Psalm 9:1-2 (NLT)
I will praise you, Lord, with all my heart;
I will tell of all the marvelous things you have done.
I will be filled with joy because of you.
I will sing praises to your name, O Most High.
The Psalmist is in a celebratory mood as he writes these verses. It is obvious that he is grateful for all that God has done in his life and can barely contain his excitement. It is as if he is writing a letter to his dearest love on a moonlit night, the pen gliding over the page with rapid energy.
His love fills him with joy that cannot be contained. Memories of faithfulness elevate his voice to singing. In the words of Buddy the Elf, “I’m in love! I’m in love, and I don’t care who knows it!”
That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.”
Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying,
“Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”
When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
They hurried to the village and found Mary and Joseph. And there was the baby, lying in the manger. After seeing him, the shepherds told everyone what had happened and what the angel had said to them about this child. All who heard the shepherds’ story were astonished, but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often. The shepherds went back to their flocks, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen. It was just as the angel had told them.
In what is perhaps my favorite story in the Bible, Luke tells us about some simple people, doing a simple job, who receive anything but a simple message and its impact on their lives.