Advent 2018 – Shepherd Boy

This is the tenth in our Advent series of reflections, written by pioneering youth workers…

“For once in my life I am special”

These were the words of one of an 11 year old who attended some bike maintenance workshops we organised through our detached project. He could not get over the fact that he was hand-picked and invited to take part. As the small group of young people from our council estate got stuck in to changing tyres and fixing punctures I reflected that this group are a little like the shepherds. Outcast and despised because of where they live and the families they were born into, every day is a struggle for self worth for these young people. Even though we have spent a year working with this particular young man, he still can’t believe that we want to spend time with him and would choose him above all the other kids in his class from ‘nice’ families.

The shepherds were similarly despised, outcast and on the margins of society. Probably they thought very little of themselves. Yet God chose them to meet and connect with his Son first, before the reputable members of Jewish society. I wonder if, as they walked back up the hill after realising they were the only, chosen ones to take part in this amazing encounter, one shepherd boy turned to another and said “For once in my life I am special”?


By Zoe Bell


Join us this advent.

Frontier Youth Trust is a home for pioneer youth workers. As part of our shared rhythm of life we have invited pioneers from within our community to contribute a reflection about a character from the nativity story. We will be posting these reflections throughout advent.

We invite you to journey with us and discover the story afresh.