A Gift for All (Tim Johnson) December 22

Luke 2:15-18

When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Lets go to bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which The Lord has told us about.” They hurried t the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger. After seeing him, the shepherds told everyone what had happened and hat the angel had said to them about this child. All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished.

Like many other people, my favorite Christmas tradition, especially as a child, was to open the gifts that my parents had bought all of us. It always seemed like a great multitude of toys as far as the eye could see; all at my worthy disposal. I very often felt kingly while opening the boxes to discover various Lego sets, Nerf guns, and much more. The gifts would always excite me so much that I could not wait to open the next box. But I had to, because my parents are the type of parents that would want to “savor the moment,” forcing us to take turns to open our gifts. You have no idea how long it takes for your five siblings to open their gifts. It felt like forever.

Soon after the Christmas season was over, the toys and socks became very familiar, and I’d forget that I got these things for Christmas anyways. Gifts are great, but all they really are is things that eventually take up space after being used about twenty times.

In this passage of Luke, the angels had just finished telling the shepherds about Jesus being born close by, in Bethlehem. I can imagine that the way they felt was similar to a child on Christmas. Feelings of excitement spun around their heads as they moved towards the loud cries and commotion. But when they got to the manger, they were filled with awe. The lowest of people in a social sense being the first to lay their eyes on the greatest of men; the Son of God. If I were one of those shepherds, I’m not sure how I would have reacted. Knowing myself, I may have taken pride in this. I may have been selfish. But that’s not what the Bible says they did.

The shepherds went to everyone they knew and those who they didn’t and told them what they’d seen. Something about seeing Jesus made them feel compelled to share.

I love the quote in the movie The Nativity Story: Mary says, “He is for all men.” How true is this? The birth of Jesus Christ is a gift for all men that came to the world thousands of years ago. But that gift is still as much a gift today as it was then.

Consider and Discuss:

This Christmas, be like the shepherds, and share the love and gift that Jesus was to this world with someone else. Talk to your family about how you all can do this as a family this year, and then do it!

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