"...I bring you good news..." Luke 2:10
We are inundated every day with bad news from politics, banking, society, government, etc. People of the world have become hardened to the arrival of bad news after exposure to despotism, random killings, plagues, natural disasters, brutality, corruption and the host of other horrors occurring throughout the world today. Most people long for just a little good news from somewhere... and it was no different in Jesus' day. That part of the world was dominated by Roman rule, scandalous military regimes, prejudice and sickness.
And then good news arrived through a serendipitous angelic visit to a small group of shepherds working near the village of Bethlehem. Shepherds were some of the lowest 'class' of people in their time. They may have preferred to stay out in the field after herding the sheep into a field corral... it may have been better to spend the night in the field than to endure the hustle and bustle of the government census taking place throughout the land. All who hailed from the sleepy little town, just six miles south of Jerusalem, would have returned as required by the rules of the census, crowding the streets and inns of the little town.
So... there they were that night... out in the fields keeping watch over the sheep... the angelic visit was no ordinary angelic visit either (if one could describe any angelic visit as ordinary), for it included an entire army of angels - countless messengers proclaiming the good news of Jesus' birth. They even ended with a resounding chorus of praise to God:
Glory to God in the highest and on earth, peace among men with whom He is pleased! Luke 2:14
What a peculiar way to pronounce such unprecedented news: announcing heaven's headline news to a bunch of sheep herders. People didn't care what shepherds thought. Shepherds held no political sway or social influence. So, why bring the news to these guys? Why not appear before the world's leaders, or the socially elite, or the VIP's of their day?
Perhaps God not only directed the angels to the shepherds, but also preserved the occasion in His Word (which will last forever) that we might know there is no person on earth He views as insignificant, unimportant, disposable, or inconsequential. YOU matter to God... you do! And though you may not have had a recent chorus of angels surrounding you with good news, God wants to delight you with the same message of His love expressed through the life of His Son. It is through His Son where one finds grace sufficient for each moment (read 2 Corinthians 12:9), and the hope of eternal joy (read Romans 15:13).
The benefits of God's good news should incite our hearts to worship Him. Would we be moved to worship Him with the same enthusiasm of the angelic host by proclaiming from our own mouths our best ascription of praise? If heaven is moved to worship with such passion, shouldn't we - as God's earthly creation - mirror the same? Let the songs of the season move your heart to join in the spirit of this season to not only show greater concern for our fellow man, but to also give God our heartiest expressions of praise for the priceless gift of His son, Jesus Christ.
Glory to God in the highest!