According to Merriam Webster’s Dictionary, sisterhood is defined as, “The close relationship among women based on shared experiences, concerns, etc.” Most of the shows I used to watch growing up had a resounding theme of sisterhood such as Living Single, Girlfriends, The Babysitter’s Club, and so much more. Each of these shows portrayed positive images of interpersonal relationships among women. I would sometimes long for that kind of feeling when I was younger, being a part of a ladies group that would accept me. In this series, I am going to discuss my journey of redefining and reembracing biblical sisterhood and applying it to the 21st century. But first, allow me to tell you my story.
Odd Girl Out
During my teen years, I was super sensitive. Many of my peers would take advantage of my sensitivity. The worst feeling was to be taken advantage of by the ones I used to call friends. I could show you a number of birthday parties and sleepovers I was invited to during my teen years with only one hand (NO JOKE). I used to dread going to Pathfinder club (co-ed scouting group) camping trips because I was always the black sheep of the group. I would be the “slave” of the group by doing everything that my group would ask me too. I remembered when I was asked to go to our club’s outdoor kitchen during a camping trip and bring back cookies to the tent just so that they wouldn’t be around me. Nevertheless, I still viewed them as friends of mine. Then, my church started a young girls group called Sisters for the Son. The mission of the group was for us girls to build sisterly relationships with one another. To be honest, I felt that the group made me feel more left out than expected. I had my share of isolation bullying being a part of the group and kept my distance. I was normally the girl who would sit away from my age group on the bus during trips. The only time I felt accepted among my girl group was when I had candy. I had more guy friends than female friends as a result of it. I had only one true friend from that group and we are still best friends till this very day. She was the only person from Sisters for the Son who treated me like a true sister and I am forever grateful.
What was really interesting was that God had to reveal to me that the best friend that I would ever had is the one whom I’ve known the longest, my little sister Whitney. She witnessed everything I went through and although I was acting like that big sister who wanted to separate from her when we were younger, I was more connected to her. Whitney is definitely a God sent. I was able to understand what it means to be a sister. This helped me to be able to choose my girlfriends more wisely. During my high school life I was able to meet more amazing friends who I call sisters. Each of us experienced bullying and other circumstances. These girls were able to hear me vent out about everything. I found myself being a sister figure to the incoming freshmen. 10 years later, I began my seminary experience. I was nervous yet excited. I was conscientious about how the ladies would view me. I ended up participating in the lady seminarian group called Women’s Clergy Network (WCN) during my matriculation in the seminary. It was during my seminary experience when I experienced true sisterhood with a large group of ladies. I was connected with so many women from various walks of life. For once, I felt included. I was able to form meaningful relationships with ladies without feeling like I had to be somebody else or have something. I didn’t have to conceal my emotions. They allowed me to express my concerns and feelings without having to gossip about me behind my back. They held me accountable. When I messed up, instead of chastising me, they helped me become better a better woman. These ladies encouraged me to be comfortable in the skin I’m in. They took the time to pray with me when I was at my lowest. They affirmed me. They mentored me. They loved me. Just thinking about them brings tears to my eyes because this was something I longed for.
Recently, I was able to attend Charlotte Gambrill and Natalie Grant’s Dare to Be Conference and the topic of sisterhood was mentioned. I was reminded that the need for sisterhood is vital in a woman’s life. We were created for community. The Bible tells us in Ecclessiastes 4:9, “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed.” After prayer and reflections, I felt impressed to make a blog series on about redefining biblical sisterhood in today’s context. This journey is just as exciting as my series about worship. Wanna tag along? Get your Bible and journals ready.
Forever Naturally Adorned,