The Advent candle of Joy glows around the dinner table. We recall that the announcement of the birth of the long-awaited Messiah was made to ordinary people. Shepherds, often considered the poorer class of workers at that time, were the first to hear the melodious sound of angel voices heralding the Good News of Christ’s birth.
Perhaps their humble ears were more open to hearing the joyous news. Their tender hearts open to God’s words. Their faith trusting in the prophecies from 400 years ago.
On that dark night, while the shepherds faithfully watched those rambling shepherds, the sky was suddenly ablaze with glorious light and angelic beings. Frightened by this dramatic change about them, the shepherds were startled. And one of the angels 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.”
Then the song of joy echoed through the hills from the choir of angels:
“Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”
Wouldn’t we have loved to hear the angels sing? Would our hearts be dancing as our feet ran down the hills to Bethlehem? Would we be eager to see the baby and bow before Him with reverence and humility? Or would be terrified by this unexpected happening in the sky?
Hearing or seeing an angel could send tremors of worry through the person being visited. Would the news be good or should they be prepared for something terrible to happen? I would certainly have been terrified if I was on a hillside at night and the sky suddenly lit up. But it’s the shepherd’s faith that settles their heart.
And after the angels’ song of Joy, the shepherds head to the manger in Bethlehem described by the angels. They didn’t need a GPS to find their way. They knew the prophecies and trusted in God’s fulfillment of His word.
What are our hearts singing this Christmas? Are we rejoicing with the angels and shepherds that God’s word has come to pass? That the babe in our manger sets represents Our Savior, the Prince of Peace, the King of Kings, and the Lord of Lords?
Even in the midst of difficult or painful circumstances, may this song fill our hearts with hope and joy. He is faithful to His word. Let’s prepare our hearts for Him to be our Lord of Lords and King of Kings.
May your Christmas bring you Joy,