now she has a BIG family. really... it is big. baby number 11 is on its way-any day now.
i try to visit her at least once every year or two. i have always loved being near her big family. the children are all good kids that help each other and you can actually take them places without getting us thrown out or banned. in stores, they follow along after her like a bunch of ducklings.
when i get home from a visit, my house is quiet. too quiet. i miss the mayhem and chaos of her big family. because it isn't bad chaos. it is loving. enviable. God inspired.
i never thought we would have a big family. just the two girls. just like my sister and i.
then God surprised me by giving us two more. i wasn't scared of having a "medium" sized family. i have had some practice with my nieces and nephews. i can cook and clean up after a dozen children. i can put eight to bed all by myself. i definitely can do laundry for an army. plus, if she can do it...so can i(not as gracefully or with as much dignity-but still i can at least survive) and if i have moments of terror, she can walk me through it, because having 10 children, she has seen and done it all(mostly-no one has stolen her car yet or set fire to a sibling).
i have teased her that i am going to catch up with her. one day my family will be as big as hers. probably not-that is why i say "tease." i am not dumb enough to challenge her. we always were competitive...that would be dangerous-for both of us!
she has been my inspiration as a mother, Godly wife, friend, partner in crime, home school parent, and Christian woman. she has been my advice, sounding board, conscious, teacher, and debating opponent. she has known me longer than any other person besides my parents...and she STILL speaks to me! did i list patient as one of her attributes?
she is the first person i call to tell exciting news to.
she is the person who can hurt me most with just one critical word.
she is the person i wished lived next door.
it is because of her that i gave my first child a sister of her own. and then i gave them two more sisters to
my life wouldn't be as rich or joyful without my beautiful sister.
so today i would like to acknowledge her birthday and say THANK YOU for being my sister, L! you are one of the first blessings God ever gave to me.
ABBA, THANK YOU FOR GIVING US FAMILY. MY FAMILY IS A BLESSING TO ME AND I THANK YOU FOR THEM. I PRAY THAT IT IS YOUR WILL THAT MY SISTER AND I HAVE MANY MORE YEARS TOGETHER. WE HAVE FOUGHT AND BEEN HURTFUL TO EACH OTHER AT TIMES. I AM SORRY THAT I HAVE NOT ALWAYS LOVED HER AS MYSELF. I APPRECIATE THE GRACES YOU HAVE GIVEN TO US, SO THAT WE MAY FORGIVE EACH OTHER AND BE A SOURCE OF LOVE AND SUPPORT TO ONE ANOTHER. I AM THANKFUL THAT WE CAN GROW IN FAITH AND FAMILY TOGETHER. THANK YOU FOR CREATING IN HER A HEART THAT PUTS YOU FIRST. SHE LOVES YOU LORD, AND WITNESSES IT THROUGH EVERYDAY EXAMPLE AND TEACHING OF HER CHILDREN. I LIFT HER UP IN PRAYER TODAY AND ASK THAT YOU KEEP HER AND HER FAMILY SAFE. I ASK THAT YOU RESTORE HER HUSBAND TO HER FULL TIME. I ASK THAT YOU GIVE HER HEALING AND STRENGTH AFTER THE NEWEST BABY IS BORN. I BOLDLY ASK YOU ALL THESE THINGS THROUGH CHRIST. AMEN.