When they had seen this, they made known the statement which had been told them about this Child. 18 And all who heard it wondered at the things which were told them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20 The shepherds went back, glorifying and praising God for all that they had heard and seen, just as had been told them. (Luke 2:17-20)
The angel of the Lord told the shepherds the good news about the birth of Christ. The shepherds saw the Lord in the manger with their own eyes, and then the shepherds spread the good news. Their “go and tell” response is worth our imitation. The surest sign that a person has not truly understood the gospel, or has not been moved by its message, is a persistent refusal or reluctance to make known to others what he or she has heard, witnessed, and experienced.
The shepherds saw the Lord as a baby lying in a manger and they left preaching the gospel and glorifying God. Our behavior should look similar, especially in light of the Advent season as we reﬂect on Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, His empty tomb, and His nearing return.
We can learn from both Mary’s quiet introspection and the shepherd’s outward celebration and evangelism. Like Mary, we must reﬂect on this good news inwardly, and like the shepherds, we must also reﬂect this good news outwardly to the world around us.
- Do you have more difficulty with quietly meditating on the gospel or outwardly spreading the gospel? Why?
- Take time to imitate Mary. Reflect on the incredible reality of Christ’s birth. Ask God to open your mind so that you can appreciate the grace and wonder of this miracle.