Breaking a sheep’s leg?

All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, best viagra for sale but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, sale afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness. Therefore, strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble, and make straight paths for your feet, so that the limb which is lame may not be put out of joint, but rather be healed. Hebrews 12:11-13

Note: The following story was taken in part from Stream in the Desert Volume II, September 22.  

We recall a striking story, says James H. McConkey, from the lips of a friend. A lady was summering in Switzerland. One day she started out for a stroll. Presently, as she climbed the mountain side, she came to a shepherd’s fold. She walked to the door and looked in. There sat the shepherd. Around him lay his flock. Near at hand on a pile of straw, lay a single sheep. It seemed to be suffering. Scanning it closely, the lady saw that its leg was broken. At once her sympathy went out to the suffering lamb. She looked up inquiringly to the shepherd. How did it happen…she said…To her amazement, the shepherd answered: Madam, I broke that sheep’s leg. A look of pain swept over the visitor’s face. Seeing it the shepherd went on; Madam of all the sheep in my flock, this one was the most wayward. It never would obey my voice.   It never would follow in the pathway in which I was leading the flock. It wandered to the verge of many a perilous cliffs and ravines. And not only was it disobedient itself, but it was always leading the other sheep of my flock astray. I had experienced this before with sheep of this kind. So I broke its leg as I had before with other sheep that were just as rebellious. The first day I went to it with food, and it tried to bite me. I let it lie alone for a couple of days. Then, I went back to it again. Now it not only took food, but licked my hand, and showed me every sign of submission and even affection. And now let me tell you something. When this sheep is well as it soon will be, it will be the model sheep of my flock. No sheep will hear my voice so quickly. None will follow so closely at my side. Instead of leading its mates astray, it will now be an example and a guide to other wayward ones. In short a complete transformation came into the life of this once wayward sheep, for it learned obedience through the discipline I had to carry out.

Teachable Moment application

Sometimes God harshly disciplines those who walk away from His will to such a degree that if they were to continue unabated they would not only destroy themselves, but others as well.   So, God allows and even creates the necessary and punitive circumstances to gain their attention and put a stop to what they are doing.   God doesn’t do this because He’s mad or offended, but only because of His love for them. Like the shepherd in the illustration above, the sheep’s leg was not broken to pay him back for his disobedience, but to save his life.

In my book, Teachable Moments, I used this shepherd/sheep illustration to make a point with parents who are in quandary when their children become incredibly disobedient. Now to settle your spirit, breaking your child’s legs was not the application I drew, but the principle of tougher consequences for a child’s escalating disobedience was. If you do get the book, the particular chapters where this information comes from is #9 (Applying the correct amount of discipline and correction) & #10 (Applying needed grace with children).

The book, Teachable Moments and its companion book, Sowing Teachable Moments can be purchased on or from my web site ( where it is a little cheaper.

However, if you can’t or don’t want to purchase copies at this time, then write me at and I will send you complimentary copies.