Giving Dignity: Advent Day 13

All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished, but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often. The shepherds went back to their flocks, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. It was just as the angel had told them. (Luke 2:18–20 NLT)

The shepherds were given the task of acting as witnesses to the birth of the Messiah. Even though they were not instructed to share this good news with others, they could not help themselves; there was no way they would remain silent about the night God granted them a small glimpse of His glorious plan.

Among those the shepherds told about the angels, there were two responses. When Mary heard the tale, she held onto everything so she could continue to think it over in the weeks and years to come. She understood better than anyone else who this child truly was, and storing up events like this in her heart was an act of worship. The other response—from those the shepherds told, likely as they searched for a baby who met the description given to them by the angels—was amazement, but with no indication that it led to any sort of action. After all, there is no indication that anyone beyond the shepherds sought out the newborn Messiah that night.

When we share the good news of Christ as the shepherds did, we, like them, have no control over how others respond. Instead, we should be living our lives “glorifying and praising God for all [we] have heard and seen” concerning God’s glorious plan of salvation for all people. Do you let the ways in which others respond to the Gospel temper your worship? If you’ve lost some of your worshipful zeal for who God is and what God has done, what can you do to get it back?