Brotherhood… What does it mean?
Recently I’ve been challenged with this question. What does it really mean to be aprt of a family? What do I really mean when I say: “you’re my brother”?
We don’t choose the family we’re born in. We do have our differences and sometimes they are ugly. But ultimately, your family is the one and only group of people you feel safe being around.
I love my family. Man, we had some tough arguments in the past, but we all grew a lot, and learned a lot. I’m proud to be part of my family. Now, why am I struggling with these questions?
Because when I read the Bible and see that we are all supposed to be part of one big family, that we’re all brothers and sisters, and then I look at our reality and see that’s not happening, that irritates me.
Check this out: I live in New Zealand. My blood family lives in Brazil. Still, if they call me, regardless of what I’m doing, I’ll stop and give them some attention. They deserve it. Why? Because they are my family. We keep in touch because we love each other. Now I understand we do get busy and some times we may have to postpone it for a later time, but still, I will give them attention. In fact, if anyone calls me, I pick up the phone and if I’m busy I will tell them I can’t talk now, but would be happy to come back to them later. If anyone sends me a text, I’ll at least acknowledge I have received it. I think people deserve that.
I’ve heard one of the leaders I followed for a while saying: If you’re too busy to reply to a text, then you need to re-consider your priorities. I couldn’t agree more. However, I would love to see people who say that kind of stuff live up to it. I hope you’re reading this brother…Maybe you will reply to my texts LOL. Just kidding. You’re all good!
Back to the family thing… In Christianity, the opposite is true in most of the cases. We DON’T keep in touch with our brothers, specially if they go to a different club, I mean, church (excuse my honesty and sincerity). I’ve had some experiences in different places and I thought I had made some real friends. In fact, I thought we were brothers. It felt like we were when I was part of the club, I mean, church… But once I left, everything changed.
Another analogy: Just like in our families, at some point we grow up and we must move on and build a new family. That’s the cycle. So it is in church. Some people are selected for some strange reason I do not know and do not endeavor to figure out, to carry the work Jesus started (in fact, we all are) and some will plant churches. When they leave home, instead of supporting parents and brothers, they get closed doors and people ignoring them. Yeah, the same ones you thought were your brothers… That’s just wrong.
I’ve been trialing this out, so I’m not just sharing frustrations from a couple of days. I’ve been sending loving messages, emails and calls to a few of those who said they were friends, and I believed were brothers. I have not had one single reply. No twitter, no Facebook, no texts, no emails. Do I need their reply? No. Do I want a reply? Yes. Why? Because when my brother calls, I pick up the damn (is this how this is spelled???) phone and talk to him! Wake up people! No wonder why people in the world classify and generalize us as hypocrites! Because that’s what they see! Heck, that’s what I see, and I’m on YOUR side!
You’re not a super-star! You’re not alone, you’re not the only one and you’re only part of the family where you’re not the head! Christ is! And trust me, if you can’t share your love with your brother who you can see, how do you expect me to believe you love a God who you can’t see?
It’s by the way we love one another that the world will know we’re His followers, and not by our fancy ministry and big buildings! I’m discussed! I hate to feel this way. I wish I had more real brothers and sisters.
I find that the true ones are the ones who are humbled everyday by their limitations. Maybe that’s how it is supposed to be! Maybe the anonymity will pay off in the end. Maybe I should really decrease and let Jesus increase… Maybe.
So help us God!