Archive for July, 2012

Final Paragraph in our Exciting Sheep Race story

Posted on Monday, July 23rd, 2012 at 5:00 pm

Ah, the final paragraph of our short story contains a surprising ending, along with a moral lesson…

We would love to post that paragraph here, but instead will only show it on the back of our Swinging Anniversary sheep card.

Feel free to purchase this card to read the exciting conclusion, or better yet, buy the entire seven-card set.  Given the various types of cards in the set, the set can be sent to one family within a two year period.

Paragraph 6 (Fighting Ninja card)

Posted on Monday, July 23rd, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    The decision of whether to offer her help and lose the race, or keep running to possibly win the race, waged war within Eli’s clouded conscience (12), like a band of fighting Ninja’s. He had only a few seconds to decide, and then the answer hit him like a blast of hot air from a blazing furnace (13). Eli must be a Good Samaritan, a story he learned long ago from attending church.  When he stopped to ask if she needed help, she replied, “No thank you, but it was kind of you to stop for me.” She then asked, “By the way, what is your name?”, as she looked closely at the number on his shirt.  Eli was surprised by the question, but answered her, and then watched her slowly write down something on a small piece of paper. After wishing her well, Eli got back into the race.  Although Eli knew the delay prevented him from winning the race that had been set out before him (14), he felt like he had done the right thing.    

12 Opposite of “clear” conscience, as in Acts 24:16 So I strive always to keep my conscience clear before God and man.

13 Taken from Daniel 3:21  So these men, wearing their robes, trousers, turbans and other clothes, were bound and thrown into the blazing furnace.

14 See Hebrews 12:1.

Short Story – paragraph 5 (shown in Crazy Street card)

Posted on Monday, July 16th, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    Although Eli was tired from a poor night of sleep, the chill in the early morning air and adrenalin in his body energized him like a bunny. He lined up at the crowded starting line and “bang,” the runners were off. During the first mile, Eli’s pace was quick but his breathing felt right. It was obvious that he had put into practice what he had learned, as his foundation for this race was well built(11). Eli was surprised to see strange outfits worn by some runners, and bands lined up along the route for entertainment. As he rounded the first corner, the pack of runners ahead of him slowed to avert a stalled car on the side of the road. Eli glanced in that direction and noticed that the driver was an elderly lady who looked distressed. 

11 Luke 6:47-48   47 I will show you what he is like who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice.  48 He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built.

Short Story – paragraph 4 (shown in Violin card)

Posted on Monday, July 16th, 2012 at 4:57 am

    It was the night before the big race, and Eli was too anxious to sleep. As he lay in bed feeling tired and heavy (10), questions raced through his mind.  “What if I don’t hear the sound of my alarm clock in the morning? What if I’m the only one, out of a hundred runners, who takes a wrong turn and becomes lost (11)?”  He tried to relax by counting sheep, but the sheep began jumping over a fence and started to compete against each other! And another sheep stood up, and began playing a violin! At that point, Eli forced himself to get up and read in order to get his mind off of the race.  After a short while, he went back to bed and fell asleep, but during the night he tossed and turned, as if riding in a small boat on a stormy sea (12).  

10 Proverbs 12:25 An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up.

11 Luke 15:4 “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it?

12 Ephesians 4:14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming.

Short Story – paragraph 3 (shown in Social Networking Sheep card)

Posted on Sunday, July 15th, 2012 at 2:46 am

 Upon returning home from the doctor, Eli began searching the internet for a 10-K training program. He found one that lasted seven full weeks (8) and decided to follow it.  The program required him to run four times per week, with a long run on Saturday, and to increase his long runs one mile per week. Eli followed the steps in the program very closely, not departing from any one (9), and after seven weeks, he was ready to enter the race!

8 This time period, and the phrasing of it, was taken from Leviticus 23:15  “‘From the day after the  Sabbath, the day you brought the sheaf of the wave offering, count off seven full weeks.                              

9 This is in reference to Job 23:11-12 11 My feet have closely followed his steps; I have kept to his way without turning aside.  12 I have not departed from the commands of his lips; I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily bread.

Short Story – paragraph 2 (shown in Sheep Doctor card)

Posted on Saturday, July 14th, 2012 at 10:56 pm

Before starting an exercise program, Eli decided to pay Doctor Luke (3) a visit, and Eli arrived early in the morning (4) for his appointment. After examining Eli, the doctor gave him a “clean bill of health,” but encouraged Eli to lose some weight, eat better, get more sleep, and gradually work into an exercise program. When the doctor left to attend to another patient, Eli could not resist the temptation to “play doctor.” He stood up (5), grabbed a spare stethoscope on the wall and tried it out on his sister, who had accompanied him.  Eli didn’t hear anything though, and then felt guilty for the sin (6) he committed by using the stethoscope without permission. After paying the doctor’s bill of $400, which included a sheep discount (7), Eli was ready to plan his exercise program.

3 The author of the book of Luke is a physician.

4 This is in reference to Job 7:17-18 17 “What is man that you make so much of him, that you give him so much attention,  18 that you examine him every morning and test him every moment?

5 Eli had yielded to tempation when sitting down. 1 Peter 5:9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

6 Hebrews 10:2 If it could, would they not have stopped being offered? For the worshipers would have been cleansed once for all, and would no longer have felt guilty for their sins.

7 Luke 16:6  “‘Eight hundred gallons of olive oil,’ he replied. “The manager told him, ‘Take your bill, sit down quickly, and make it four hundred.’

Short Story – paragraph 1 (shown in Sheep resting in Chair card)

Posted on Saturday, July 14th, 2012 at 3:52 am

As we commented in a prior blog, we plan to incorporate a short story (of a sheep in a race; the story has a surprise ending and a moral story) onto the back of seven of our greeting cards with sheep images.  We believe this will increase the value of and interest in these cards, and simply make them more fun to buy or receive.  We will offer the cards as a set and at a discounted price relative to buying them individually.  We plan to post each portion of the story on our blog, at least for awhile, to benefit our blog readers.

In our story, we plan to reference, to the extent possible, words and phrases that can be found in the Bible.  We got this idea from reading a commentary in the back of one of our favorite books outside of the Bible, Inferno by Dante.  Dante’s commentary reveals that he used Bible verses as the source for a number of the words he used and scenes he described in his book.  At the bottom of this blog entry, I’ll provide you with an example of how we plan to do the same thing.

Below is the first paragraph of the story, which will be shown in the “Sheep resting in Chair” (humorous birthday) card.

Sitting in his favorite chair, Sheep was surprised to read an article in the local newspaper about a former classmate winning a 10-K race.  The classmate had never been much of an athlete, but looked fit and trim now.   Thinking of all the weight he had gained since graduation, and how out of shape he had become, Sheep decided right then and there to do something about it.  He would get in shape, lose weight, and run in a race! 

Our decision to use the phrase, “run in a race,” rather than “enter a race,” came from 1 Corinthians 9:24:  Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.

We look forward to revealing paragraph #2 of our story in the near future.