Am I My Brother's Keeper?

Sunday, May 31, 2015
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Listen while you read: "No Never Alone"1 (Lyrics)

As I was enjoying a peaceful evening, a text arrived from my daughter. My middle brother, who was severely depressed because of his family breakup and impending divorce, instructed her to call our mom and tell her that he was going to our younger brother's house for a while, and to call his landlord and inform him that he wouldn't be back.

His sudden leaving didn't surprise us, but our concern deepened when our younger brother informed us that he hadn't heard from him. He had told some other people that he was going to live with my brother's high school friend, but he hadn't heard from him either. Since my younger brother is a detective, he immediately contacted our local authorities and requested help. Four days later — after frantic days and sleepless nights — our brother contacted us to tell us that he had been hiking in the mountains and was fine.

Am I my brother's keeper? Evidently so.

James 5:19-20 – My dear brothers and sisters, if someone among you wanders away from the truth and is brought back, you can be sure that whoever brings the sinner back from wandering will save that person from death and bring about the forgiveness of many sins. (NLT)

Accepting responsibility for others has always been a challenge. God asked Cain where his brother Abel was, and Cain responded with, "Am I my brother's keeper?" Of course, he wasn't … but he should have been. Rather than caring for him, he had killed him out of jealousy.

When I'm my brother's keeper, I'll show concern for my immediate and extended family. My responsibility, however, goes farther and includes my spiritual family. Anyone who names the name of Christ is my brother and sister. Jesus even extends my reach to enemies. I must love those who don't return my love and who may treat me harshly. By using my gifts, talents, time, and finances, I build up the church and also distribute love throughout my circle of influence.

Through prayer, mentoring, and practical acts of love, I demonstrate that I am my brother's keeper. Are you caring for your brothers and sisters?

Prayer: Open our eyes, Father, that we might see and care for those we might otherwise overlook because of our lack of time or concern. Amen.

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About the author:

Martin Wiles <>
Greenwood, South Carolina, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Good thought.

    Appreciated this message very much.

    Right on target Martin,
    A good message for today.

    So glad your brother was okay. It’s scary to have a family member disappear. We’ve had it happen a few times. All ended up well in long run but it was still agonizing.

    Wanted to thank you for this devotional. I have been battling this same issue for some time now. Praise to God For reminding us through many different ways of His promises. May the Lord continue to Bless.

    Thank you for your devotion today. I have an estranged son and I wish I could connect with him again.
    However, after trying many times, now all I can do is keep him in my prayers. Your devotion was timely and a reminder that we can help others.

    Excellent message Martin. Thank you for sharing. By God’s grace, I’m glad to hear your brother was okay. It’s a blessing to have family members who care for another.
    Keep up the good writing!

    What a wonderful devotional you gave us today and much food for thought. I only have 2 brothers left, two are dead and your writings were so appropriate as they both have had strokes and the eldest has Alzeimers and l am their keeper. As the only sister it is my duty and privilege to care for them.
    (Northern Ireland)

    Good Morning Martin: Your devotional today touches me in so many ways. I always seem to have a soft heart for anyone who is trouble, even sometime to the point of giving when I don’t really have it to give. Yet I try putting myself in their shoes and knowing how much I would feel in similar circumstances. Currently my heart is aching for a young man who is currently facing pending criminal charges. He is very young. I keep trying to imagine what led him to such, only God knows for sure. If I lived closer I would visit him in jail. All I can do now is pray about the situation and that justice will be done. Yes I too feel we are our brother’s keeper. Thank you for sharing your families trials, not an easy one to share. I pray that things will work out for your brother and I am happy to know he was safe. Guess he felt he needed to get away from everything for a while and contemplate his situation, hopefully he talked to God while doing so.

    Good Morning Martin:
    As always, a message to challenge us concerning God’s word and the message He sends to us concerning our responsibility to care for and monitor those we love and have been blessed with as part of our family. Too often we place our concerns on the lives of those outside our families and leave our family members without the love, encouragement and concern they require during days of trial and tribulation. Thank you for your message, makes us realize God does want us to be part of the lives of those he has intrusted to us as siblings.
    I am so thankful your brother returned home safely, I know your time of waiting must have been a time of agony and much prayer.
    Blessings Always.

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