Thursday, August 4, 2011

Goodbye, childhood.

My curly-haired older brother is quite a guy. I counted him among my two "best friends" when I was in my late teens. Mom and Dad say that he spoiled me.. Maybe he did, (okay, I know he did.) but he also invested countless hours into my life, talking me down from the edge of whatever trouble I had brought on myself, whatever tantrum I was about to throw, smoothing over whatever hurt I imagined myself to be inflicted with.

I knew that he would always pick up the phone when I called, if it was at all possible for him, and talk to me for hours. He always had time to listen to me, and then offer wise counsel. He never said what I wanted to hear, but somehow, the way he would deliver his message of, "you know the right thing to do, now grow up and do it." kept me running back to him to hear it again and again.

While he may have been spoiling me, I'm still grateful for all he did, always pointing my fingers back at myself, causing me to see the error of my ways without judging me. Let's face it. Nobody wants to be judged. Instead of saying what would make me happy in that moment, he would always point me towards the one Joy-Giver, the Lord Jesus Christ.

When Dad and Mom asked him to stop spoiling me, I thought that the world was over. It was a critical turning point in my life, one I thought I would never recover from. (Being in my teens, everything that happened had an eternal effect, in my mind) I cried, yelled at him, cried to him, yelled at him some more, begged him... all to no avail.. he never stopped loving me, but it had to be from a distance.

I'm so grateful for the wisdom of my parents. I grew up a lot that next year. (I'm still growing up... probably will be until I'm forty...or older) I had alienated the rest of my siblings and friends while getting closer to my "best friends" and I suddenly found myself all alone, forced to turn to the the Friend who is closer than a brother. I wouldn't trade this budding relationship with Christ for anything in the world. Not even having my best friends back.

Anyways.. My brother continued to be wise and awesome and sweet, and eventually I stopped being angry with him for "abandoning me," and was able to see how wise, awesome and sweet he actually was. He's still on my best friend list, but then, so is everybody. =)

My big brother is getting married in a little over a week.

I'm sitting here staring at the above sentence, letting the reality sink in. I'll probably bawl my eyes out at the wedding. (or afterward) I'm so thankful that they will be mostly tears of joy. God has provided a perfect match for each of my siblings who've gotten married. I couldn't be happier for him and his soon-to-be-wife, (who was my friend long before she was his girlfriend). I thank God for bringing her into our lives, and for FINALLY opening my brothers eyes to be able to see her. =) She's a total jewel, and I love her.

Some tears will be for saying goodbye to that part of childhood. So, without further ado, "Goodbye, childhood. I have better things to do now.."

"I want to know Christ - yes, to know the power of His resurrection and participation in His sufferings, becoming like Him in His death... Not that I have already attained all this, or have arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me... one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus."

I'm quoting Paul on this, because he says it so much better than I can. =)

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