The Shepherd’s Story

Based on Luke 2:8-20

It’s the most incredible news!  You’ll never believe what I’ve seen tonight.  It’s just incredible, I can’t believe it?

Well, me and the other guys, we were out in the fields outside Bethlehem, watching our flocks by night – no, watching our flocks, not washing our socks – anyway, we were minding our business, watching our flocks, counting sheep, that sort of thing, when suddenly this figure all dressed in white appeared. We were just minding our own business, watching our flocks by night – we’ve been told by the shepherd’s union to say that we were definitely not sleeping, but were, in fact, resting our eyes. Anyway, this figure in white appeared out of nowhere, the whole hillside was lit up brightly and we were scared stiff!  This figure told us not to be afraid, which is a bit of a joke, cos he’d be scared if he were in our shoes, anyway, he said that he was an angel called Gabriel, and he’d come from heaven, sent by God especially to give us a message. The message was amazing.  He said he’d come to bring a message of good news that will cause great joy for all people.  He said a saviour had been born to us – the Messiah – the Lord.  He then said that we’d find this saviour wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger – that this is how we’d know what he’s said about him is true.

I couldn’t believe it! I either thought I’d gone mad, or that someone had put something in my cocoa, or that he’d got lost and ended up in the shepherd’s fields by mistake.  I was most definitely gobsmacked! I mean, why was an angel visiting us at all, let alone visiting us to give us this message?  I mean, we’re just shepherds. We look after sheep in the fields.  We smell like sheep.  We’re not very important.  I can’t even get my mother-in-law to visit me, let alone an angel.  Surely there had been a mistake?  But no, the angel assured us there was no mistake. He meant to come all this way to see us, to come and give us the good news.  Apparently this new baby is a very special baby.  A king – the king of kings, born to save the save the world.  He’s been born for everybody, including smelly shepherds like me, ordinary people like you and me.  God wanted us to be the first to know.  

I couldn’t believe it.  It’s incredible – a king has been born for us.  Us nobodies. But I guess that’s the point.  I think that’s what the angel was trying to tell us.  Nobody’s a nobody in God’s eyes. Everybody’s special to God.  That’s why this baby’s been born. 

We were just taking it in when suddenly this whole choir appeared and began singing the most beautiful song I’ve ever heard, singing about Glory to God and peace on earth.  It was wonderful, and I didn’t want it to end.  Then when they finished their song, Gabriel said we could go and visit the baby.  I couldn’t believe that either – I mean, we weren’t dressed in a way fit for a king.  Amazingly, we could come as we were.  We didn’t have any presents for him or the new parents.  But Gabriel didn’t think that mattered either.

And so, we smelly shepherds visited the newborn king tonight.  I even held him in my arms. God was in that manger.  God was in my arms.  It’s just so amazing.  It really is good news for me.  It’s good news for you too. We’re all special to God.  We matter to him.  That baby has been born for you and for me.  It’s just amazing!  Anyway, I’ve got to go – got some other people to tell!

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