When I first became a sister, I never thought I would tire of hearing people actually calling me "Sister." However, after a long week in school after a week off for Thanksgiving... I would be glad if no one ever called me anything again!
I love my kids so much and I love school but they break my heart sometimes. Sometimes, I want to say, "Please, don't say sister again!" My love for them never ends, however, I quickly move in a matter of moments from disappointment, to pride, to fun, to sorrow, to happiness and many more! I try to remember they are only in middle school, but I see so much potential in them that I am terrified they will let all that go in favor of what the world has offered them.
So today, the boys were telling me all about who is breaking up with who and who has a new girlfriend... I do love that they feel comfortable to tell me because I do try to be very open and available with them. Then one of them said, "Sister (that was his first mistake :) ), Joe is a player." Now poor Joe is one of those all around great kids. He's smart, polite, and popular. He is a good kid - always helpful even when he doesn't need to be, always kind, always a gentleman. I didn't know how to say anything I was thinking. What came up was something like, "Please don't ever be a player... You'll break my heart - all of you! You're too wonderful and special for that!" The hard thing in middle school is that they never let you know if they are taking you seriously or not. It is like planting teeny, tiny seeds that you never see come to fruit. They are always there, and the kids might actually think about them sometimes, however, they would never tell you!
They then proceeded to start singing a song that has some not very nice lyrics which I stopped immediately. They responded - "Sister, we wouldn't have said the next line, not in front of a sister, not in front of a lady." So I guess that's a step in the right direction.
My point is really that it is almost impossible, except for grace, to counteract what our culture is doing to our young people. I always have to tell myself that I just need to fall back on the fact that I have loved them, prepared them, guided them, and done my best to shield them from those things that can and will diminish their understanding of their own dignity and the dignity of others. I hope and I pray that God will bless that and that even the word, "Sister" that they speak so often will be one that reminds them of love, peace, joy, and faith.