Why Shepherds? Part 4

This week I've tried to make the case that the shepherds in Luke 2 aren't there by accident. God made the spectacular birth announcements to shepherds (1) because Jesus as the Good Shepherd is the great fulfillment of God's promise in Ezekiel 34 and (2) because the other shepherds who should have been caring for the welfare of the people of Israel were asleep on the job. Every time Jewish leaders were reminded that the shepherds in the field heard first it should have been a stinging rebuke of their negligence.

So what? Here are a few observations from Luke 2 and Ezekiel 34 that apply to us as leaders today.

- Leadership is a stewardship. Shepherds didn't own the sheep; they managed them for someone else and were accountable to him for the welfare of the sheep-owner's assets. Whether we lead a church, an organization, a small group, or a family, God cares about the way we lead.

- God cares more for the welfare of the sheep than He does the position of the shepherd. When leaders refuse to manage well what has been entrusted to them, it is good stewardship on the Owner's part to replace the manager.

- God is looking for shepherds who will watch after the sheep, even when it is inconvenient, scary, exhausting, or bothersome. Nobody wants to stay up all night with a bunch of stupid sheep. But if the sheep are important to their owner, they should be important to us; whatever the cost.

- Faithfulness often gets rewarded in unexpected ways. In Luke 2, several guys watched over their sheep like they had undoubtedly done for many moons. They had likely seen several interesting things during their nights keeping watch over the sheep. On this night, they saw angels singing and received a sneak peak at the Good Shepherd who had come to save the world. God may not peel back heaven for your faithfulness in the minutiae of what He has called you to do, but He might.