by Rev. Brad Sheppard, Immanuel via his site holyencounter.net
As I ventured outside early Monday evening, I soon spotted the beautiful crescent moon in the southwestern sky with Venus shining brightly above it. Together they shinned brightly through the barren tree in my front yard. They seemed suspended as from a delicate thread in the vastness of the winter night. I felt warmed by their light.
A short time later a friend from Missouri posted a picture on social media of the moon and Venus from where he stood. It really struck me. I truly needed the reminder that he and I dwell under the same sky. Our perspectives from the ground differ but we share a common view of what lies above. In the midst of such divisions in the world something about remembering that commonality moved and encouraged me.
Long ago shepherds outside of Bethlehem gathered under our same sky. With the absence of modern light pollution I imagine that that night sky shone brightly with stars, planets and distant galaxies. I would like to think that those shepherds never grew tired of gazing upon the starry sky.
Yet one night stood out from the rest. On that night the stars seemed to dim as angelic messengers filled the sky with their celestial glory. They came to the shepherds with a message—the birth of a Savior—that they revealed as good and joyful news for everyone. For everyone.
This season we really need to hear and remember that message—a Savior born for everyone. We are divided but live under the same starry sky with the same need—the need for a Savior. We cannot fix or make right this world on our own. We need the One that only God can send.
That good and joyful news spoken first to some shepherds remains good and joyful news for you, me and our shared world. Let us believe that good news; let us, like the shepherds, act on that good news; and may we, like that angelic choir, proclaim that good news for all who dwell under the same starry sky.