I've been reading the Old Testament again and a little bit ago I ran across some interesting information about sheep that cracked me up when I made the comparison of the behavior of the Israelites to sheep. It literally made me laugh out loud. I share this, if for no other reason, to give you a little chuckle, but as a professional educator I try to find out as much about my students as possible. The better I know my students, the better a teacher I can be. As a shepherd, the better you know your sheep, the better a shepherd you can be. We all, like sheep, have gone astray... (Isaiah 53)
- need the most hands-on care of all livestock.
- are gregarious animals. They are better kept in numbers as they are social.
- have a strong sense of flocking which is primarily about fear of predators.
- are passive and have little means of self-defense.
- become nervous and difficult to handle when feeling stress.
- are gullible and often follow the crowd.
- are creatures of habit.
- frequently look for easy places to rest.
- don't like to be sheared or cleaned.
- are vulnerable to mob psychology and stampede easily.
- are vulnerable to fear.
- are competitive and compete for dominance.
- have little discernment in choosing good food and water.
- are stubborn and insist on getting their own way. They will even eat poisonous plants and dirty water.
- need a shepherd to lead them or they wander off and get lost.
- trust their shepherd as their most calming influence.
- need "rod and staff" guidance. They are not just used for protection but for guidance of wayward sheep.
When I look at myself and my life in comparison to this list I can easily see why satan, the ever prowling wolf, so easily manipulates me and I can proudly sing, "I am Jesus' little lamb!"