with Creamy Risotto with Crab and Asparagus Tips. I had the Petite Sirah and she had a Riesling. I won a Starbucks gift basket with my ridiculous trivia skilz, and got to reconnect with some people I really like.