And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
That night those third-shift shepherds did nothing to provide for their meeting with angels and, later, the Christ child. They were just there. They were just doing their very boring job. It all came to them. Heaven came to them. This is sometimes easy to forget. The story of the shepherds has a built-in lesson: it’s all and only about our response. Action is important, but reaction is eternally important. There is no action I can take to further my relationship with God. There is nothing I can do. All I can do is be. God is the one who takes action. He alone does “this thing.” Now it is up to me to react, to respond. My life and my eternity hang on my response. And, usually, the first response is wrong. “Fear not,” the angel said. God does all the action and then He shepherds us in our reaction. “No, don’t do that. This isn’t about fear; it’s about joy. The baby you find will be a sign of this joy and the power of My Promise behind it.” The shepherds respond in verses 15-17…
 When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.”  And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger.  And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child.
- Decided to go and see Him
- Went with haste and found Him
- Made known what they were told about Him
This is a nice list to build our lives on. It depends on a God who acts. It depends on God. We live in a world with many things to respond to and depend on. Today, let’s only respond to and depend on Christ. “This thing” we celebrate at Christmas happened! No wonder the angels break out in praise!