Lord, this is your day – the day of worship, joy and celebration of your resurrection. Through the worship of your people throughout the globe build up your disciples in faith, increase their love for you and each other and strengthen their hold on you. I ask this in Christ’s name. AMEN
Lord, forgive me for the nasty habit I have got into of looking down on other people – those who are poorer than I am, those who have other views on life, those of other races and religions. Help me to think more positively and to treat them as your children. In Christ’s name I ask. AMEN
I think today Lord, of those who will not have even a crust of bread to eat. Guide them where to go to and what to do to find food. Move those who have plenty to have compassion for those who are hungry and bring about a better world economic order. In Christ. AMEN
“There were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night”.
Luke 2:8 NIV
There were many people on the road to Bethlehem at the time of the birth of Jesus. There were ordinary people going about their ordinary tasks. Many of the people in Judea were farmers, sheep farming being a good fit for the Judean terrain. The image of the shepherd was particularly significant. Moses, who brought God’s law to the people of Israel, had been shepherding his father-in-law’s sheep when God revealed himself to him at the burning bush. David, their greatest king, had been a shepherd boy when he came out to defeat their great enemy, Goliath of the Philistines. And Isaiah had seen shepherding as the appropriate image for understanding the power and presence of “the Sovereign Lord … (who) tends his flock like a shepherd; He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young” (Isa 40:11 NIV). And Jesus himself was to cast his own ministry as “the good shepherd”.
There are always people watching over their charges when God comes. Teachers are watching over their pupils to help them learn their lessons. Security personnel are watching over those they guard. Parents are watching over their children. Doctors are watching over their patients. Town councillors are watching over their ratepayers. Business people are watching over their customers. Bus drivers are watching over their passengers. Pastors are shepherding and watching over their congregations. And God is watching over his world, which is why, in his eternal love, he gave his only Son to be our Saviour.
Lord, help me to be always watchful.
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