Very soon I am going to be with my sisters. It will be strange to be just the three of us with none of our kids around. I think I can safely say that the last time we did that for any length of time was at least 21 years ago—which happens to be the age of the oldest cousin. When I set aside my anxiety about leaving my kids and focus on the time with sisters, I get pretty excited.
Today as I was thinking about it, I imagined choosing a book to read together while we are cleaning and unpacking. Naturally, The Help came to mind, because I know Diane hasn’t read it. I had this crazy thought that I should be the one to read it while they clean because I can do a pretty good southern accent. That is when it struck me.
There is nothing I can do that they cannot do. All the things that set me apart from others when I am out In the world aren't so special when I am with them. Do I have missionary parents? Did I live in Korea? Can I kick out a sermon in nothin’ flat? Can I teach a roomful of children or adults on just about any topic with no preparation? Can I turn on a southern accent without even thinking about it? Can I feed a crowd and leave them satisfied? Can I throw a party sans the usual trappings and still show a good time? Sure. And each sister can do it better than the last.
The funny thing is that, aside from my husband and kids, no one loves me more than my sisters. I can't do anything unique. I am nothing special when I am around them. And yet they love me. I have had friends who've dropped me on my ass because I looked cross-eyed in their direction when there was dust in my eye. But I have had knock-down, drag-out fights complete with vehement (and sincere) cursing with my sisters. I have been one hundred percent wrong more times than I care to count with them. And they love me. They stick with me. They call me and seek me out and speak truth into my heart. Forgiveness is a foregone conclusion.
I can count on my hands the number of people with whom I can be at my worst who will not condemn me. My sisters (and husband and kids) are among the very select few. In fact, these people actually treat me with even more tender love when I am at my ugliest. It is not the fact that we are related that makes this so. These people are just really great people, and I happen to be family with some of them. I see how they treat others, and I am honored to know them.