By Brooke Holt
“And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, ‘Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.’” Luke 2:8-12
It was just another night in the fields for the shepherds. Darkness surrounded them as stars filled the sky. They went about their normal tasks of watching the flocks. All was perfectly normal until an angel appeared before them and the glory of the Lord shone around them. What in the world was happening? These men were chosen to hear the best news ever – Christ the Lord was born that day! Just as the angel’s presence and God’s glory brought light into their dark fields so God’s light was breaking into the darkness of this world.
Of all people in the world, why did the Lord choose to reveal this good news to shepherds? They weren’t highly respected among the townspeople; they didn’t have any significant religious influence. They were simple men out in the fields among animals.
God’s choice of to whom to reveal his glory and good news reminds me of another story in the Bible. When the Lord called the prophet Samuel to anoint his chosen king to replace Saul, Samuel thought he recognized the man. God’s plan and Samuel’s plan were vastly different: “For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7). David, the shepherd boy was chosen to be the King of Israel. And now, these shepherds were God’s chosen men to receive the good news of Jesus. While they seemed unimportant in the world’s eyes, God saw them as worthy.
God chooses the most unlikely of people to participate in his kingdom building. Today, he reminds you that he sees you, knows you, and has entrusted you with the good news of his Son, Jesus Christ. You have been chosen to be his adopted son or daughter. How do you respond to this divine calling and responsibility?
The shepherds “went with haste” to find Jesus, and it was just as the angel announced to them that night. Will you go in haste to find the Christ child, to worship him, and to then glorify him with your life? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Our honest prayer before God is evidence that we understand the ways He loves, cherishes, sees, and hears us. Through prayer, we can acknowledge with Hagar, “You are the living One who sees me” (Genesis 16:14). When we pray, we are affirming the same. Why do we often hide from this privilege? Why do we avoid God, the One who sees us as we are and stands ready to provide and answer us in his holy, timely way? In this 8-week study on the prayers of Job, Ruth, Hannah, and David, grow your prayer life by facing your honest need and bringing your whole self before God. Acknowledging God as the One who guides your path can change your heart. It can take you past fear and into faith, strength, and hope. Learn more about Honest Prayer.
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