Thursday, December 24, 2015

God Chosen Shepherds

Encouragement for your daily walk with God

I know what I am about to ask is a stretch, but let’s try it anyway. If you were God, and could use any means to announce the arrival of the world’s Savior on a specific night, what would you do? Would you choose shepherds whiling away on their nighttime watch? I didn’t think so. 

Shepherds. Rough characters at that time. They labored at the tedious job others were not willing to do. Not only that, they slept with their flocks and probably produced a flock-like scent—OK, they were smelly! 

But there is a link; a thread that connected the town of Bethlehem and shepherds who lived about two thousand years apart. David, the Shepherd-King. He cared for the people of Israel just as he cared for his father’s sheep when he was a lad in Bethlehem. He even wrote a Psalm about a heavenly Shepherd, because he knew what a good shepherd was like.

Jesus, the Son of David, came and announced Himself as the good shepherd [John 10:11]. When talking about it He said that He knows His sheep and they know Him. But most importantly, He said that a good shepherd lays down his life for his sheep. 

So consider this: on the night when Jesus' life began, an eternal plan was set in motion. That plan would lead to a day when the good Shepherd would lay down His life to save people from their sins. So maybe an angelic vision to shepherds wasn’t such a bad idea after all. Since they understood feeding, guiding, and saving, it seems to me the best way for chapter one to begin. 

I don’t do this often in my eDevotions, but today would be a good time for a prayer. Join me in a prayer of praise, a declaration of the God we serve:

1    The LORD is my shepherd;
I shall not want. 
2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters. 
3 He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake. 
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. 
5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over. 
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the LORD
Forever.  AMEN!

Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Luke 2:8

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