“…the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified…”
If we succumb to a fast paced life that isn’t suited to shelving schedules and opinions to stand and welcome God’s presence, we will miss a marvelous piece of the Christmas story.
Chills run down our spine as we worship together. What did the shepherds feel as angels appeared when Christ was born? What was it like to stand in the very presence of God when they visited baby Jesus? What we read about their indescribable experience is only a glimpse of how it affected them.
Jesus was born, walked the earth, and died so we could stand in awe of our most holy God. It’s to be sought after. It’s in us. To be surrounded by the Lord’s glory doesn’t have to come in the form of heavenly angels, but it did for the shepherds.
glory (doxa) – opinion, judgment, view. – Strong’s
At the first glance of glory defined, we can see why they were terrified. What an immense feeling to be immediately taken from the dark and exposed to the light.
doxa- opinion, estimate, whether good or bad concerning someone (in the NT always a good opinion concerning one, resulting in praise, honour, and glory)- Strong’s
Always a good opinion.
Being in God’s presence pulls all of the good that we are to the front of our minds …because that’s how He sees us. He sees the image of Him that He created, suffering for the curse of sin. He knows us apart from and beyond our struggles. A plight we can’t even relate to yet on this earth.
“splendour, brightness” (Strong’s)
Past the all-consuming and fascinating brightness of the sun, the moon and the stars, is glory. The Glory that the Shepard’s witnessed was the arrival of God’s glory on earth in Christ.
“God in this place.” Even in worship with our eyes shut we can feel Him brightening us. Even if we’re only removed from our suffering temporarily …it’s enough. Enough to get us through to the other side, with a glimpse of what we’re to do for the Kingdom in the meantime.
Father, Praise You for the Christmas angels that terrified the shepherds. Thank You for coming low so that we can know Your presence. Forgive us for wallowing in the heartache and struggle of this world, and help us to let go and just be in Your presence through worship and service. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
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