Luke 2:8-12 (NIV)
8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
One night a family with multiple children was noisily chattering away at the dinner table when the youngest, a four-year-old, stood up on his chair and shouted, "Pass the butter!" His parents sat in stunned silence for a moment and then sent the young, ill-mannered child to his room.
The father of the family later told his noisy bunch that he had sound recorded the evening meal. On playback a quiet voice was heard asking, "Please pass the butter." A few moments later the voice called out a little louder, "Could someone PLEASE pass the butter." A few moments later there was the thundering shout everyone remembered from the meal, "Pass the butter!"
Often it isn't that God didn't tell us something, it is that we weren't listening. Maybe there was too much noise and activity to recognize the still small voice of God speaking to our hearts.
The story of the angelic visit to the Bethlehem Shepherds bids us consider why they were chosen to hear the announcement of the Savior's birth. Could it be at least in part that they would listen? The shepherds led a quiet life; being around sheep required peaceful conduct. The shepherd's lives were not cluttered with "a thousand things to do." They were hushed enough to hear the angels and hushed enough to visit a newborn baby. Are you?
Can you hear the Lord's voice over the noise of this Christmas? Take some time to hush your heart, turn off the TV and radio, go to a quiet place and listen for the Lord's voice.
Dear Lord, we pray today that we would have a quite spirit so that we can hear You when You speak to us. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.