Hebrews 13:1 – Let brotherly love continue. (KJV)
Jonah 2:7 – When my soul fainted within me I remembered the Lord: and my prayer came in unto thee, into thine holy temple. (KJV)
Anyone who has experienced bringing a new baby home knows the excitement generated amongst family and friends. Baby showers abound. People pop in to take a peek at the precious, new, little life. They want to hold them, cradle them, and show how to rock, feed, nurse, care for the wee soul.
When we are first married, we often have a deluge of visitors. Well-meaning, they want to see the happy couple in their home.
And when we experience illness or the death of a loved one, people grace us with their presence, with gifts of food and with floods of phone calls.
As welcome as the care and attention is, it can also be exhausting. We wish for a few minutes, hours, to ourselves. About the six-week mark, we get it. Everyone gradually goes back to their normal routines, leaving us in a wake of solitude — sometimes too much solitude.
As visitors, we need to learn when our presence and help is enough, when it becomes too much, and also when it is needed.
It is no different when disaster strikes. As we share in the sorrow, we swarm to help and, while welcomed, we again need to know when to be present, when to hold back. Though it is important to get back to some sort of normalcy in our routines, we need to know that we mustn't completely abandon those in need after the six-week mark.
May we keep in mind the message of today's verse from Hebrews 13. May God guide us to continue the brotherly love we so graciously extend in the first hours of greatest need.
Prayer: Lord, please lead us in assisting those to whom we extend a helping hand. Help us not to go back to a place of complacency and invisible borders, but let our brotherly love continue to grow, that we may become one through You. In Your name we pray. Amen.