I know all about sisters. As a matter of fact, I have a bunch of them. One full, biological sister, and a grand total of 6 that are half-sisters and step-sisters. Some I am very close to and share countless memories with because we’ve spent a ton of time together, and some (I confess) I barely know. And then there are what I consider my “adopted” sisters and these are the handful of women on my most inner circle. The women with whom I share my life, my secrets, and sometimes even my children. Most of them are passionately in love with the same Jesus, but each has her own unique story of how their love affair with Him began. We’ve done hard things together. We’ve laughed deliriously, seen each other ugly-cry, and we have knees that are bruised and worn from fighting in prayer for each other. This is the glue that adheres them to my heart and makes me consider them my sisters.
Recently, I signed up for a new kind of ‘sister.’ And I couldn’t be more thankful that I did.
Back in October I stumbled upon a blog called Simple Moments Stick. I signed up for something the author calls “Solidarity Sisters” and waited to be paired with the sister-blogger I would get to know and spend the month of November communicating with.
And then I got an email from Kristen. She is 25 years old, not married, and balances 2 careers: One as a full-time graduate student in her last year at Michigan State pursuing a PhD in molecular biology and biochemistry (no big deal, right?!). Another as a blogger/author/publisher of Bible Studies who manages blogs for other ministries as well. And somehow this gem wasn’t too busy to sign up to be my pen pal either! Hallelujah!
Oh…and one more thing about Kristen. She has a life-shortening genetic disease known as Cystic Fibrosis. But that is also no big deal either because she knows how to focus of the ‘life’ part of that description. She’s so focused on the living that she doesn’t seem to have time to worry about the ‘shortening’ aspect of her disease. It doesn’t define her. And fear doesn’t control her. She worries only about living her one life well and leaving a Jesus-sized imprint on as many people’s hearts as she can. If you don’t believe me, hop on over to her blog, All For Him Life, and read this post about her life expectancy. Have a tissue or 10 handy. And don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Lest you think that because our daily lives are so drastically different that we would not have enough in common to “bond” I can assure you this couldn’t be further from the truth. It turns out that when you have Jesus in common and you are willing to be vulnerable about your doubts, struggles, and fears, friendships form rather quickly and sisterhood is pretty much a given.
Getting to know Kristen last month was extraordinary. And the best part is that she is coming to Hawaii for a work trip this month so she and I will actually get to meet face-to-face! I honestly can’t wait to hug her as though I’ve known her my whole entire life.
Some might call it coincidence that our paths have crossed. Others may call it fate or luck. I prefer to call it what it is–a gift from our God who loves us more than we could ever imagine. He knew that I needed a sister like Kristen in my inner circle…a sister who would remind me how important it is to focus on the living part every day. I am eternally thankful that He saw fit to bless me with such an incredible new “sister.” Her courage and grace encourage me. And her passion for living inspires me to continue working on my own Jesus-sized imprint on this world for as long as I am here.