by Jill Lienemann, Kesher International Missions | ©2010
“Now when they had seen Him, they made widely known the saying which was told them concerning this Child.” Luke 2:17 NKJV
As they started their journey back to their homes and work, the shepherds told everyone they passed about their encounter with the angel, multitude of heavenly hosts, and most importantly, the baby Jesus (“For there is born to you this day…a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:11 NKJV). The shepherds’ story of the previous hours of emotions ranging from fear, peace, excitement, expectancy then culminating in joy, must have seemed unbelievable to those who heard. And though they were probably not eloquent in their speech, these men must have radiated the Glory of the Lord much like Moses did after he came down the mountain after being face to face with God. I suspect that their trek back to their flock of sheep was at a slower pace than the frenzied rush they used getting to Bethlehem.
The shepherds were walking in God’s perfect plan in this moment of their lives just as the Apostle Paul preached about many years later. “…The God of our fathers has chosen you that you should know His will, and see the Just One and hear the voice of His mouth. For you will be His witness to all men of what you have seen and heard.” Acts 22:14-15 NKJV
Some think that the shepherds were tending the ceremonial sheep used at the temple in Jerusalem, just north of their fields. Families, returning for the census, might not have brought an animal for sacrificial worship and would need to purchase one from a local vendor. Therefore, the shepherds would have been exposed to many people from across the Roman Empire so they seized the opportunity to share the message of salvation with them. What an impact they had for the Kingdom!
As you begin the journey back to your family and job, will you share with others about many miracles you experienced on your mission trip? There is an energized anointing upon you – a result of your time with God during this period away from routine life. People around you can sense it, see it and are drawn to it. Don’t miss an opportunity to convey your encounter with Jesus to those who cross your path! You’ll have the same impact, if not greater, as the shepherds did.
KESHER TIP: One duck, two ducks, three ducks, four!
Assign your mission team into manageable groups. Appoint a Team Captain for each smaller group who will keep account of their cluster of individuals when boarding/exiting buses and airplanes or attendance at meals and team meetings. You’ll find that it’s much easier to take roll from five people rather than fifty. Besides delegation of a necessary task, an added benefit is that some team members may discover and exercise their gift of leadership.
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