Room in the Inn

Christmas Manger

Several years ago my good friend, Marvin Gardner wrote a Christmas carol that has become a favorite in our family.  John has sung it at many events in his beautiful baritone-bass voice.  Marv and I worked together as magazine editors in the late 1980s.  He is now a part of the English Department at BYU.

Last week I walked into an empty chapel filled with glorious Christmas organ music.  It was Marv.  I stood quietly at the back, hoping to go unnoticed as he practiced.  The music filled my soul.  I think my very favorite part of the Christmas season is listening to sacred carols.  I think the most beautiful music and lyrics ever recorded tell the story of Jesus’s birth.  I love thinking about that wondrous night and what it may have been like.  Marv’s carol below beautifully expresses feelings and thoughts I’ve had.

Room in the Inn
Words: Marvin K. Gardner
Music: Vanja Y. Watkins

1. Ah, Joseph, how you wearily implore
that someone will have pity on your plight,
And, with compassion, open wide the door—
For Jesus will be born this holy night.
Will no one offer shelter to the stranger?
Must Christ the King be cradled in a manger?

That night there was no room in the inn;
This night may there be room within—
Within my heart for him.

2. Ah, Mary, how you patiently endure!
While heav’n awaits the blessed baby’s birth,
You wait outside the inn—alone, obscure—
And pray for some compassion here on earth!
You would have given shelter to the stranger.
Why must your Son lie cradled in a manger?

That night there was no room in the inn;
This night may there be room within—
Within my heart for him.

3. O Father, how thy sons and daughters cry—
The lonely ones, the weary, the oppressed.
Fill thou my heart with love, that I may try
To lift another’s burden, give him rest.
Oh, may I have compassion for the stranger.
Remembering that Baby in a manger!

That night there was no room in the inn;
This night may there be room within—
Within my heart for him.

Copyright © 1988 by Marvin K. Gardner and Vanja Y. Watkins. Used by permission. This song may be copied for incidental, noncommercial church or home use.

Room in the Inn 1

Room in the Inn 2

About annlaemmlenlewis

I am member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and I am currently serving as a Missionary in the Washington Yakima Mission. Welcome to my personal blog, Ann's Words, and my Mission blog, Our Yakima Mission. If you are interested in family history stories and histories, you can find those posted in Ann's Stories. Thanks for looking in!
This entry was posted in Lewis Family, Thoughts and Insights. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Room in the Inn

  1. Mindy Carlson says:

    Hi there. I’m looking for a choral arrangement of this beautiful song. Do you happen to know where I can find one? THANKS!

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