“And in that region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear. And the angel said to them, ’Be not afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy which will come to all the people; for to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a babe wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.’ And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among people of good will (ἐν ἀνθρώποις εὐδοκίας).’ When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.’ And they went with haste, and found Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they saw it they made known the saying which had been told them concerning this child; and all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary kept all these things, pondering (συμβάλλουσα) them in her heart.” (Lk 2: 8-19)

The nameless shepherds! Hard-working people, who probably struggled to put bread on their tables, having to work nights, – apparently even on Christmas! Nonetheless, they drop everything and even leave their flock, to “go and see this thing that has happened…,” responding to God’s call “with haste.”

Let me be hard-working today, but not so “busy” with my work and concerns that God can’t get a word in edgewise. Let me go about my business with a “good will”; with my heart and mind open to the “good news of a great joy,” which breaks into my life and calls me to take pause; to come and worship Him in gratitude and peace, amidst and despite my various concerns, financial and otherwise. “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among people of good will.”