Luke 2:8-19 New International Version (NIV)
And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.
Good news for all - that is the message of Christmas.
That is the hope of Christmas.
In our reading the biggest invitation came to the most outcast of people. Shepherds.
I believe that all are welcome to come and meet Jesus in the Christmas story and in so much more.
I believe our destiny is not set.
I believe our future is not written.
I believe our choices not yet made.
No matter what path you have trod to get to here tonight, no matter what life journey you’ve been on….tonight you have a chance, like the shepherds to kneel before Jesus and praise him.
And that’s because ….Adoption into God kingdom is open to all. No mater how far you fall, or wander…or drift…
Redemption is there for everyone.
Because of Jesus.
A way is opened
And that gives us hope.
Christmas is indeed good news…our fears are gone and we can again discover the welcoming, loving acceptance of our creator - because of this tiny baby, who went on to show us the way of life lived to its fullest and most beautiful…a life lived following God’s plan.
And because of this tiny baby who then went on to pay the price, that way is open - that adoption is real.
And so today I invite you to accept Jesus into you life - and let his love transform you.