What if…the shepherds fled from fear?

Silas pulled his cloak tighter around his body to block out the coolness of the night air. He leaned on his staff to rest his bum leg. The others huddled in a group just down the hill. He heard them whispering and laughing as they peered back at him.

Why don’t the others shepherds like me? You’re wrong, Mr. Michael the Angel. They’ll never follow me to Bethlehem.

Suddenly a light shone around them. Silas raised his hands to shield his eyes. His staff thumped to the ground.

A voice boomed from the heavens. “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you, He is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you. You will find a baby wrapped in clothes and lying in a manger.”

Silas brought his hands down. Michael, the angel who appeared to him earlier, stood amongst a host of angels. The light illuminating from them lit the field like daylight. The other shepherds were face down on the ground. Their bodies shaking.

Silas walked over to them. “See, told ya an angel appeared to me. But no, you wouldn’t believe me.”

Morty pointed. “Who’s that?”

“That’s Michael, God’s arch angel.”

The angel stepped forward. “Hi Mordecai, Shiloh and Hezekiah.”

The rest of the shepherds stood, but stayed in their huddle.

“Greetings from your heavenly host of angels. We bring you great news! Silas was correct. God has appointed him to lead you to Bethlehem where you will find a baby.”

Morty stepped forward and folded his arms. “A baby? You want us to follow Silas to Bethlehem for a BABY? I don’t think so!”

Silas shook his head. “Told you they wouldn’t go.”

“Listen my friends,” Michael said. “This baby is special. He is God’s Son.”

“But what’s so special about Him?” Hezekiah said.

“He is to save mankind from their sins.”

Silas gestured to himself and the others. “Why us? We’re just measly shepherds. The outcasts of society.”

Michael shook his head. “God wants you to know He came for all, not just the rich kings. Everyone.”

Silas took a breath, picked up his staff, and stepped forward. “Okay then, let’s go boys. Time to head out.”

The above story is a scene from a play I wrote called “The Chosen Shepherd.” Do you ever wonder what the shepherds went through the night the angels appeared to them? How scared were they? Did they want to turn and run?

What would you do if you were greeted by a host of angels? I think I’d run for my life!

Did they have a conversation similar to the one in the story? Did they ask the angels why them?

Probably not. I bet they just shrugged their shoulders and began their journey to Bethlehem.

Shepherds were good at herding sheep, so perhaps God knew they would be good at herding others to see the baby Jesus. If they did it, others would follow.

What would have happened if they turned and fled? I’m glad we don’t have to figure it out. God knew they would overcome any fears and just obey. Plus, Luke 2 tells us they did it with haste.

That’s why He picked them.

Has God asked you to do something? Will you give up your fears and simply obey? Let’s follow the example the shepherds gave us.

Go! Do it with haste.

Luke 2: 15-16 (ASV)

“And it came to pass, when the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing that is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found both Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in the manger.”

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  2 comments for “What if…the shepherds fled from fear?

  1. susan steeves
    December 12, 2011 at 7:06 am

    Thanks Dar for reminding us of the importance of the shepherds and of their obedience and with HASTE!!! We need to follow their example when Christ calls us to do something.

  2. Heather.
    December 16, 2011 at 9:14 am

    I love the picture you show of the angels and shepherds. Their trust conquered their fear. Good point.

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