Today’s Reading is Luke 2:8-20
And there were shepherds in the same region, spending their nights in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord stood by them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they feared greatly. And the angel said to them, Do not be afraid; for behold, I announce to you good news of great joy, which will be for all the people, Because today a Savior has been born to you in David's city, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly army, praising God and saying, Glory in the highest places to God, and on earth peace among men of His good pleasure. And when the angels departed from them into heaven, the shepherds spoke to one another, Let us go then to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us. And they came in haste and found both Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in the manger. And when they had seen this, they made known the word which was spoken to them concerning this little child. And all those who heard marveled at the things spoken to them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things which they had heard and seen, even as it was spoken to them.
You know what I love most about the shepherds? They were faithful. You can already see that faithful service is part of their personality. They were out in the dark of night caring for their flock. The most glorious news the world had ever received was being announced in the middle of the night. If the shepherds had been asleep on the job, they would have missed it.
They were faithful to receive the vision and go where the angel sent them. They faithfully reported to Joseph and Mary what they had seen and been told. When it was over they returned to their lives, their work, their faithful service in the dark of night – and they did it glorifying and praising God for all they had experienced.
I expect that by the time this devotion is released on the first day of 2021 that we will not yet have the pandemic behind us. Many of the difficulties of this world will still feature in the daily news and in our own lives. We certainly serve in the dark night of this world, but we have seen a vision. We have the vision of the Living God. Let us continue to serve Him faithfully, glorifying and praising God for all we have and will experience.
Lord God Almighty, Master, Creator, Savior of mankind, Spirit of Life, we worship You. Thank You for investing in us. We are thankful for Your life, Your light, Your love, Your peace, and Your strength. Help us to be a faithful conduit of these things to a dark world. Amen.
Paula Barney firstname.lastname@example.org
Prayer Concern: Hope