Journey to Christmas ( Day 12)
Today we’re reflecting on the second chapter of Luke’s Gospel, where we meet a group of shepherds, the first people to participate in the drama of Jesus’ birth.
Imagine the scene. The shepherds were doing what shepherds do – watching their sheep – when the angels appeared. An ordinary day suddenly became extraordinary... not to mention terrifying!
We see this pattern throughout the Bible. God interrupts people while they are going about ordinary tasks. Matthew was in his tax-collecting booth when Jesus passed by and told him to leave everything behind and follow Him. The boy Samuel was asleep when God spoke, audibly, in his room. And Moses was also watching his sheep when a strange burning bush caught his attention.
As I think about how the shepherds responded to the angel’s announcement, I ask myself, how interruptible am I? Amidst the busyness of Christmas, how can I be more open to the unexpected?
God, I ask You to speak to me when and where I least expect it.
Pause and pray
I ask You, God, to speak to my friends, family, and those I know who need to hear ‘good news of great joy.’ As I think of three people in particular right now, I ask You to interrupt them with the good news of Jesus this Christmastime.
Pause and pray
The shepherds were terrified as the angel announced the birth of Jesus, but their fear quickly turned to ‘great joy’ when they went to see Him for themselves. A little later in this chapter, Luke writes that ‘the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had seen and heard.’ The good news became great joy for them and for ‘all the people’ who heard them.
God, I confess that I am fearful and anxious about many things – some big things and some so small that I am embarrassed to admit them. But they rob me of ‘great joy.’ I yield all of my fears and anxieties to You, God. I choose to trust You… and I make room for ‘great joy’ this Christmas!