Luke 2:15-17 “And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.”
The night is quiet! It is peaceful and calm on the open fields just outside the city of Bethlehem! It has been a long and tiring day of work with the bleating sheep. The shepherds are settling in for a much needed rest beneath the bright stars of the sky. What a beautiful evening! Then, all of a sudden the sky lights up with a bright light and a messenger appears. He begins to speak of the weather, the local sports teams, the events of the following day, the finest restaurants, and the new apparel down at the Bethlehem Outlet store. He proclaims to these shepherds the newest and latest styles of sandals that they can purchase and of the most modern sheepskin cloaks. As quickly as they came, the angels then leave with a group of curious shepherds left behind. Thus begins the Christmas story!
Well, maybe my facts are a bit out of sorts, but this version is a reminder of the present-day messengers of Christmas. Many people have grown tired of the daily routine of life, and now this special time of year comes around and the Christian has a tremendous opportunity to bring a wonderful message. As he comes to “brighten someone’s day” with a plate of cookies or a chorus of carols, he must remember to bring a straightforward message of what the Christmas story is all about—“For unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Savior which is Christ the Lord.” The Christian must keep in the forefront of his mind Whom people truly need—Christ! We get so busy working on programs, plays, etc, but fail to show the proper message of this very special season. When Gabriel and the host appeared, they had a purpose. They had a clear message causing the shepherds to move quickly and go see what they were talking about. See the shepherds excitement as they go and find the Christ child sleeping quietly in the stable with Mary and Joseph. The message of the heavenly beings impacted these work-weary men. Yet, what did it cause them to do? They were able to see this child for themselves and it caused them to spread the message as well. This Christmas, determine to do your best not just to send a greeting card, but one with a message by way of a Christmas tract with a Gospel plan of salvation. Let your message be not just a carol of comfort but a call to see Christ. As you take that plate of cookies or that special dessert down the street to that neighbor, be sure to have available and ready a message to awaken him from his weariness.
Eric J. Ramos