I’ve had many expectant mothers talk to me about the special kinship they feel with the mother of our Lord, especially during the Advent and Christmas seasons: the shared Magnificat upon learning of their pregnancies; the similar joy of telling the good news to their relatives; the pondering of the miraculous in their hearts; the reality of having to labor and birth in unsavory conditions (or opposite to original birth plans); and the joy of holding and naming their children.

I have to admit, I tend to listen to such musings as one might a recounting of a recent vacation to Hawaii. I’ve never been there, but it sounds wonderful. I even hope to go there someday.

But, as much as I admire Mary and want to be like her, it is the shepherds with whom I can most relate, for I am just like them. I am poor and rough around the edges, not expecting much of anything. Yet, God in His mercy reveals His Good News to me – lowly, unworthy me:

“For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”

Oh, the joy! The blessed, holy noise of that multitude of heavenly hosts singing! My heart almost faints within me.

And, so I run. I run with the shepherds to the manger to see this thing which God has done, and I marvel that it was done for me. Glory to God in the highest, indeed!

I may never get to Hawaii, and that’s okay.