Luke 2:8 “And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.”
During the Christmas season, any gloomy, dark room is transformed by adding Christmas lights. The light dispels the darkness and provides a welcoming atmosphere. The beauty of the lights compels you to spend time in the room and invite others to relish the splendor. When light pierces the darkness our perspective changes as we see things differently.
The arrival of Christ in Bethlehem was an illuminating experience to a band of rugged, lowly shepherds. As the morning sun lit up the Judaean hills, the shepherds believed it was just another routine day of the week. Each day the shepherds faithfully held their post by watching their flock, leading the herd to food and water, and guarding them against predators. The shepherds were not considered as influencers of society. These dirty-robed herders were viewed as an obscure group with no education or social standing.
Although great men of the Bible were shepherds (e.g., Abraham, Moses, and David) the shepherd’s social status was low. According to Dr. Warren Wiersbe, the shepherds were not held in high regard. Wiersbe stated: “By the nature of their work, shepherds were considered ‘unclean,’ which meant they could not go to worship at the temple. Shepherds were not permitted to testify as witnesses in court either. So those whose lives were devoted to keeping the law looked down on them.” Nobody would have predicted that a group of small-town, rustic shepherds living in the quiet hills of Judaea would become the recipients of the most important news ever known to man.
What a tremendous shock it must have been when their mundane activity gave way to the marvelous announcement of the angel. The angelic choir illuminated the shadowy night sky. A great heavenly host emanated with celestial glory proclaiming: "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men" (Luke 2:14). The angelic announcement not only pierced the darkness but also permeated their soul with good news.
The shepherds' story is an illustration of God's desire to brighten and bless the world of humanity. He wants this ordinary day to become an extraordinary day for you. Regardless of your current situation, setbacks, or disappointments, God desires to pour His favor on you by piercing your dark times with the Light of His revealing glory.
God's promises are not only reserved for the prestigious and powerful, but also for people just like the shepherds. God wants you to know the depth of His love, the vastness of His mercy, and the riches of His magnificent grace. Did you know that He has expressed this in the form of a gift? A gift wrapped in swaddling clothes and resting in a manger. Isaiah, the prophet, described this gift as—Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, and the Prince of peace. This gift was divinity wrapped up in humanity and given to all men as the Savior of the world—Jesus.
Jesus Christ, the Light of the world, invaded our planet, piercing the darkness of our helplessness and hopelessness and proclaiming the light of God's redemptive love. Christ desires to fill your ears with glad tidings, to brighten your darkened heart, and to fill your soul with rejoicing in every season of your life.
The Light is reaching out to you today. How should you respond? You should receive His gift of salvation by faith, believe in His message of grace, repent of your sins asking for forgiveness, and worship Him as Lord and Saviour and soon coming King!
Missional Until He Comes,
Dr. David L. Sampson
 David W. Wiersbe and Warren W. Wiersbe, C Is for Christmas: The History, Personalities, and Meaning of Christ’s Birth: An A to Z Guide (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2012), 170.