When siblings attack

November 10th, 2017

Last week Marvel Studios released their latest film, Thor: Ragnarok, a cosmic story that spans the universe as Thor and others work together to defeat the goddess of death. But, like the other Thor movies and the first Avengers film before it, there is one element that is front and center — one that we experience even today: sibling rivalry. The titular character Thor seems always to be at odds with his adopted brother Loki, sometimes to comic effect and sometimes to tragic. At times the two battle against one another, and at times they lay aside their conflicts to work together for the good of their home Asgard. Their fictional story demonstrates a truth that most families and siblings experience: Relationships can be difficult at times.

Modern families

Students today often experience some of the same situations and feelings portrayed in the Thor movies. Sometimes they are willing to do anything to support a sibling or close friend, and sometimes they want to strike out in rage against that same person. Just as we help teens to view their relationships as a place where their faith can and should make a tremendous impact, we also need to help them understand the reality that relationships can be messy, difficult and not always easy to resolve.

Our examples

Thankfully, God’s Word is full of examples of families and siblings. Some of the texts can serve as warnings, like the story of Cain and Abel; others provide examples of forgiveness for us to emulate, like Joseph and his brothers. As we move toward the family tables of Thanksgiving, let’s encourage our youth to examine their hearts through the lens of Scripture, bringing hope and healing to their relationships, especially to their families and siblings.

Question of the day: What is your favorite way to annoy your sibling?
Focal scriptures: Genesis 4:1-12; Genesis 37; 39–45; Matthew 12:46-50 

For a complete lesson on this topic visit LinC.

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