I’ve been thinking about my three sisters lately. They are three successful, amazing people with incredible kids and big hearts. And I haven’t spoken to any of them in several months.
Another way God talks to me is to put an inescapable thought on my mind. Like a dream you can’t quite remember from the night before, but all day the person in the dream is just a thought away. Today, and yesterday, Vivian, Brenda and Joyce have been on my mind.
I suspect God is saying, "You are pushing them away." To which I want to argue, "No! They are pushing me away!" And though I think both statements are correct to a certain degree, I know God is right. Duh!
I don’t know why, in our old age, we have no real interest in maintaining a relationship with each other. In some ways—a less than happy childhood, abuse, frequent moves—we should cling tightly to the alliances we built as children. We needed the mental safety our siblings provided.
But as we’ve grown older, we have grown apart. And that chasm has never been wider than since our mother died this year. The mother who was certainly partly to blame for our childhood.
Maybe it’s just part of growing up. Minda and her brother go several months at a time without speaking to each other. My friend Nate says he and his siblings rarely talk. But I have other friends who will move mountains to go visit their sister or brother.
Perhaps it is a “mirror effect”: those we grew up with are too strong a reminder of all our childish foibles, sins and family dysfunction. The ones we long to forget. The ones our family will always remember and if not condemn us for, remind us of them just by their very presence in the room. Or our life.
I think we forget that the only opinion that matters is God’s and he’s already gone way past our foibles and forgiven our sins and repaired our dysfunctions.
A couple years ago I had a prayer-vision concerning my sisters. I was praying, just after laying down to sleep for the night (morning actually, as I was working third shift at the time). As I prayed with eyes closed, the dark field in front of me became a black field, black as in total absence of light. A palpable black.
Then a glowing ball of silver threads appeared and moved into the center of the field. Despite the bright silvery glow, the field remained mostly black, only illuminating the area immediately around it. It was a warm glow (not that I felt it, but I sensed the warmth of the Presence in the glow).
The silvery threads were dropping off the ball, landing randomly on the ground, still glowing. I started gathering them up and making vertical stacks, like sheaves of wheat. And then I gave the sheaves to two women, whom I knew, somehow, were two of my sisters.
My interpretation was that the glowing ball was God and the threads were strands of His love and I was gathering them and giving them to my sisters. I wanted to share God’s love with my sisters.
To this day, I do not know which two of my three sisters I was meant to share God’s love with. Maybe the two were representative of the three. A friend suggested they represented all my “sisters”, the ones whom I love in the Body of Christ as well as my birth sisters.
I think all three of my sisters are Believers, but only one has professed to me a living relationship with God. Sad that I don’t know for sure where the other two stand. And isn’t that a more important failure on my part than any childish foible I may be embarrassed about?
If God was telling me that He wanted me to bring His love to my sisters, I have not only failed in that mission, but like Jonah, I have run from His instruction. I hope it’s not too late to head back to Ninevah.