Luke 2:17-18, 20 “The shepherds went back, glorifying and praising God for all that they had heard and seen, just as had been told them.
Luke 2:28 “Then he [Simeon] took him [Jesus] in his arms, and blessed God,
Luke 2:38 “At that very moment she [Anna] came up and began giving thanks to God, and continued to speak of Him to all those who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem.
When reading through Luke’s account of those that celebrated the birth of Jesus along with Mary and Joseph, we often separate the shepherds’ story from that of Simeon and Anna. We take them by chunks. But just the other day I found it interesting to read them straight on through. I guess you see what I saw in the highlighted passages above. Each one that encountered Jesus responded with praise, thanksgiving, and blessing to God.
Isn’t that fascinating? And yet it’s a bit disconcerting, too. After all, because of Jesus’ later death and resurrection, we encounter Jesus every day of our lives. And how do we respond? Often with complacency. It becomes a familiar thing. Kind of like the celebration of Christmas.
I mean really—how many years ago did you stop thinking about the words to the Christmas carols you sing in church in December? I know I have been guilty of going through those motions. My lips sing the words while my wanders elsewhere.
Christmas is the celebration of the world’s first encounter with Jesus. Of the beginning of what becomes our salvation. And doesn’t that deserve praise and glory and blessing and thanks to God, no matter how many times we have expressed it before?
Have you already had a surprising encounter with Jesus this December? Did it spur you to spout a spontaneous praise of glory and blessing and thanks to God? Tell us about it, so that we can glorify God in the highest together!