6 Days Until Christmas!
Song: “Hark, the Herald Angels Sing,” by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir
Christmas Album: “Living Room Sessions: Christmas,” by Chris Rice
Christmas DVD: “Home Alone”
Netflix Movie: “Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas”
Amazon Prime Movie: “The Year Without a Santa Claus”
Feeln Movie: “November Christmas”
• Miami Beach Bowl, Central Michigan vs. Tulsa, from Miami, 2:30 p.m., ESPN
• “The Christmas Parade,” 6 p.m., Hallmark
• “The Christmas Hope,” 6 p.m., Lifetime
• “Surviving Christmas,” 6 p.m., TNT
• “Elf,” 6:50 p.m., FreeForm
• “Jack Frost,” 7 p.m., DisneyXD
• “The Great Christmas Light Fight,” 8 p.m., ABC
• “America’s Got Talent Holiday Spectacular,” 8 p.m., NBC
• “Deck the Halls,” 8 p.m., AMC
• “Arthur Christmas,” 8 p.m., Disney
• “The 12 Gifts of Christmas,” 8 p.m., Hallmark
• “Heaven Sent,” 8 p.m., Lifetime
• “A Christmas Carol (1999),” 8 p.m. and 10 p.m., TNT
• NFL Football: Carolina at Washington, 8:15 p.m., ESPN
• “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” 8:55 p.m., FreeForm
• “Duck the Halls: A Mickey Mouse Christmas Special,” 9:40 p.m., Disney
• “A Perfect Christmas,” 10 p.m., Hallmark
• “Home by Christmas,” 10:02 p.m., Lifetime
Recipe: Mashed potatoes
Quick Thought for Christmas
And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.”
I’ve actually been to Bethlehem and seen the fields where the shepherds must have been watching their sheep that first Christmas Eve. Bethlehem isn’t a big place, and there aren’t many fields nearby. And you can still see, hear and smell sheep in some of the same places.
Shepherds were simple people. Their job wasn’t very complicated. Keep you eyes on the sheep. Don’t let any of them get away. If a sheep wanders off, get it back. And fight off any wolves or other predators that come looking for a lamb dinner.
Being a shepherd didn’t require a lot of education. In fact, shepherds were probably at the bottom rung of society. They were viewed as simple, stupid, smelly, bad-mannered boys and men who you would be best to keep at arm’s length or beyond.
So it makes perfect sense that on our Savior’s first day on this planet that His angels would come to exactly those men – not the highest, loftiest, most accomplished men in the land, but the lowliest, simplest, poorest men.
And it didn’t matter what education level they had. Anyone seeing God’s host of angels in the sky was going to be freaked out. So the angel, of course, opened with the best statement of comfort possible – “Fear not.” Whatever the angels said or did, it was enough to convince these shepherds to do the one thing they weren’t supposed to do – leave the fields. They responded with the greatest of faith in going into town to see the promised Savior.
Most of us will never be confronted by a host of angels, and most of us will never be required to take such an amazing leap of faith as those shepherds did. But that makes whatever we are asked to do seem that much easier. God isn’t asking most people to leave their homes, fortunes or families in order to follow Him every day. But He is asking us to trust Him. By comparison, that seems pretty simple.
There are only six more days until Christmas, and you’re probably neck-deep in details to get ready for the big day. But in the midst of it all, God is still calling out to you to keep your eye on His Son, and to follow His will and His ways. Pray today that He will reveal His plans for this day to you. And, with or without a chorus of angels to lead the way, follow His lead and pray for the strength to do whatever and go wherever He takes you.
Reflection copyright © 2015 by Doug DeBolt.
Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.