“When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.’” So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.” (Luke 2:15–20, NIV84)
The angels were gone. The shepherds were once again alone on the hillside. Everything was back to normal. Not! Something happened that was going to change the lives of these shepherds forever. You might think I mean the encounter with the heavenly hosts, but that’s not it. It is true that they would remember that moment until the day they died. But it was the next experience that changed their lives for all eternity. They rushed to Bethlehem to check out the story told to them by the angel. And what did they find? They found everything just as the angel had told them. There was Jesus lying in a manger with Joseph and Mary. These men had been told that their Savior and Lord was born today, and it was true. They told Mary and Joseph everything they heard and saw on the hillside. It must have been overwhelming for the two new parents. It is said that “Mary pondered these things in her heart.” And what about the shepherds, what did they do next? They never stopped glorifying and praising God for all that He had done, and they shared their story with everyone and anyone who would listen.
How about you and me? We, like the shepherds, have experienced God fulfilling great promises. We have come to know the Jesus who lived, died, and rose again. We have come to believe in Him just as the shepherds did. So what is our response? Are we so overwhelmed by what God has done for us that we can’t help but glorify and praise Him? Do we get exhausted sharing our story with everyone and anyone who is willing to listen? If you’re like me, then probably not. But it’s not too late. We need to wake up and share in the excitement of the shepherds. We need to witness to the love, grace, and faithfulness God has shown us throughout our lives.
Let’s spread the good news!