I was a Shepherd Yesterday

Circumstances and surroundings may not always be ideal, but we serve a God who has brought us Good News for all people. OMF missionary Kate Bookhamer shares her experience of this Christmas season in Thailand.
I was a shepherd yesterday. That’s been my designated role for the past week and a half at our Christmas program for local schools. Christmas music has been playing around our house and in the car. Although I wouldn’t describe this as a “cold winter’s night that was so deep,” still, it is a beautiful morning—even deep; blanketed in the stillness of night that even the streetlights cannot disturb. Aside from the occasional motorbike and neighborhood chickens, it seems quiet, too. The lights on the small, plastic Christmas tree, plus one little lamp together produce the warm lighting in the room as I have some much-needed talk-time with my husband. The weather is far from being cold, but I am thankful to not be sweating on this early morning in the cool season in central Thailand.
Who would’ve thought that a moment as peaceful as this would’ve had such a beginning? We usually don’t wake before our neighbors, but today our morning started at 4 am when the baby woke up in a pool of his own vomit. Speaking of babies, the momma cockroach that lives in our kitchen had some of her own. Now, before the baby throws up again or the next pangs in my own stomach send me prancing back to the bathroom, I am going to enjoy this moment. Christmastime is the perfect time to be thankful. As we washed the smelly crib sheets, my husband and I remarked on how nice it is that we have enough water pressure today to do both laundry and shower. That hasn’t happened in a while.
“Perspective” is a word that seems to echo throughout the lessons the Lord has been teaching me over the past several years. Time and again the Bible calls us to be thankful. When we understand what Jesus has done for us, how can we be anything but thankful? Whatever you’re in the midst of, there is cause for thankfulness and joy (even amid suffering) because of the new life we have in Christ.

“The first Noel the angel did say, was to certain poor shepherds in fields where they lay.
In fields where they lay keeping their sheep on a cold winter’s night that was so deep.”

I’m not sure what these shepherds were thinking or feeling before the angels appeared, all I know is that once they heard the Good News their lives were changed, as well as their attitudes. I pray that I can maintain a Godly perspective this season… especially when I don’t feel like it.

“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!” Romans 10:13-15

This blog post was used with permission from the Bookhamers’ blog at http://pkbookhamer.wixsite.com/thailand.

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