No Christmas pageant would ever be complete without shepherds. After all, the shepherds received the first birth announcement that Jesus had been born. But have you ever stopped and wondered why God chose the shepherds to receive the news first?
I read that Billy Graham believed God chose to announce Jesus birth to shepherds in order to show Gods great love for everyone. You see, in biblical times shepherds were humble people with a humble job. They watched over the sheep but they were also looked down upon by society. Think about it, they slept outside watching over their flocks. They had to defend their sheep from other animals, they were probably not very clean as they were outside with animals as their every day existence. But God chose to reveal His son to the people who were looked down on by people. They were humble ordinary people performing an every day ordinary job.
I like that God chose the ordinary over the notables first. He really always did, even before the birth announcement, remember David. He was a shepherd out watching over sheep when Samuel came looking for a king and Jesse paraded all of his sons in front of Samuel. All except for the youngest, the least, who was out watching over the sheep. God said no to the best and the brightest of Samuels bunch and said go get the shepherd boy, that’s the one, he has a heart for Me!
I wonder if those shepherds, the particular ones that got that birth announcement had a heart for God already. I wonder if that was why they were chosen! I wonder if their hearts were already in tune a bit to things of God, if that is why they got to be the ones. I bet they were, because God has always looked at the heart!
And I believe He still does. We still tend to look for the best and the brightest of the bunch but God says I’m not looking for the best and the brightest, I am looking for the heart that will follow me, the every day ordinary heart that is going about the everyday ordinary job.
I agree with Billy Graham, God sent His son, His love for all of us ordinary people. I think He chose ordinary people to show ordinary people for all time that we would still be chosen by Him! God revealed Himself, His son to ordinary people going about their ordinary job.
“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.” Luke 2:8-9
I believe He still does that every day. We may not get an angel and the glory of the Lord shining all around us. But I believe that God wants us to see His glory in our every day, ordinary mundane days even now. We just have to open our eyes to it.
Lord I pray you find my heart to be that of the shepherds, ready to follow You! And I pray you will reveal your glory to me today!