Lucas, the Little Lost Lamb
by Patricia F. Smith
Trafford Publishing

"My name is Jesus and I am a shepherd and I will take you home. I will carry you on my shoulders and you will be home with your Mama sheep in no time!"

Lucas the little lamb loves to play with the other lambs in the sheepfold, and the game he loves playing most is hide and seek. While playing hide and seek one day, Lucas stumbles across a large rock and immediately knows he has found the perfect hiding place. He doesn't realize, however, that his hiding place is, perhaps, too perfect. He slips behind the large rock, where he waits in vain for the "it" lamb to find him. Night begins to fall and Lucas grows fearful, crying out for his mama. He hears footsteps approaching, but they are not the footsteps of the "it" lamb or his mama; they are the footsteps of a man, Jesus the shepherd, who has come to carry him home.

Smith's story of a lamb gone astray is a straightforward representation of Christian scriptures that analogize Jesus as a shepherd of men. Lucas' journey and the brief moments when he grows anxious and fearful are brought to a safe and comforting end when Jesus arrives to carry him home. The simple, though at times muddied, illustrations work to enhance the narrative by revealing Lucas and his lamb friends frolicking in the fields. The result is a Christian-themed narrative appropriate for emergent readers, who will find the short paragraphs and varied sentence structure as fitting challenges. Moreover, young readers will find comfort in the idea that Jesus always "will find little lost lambs and bring them back to the fold and their Mamas."


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