“…he’s my brother…”

There’s a song I remember from years ago, and it’s been brought back to memory today. I didn’t remember all the words–just the chorus: “He ain’t heavy…he’s my brother.”

Today there have been a couple of things that made me think of those lines. I guess it really started when I read some of the paper before going to church. There was a column by Nicholas Kristof that tore my heart. It was about a 13-year-old girl who knocked on a stranger’s door, hoping to avoid having to go on upstairs to meet the customer her pimp was sending her to. She was hurting too much to endure yet another rape. She was helped, but his column exposed an ugly side of life…again. I have a grandson who is just a little older…who sometimes gets angry with his parents. Never angry enough to run away, as this girl had–but I wonder what her parents and grandparents were thinking. Did they miss her? Did they worry about her?

Then at church, we had bad news about one of our friends. He is homeless, but he has been coming for quite a while and has been involved in activities. We found out that Thursday some of his other homeless friends found him lying in a pool of blood, bleeding from both ends. They were able to call an ambulance, which came and took him…but they didn’t know where. We tried the local hospitals, but no one had anyone by his name. We don’t know if he survived his injuries or not. We don’t know his family–and don’t know if they know about his connection with us.

Are these two my sister and my brother?

Absolutely! One I don’t know…one I do–at least a little bit. But I can’t stop thinking about them.

There are so many people who are alone…for various reasons. Some carry heavy burdens. Some I may never meet. Yet I am called to help carry their burdens as best I can. They are my brother…my sister.

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