How A Picnic Inspired A Lesson on Compassion


They can be the best of friends, bunk mates, and fishing partners. But when one jumps into the front passenger seat yelling shotgun for the third time in a week, fireworks might ensue.

The oldest argues that the youngest always gets her way. While, coincidentally, the youngest makes her case that the oldest always gets all the fun! And if there happen to be more than two, well then, you’ve got the makings of a tv series. (Brady Bunch, anyone?)

Sibling rivalry.

Conflict between siblings is a fairly common theme in the Bible. Today I’ve been meditating on the story of Jesse’s sons and their encounter with Goliath, the giant Philistine battle champion. As I’ve read and pondered this battleground scenario from 1 Samuel 17, I’m reminded of some similarities between Jesse’s gang of eight, and Jacob’s brood of twelve wild bucks.

Realizing that each of the elder brothers were passed over by Samuel in his search for the next king was likely only the latest irritation in a long history of jealousy toward the little brother. Suffice it to say that none of the elder brothers were excited for David to optimistically be-bop into the army camp, picnic lunch in hand or not.

“And Jesse said to David his son, “Take for your brothers an ephah of this parched grain, and these ten loaves, and carry them quickly to the camp to your brothers. Also take these ten cheeses to the commander of their thousand. See if your brothers are well, and bring some token from them.””
‭‭1 Samuel‬ ‭17‬:‭17‬-‭18‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Though siblings exist as participants in the same family, each individual is designed with unique personalities, abilities, and rank. We’re all flesh and blood image bearers of God, who see life and relationships from a variety of angles comprising the same rock. Family. As such, siblings can be some of the best homemade sandpaper in God’s hands for molding and shaping us more and into the image of His dear Son.

Special delivery… from Dad.

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