So it’s Christmas. You can see imagery of shepherds everywhere.
I bought a nativity scene the other day because I wanted to have one in our house.** I’ve been thinking about shepherds ever since I set it up. I am always really happy when I hear the verse about Jesus being the good shepherd and leaving the 99 to find me, the one. I feel really loved whenever I hear that.
What is it about shepherds and God? Abraham, David, the angels showing up to them while they were watching their flocks in the night, Jesus, we are his sheep… interestingly I found something curious about sheep when I looked up shepherds on wikipedia. It says: “…To maintain a large flock, however, the sheep must be able to move from pasture to pasture…” Hmmm… isn’t that interesting? So, could we say that in order to keep healthy and maintain steady growth we must be able to move from place to place, following the shepherd as we go? In contrast to staying in one mode, one place of worship, one mindset? I’m just throwing that out there and taking a wikipedia excerpt about sheep a bit literally when looking at it from a “church” standpoint.
But back to shepherds… I can identify with a Savior who was humble outcast (apparently shepherds were low, if not the lowest, on the 1st century class ladder) who left all others to find me when I was lost and clueless better than I can identify with a King.
And why the angels showing up to the shepherds? The more I think about it the more incredibly cool it gets. I know there is more to it than this, but knowing that God decided to show up to a bunch of shepherds makes me feel like He could even decide to send some angels or show up Himself to me (and He has – how awesome is that?) I hope he does it again SOON.
So hopefully without sounding trite or corny,when we’re feeling low or unwanted, I hope God will remind us of shepherds; that he gave them a first glimpse of Himself on the night all of creation sang in celebration of God, and also, that if Jesus identifies Himself with them, hopefully so can we. And I hope we can be satisfied in that because it’s really quite beautiful.
**(Side Note: Soon after I put out the nativity scene at our house baby Jesus disappeared. Yes, that’s right. Jesus was kidnapped from our nativity scene. By whom? My husband. He informed us that he took and hid the tiny, infant Jesus because he wasn’t “born” until Christmas Eve. So, Jesus won’t be showing up in our manger scene until the night of December 24th. Sheesh.)