Big brother to the rescue


I’m all about comfort. A good recliner and good comfortable shoes are all I need. I’ve thrown away my 3-inch heels and now wear ugly shoes I would’ve never been caught dead in them a few years ago. Not only that, but when the shoes went on sale, I bought four pairs, all different colors. I’m telling the kids to bury me in those shoes.

It’s amazing how little things bring comfort. Yes, ugly shoes and a recliner are fine, but sometimes comfort must give in to action. I’m finding there are people around me that aren’t as comfortable and need help. We can’t sit around when we can help and they can’t help themselves.

When Lamech was 182 years old, he had a son and called his name Noah, meaning comfort. He said, “This one will comfort us concerning our work and the toil of our hands, because of the ground which the Lord has cursed.” — Genesis 5:29 (NKJV).

Noah surely didn’t bring comfort. He brought hostility. People didn’t want to hear what was coming. Noah was told to build an ark. The rains would come. What’s rain? The people had never seen rain. Noah was told that building the ark would save the human race. God shut the door on Noah’s friends and foes. It doesn’t sound comforting to me to be the outcast.

I would rather be comfortable than to confront the unpleasant things of life. But sometimes it’s necessary to stir up the dust.

Comfort also means to strengthen much. We have to get up from our easy rocker and confront the problem head-on. Go against the grain. Believe me, at the time, it’s not comfortable to do something about that which is wrong and make it right.

As my Sweet Al and I listened to two of our children, I said to him, “How did it happen? We have four children, they all rode the same bus together to school and back home and sat at the same table, but they are as different as night and day.”

One of our children is like a Labrador puppy. She lets life take over and doesn’t do anything about it. We also have a child who is like a bulldog with a bone who won’t let it go until he gets the last shred of meat from it.

I said to our son, “Your little sister needs your help. She doesn’t have the same fight in her as you do. Please help her. She can’t fight for what is hers. She gives in.”

That started the discomfort in our home. Big brother came to the rescue. He tried to get his little sister to understand why she was a part of the problem. She needed to pay more attention to what was going on around her.

All she could say was, “I know. I know.” But we all knew she didn’t know. Labradors only know to love, be there and loyal to everyone else.

I was sorry to have brought up the problem, but something had to be done. Our family has survived as a family with a lot of prayer and honesty. We love each other and we have learned to let everyone be who they are. We need them in their roles as members of this family. Each one brings balance for the other.

When someone picks on the Labrador, we have jumped right into the middle of the fight. This time Al and I needed to stay out of it. Al enables the Labrador, and I could see the truth and sided with the bulldog.

But when a bone has been out of joint, and we’ve heard the pain since July, someone needs to reset the bone. It was time for the bulldog to take over. It doesn’t matter what kind of discomfort the rest of the family might go through, it must be done.

Our son said to me, “I’ve become less charitable about this and I don’t want to hear about it anymore. I’m done with it. I’m not being mean, but her arm is going to fall off if she doesn’t do something about it.”

I said to Al, “We don’t have a dog in this fight. Stay out of it.” I sat in the recliner and planted my ugly shoes on the carpet.

Al got up from his recliner and paced. “But I can’t stand around and let anyone hurt her.”

“That’s the problem. She needs tough love from us, but she also needs her brother to fight for her. Let it go, Al.” 

We listened to the crying, the moaning, the redundancy as our son chewed on that bone for an hour or so. My heart was breaking for our youngest daughter, but I knew it was necessary. My Sweet Al wanted to protect her from her brother. He was helping her.

Back to Noah. His comforting wasn’t comforting at all as he built the ark. He preached righteousness and told them about their sins. He listened to their accusations. His actions showed the message he was telling. Build the ark and save the human race. The rains are coming. 

I love comfort, but sometimes it’s necessary to make a wrong right. We need more Noahs in this world. It’s not a popular place for them, but we need to let them fight for us and even change our minds in the process.

Sitting in the car with his sister in the parking lot, our son persisted on the phone. He spent an hour talking to machines and getting the runaround. He finally got to the right person and handled the problem. 

Final Brushstroke: Big brother came in and wiped the floor up with everyone in the way, including Al and me. Everything is taken care of. Peace is in our home once again. This is what families are all about and do for each other.

Views expressed do not necessarily represent those of The SUN.