Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Responding to Our Brother's Needs

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Responding to Our Brother's Needs

Article excerpt

A MAN was asked in an interview if he felt people in the suburbs had any responsibility to help take care of the people in inner cities. His answer was a definite "No." In fact, he felt no responsibility to help anyone outside of his own immediate family and friends. Sadly, many people feel this way. And sometimes we feel that even if we helped others get out of their difficulties, it would only be a matter of time before they returned to their old ways, perhaps falling deeper into the mire. But we don't have to just shrug our shoulders and decide not to even try to help. There is something we can do. We can pray, and the Bible shows us how. The book of Genesis records that after Cain murdered Abel, God said to him, "Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper?" (4:9). This is the question mankind faces today. Are we our brother's keeper? The answer is an emphatic "Yes!" But our "brother" isn't just our immediate family, or even people we know well. As children of one Father, God, we are all gathered in His love, all brothers and sisters in one family. Taking responsibility to care for others doesn't mean, however, that we should rush around personally intervening in everyone's difficulties. It's only what is based on God's guidance that will truly--and permanently--help. This is where prayer comes in. While I was in college I had to leave a class early because I was feeling seriously ill. Unable to make it to my car, I sat down in the middle of the sidewalk to pray. It was hard to hold onto any one thought, but through persistence I was able to think of God and His all-power. And I prayed for help. It wasn't long before another student, one I had never met and never saw again, came up to me. He asked if I was all right and wanted to know what he could do for me. …
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