The Belief That Someone Else Will Do Something

It was 1964. A woman named Kitty Genovese turned off her car, took out the key and proceeded to make her exit. Her New York City apartment was only 100 feet from where she was parked, but there was a man there blocking her path. She went forward anyway as she had to get home. The man reached out of the inky blackness and grabbed her, causing  the 3:00 a.m. silence to be pierced by her screams.

'He stabbed me!'

The people in the apartments had a decision to make. Would they make the phone call that would summon the police or would they merely look on?

A man called out, 'let that girl alone' before turning out his light. The killer shrugged and went for her, stabbing her again.

This time she screamed out, 'I'm dying. I'm dying'.

A bus passed by.

Lights went on in apartments and windows were opened. Still, no phone call was made. 38 people witnessed the assault. Later, after Kitty was stabbed the last time – a fatal deathblow-- someone made the call. The police came and then the people came out. Of 38 law-abiding people who lived in a good neighborhood, no wanted to get involved to the point of making a simple phone call.

They said as much to the police. Clearly, detectives and law enforcement were both baffled. When questioned, the people said that they failed to call because they were afraid. When pressed further to explain what they were afraid of, residents either gave nonsense answers or said they didn't know.

One man turned off his light and went to bed, because, he said, he was tired. Most, it has been said, had the feeling that someone else would do something. After all the gruesome drama was played out before a full house of people. And yet no one did anything and Kitty Genovese paid the ultimate price.

Queen Esther was also faced with a serious dilemma. An ordinance in the law basically decreed the extermination of her people, the Jewish people. She was put to the task of pleading with her husband, the king, on behalf of but she wavered because there was so much at stake. Her uncle Mordecai told her that if she refused to act that deliverance would arise from another place, but that she and her family would perish. He also said that perhaps she was placed in her royal position, 'for such a time as this'.

Esther decided to act and God moved to save His people. She did not miss out on her blessing.

Moses was another example of believing someone else would do something. He basically told God to send whoever he was going to send, causing God's anger to burn against him. God wasn't sending someone else. God was sending him.

There is much work to be done in this fallen world of ours when there are people who need our help and who need to be pointed to Jesus. If we refuse our calling and we leave it to someone else, we are living in disobedience. Oftentimes those who take up the work are left alone by their Christian brethren to bear the brunt doing of their work by themselves.

May this never be the case and may we never reside in the belief that someone else will do something. Especially when the someone God is calling is us.

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