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Little Sheep by Debby Efurd blog post

One of the first scriptures I memorized as a child was Psalm 23.  It was a beautiful picture of what Jesus, as the Good Shepherd, does for each of us, His sheep. It wasn’t until the last few years that I fully came to appreciate its meaning.

In Psalm, David, a shepherd boy, writes as a sheep would think and feel about his/her shepherd. “The Lord is my Shepherd” implies a profound yet practical working relationship between a person (in this case sheep) and the Savior. So, if the Lord is my Shepherd, then “I shall not want” for anything. There is nothing that I desire that He cannot provide within His will and timing. But if anyone knows anything about sheep (people), they can be wayward and subject to the problems of living in a flawed world.

“He makes me lie down in green pastures” gives us a picture of rest and assurance. Sheep will not lie down if they are afraid, if there is conflict among other sheep, if bothered by insects or parasites, or if they are hungry. Jesus, our Shepherd, can take away from us fear, the tension between and among each other, the aggravations of things that bug us, and provide full satisfaction. Then we will be able to “lie down in green pastures.”

Sheep, because they are naturally nervous, prefer the “still water” of a stream. Good shepherds often dam up fast-moving water of a creek to form a still pool. 

“He restores my soul” indicate that even in the wonderful care of our Shepherd, the still water and the green pastures, there are times when we will need to be restored and renewed.  Sometimes sheep can get downcast, unable to get off their back. We, as humans, often suffer from despair, discouragement and helplessness as we wander aimlessly from God. Just as good shepherds do, they will turn sheep right side up to their upright status.

Sheep are creatures of habit who tend to go the same way to the same pastures until the pastures are worn out leaving nothing to eat. People can have that same tendency. But we can rest assured that our Shepherd will lead us in the right path. It is Jesus who leads us into new pastures with abundance of food and opportunities. It is our responsibility to follow. We will starve to death spiritually if we stay behind in a worn out pasture.

Just this week I was reminded of an excerpt from Sheila Walsh’s devotional, “The Beauty of the Bummer Lamb,” which really spoke to me:

“Every once in a while, a ewe will give birth to a lamb and reject it. There are many reasons she may do this. If the lamb is returned to the ewe, the mother may even kick the poor animal away. Once a ewe rejects one of her lambs, she will never change her mind.

These little lambs will hang their heads so low that it looks like something is wrong with its neck. Their spirit is broken.

These lambs are called “bummer lambs.” Unless the Shepherd intervenes, that lamb will die, rejected and alone. So, do you know what the Shepherd does? He takes that rejected little one into His home, hand-feeds it and keeps it warm by the fire. He will wrap it up with blankets and hold it to His chest so the bummer can hear His heartbeat. Once the lamb is strong enough, the Shepherd will place it back in the field with the rest of the flock.

But that sheep never forgets how the Shepherd cared for him when his mother rejected him. When the Shepherd calls for the flock, guess who runs to Him first? That is right, the bummer sheep. He knows His voice intimately.

It is not that the bummer lamb is loved more, it just knows intimately the One who loves it and has experienced that love one on one.

So many of us are bummer lambs, rejected and broken. But He is the good Shepherd. He cares for our every need and holds us close to His heart so we can hear His heartbeat.”

I am a bummer lamb!

Debby Efurd is co-founder of Cary John Efurd Ministries. Learn more about the ministry by liking our Facebook page ( and downloading our FREE mobile app ( from App Store or Google Play. Once downloaded, allow notifications to keep you up to date on what’s happening in Cary John Efurd Ministries. Debby can be contacted at Feel free to comment at

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