- heroic courage when facing tough decisions
“Most of the people in our society are sheep. They are kind, gentle, productive creatures. Then there are the wolves, and the wolves feed on the sheep without mercy. Then there are sheepdogs. And I’m a sheepdog. I live to protect the flock and confront the wolf” – Lt. Col. Dave Grossman
For the Parent::Battle Cry
Sometimes simple metaphors are the most powerful. Imagine for a moment that the entire human race can be divided into three distinct groups. The first and largest group is the sheep, also known as the flock. The flock tends to go through life on autopilot, only thinking of their immediate needs. They’re decent people, they play by the rules, they don’t rock the boat, and they tend to think inside the box. Because they are naïve and are tame themselves, they assume that everyone else is too – which makes them vulnerable. This brings us to the second group – the wolves. The wolves are cunning, resourceful and independent, but they care only for themselves. A wolf will devour a lamb without a second thought, because the wolf takes what it wants through lies, manipulation and physical force.
Finally, there’s the sheepdog. Sheepdogs are the protectors of the flock. They are strong, bold, independent, free thinkers much like the wolves, but they put the needs of the flock before their own desires. The sheepdog is someone who is confident in their inner strength, but never uses that strength to bully or start fights with others. In reality, each one of us has the capacity to be any of these three. Will we be self-serving wolves? Will we be sheep, passive and unaware? Or will we be the sheepdogs, creatures of principle fearlessly standing guard between the wolf and his prey?
For Your Son::Call to Arms
The Warrior Poet is always prepared to do what is right and what is necessary. He’s a leader who knows how to serve others and is willing to carry the feeble and defend the weak. Living a life of Valor means having the courage to shield others from harm. Sometimes this means speaking the truth to a friend or sibling who is making bad decisions. Other times, this may mean standing up to a bully in someone’s defense. That’s who the Warrior Poet is. But everyone isn’t like the Warrior Poet.
The world is full of sheep and wolves. The sheep are mild-mannered, decent people who mind their own business. However, many sheep are unaware of the evil in the world. The wolf is a different kind of animal all together. The wolves are selfish people who lie, cheat, and steal and are willing to hurt others to get their way. Lastly, there’s the sheepdog – also known as the Warrior Poet. Now the sheepdog is strong enough to take advantage of the sheep’s weakness, but he chooses not to. Instead, he chooses to use his power for good and protects the flock from the wolves and any other threats that may come. Which animal are you? It is up to you to choose each day who you will be.
Sometime over the weekend, take a few minutes to do this thought exercise with your Warrior Poet. Think of some of your Warrior Poet’s favorite cartoons, movies or books. Then ask him to pick out characters that fit the description of wolves, sheep or sheepdogs. Be sure to ask why he arrived at his conclusions. Follow this up by asking him what kind of traits the sheepdog characters had, and how he can be more like them.