Here is a story about a sheep named Shem.
The poem (read below) will be animated in a video soon to be released as part of a new PMM Project where the animal in the scripture tells what happened from their perspective. It can be used right after the scripture is read so even in this story people may not know the reason for the initial celebration or what the lamb had done to elicit Shem’s jealousy. It is a fictitious story that possibly happened in the flock after the shepherd left the 99 sheep then returned having found or saved the lost sheep in Luke 15:4-7.
The Story of Shem the Sheep is a wonderful blend of the parables told in the Gospels of the Lost Sheep, the Lost Coin, and the Prodigal Son. An interesting way to engage young minds about using their imagination regarding storytelling and the stories in scripture.
Shem is a jealous sheep in response to the dumb lamb being found and then the plot thickens for him to try to get the shepherd’s love and affection too. Shem didn’t realize that he already had the shepherd’s love and care. He feels a need to be rescued by the shepherd too.
Like scripture these short rhymes have a number of different vantage points of learning like the Parables Jesus shared to give us insight to the essence of God’s nature.
We see this as a way to help young people discover the stories of God and his love for us in simple stories that rhyme. It can be done in a fun and caring way to bring a desire for hearing and reading the word of God. Discovering God’s love through story is what it is all about.
Luke 15: 4-7
“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them – what does he do? He leaves the other ninety-nine sheep in the pasture and goes looking for the one that got lost until he finds it. When he finds it, he is so happy that he puts it on his shoulders and carries it back home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says to them, “I am so happy I found my lost sheep. Let us celebrate.”
Here, then, is a story about a sheep named Shem.
The sheep were also overjoyed
Except for one a bit annoyed
Shem could not see why sheep as such
As that dumb lamb were praised so much,
Shem moaned, “It simply isn’t fair
I’ve never strayed off anywhere
I’ve always done as I’ve been told
And stayed within my sheepy fold. “
And so Shem brooded through the night
Thus filled up more and more with spite
Next day he hatched an evil plan
That evening from the flock he ran.
He hid himself in thickets deep
And thought, “Oh, I’m a clever sheep
Now for my shepherd I’ll just wait
Then we’11 go home and celebrate.”
Shem thought he heard the shepherd’s tread
But here is what he heard instead,
“Ah, what a lucky wolf I am
To come upon this tasty lamb.”
It cruelly, drolly smacked its lips
And as Shem felt his life eclipse
A ram appeared there by his side
Which sent the wolf off goggle-eyed.
As Shem just stood there overawed
It said, “Shem, I’m the Lamb of God
I hope you’ve learned no one succeeds
In buying love with tricky deeds.”
“For when a lost sheep finds its way
That’s one more saved since yesterday
But you were in my care already
One of my flock whose faith was steady.
From now on when lost sheep are found
Your joy, like mine, should then abound
Now come back to the flock with me
And cast off all your jealousy.”
Please feel free to be a new Facebook friend with PMM when you finish viewing Shem the Sheep! You can also contact Gregg Hartung about the Animals Talk Project by contacting him at email@example.com or by calling (412) 697-9211.
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