15 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.” 16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.
Three interesting reactions.
Angels have just told some shepherds that the Messiah has been born in Bethlehem.
They were out in the fields to see them because it’s their job to never ever leave the sheep. But that’s exactly what they did. The angels didn’t tell them to go, but they are so excited at what God is doing they just have to. When God is doing things, “in the middle of it” is exactly the right place to be.
They don’t just go and find Jesus, they tell everyone and go away praising God.
I can see why the angels chose them.
The reaction of the people they tell is more curious. They are amazed, but that’s all. It seems they leave Jesus where he is in the stable. Perhaps that’s why the angels didn’t choose them.
Mary’s reaction is interesting too. She doesn’t yet understand the significance of what the shepherds have told her. But she treasures it in her heart and thinks on it often.
Father, please show me the things you are doing.
Give me the heart of these shepherds that delights in the things you are doing, longs to be part of them, and remembers to tell others and to praise you in response.
Give me Mary’s heart to never let go of anything you say, especially if it’s hard to understand. And open my mind to understand everything about you.
Written by David Cornell