Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"
A "sibling" is a brother or sister, and the Bible tells of many "sibling rivalries," jealousy and even hatred within the family circle, including the pain the boy Jesus endured in His own earthly family (John 7:5; Matt. 13:55, 56). Could "sibling" also refer to a "brother" or "sister" in the church?
Sin got started in heaven itself when Lucifer, the "bright and morning star" angel, became jealous of the Archangel, the Son of God. Was Lucifer's hatred the source of painful "sibling rivalries" the Bible speaks of?
How do we relate to someone who obviously enjoys gifts from God that we don't have, yet we are bound in that "sibling" relationship that makes the contrast painful? It seems to say, "God loves so-and-so more than He loves me!"
"He who is of a merry heart has a continual feast," while another just doesn't--through no fault of their own (Prov. 15:15). "Why does God favor the other instead of me?" "Why does so-and-so enjoy love in marriage, and I have divorce?" "Why does so-and-so revel in health, and I carry sickness-laden genes?"
Be careful before you condemn the apparently short-changed one and tell him or her, "Just be merry!" "Just get well!" "Just be happy in your loneliness!" It wouldn't be kind or loving for an eagle to taunt a chicken, "Just fly!" (Well, that doesn't fit; the chicken is happy not flying!)
The usual counsel from well-meaning people is, "Just pray!" And even that can be like Job's "friends," because the apparently short-changed one has been praying. It's a heavier taunt now to carry: "God answers so-and-so's prayers and not mine!"
Could the answer be--Jesus, the Son of God Himself, the pained Sibling? If yes, then we have some Good News. Revel in your oneness with Him.
--Robert J. Wieland
From the "Dial Daily Bread" Archive: May 13, 2001.
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