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.” So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger.Luke 2: 15-16
When I read this passage, I think about what the shepherds must have been feeling. They have just been visited by the angels and told the incredible news of the birth of Jesus.
They were just sitting on the hills tending their sheep, in an ordinary setting, when they were told extraordinary news. ‘Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that happened, which the Lord has told us about.’ This verse shows their awe and curiosity. A desire to know more; maybe a desire to play their part. And they didn’t just sit and wait – ‘they hurried off’. There was a sense of urgency; the sense that they had to leave their home and their sheep, and go in search of Jesus.
I have the privilege to work for Tearfund. Over this past year that has been difficult and challenging for us all and many around the world, I’ve been amazed at where God has shown up, where He has revealed his love and hope.
We’ve been supporting churches around the world from Brazil, Ethiopia, Guatemala, India, Myanmar, and Zambia. Churches are there within communities, responding to crisis – not just Covid-19 but also hurricanes in Latin America, and on-going conflicts. They are loving and nurturing individuals and communities, reaching out and sharing love and hope through word and deed.
It has been incredible to see the church and its people responding, just as the shepherds did. They’ve ‘hurried’ to the places where and hope have been needed. And they continue to hurry where the need is greatest.
Jesus is in the ordinary every day moments. In the dirt and grit of life. The image of baby Jesus lying in a manger is so powerful for me – peace, love and hope found in the ordinary.
The ‘daily share’ is a hint each day for how you could share some hope in your life, today.
In this season where are you ‘hurrying’ to bring hope, peace and love to others? It may just be in the ordinary events of the day. Maybe it is a smile to a neighbour, doing the shopping for someone, making a phone call to say hello to someone on their own, saying thank you to key worker or a shop assistant. Whatever it is, let’s remember that Jesus is in the ordinary, and we can play our part in sharing the extraordinary message of hope and love this Christmas time.
Catriona has worshipped at TRINITY since 2012. She lives in Eastbourne. She enjoys long walks in the hills and countryside, playing jazz music and baking bread.