It's the day before Christmas Eve. But, it's just another day on the job for the shepherds watching flocks by night.
They have no idea what's waiting for them on the other side of 24 hours.
-- They will be the only ones personally invited to see the Messiah, right in the delivery room.
-- Angels are actually going to light up the sky and blast a singing telegram from God in surround sound.
-- Then, just as quickly, the sky will drop back into dead silence, darkness and stars standing in their places, just as they've always hung in panoramic view.
The shepherds will wonder. Was that for real? Did I actually see and hear what I think just happened?
When God sends us a message -- just to us and no one else -- we stagger into that fearful and wonderful place the shepherds found themselves 2,000 years ago.
We will find ourselves in the Fields of Faith.
God does that. He drops by to give us some exciting joyful news.
Change. New beginnings.
He tells us about His plans with a simple announcement. No explanations.
His timing is peculiar too.
God hits us with an inspiration, when we're feeling the most ordinary.
Like the shepherds, we encounter God as we're sitting on the outside, on the fringes of what we think is our best.
Just as we get excited -- just as we begin daring to believe what we we're hearing or seeing about God and His invitation -- Whoosh! Everything returns back to everyday sameness.
Darkness. Circumstances and people around all circling and in holding patterns, just as they've always been.
This is when we must hold onto faith and gather our courage.
C'mon. Let's do it. Let's say to ourselves -- and to each other -- just as the shepherds blurted, bright eyed and open hearted to each other:
"Let us go to Bethlehem and see what the Lord has told us about." (Luke 2:15 GWT)
In an instant, God can call out to us in the field of faith and invite us to leave where we are, to go and see. We may not believe it, but God is calling us out into the open, wooing us to radically leave the routines we've established behind. We will have to say good bye to some old ways and even some familiar expectations.
But when it's time to point our steps to go and discover what God's told us, it's time for us to act. As you think and savor these last days of Christmas, remember what God has told you.
No matter how brief the encounter or how few the words.
He said it. And you heard it.
Let's go and discover what the Lord has for us this Christmas, into the new year.
Have you wondered about your "field of faith" encounter?
How is God calling you to leave, go or see?
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Bonnie Gray is an inspiring Christian writer and blogger, offering encouragement to keep faith fresh in the daily grind. Her writing springs from the belief that the beauty of faith often takes place when life goes off script. Bonnie is the Founder of FaithBarista.com and featured writer for Hallmark subsidiary DaySpring's (in)Courage. Bonnie is currently working on her debut book, to be published by Revell Books. Bonnie is a native Californian living in the heart of Silicon Valley with her best friend Hubby, wrangling their two heaven-sent boys on the homestead.
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Bonnie Gray is author of Finding Spiritual Whitespace: Awakening Your Soul To Rest, garnering starred review praise from Publisher's Weekly, named as one of PW's top 6 notable new religion authors. Bonnie is a featured contributor at (in)courage and her writing is nationally syndicated, spotlighted by Relevant Magazine, Catalyst Leadership, Today's Christian Woman, and Christianity Today. A UCLA graduate, Bonnie has been a missionary, ministry entrepreneur and Silicon Valley high-tech professional. Bonnie serves up shots of faith for the daily grind on her blog Faith Barista.com. Bonnie lives in Northern California with her husband Eric and their two sons.