"And there were shepherds out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks by night."
Okay. I don't know about you, but every time I read those words I can hear Linus reciting them in one of my favorite cartoons, "Charlie Brown's Christmas." Ha! I love his voice as he stands there on stage, the spotlight shining on him, and tells the Christmas Story to the Peanuts gang, reminding them Christmas is not about the glitter and lights but about the birth of the Savior of the World!
Luke 2:8-20 is a fascinating passage. Here we find a group of shepherds out on the hills, watching their sheep. We don't know their names or ages or anything about them other than their profession, which just so happens to be one of the lowest on the career ladder. Being a shepherd was not glamorous and I seriously doubt it paid well. Sheep need someone to make sure they don't wander off and get lost, to keep them safe from predators, and to lead them around to the best grazing fields.
"What do you do for a living?"
"I babysit sheep."
That about sums it up.
But I bet the shepherds in Luke 2 were pretty darn happy they were out on the hill that night!
"An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them...Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God."
I can't even begin to imagine what this looked liked! I can't even begin to imagine what this sounded like! If I could go back in time, I would choose that moment on that hill. Seriously! Noah's flood is a close second--as long as I'm on the ark!--but I absolutely would have loved to see and hear the heavenly hosts announcing the birth of Jesus Christ, Lord and Savior of all!
That God chose these lowly shepherds to see this and be part of the great announcement of His Son's birth is truly amazing! It kinda gives me some assurance that as lowly as I am, God is willing to share His Son with me. He wants me to know Him and be with Him for all eternity. I don't have to be rich or smart or pretty. I can be a stinky shepherd hanging out with sheep and God would still want me.
He wants you too.
The shepherds didn't wait around on that hill after the angels left. Verse 16 says they "hurried" off to find the Baby. Oh, that we all would be like those shepherds and hurry to find the Lord!
I'll have to wait until I get to heaven to see the angels and hear them singing praises to God. I'll bet'cha those same shepherds will be right there with me.
I wonder if any of them sound like Linus.