Happy sixteenth birthday! I can’t believe that I’m already saying that to one of my siblings. Although, to tell the truth, you have acted older than sixteen for quite some time.
You have always been a role model for me and the rest of your brothers and sisters. We used to think that magazine was pronounced “mazazine” because that was the way you said it. Though you may not realize it you are still teaching us things every day. You have never said, as Paul did, “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.” (1 Corinthians 11:1.) But your life has displayed it.
You could never help being a leader. I guess it came naturally as the oldest child. But as you grew older you began to lead the way that Christ did. When we were little, you made me be Xerxes and Joseph in our games so that you could be Esther and Mary. It was your way of leading. But now things are different. You lead by service. Jesus said, “Let the greatest among you become as the youngest, and the leader as one who serves.” (Luke 22:26.) You lead by dying to yourself and putting the interests of others before your own.
I’m sure you would let me “be Esther” now if I wanted to. But our interests have changed over the years. We enjoy talking together about serious (and not-so-serious) things. I always like hearing your insight on various topics and feel like I can share my thoughts freely with you. Proverbs 13:20 says, “Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.” I am so blessed to have a wise big sister who can sharpen me as “iron sharpens iron” (Proverbs 27:17). I love you!