QUESTIONS GOD ASKS US. #3 – #Where is your brother (sister)?”
Genesis 4:9: “Then the LORD said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?” He said, “I do not know; am I my brother’s keeper? . . . Your brother’s blood is crying out from the ground.”
It seems clear to me that God is still asking all of us this question. It also seems clear to me that the crushed lives of many of our brothers and sisters are still crying out for God’s justice.
In a conversation last night, my grandson made a very astute observation. He said, “It is so hard for all of us Americans to think in terms of ‘us’ as we think about how things are affecting ‘me and mine.” He is so right, isn’t he? Let’s just consider one example; the one that confronted me as I listened to the wisdom of my grandson, and thrilled at the wonder of his bright and beautiful little girl playing in the floor near us.
As I thank God for the little brown skinned baby born in a manger in Bethlehem so many years ago, and think that I surely would have given up my bed and room for this needy couple, do I also think about, and care about, the little babies being born on the other side of my town today? Or, and on the other side of the world? Do I think of them as “born unto you this day,” as a part of the “us” whom God cares for? As I think of how horrible Herod was to that baby and his family, do I also think about, and care about, what the people I vote for in my town, state, and nation are doing to make the lives of these newborns better, or far worse?
In short, is God still asking me, and you, “Where is your brother, where is your sister?” Are any of their lives crying out to God because of how I don’t think of them, and don’t care about them, even though God sees them as a human “in the image of God?” Do I really think God will be pleased if my answer is “I do not know” what is happening to them, am I their keeper?” That answer probably wasn’t adequate two thousand years ago as Jesus lay in an animal feeder, and it probably isn’t adequate now either.