Watch the Flock!Ethiopia photos 2004 083

This Sunday I will preach about two different perspectives on the Biblical story of the shepherds who left their sheep to go see the baby Jesus. At the 8:30 AM worship service I will preach about “Watch the Flock” with a focus on some of the interesting elements of the story that always have fascinated me. At the 11 AM worship service I will look at the question, when does it make sense to leave everything and follow the Lord?

-Why did God choose these particular shepherds?

-What are the modern parallels to the shepherds watching their field by night?

-Are the shepherds protecting the sheep from the enemy on the outside, or are they protecting the sheep from themselves? Sometimes our greatest enemy is within ourselves.

Some of us are so busy saving the world that we overlook the sheep that God has put under our care. We overlook our children, overlook our spouses, overlook the community within we leave. So, the word for today is simply this: Watch the Sheep!   Watch the sheep and give glory to God


Luke 2: In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: 11 to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord.[1]

Questions for Reflection:

  1. What is the significance of the angel finding the shepherds watching their flock?
  2. What lessons can we learn from the shepherds watching the sheep at night?



Lord, teach me to honor my commitments. Make me faithful in my responsibilities. Lord, make me humble and diligent as I look out for those who cannot look out for themselves. Grant me the presence of mind to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, and visit those who are sick and in prison. Simplify my life. Clarify my vision. Narrow my focus. Bless me and keep me in your care.   Sharpen my focus and open my ears. Lift me by thy grace. Redeem me through your mercy. Endow me with your love. Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior we pray. Amen.


Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Nicholas Hood III

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[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. 1989 (Lk 2:8–11). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.