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“For behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all the people…..”  Luke 2:10

Much has been written about this wonderful proclamation by the angels to the shepherds.  It has been talked about how wonderful it is that Our Heavenly Father’s heralds would proclaim this news to the meek and lowly of society of that time, the shepherds.  It has been discussed about how the appearance of such a supernatural manifestation would cause fear to those who have the limited understanding of the world view; hence the angel’s initial urging to “do not be afraid”.  We contemplate what it must have been like to see the air filled with the heavenly host, praising God.

Yet what I want to focus on is not the unfathomable historical importance of that visitation so long ago, but the fact (or should I say belief) that the power of this in it’s truest essence is that it is being spoken, not in past, but in present tense.  The angel is speaking to each and every one of us when he uses the pronoun you.  The angel did not say I bring to you shepherds or I bring to you in this field, the angel simply said you.  And as such it is then not limited to any specific person nor any specific time.  You is universal.

Now lets think about the idea of bringing.  To bring something, whether it is physical, like a gift, or less tangible like knowledge, is to provide something, from the givers point of view, that is true and factual.  To bring you dinner, I’d better have some food.  To bring you knowledge about how to read, I’d better be able to read myself.  So the angel is bringing good tidings of great joy.  How does the angel know that the tidings should bring such great joy?  Simply because the angel had the experience of being with Christ.  Christ is from the beginning and the angelic beings had the experience of being with He who is pure love, pure justice, pure mercy, perfect in every way.  And now that same perfect Christ, who is from the beginning, has left His heavenly realm to come to earth, to be the Savior.  The angels knew who it was who had come to earth, what His mission was and that knowledge caused them to burst forth with, not only praise for God, but also pronouncements of joy to those for whom Christ had come.

Finally, Christ did not come for some lucky few.  These tidings were not meant only for shepherds or jews; not the rich nor just the poor, this news was not for thousands of years ago Judea only, it is for all people.  All people is all people.  All people is all who were alive at that time, all who would be subsequently born and even all who had come before and passed away.

So, fill in the blank.  For behold I bring (insert your name here)  good tidings of great joy, that is for everyone you have known, know and will know……….  And what is the expectation based on hearing these tidings given directly to you and me individually?  That we will fill with joy.  That we will capture as much as our limited consciousness will allow and our spirit can grasp hold of, the concept that God left an existence of perfection, to come to us, to share our pains, to know our frustrations, to experience our temptations and to return to heaven with that knowledge.  In that process of returning, by way of the most physically painful death imaginable, but equally as devastating for Christ, but essential for us and our individual salvation, Christ took upon him each and every one of our sins, giving his body and blood for our atonement.  He allowed us to return to a relationship with Our Heavenly Father.

May it be that through the Holy Spirit, you hear the angel’s proclamation to you this day.  And as the shepherds responded so long ago, may it be that we set out to find Christ, worship Christ and come away from that meeting praising God Almighty.  Amen

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