“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. And angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them . . . “I bring you good news of great joy . . .” (Luke 1:8,9,10).
We love to make a big deal out of big news. The latest trends in parenting are making a special announcement that a baby is on the way and to have a “gender reveal” party to announce whether the baby is a boy or girl. Celebrity pregnancies and births become media frenzies, and when a royal baby is born the entire country celebrates. Yet when the King of the Universe came to earth as a human baby, the big announcement was surprisingly held out of the limelight. Oh, there was an important announcer but it wasn’t the High Priest. It was one of God’s own angels. And there was a glorious choir, but the chief musicians of the temple weren’t there. It was “a great host” of heavenly angels who sang the first Christmas carol. It wasn’t told to the royal court nor the religious elite. A group of humble shepherds were the first to hear the “good news of great joy.”
That is one aspect of the Christmas story that I truly love. God-in-flesh came in the most humble fashion, in the most humble place, to the most humble parents, and the big reveal was made to the most humble folks in Judea. I love that because it means that Jesus came for people like you and me – everyday commoners with no important position or high standing or impressive title. He will receive the poorest soul, and the wealthiest; we are all welcome to worship at the manger. Men and women, boys and girls, rich and poor, saints and sinners.
Come to the stable – you won’t be turned away; there is room in that tiny space for the whole world.