Who does God delight to reveal Himself to? Who does He so often choose to spread His message of love? Is it the qualified and trained? Or the ordinary person?
This Advent season, I’ve been reading again the incredible story of Jesus’ birth. There is so much to be amazed about, to ponder and think about in this story.
Today I asked myself the question: If I were the Messiah coming to earth, who would I first announce my arrival to?
I’d probably look for people of influence, good communicators, people who are believable and have credibility. I’d want to choose those who are well-educated and could clearly and eloquently articulate the message of my coming.
Jesus chose to announce His long-awaited, miraculous arrival to shepherds in a field. Let that sink in for a minute. Uneducated laborers. Common people who lived outside among sheep.
Why in the world would God choose them? Doesn’t He know they don’t understand things very quickly?!! (I’m kidding of course, though I have definitely experienced first hand how it can sometimes be hard to get less educated people to understand certain concepts and principles!)
Why not the Rabbis? Why not the High Priest? Why not the upstanding citizens of the big city of Jerusalem, or at least the scribes who could properly write it all down??
God chose to give the first announcement of His coming to Earth to very ordinary people. He then chose to spread that word, the testimony/witness of His birth, through them.
Luke 2:17-18 “When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them.”
If God chose to do this, maybe we should consider the key role that ordinary people play in sharing His message. Maybe we should trust and empower the less educated, the less articulate, the day laborers and field workers to do the work of the ministry. Maybe it isn’t God who thinks we need lots of qualifications to share His good news. Maybe it is us as humans who have put all these conditions on who is qualified to do the work of the Kingdom.
A major key to seeing a DMM (Disciple Making Movement) released is that we believe in and give genuine authority to ordinary believers to do the work of the ministry. God was willing to trust lay people without much training. Shouldn’t we?