Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Thank God For ... My Sister

September’s a funny month because my dad and my sister were born in this month so just when I think it’s safe to get my gratitude out for one family member another pops up and demands the same, but I’m so grateful to God for them both that it’s a pleasure not a chore.

I actually have two sisters the elder of whom is based in America and I didn’t really grow up with her, so I’ve only ever known the younger who’s still over one year older than me and so to me was my big sister.

When I was a lot younger, Ruth was a dictator who ruled with an iron fist. I’m quite certain she must have been inspired by the leadership of the Prime Minister of the time Margaret Thatcher. For Ruth indeed ruled my brother and I by fear and we knew our place with her – we did not mess with her stuff, we did not enter her bedroom … ever … unless royal approval was given. Even when we started growing up and David and I were physically Ruth’s superior she still subdued us by intellect. The amount of weeks’ washing up I did for Ruth is like the descendants of Abraham – innumerable. Ruth really knew how to manipulate her brothers.

For all that though I give God thanks for her because for the longest time up until I met and became close to my wife, Ruth was the best friend I ever had. I can’t speak highly enough of how strong she was for me. When I was contemplating things, Ruth would always offer a perspective on things that made it easier for me to make a decision. She never condemned me for mistakes I made, neither did she soft-soap anything and flatter me – she was brutally honest when she needed to me, always looking out for my good. Indeed she was looking out for my good so much she even did the vetting job on Authrine before she was allowed to be my wife! Hah, I still remember the relations between my sister and wife in the early days – just a testament to Ruth’s protective nature. It’s that what made her such a great sister to me. It’s the one thing I’ve never needed to look for – a great sister, because I already have one in Ruth and I don’t really know if I’ll ever find anyone who comes close to her.

So there’s much to be grateful to God for her input in my life, but her example and testimony is also worthy of admiration. My sister has endured setbacks ever since she was a baby – hard, trying, difficult, off-putting, discouraging episodes that would have weakened anyone else perhaps to the point of despair. There was something about Ruth, though, her faith in God strengthened her in those trying times, so even though it was upsetting, she would work through that and trusting in God persevere towards the goal set before her – not only that she would achieve it. A natural-born leader and a great teacher she is able to inspire the best out of those who she lead and taught. I still chuckle at the fact that she was teaching children since she was a child herself and completely self-taught developed a teaching capability that would be the envy of many a children’s teacher.

She is an extraordinarily principled woman who’s stuck to her convictions through thick and thin and never wavered (at least to me) in her commitment to Christ. Like her Dad, Ruth is notoriously loyal and dedicated in everything she did. No fanfare, no big deal and sometimes even at the cost to her own health or welfare my sister would keep on keeping on. Supporting and serving others selflessly in such a manner that could only be described as humility in action. Sure she could be strong in her opinion and outspoken from time to time. She had a heavy stubborn streak of that there is no doubt and she could be heavily private putting on a public presentation that would guard against any intrusion into what was going on inside. She is by no means perfect. I give thanks for her, though, because she’s committed to perfection. She loves God with her heart and there’s no doubt in my mind she has been a huge influence in my own spiritual development just by her example.

I’ll always look up to Ruth even though times have changed and the dynamic of our relationship has evolved from big-sis – little-bro through best friends through to now brother and sister with families and larger responsibilities. At this particular time in her life I pray that she will truly experience the manifold blessings of God and go onto bigger and better things by faith. I love her so very much and no one deserves happiness more than she does. As long as there’s breath in my body I always want to give God thanks and praise for my sister – Ruth.

4 His Name’s Sake
da man cd

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