8. As it turned out, there were some nomadic shepherds who had set up camp out in the nearby fields to keep watch over their flocks throughout the night.
9. And as they sat, sleepy, silent and still, an angel...a celestial being...just manifested right in front of their surprised eyes. At the angel's appearance, the very glory of God completely enveloped them, glowing and vibrating like an intense, electric force field, and they were utterly shocked and terrified.
10. But the angel spoke immediately and authoritatively, saying to them, "Do not be afraid! I am here to announce good news to you...good news of a great and joyful event, and of a new reality! And this good news...this new reality...is for all people everywhere...it is for the entirety of humanity!
11. This very night a Savior has been born in the City of David...a Savior who will perfectly embody the Christ, and will be known as the Lord!
12. If you seek Him you will find Him...and this is what you're to look for: a baby swaddled in a blanket, and lying in a feeding trough for animals!"
13. As soon as the angel made this declaration, the sky above the shepherds' heads lit up, and was filled with a seemingly infinite number of angels who formed a thunderous, mass choir, singing God's praises, and shouting,
14. "GLORY TO GOD IN THE HIGHEST PARTS OF THE HEAVENLY REALM...AND IN THE EARTHLY DIMENSION, PEACE...PEACE TO EVERY SINGLE PERSON ON THE EARTH...AND A REVELATION TO THEM THAT GOD'S WILL TOWARD ALL OF HUMANITY IS ONLY GOOD!"
15. And then, just as suddenly as they had appeared, they were gone. When the stunned shepherds eventually regained their composure, they said to one another, "Well, let's go to Bethlehem right now and see for ourselves this thing that the Lord has revealed to us!"
16. And they did just that, leaving the sheep, the campsite, and all of their belongings behind. They literally took off running, all the way into the city, and were able to locate the stable. And, sure enough, there they found Mary and Joseph, and, lying in the trough as the angel had said, the infant Savior.
17. They gazed at Him, transfixed, for an indefinite period of time, until they eventually felt released to go. But as they returned to their campsite, they told everyone with whom they came into contact what they had just witnessed.
18. And their delivery of the news was so compelling that all who encountered them on their way were simply amazed at how these common shepherds...men who were normally quiet, isolated and reserved......carried on about what they had just seen.
19. But Mary was not as expressive...she just remained silent and contemplative, treasuring up all the mysteries of the night in her heart, and thinking about what the future would hold for her newborn baby boy.
20. The shepherds returned to their campsite and their sheep, but they couldn't settle down for the rest of the night. They praised and glorified God on into the morning light for all the things they had heard and seen. Everything that the angel had told them was true.