Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Sibling(s) (05/01/08)
TITLE: My Brother/My Friend
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When I was a mere slip of a girl I thought my big brother could do anything. I loved
tagging after him everywhere he wentÖthat worked well until he slid into his teens, feet first. Everything seemed to change, the three years difference in our age, became a chasm that I just could not seem to bridge, although I diligently tried. There are three events that stood out in the life of my brother for me.
The first was his going into the Air Force. I was in my senior year of high school and I just could not imagine days without him teasing me, kidding me and I, him. I recall once having made him a cake and using shaving cream for frostingÖthe look on his face was priceless. I think Ronnieís going away changed our family forever in a way. Certainly for Mom it did, she knew that he would probably never live at home again and it marked an end of an era. I, also, felt that our relationship would change, and it did. When he returned from his basic training the childish games we had played, stopped. We became real friends. He didnít mind my going places with him and his friends, just as I was comfortable with him going places with my friends and me. Magically we began to enjoy each otherís company.
The second event that proved indelible was his marriage. As a sister I did not think anyone could be quite good enough for him, even though I knew all of his faults. It is true that love is myopic. Ronís bride was/is a wonderful girl and their first born, was a daughter, Cindy. She filled our hearts as only new birth can. The years were good to them both; they had three sons to accompany the gift of Cindy. Their quiver was full.
The third and last event that so impacted my life was when my brother was diagnosed with colon cancer. I was living in Texas and he in Virginia. He called to tell me that he was having some health issues, but failed to reveal just how serious they were and how long he had been symptomatic. As a nurse I would have advised him, but he never hinted that he had serious problems. Prior to his diagnosis in December I had begun to witness to him that previous August. God had placed him on my heart. I knew that as children, 13 and 10 years of age, that we had accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior, but I also knew that we both had drifted away from our first love. I had rededicated my life to the Lord and was so concerned about Ronís spiritual health. My mom called me Thanksgiving Day and informed me that Ronnie looked very sick, but no physician at that time had actually pinpointed his problem. She sounded worried and we prayed. Not many days later the diagnosis of colon cancer became a reality. He was scheduled for surgery after Christmas. I flew home a few days prior to his surgery and was stunned by his appearance. His body revealed the ravishing of disease and I so recognized that look. I now understood the Lordís prompting.
His surgery confirmed a large tumor in the colon, necessitating a colostomy. The disease process had metastasized to other organs; His prognosis was grave, but I believed the report of the Lord. I took a leave of absence from my job and stayed with my brother and his family, helping them all in coping with the death sentence that the doctor had proclaimed. To make a long story short, I was privileged to lead my brother back to Jesus, and although he suffered greatly in the end, I knew where he was going. There was a true peace in this knowledge.
My brother left a legacy in his children. They are all saved, serving the Lord, and rearing their children in the admonition of the Lord. My brother was a wonderful friend, a loving father and a good husband. I miss him but know that one day we will be reunited. I think siblings are a value gift from God, one to be nurtured and treasured.
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