On Monday evening, a young suicide bomber killed 22 people and injured 64 others in the Manchester Arena.
There’s increased police and military personnel in England as a result.
What do you say after an attack like that? Is it terrible? Of course. Should we pray? Absolutely. I can’t imagine what it’s like to lose a family member in an attack like that.
But I think we should do something else too.
In the book of Genesis, Cain kills his brother Abel. God then asks Cain where his brother is. Cain replies, “I don’t know. Am I my brother’s keeper?” (Genesis 4:9)
Cain thinks the answer to the question about whether or not he’s his brother’s keeper is ‘No.’
But the answer is ‘Yes’!
We are one another’s keeper. That means we’re one another’s guardian. And we’re not only one another’s keeper after something bad happens—but before.
I think we need to be on the lookout. I’m not talking about terrorists. (Although I think keeping a lookout for terrorists is a good idea too.) I’m talking about being on the lookout for one another.
I’m guessing it’s a slow fade into evil. First one thing, then another. Increased apathy and a growing disregard for other people’s rights and different points of view.
That’s why we need to continually answer Cain’s question in the affirmative. Yes, we are one another’s keeper.
When the world gets bigger, when we pay more attention to screens than the family next door, and when we see so much trauma on a daily basis, it’s easy to zone out. ‘Ah, all this junk is someone else’s problem.’
But it’s not. It’s yours. And it’s mine.
Check in on a friend. Mentor someone who needs some guidance. Keep in touch.
Because that’s what keepers do.
Evil won’t win. And you are a part of God’s light.
By Matthew Ruttan