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Saturday, October 27, 2012

Keeping my sister…

 Then the LORD said to Cain, "Where is your brother Abel?"
"I don
't know," he replied. "Am I my brother's keeper?"
Genesis 4:9 (NIV)

I do not know her, really. We have been gathered together in online fellowship, writing about our faith, supporting each other, living far more transparently in this sacred space than perhaps we do elsewhere. We know only what we choose to share about one another, and we can only rely on each other's veracity…there is no reason not to do otherwise.

She is very hard on herself, and I recognize that in some form from the person I used to be. Older, clearer now, I forgive myself more easily; giving myself the benefit of every doubt because the kindness I show myself becomes the kindness I show everyone else. It has become my way. 

God knows you better and
guides you in your blindness.
Just follow in your darkness knowing
The Hand that holds you is trustworthy.
This morning, my sisterfriend told me something I did not know about her; a practice we share. But in the same breath, she said she wasn't very good at it, and I couldn't understand why. When I encouraged her for taking uncommon risks (the ones not everyone takes) and asked her into to speak such negativity into her life, her next comment was that she probably just needed "a whap on the head." She then confessed that she wasn't even aware of her negative tone.

How comfortable have we become with negative self-talk? Are we so accustomed to beating ourselves up that we're not even paying attention anymore? According to ChristianAffirmations.com,
It is estimated that over 80% of the average person’s Self Talk is negative.
How are we caring for our sisters and brothers if we let this happen? We cannot constantly monitor one another's internal monologues, but we can pay attention to what people are saying when we listen (do we really listen?) What about what we say to ourselves?

At that moment, I determined to take her on. Because when you know better, you must do better. It wasn't like I had a choice, I simply had a calling about it.

I then remembered one of my favorite quotes from William Blake, who wrote “I myself do nothing. The Holy Spirit accomplishes all through me. This reminded me that I walk with a purpose, though not one of my own making. Ultimately, I realized that I am my sister's keeper. She represents some part of the me that once was, but not who I am anymore.  I have learned…the kindness I show myself becomes the kindness I show everyone else. It has become my way. I was to give that path to her. I am responsible. I am my sister's keeper.

So, little sister, you are worthy, no matter what wrong messages you hear or repeat.
The last time I was feeling weary, a very good friend, one who laughs with (and at) me, prays with me, prays for me, and helps me see things, showed me something my mirror couldn't tell me...
despite the many times that your mind tells you different, know that God knows you better than you know yourself and is guiding you in your "blindness". Just follow in your darkness and know that the hand that holds you is trustworthy. 

I'm on your side. I see just ahead of where you are to where you're going, and you can do this.  The kindness you show yourself becomes the kindness you will show everyone else. It can, it will become your way. Please be brave enough to take this path. I am my sister's keeper, as you will be for the sister than comes after you. We are responsible. We have been gathered together for a reason, writing about our faith, supporting each other, glorifying God in all we do. Our fellowship is a blessing, and more than that, our sisterhood is a reminder that God is good.

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