Thursday, 27 March 2014

My Brother, My Friend

Hey there, Richard,
Happy Birthday! I love you!
I have always loved you, but, it seems the older we get, (You 40! and me.......ah........older than you.....even though I don't look it!) the closer we've become. Not that we've never had our differences! I haven't always been a perfect sister to you. There were a few times when we were younger that I was mean to you.
Like the time I threw your teeth mold down the basement stairs. That wasn't very sisterly of me. (But, in my defense, Mom said I was supposed to clean up the living room, and I felt it was only fair that you come up and bring your mold down to your room, but you kept saying I was the one who was supposed to clean up the living room so I should be the one to bring it down stairs, and I was mad about that and I said if you didn't come get it, I was going to throw it down the stairs and you yelled at me and said "Go ahead!" and so I did.) I don't know if I've ever told you this, but even in my anger in that moment, the second that mold left my fingers I regretted it. I wished I could have reached out and caught it before it smashed on the cement floor below. You wouldn't have known that though, because the words I yelled, -after you started bawlin'- "SERVES YOU RIGHT!" did not reflect that regret! Today, I would like to apologize for that. Sorry.
(But, since then, I'm pretty sure I have been awesome to you!)
I liked you when we were teenagers, too. Mostly. There was a short time frame when you were finally old enough to go to youth group that I didn't really like you. I didn't want you cramping my style with my friends. But, blast is all, it seemed my friends actually liked you! And, if I remember correctly, it wasn't too long before started to enjoy having you around.  You had, and have, this magnetic personality that draws people to you.
I like the person you are. I like your wacked sense of humour! I love the sound of your laugh! I love when you bring your beautiful family to my house for the weekend, because I love to be around you! As I write this, and as I reflect on the person you are, and how I feel when I am with you, my heart swells!
I asked God to show me something special about you, something that I, and perhaps you, might not have previously known.
He showed me joy.
Yes,  joy.
I feel like this is not a word, or a gift, that you would necessarily associate with yourself. But, I believe it to be true. Many people think joy and happiness are the same thing, but I don't think that is the case. I read an article that I think explains it quite accurately. (You can read it here if you like.)
In the article it says "...happiness tends to be fleeting and depends upon temporal factors like circumstances or other people. Joy, on the other hand, is true contentment that comes from internal factors like our faith in the Lord. True joy is everlasting and not dependent upon circumstances."
I think you have this kind of joy. I think it has been growing and developing inside you for a long time, (even if you haven't realized it) and it is ready to burst out of you! I see you growing and maturing, more and more, into the man God has intended you to be. While I know that you have always been a man of faith, as you have grown older (no disrespect intended!) I see it becoming so much more evident in your life. And that is going to bring forth joy like you have never experienced! And what is even more wonderful, is that joy is going to affect everyone around you! It is that joy, that is going to show the world, Jesus, through you.
Richard, I am proud to know you! I am blessed to be your sister,
 and I am honored to call you friend!
I love you.