There Are ‘Bummer Lambs’ Among Us …

“Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly, comfort the fainthearted, uphold the weak, be patient with all.” (1 Thessalonians 5:14, NKJV)

So, you just might be asking at this moment, What in the world is a bummer lamb? You might also be asking, What in the world does this term have to do with our opening text?

So glad you asked because there is an answer to both of these questions with some wonderful application for each of us to hold on to!

Life offers no free passes from pain, heartache, or disappointment.  We’ve all been to that place and it is not a place we would ever want to reside in for any length of time.

Yet, it comes … sometimes in waves like the sea … one right after another.

None of us are exempt from suffering … from sinning … from the consequences that follow! (Romans 3:23).

None of us are exempt from experiencing loneliness in life … wondering at times if anyone really cares about us!

None of us are exempt from the pain of rejection … of a loved one, friend, trusted brother, or sister in Christ.

What is a ‘bummer lamb?’ In the agricultural world … in the world of sheep … every once in a while a ewe will give birth to a lamb and for one of any number of reasons reject the baby. And just leave it there to die.  These rejected lambs are referred to as ‘bummer lambs.’

Unless the shepherd intervenes, that lamb will die. The wise and attentive shepherd watches and looks out for not only the little ones but the adults as well!

Consequently, these ‘bummer lambs’ must be bottle-raised.  A life-saving effort that requires diligence along with compassion and hard work is required.  With this attention, nurturing, closeness, and yes, even love … the ewe lamb can grow up to be healthy!

You see … just as the rejected lamb needs someone to believe in them, help them, love them, or they will not survive … and neither will we!

I am so grateful that Christ calls Himself the Good Shepherd.

“He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. After he has gathered his own flock, he walks ahead of them, and they follow him because they know his voice.” (John 10:3-4 NLT)

He is the shepherd that will leave the 99 sheep to find the one lamb that has wandered away (Matthew 18:12-14)!  What a Shepherd!  What a Savior!

There are ‘bummer lambs’ among us!

Sitting quietly on the pew … across the auditorium not really engaging anyone unless someone approaches!  Are we getting the picture here?

‘Bummer lambs’ … hurting … brokenhearted for any number of reasons … feeling rejected … “faint-hearted”“weak” from exhaustion, without enough strength it would seem to be able to stand on their own

My friends … my brothers and sisters in Christ … these ‘bummer lambs’ … will always be among us.  We must not judge, criticize, or even think about giving upon them. The Apostle Paul was encouraging the Thessalonians to be encouragers as well!

We must learn to love them … show compassion to them … demonstrate on a personal level what the Lord, our Shepherd has already shown … and promises to continue to show … that we really do care!

They need to be “encouraged” … shown “tender care”… “cheered on” … and “helped back up on their feet.”

“He will feed His flock like a shepherd; He will carry the lambs in His arms, holding them close to His heart.  He will gently lead the mother sheep with their young.” (Isaiah 40:11).

So … so many of us are just like the ‘bummer lamb’ that has been rejected and yes, broken.  But Jesus is the good Shepherd.  He cares for our every need (1 Peter 5:7) … and He holds us close to His heart that has room for all of us … so that we can hear the comfort of His heartbeat!

If you are walking around in this dangerous and evil world with little to no hope … I pray you will allow the “love of God” to be the salve to ease your heart, mind, and soul.  All of us … every one of us … is precious to Him!

May you come to know the sound of His voice and feel the comfort of His eternal heartbeat!

Bill Fairchild, Jr.

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