The title of this photograph is Oh We, Like Sheep.” I post it again this week to “show” rather than “tell” a fact that I was shocked to learn about sheep. Here it is: A mother sheep will not nurse any lamb other than her own, even when her own lamb has died and there is an orphan who will die if not nursed. Farmers have learned to cover the orphaned lamb with the fleece of the lamb that died. That way, the mother with milk receives the orphaned lamb as her own.
When I heard about this, I thought, “God is like that!” Every human is born with the tendency to “dis” what God recommends. The serpent in Eden said God couldn’t have meant what He said about the fruit -- surely He won’t mind, and so our ancestors ate of it. Today that same serpent takes many forms, but still manages to trick us into thinking God couldn’t mean …. surely He won’t mind. After all, we assure ourselves, God is love, and we are His children!
Not…. In fact, God, who IS in charge, sent Jesus to tell us that we are NOT God’s children, but His creations. We are born with the curse we inherited -- an indwelling sin disposition. It is that curse Christ came to reverse. His “fleece” is available for every orphaned lamb, though rarely do we know it.
Hungry and dying of thirst, we orphaned lambs start bleating our heads off. Then and only then, it seems, do we become willing to come under the Fleece of the Lamb. His “fleece” makes us acceptable for adoption back into God’s family. We are now, finally and at last, truly God’s children. Not because of what we’ve done, but simply because, and only because, we are covered by the Fleece of the Lamb.
P.S. It is at times like this my son calls me Metaphor Mama.