These shepherds weren’t anyone special according to the world’s definition of special. They didn’t dress in fine cloths. They didn’t frequent the hot spots of Jerusalem on the weekends. They weren’t chic, or hip, or trendsetters in any way. Nor were they pretending to be. They weren’t worried about their self-esteem. They didn’t doubt their purpose in life. They were simple keepers of sheep, watchers of the flock, defenders of animals too stupid to know the difference between a hill or a cliff. In many ways they were a lot like parents . . . and like parents today these shepherds weren’t much appreciated. They were despised. They were poor. They were unclean. And they shared the same fears that you and I suffer. They were afraid of failure – of losing their sheep to lions or wolves, or gravity. And like all men, they were afraid of death. Nevertheless these shepherds were keeping watch over their flocks by night. They were doing their job, keeping their vocation, working the work they had been given.