Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Christmas Lessons the Shepherds and Wise Men Teach

The Shepherds
While shepherds watch'd their flocks by night,
All seated on the ground,
The angel of the Lord came down,
And glory shone around.
"Fear not," said he, for mighty dread
Had seized their troubled mind;
"Glad tidings of great joy I bring
To you and all mankind."

"To you, in David's town this day,
Is born of David's line
The Savior who is Christ the Lord,
And this shall be the sign:
The heav'nly Babe you there shall find
To human view displayed,
All meanly wrapped in swathing bands,
And in a manger laid."

15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
 16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.
 17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.

Lesson #1 from the Shepherds:  They left with haste.
Lesson #2: They spread the good news of Christ abroad.

The Wise Men
With wond'ring awe the wisemen saw
The star in heaven springing,
And with delight, in peaceful night,
They heard the angels singing:
Hosanna, hosanna, hosanna to his name!

7 Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, inquired of them diligently what time the star appeared.

 8 And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.

By light of star they traveled far
To seek the lowly manger,
A humble bed wherein was laid
The wondrous little Stranger.

 11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.
 12 And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.
Lesson from the Wise Men: Sometimes we must choose another way.

I love these lessons we are taught from the shepherds and the wise men.

I like to think that if I saw the sign of the star in the sky, I would join the shepherds and the wise men and leave with haste to meet the Savior. Although, it can be so easy to get caught up in the daily tasks which seem so important to get done in that moment.  Maybe I would have meant to go, but said, just one second, I’m coming…

Would I have recognized the sign for what it was? Do I search the scriptures well enough that I would know what the sign meant?  Do I make the time for him now, to develop a relationship with Him, so I would know my Lord when I saw him?

The lesson for me here is to put down what I’m doing and make the time to get to know my Lord and Savior. Read the scriptures, ponder on his life, and invite His spirit to accompany me in my journey, so that I may find Him.

The second lesson for me is one I learn from the wise men. Instead of taking the easy, most traveled route, they went another way. Maybe they went out of their comfort zone. King Herod asked them to return and report to Him. It may have been scary to disobey. But the Lord asks us to follow Him, which may sometimes be contrary to the popular or easy way, and we need to follow.

The lesson for me here is to take a different way; follow the Lord’s way.

I am grateful for the simple, yet profound examples of the shepherds and the wise men, which if followed, can lead us closer to our loving Lord and Savior.

Published by: McKell


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