Monday, July 23, 2007

Big brothers

Well, I should make that singular. My big brother is quite amazing, I must say, so maybe he's good enough to fill the role of two big brothers. Thats justifiable.

When we were little, I was forced to play with Steven and my two other boy cousins. Being around those boys really tested my patience. I had to learn to ramp and wreck bikes, ride a go-kart (not very successfully, I might add), climb the trees, be a ninja-turtle (the purple one of course....nobody else wanted to be purple), and try and make sense of the fun they had racing matchbox cars down the hallway...and then pretend I enjoyed it, too. When I got older, my older cousin and Steven decided that they weren't up for playing with us 2 younger ones, so Jason was subject to my wrath. I no longer let him wreck his bike, but he had to decide what kind of car his bike was, how many kids he had, and where he was going. And he wasn't allowed to wreck into me in my "teal mini-van." He also played Barbies, though he may not admit it.

Steven, being 5 years older than I am, quickly realized how un-cool it was to hang out with his little sister, and we'd fight over everything from how loud his music was, to who ate the last pop-tart. He always won, unless mom was there....then I won :) I remember the first time I truly appreciated my brother, though. I was 16 and he was 21. He'd moved home from school already and he wasn't too happy to be sharing a bathroom with a teenage girl. I was working at the gas station in Fountain City and this boy kept coming in trying to get me to go places with him. He would sit in the booth at the station for hours, waiting for me to get off work so he could walk with me out to my car and try to convince me to go hang out with him and his loser friends. Luckily, I had a good head on my shoulders and never gave in. But, my brother knew him, and found out about it. He was not happy. I remember him coming home one night saying that he almost got in a fight with this guy. When my parents and I asked why....he said that he didn't want this jerk bugging his little sister and that he threatened him not to bug me about it again. Well, it worked. My big brother successfully stood up for me and for the first time, I loved him like I never thought I could. He was my hero.

Looking back, 7 years later, I see how much closer we became after that. Maybe he realized that I wasn't so bad afterall....or maybe he liked sticking up for someone. Whatever it was, it was so great.

As I type this, Steven is boarding a plane to head to Bogota, Columbia with a missions team. I called him last night and he was a little nervous. He's never flown before and he's never experienced anything quite like he's going to experience. I know that when he is down there, he's going to see God move in his life and the lives of others in ways he can't even begin to imagine. I know that God is calling him to do great things, but I'm so nervous. Its going to be a long week of prayer, thats for sure. I know God will take care of him, but I know this is new territory for him and he's nervous. I just want him to be at ease and really experience the power in serving others in God's name. I'm so proud of him. I tear up at the thought of how great he is. God really blessed me with an amazing family and I can't praise Him enough for the great big brother I have.

and I just don't know if you could ask for a better hero.


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