Joy in the Shepherd
As we conclude our Christmas series, “The Promise,” we look again at Matthew 2, but also its Old Testament prophecy in Micah 5. Through those passages, we see that Christmas is about a king who chose to rule as a shepherd. When we look at Christmas through that lens, we see that despite our culture and society parading Christmas primarily as a time for children and exchanging gifts, Christmas is really for everyone.
Questions for Meditation
- As Christians, how should our outlook of Christmas differ from the outlook of those who are in the world? Why do you think feelings of depression, anxiety, and sadness increase exponentially during the Christmas season?
- King Herod was a man who had power, authority, position, and influence. In history, he is actually commended for a lot of the things he did in his reign. Yet, he had a profound sense of fear that people were consistently trying to overthrow him. As the result of having no peace, Herod saw Jesus, the one who came to be his friend, as his enemy. In our lives, what does it look like when we lack peace?
- Jesus is the Good Shepherd and the chief of all shepherds, and we are called to be his sheep and follow him. Sometimes, we don’t like the connotation that is associated with being a sheep yet everyone is following something. Who or what are you following today and how can you keep your focus on the Good Shepherd?
- The prophecy in Micah 5 was given hundreds of years before Jesus was born. Why do you think God waited so long to bring this prophecy to fruition? Are there any promises from God you are waiting on in your own life? If so, what do you believe God is calling you to do while you wait for His fulfillment?
- Jesus is both our king and our shepherd. Jesus came to both lead us and serve us. Jesus is our joy that the world cannot take away yet there are times we let the world rob us of this joy. When was the last time you allowed the world to take your joy? How can you experience true joy in your life no matter what your circumstances are?
- We focus on getting closer to Jesus when times are tough and our circumstances are challenging yet, biblically speaking, the greatest falls came in times of success. What steps can you take to ensure you are continually growing closer to Jesus both in good seasons and challenging ones?