Devotional for December 16

8 In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see – I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: 11 to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.” 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, 14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favors!”

Reflection

I can’t imagine what the shepherds were feeling at that moment. Worry, nervousness, and disbelief are some possibilities that come to mind. If I were in that moment I would ask questions like, “Why me? What makes me so important? Why is the God I worship talking to me about the greatest news ever?” Not only would I be confused, I would also be scared. The almighty and powerful God, and his presence standing before me would probably be terrifying. But would I believe it? Most humans are so quick to not believe things that are standing right in front of their eyes, just like when Jesus was hanging on the cross. People were so quick to disbelieve they said they wouldn’t believe it until they saw Jesus with the thorns in his hands. This moment, as you can imagine, was stressful. God told them the good news the Israelites had been hoping to hear for so long. The Messiah had finally come to free them of their sins. I hope that as I grow older, God will help me in my disbelief.

Jane Young

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