Breaking news: Day eight

Breaking news: Day eight

Please enjoy today's reflection from our September-December issue of New Daylight.

Breaking news

In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; for see – I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a child wrapped in bands of cloth and lying in a manger.’ And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favours!’
Luke 2:8 - 14 (NRSV) 

The circumstances of the birth may have been shockingly, arrestingly humble, but heaven cannot contain its excitement, overflowing in skies (and fields?) filled with angels, the glory of God and an unusual star. The most significant news of all time is announced with the greatest of all massed choirs, not to the religiously or politically important but to the most insignificant of people, whose care, faithfulness and obedience seemingly count for more than the power-seeking self-righteousness of leaders. The lamb of God is revealed first to those who care for lambs: to humble shepherds. While they may not understand it all (who does?), their minds and hearts are open and receptive, enough to respond in wonder and worship.

Again, we see the reversal of values that is to characterise the life and teaching of Jesus: the humble will be exalted, the self-important brought low; and those who are watchful, ever on the alert, may find themselves unexpectedly blessed. It is all too easy to expect God to speak to us in certain ways – through respected speakers, beautiful scenery, places of worship. But in that regard, truly he is no respecter of place or person. 

Lord of glory, it is beyond our imagining that you could be fully present in a box of hay. Help us to discern your presence, in whatever manifestation, and to hear your voice, through whatever messenger.

Find our New Daylight Bible reading notes