Shammah thought his smile looked best reflected in the flowing river water. He often stared for hours into his own eyes, mesmerized by the beauty the Lord had blessed him with. The lake was just a break from training though. The only activity Shammah enjoyed more than examining his perfections was training with the Israelites.
Shammah would demonstrate the ideal techniques for all weaponry, but his favorite was the sling. David’s confrontation with Goliath inspired Shammah. He even used a sling modeled after David’s. He went as far as to always carry a few stones from the Brook of Elah; the waters blessed by the lord, he thought.
David was unimpressed by Shammah’s behavior. “Braggarts impress neither the Lord nor themselves,” he once said to Shammah. He simply nodded in agreement not realizing David was chastising him.
David had grown so tired of Shammah on this day, that he sent Shammah to harvest in the lentil fields. Shammah considered ignoring the order, as it simply did not interest him. However, a young woman named Naomi worked the fields. He had spied her several times doubling the pace of the other harvesters. Shammah knew he could best her given the chance. He would best her harvest twice over!
The thick green of the lentil fields matched Shammah’s robes. He could’ve easily disguised himself among the shrubberies. He crouched under the cover, hoping to spot Naomi. Perhaps he could learn from her technique, but she was not in sight.
“You know, you’re crushing the harvest,” Naomi said, standing behind him.
“I was merely examining the curve of the horizon,” Shammah said. ”There’s a pattern of the best way to harvest.”
“There’s always a better way. I look to the Lord to show me,” said Naomi.
“I always find the best way on my own,” said Shammah. “I’ve seen your techniques; you might even rival me.”
Naomi said, “When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the humble is wisdom.”
“Let us see who harvests best then?” said Shammah.
Shammah brought a sense of competition to the fields. Every harvester examined his techniques and tried to best him. Naomi continued at her normal pace, matching Shammah’s harvest. The Israelites distracted their minds with Shammah’s strange behavior as the harvest continued.
From the east, the grumbles of marching Philistines approached. Shammah had drawn attention away from the Israelite scouts, and now the Philistines were in sight. The Israelites fled the fields one-by-one, leaving Shammah and Naomi.
“Naomi, we must go!” said Shammah, preparing his sling for his retreating defensive maneuvers.
“I will not leave the harvest. Trust in the Lord,” said Naomi.
Shammah looked at the fleeing Israelites and the approaching Philistines. Before he took a step, he took a final look at Naomi. “When pride cometh, then cometh shame,” he thought.
Staring at the approaching Philistines, then to Naomi merely inches away from the approaching brutes, Shammah looked into his hands. “No more speaking; it’s time to listen to the Lord.” The Philistines approached, and in what seemed like a flash, they fled. Shammah had fended off the legion single-handedly, without speaking or thinking of it. He couldn’t fathom even bringing up the tale of the battle.
Walking back with the harvest, Shammah and Naomi passed the river. Shammah looked at his reflection in the running water with Naomi. Naomi dropped a pebble causing ripples in their images. They both laughed and continued home with the harvest. Shammah no longer thought about his own smile. He much preferred Naomi’s.