We’re All Christmas Travelers

Christmas Travelers

10AllAreTravelers_Julie Rodriguez Jones

I believe each of us can be found in the Christmas story.

  • Some are journeying to an unfamiliar destination, along an uncomfortable road, believing in God’s provision and care—trusting that He has preceded them and is waiting for their arrival. Like Joseph and Mary, your trust will be rewarded.
  • Others are in a good place, fully devoted to God, living for the praise of His glory, worshiping Him without reserve, proclaiming the Good News. Your heart for worship will encourage others—let it show with angelic splendor.
  • Many are seeking to verify truth and find the Bethlehem Savior for themselves. When you do, tell others about your discovery with shepard-like enthusiasm.
  • Some are following an elusive vision, a star if you will, trusting that God is directing them, leading them to His fullness. You will not be disappointed. With hearts like the magi, fall on your knees before the King.

Wherever we are in our story, we’re not traveling alone. The God who has set our hearts to follow Him is with us and will reveal Himself. Press forward, be faithful, enjoy the journey.

God has chosen to make known … the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. Colossians 1:27

Picture by Julie Rodriguez Jones

Learning from the Angels

shepherds angels (1)

The angels appeared to the shepherds with a long-awaited, earth-shattering, can-it-really-be-true? message: “A Savior has been born to you.” As amazing as this announcement was, a gentle progression preceded their proclamation. Read it for yourself in Luke 2: 8-15.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

The angel arrived on the hillside with an astounding announcement, but before that, he calmed the shepherds’ fears. His first words were, “Do not be afraid.” The angel had the shepherds’ attention but needed to prepare the men to hear the message. It makes me wonder how often fear stands in the way of receiving—in the physical world and in the spiritual world.

The angel still didn’t make his announcement; he stated his purpose, “I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.” There was urgency to the angel’s message, but the heavenly being didn’t rush. His shepherd audience needed further preparation—they were going to hear good news, a message of joy for them and the entire world.

Finally, the announcement was made: “A Savior has been born to you.” The angel proclaimed the history-changing, life-altering, sin-solving message of hope. The proclamation was simple and straightforward, without explanation of prophecy or theology.

The angel concluded with details, which were also a teaser. “You will find a baby…lying in a manger.” He didn’t tell the shepherds what to do, but enticed them to discover the truth for themselves. Then a host of angels appeared and burst into praise, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

With little information and the inspiration of the angels’ song resounding in their hearts, the shepherds were compelled to act.

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

Isn’t that exactly how God is with us? He calms our fears so we’ll be in a position to listen. He gentles our spirit before speaking His message. He tells us truth, plainly and simply, with information enough to inspire us to go and see for ourselves.

And the angels sing.

Photo compliments of endoftheage.blogspot.com