Today is December 27. For some reason this morning I thought of the shepherds during that first Christmas.
Discussion on Facebook already has begun: when folks should/do take down the tree. Life needs to get back to "normal," the reminders of the holiday packed away for another year . . . by this time that first Christmas the shepherds had undoubtedly returned to their flocks. I'm just not ready to put Christmas away yet.
I bet there was still much conversation about those angels, and that baby, the star, and the wonder/hope of what it all foretold. I bet those shepherds lingered that night . . . knowing their sheep were unattended . . . or perhaps knowing it was time for the "next shift" to come to town as they took turns watching each other's flocks.
I'm pretty sure they never looked up in the night sky and thought of it in the same way as they had the night before those angels appeared! I bet they secretly hoped to see more angels . . . receive even more good news . . . maybe a prediction of the future . . . life would certainly never be the same!
Our Christmas tree will stay up a while . . . at least through next weekend. This year the predominant ornaments are angels. I started buying my son the "Mary's angels" series by Hallmark on his first Christmas and by now they fill the tree--reminding me of that night sky.
"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 that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, 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 heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests” (Luke 2:8-14 NIV).
Blessings on your journey,