NOT A NORMAL CHRISTMAS STORY
That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.”
Luke 2:8-12 NLT
There are surprises in the Christmas story. A girl engaged to be married is surprised by an angelic visit and told she will have a child fathered by the Holy Spirit. Joseph is surprised by an angel telling him that Mary wasn’t crazy and the child was the Son of God. Joseph and Mary are both surprised that they must travel to Bethlehem to register for taxation. Then the time comes for the birth, and they are surprised they can’t find any room anywhere and must settle for a stable filled with animals. Then comes the surprising announcement of God’s Son being born on earth. The announcement is not made in Herod’s palace. Nor is the announcement made at the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. The angelic announcement is made to lowly shepherds keeping watch over their sheep in a field. Shepherds were considered unclean because of their work and lack of participation in the Jewish religious functions. They were required to spend most of their time moving from place to place with their sheep in search of food. They were nomads. Yet, according to various Biblical scholars the shepherds were considered honest men. Perhaps it was this quality that led the angels to announce the birth of the Messiah to lowly shepherds. It was these shepherds who were the first evangelists in the Bible. They went and told others what they had experienced. God looks for those who are willing to tell others. Those who can tell others what they have personally experienced in the birth of Jesus in their own lives.
Holy Spirit help me to be a witness to others of what You have done in my life. Help me to be tell others of the life of God available to all.
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