Kline Creek Farm raises southdown sheep – a sheep that is bred mostly for its meat. The other unusual aspect of a southdown sheep is that it has wool all over its body, so when it is sheared – she is sheared everywhere including her legs.. Many breeds have wool only on specific parts of their body. (Worldwide – there are more than 1,000 distinct breeds of sheep.) Right now, the going price of southdown sheep wool is 25 cents which is the same as it was in 1900. Synthetics have made wool not so desireable.
The sheepshearer was very personable and kept up a running commentary. In fact, when he saw me taking pictures, he asked his assistant (Faith) to come over and provide a photo op for me. The photo op picture is the one with the shearer, Faith and the sheep all smiling – well, the sheep isn’t really smiling, but he doesn’t look all that unhappy. After all, being sheared is better than being made into lambchops.
Someone asked why the sheep wasn’t struggling and baaing. Once they turned her over, the sheep just “sat.” She allowed the shearer to shear her with unbelievable compliance. The shearer explained that once a sheep is in an unusual position where she’s not sure if she can get out – she simply stops and allows the shearer to move her anyway he wants.
As the shearer was explaining all this, my mind immediately went to the verse (as did CFC who was across the pen from me).
He was oppressed and afflicted, yet He did not open his mouth; He was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so He did not open His mouth. (Isaiah 53:7)