Mary Roper - Being Helpers - Maroota II, Australia Convention - 2017

Genesis 4:9, “And the LORD said unto Cain, 'Where is Abel, thy brother?' And he said, 'I know not. Am I my brother's keeper?'”  Proverbs 31:26, “She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.”  II Corinthians 1:24, “Not for that we have dominion over your faith, but are helpers of your joy, for by faith ye stand.” My meditation has been to be a helper and to be my Brother’s keeper.

 

Sometimes we are asked to be a helper when we have the least amount to give; sometimes in the darkest hours of our lives or when we feel we have nothing to share, but God would like us to be a helper to our Brothers and Sisters in Christ. The spirit of our human nature, the spirit of the world, and the work of Satan would make us feel like our Brother or Sister in Christ is a competitor, but God wants us to understand that our Brother or Sister in Christ is our comrade. We are all in the same race, all trying to win the approval of God, all trying to make it to Heaven. If that feeling of competition enters our hearts, I hope we would put it to death because we need to help one another to finish in the race.

 

In the late 1890s, gold was found in Alaska and there was a great rush to get there and stake a claim so that individuals could be rich, and many men and women took that long trek. Some never made it and many did not get rich. It was every man for himself. That is the greed of human nature, but it is not the spirit of Christ and it is not the way of God. We are not competitors; we are comrades, and we want to know how to help each other and how to accept help. When God came to Cain, his response was, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” God has made us feel for one another, yet the spirit of our human would rise up and say, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” Yes, we are our brother’s keeper and we want to know how to encourage and strengthen our brethren.

 

God wants us to help one another to finish in the race. We sang in the hymn about being a helper and knowing the pain my neighbours know. It is hard to sing, isn’t it, and harder to do. Christ was that kind of helper. I love Hymn 328, “May Thy law of loving kindness in our hearts have full control.” The law of loving kindness will teach us how to be a helper in a way that is profitable for eternity. If we are going to be a helper, we need the spirit of honesty and truthfulness, we need the spirit of Christ, the spirit of service; we need the law of love in our hearts to really help one another in the Kingdom.

 

David had many helpers; they weren’t all on the battle field, some were unseen and unnamed. Sometimes a helper stands by, sometimes a helper simply says, “I am thinking of you.” Sometimes a helper bends low and sometimes a helper stands strong. What kind of helpers are we? A true helper knows the doctrine of Christ and stands true to it. Sometimes kindness is thought to be giving in and going with the flow, but that is not the kindness God wants us to show to one another.

 

The spirit of loving kindness stands true and steadfast to the end, even if no-one else is standing true. That kind of helper is safe for our souls. I Samuel 23:16, “And Jonathan Saul’s son arose, and went to David into the wood, and strengthened his hand in God.” I think Jonathan understood that he would never be the king and he could have had envy about that, but he didn’t. He had the spirit of a child and wanted to help David. A true helper helps others grasp more firmly to the will of God, to just keep on.

 

In II Samuel 17, David was fleeing from Absalom. Absalom became an enemy to the king; the king never became an enemy to him. Two men came to David, not to solve any problem or to give counsel. What they brought is in Verse 28, “Brought beds, and basons, and earthen vessels, and wheat, and barley, and flour, and parched corn, and beans, and lentiles, and parched pulse, And honey, and butter, and sheep, and cheese of kine, for David, and for the people that were with him, to eat, for they said, 'The people is hungry, and weary, and thirsty, in the wilderness.'” They could not solve the problems and often it is not our place to solve problems but it is our place to be a helper, to bring things that bring bread and rest.

 

I don’t have time to tell of the meditations I had of the way Jesus helped His disciples. He wanted to see them continue and finish, and one way Jesus helped His disciples was to love them.  Love shortens any distance and makes a burden lighter. I hope every one of us will be helpers of one another’s joy, trying to help each other to make it to the finish line and win God’s approval.