Adapted from the homily delivered this past Christmas...
When Christ was born, a drumbeat entered into existence. Beforehand, there was silence; no beat to give people a cadence and to excite them. For that is the twofold purpose of a drum sound. An army marching will often do so to the rhythm of a drummer. This keeps the soldiers in line. If the pace of the beat rises, the army charges. The drumbeat not only quickens the feet, it also quickens the heart. There is something primordial about a drum that produces adrenaline and energizes us. See a football team coming out of the locker room to the drummer of the marching band. Listen to a rock song with a great drum solo or sequence, like Happy Jack by The Who. Or, if you want to stick to Christmas music, The Little Drummer Boy. Originally known as 'The Carol of the Drums' this song is all about the poor shepherd boy pleasing the Holy Family with his drumming, since he has nothing else to offer. Bob Seger has a great version of this Christmas carol. If rock is not to your taste, you could listen to 'The Hallelujah Chorus' in Handel's Messiah, which utilizes the timpani masterfully. This is not a sad or dull piece.
Christ has provided the drumbeat for us. If we are to receive genuine excitement and joy and not fall astray in life, we ought to listen and march to this beat. Henri Nouwen writes, "Discernment is a life of listening to a deeper sound and marching to a different beat, a life in which we become 'all ears'." Prayer is one way we listen to the drums. The Mass is another. Christ's heart beats loudly in the Eucharist.
For 2,000 years God has been drumming. It is not only for us to this Christmas to be attuned and 'rock out', but also our Church, founded on a rock.