Written by Ellen Graf-Martin
My sweet girl is an only child, and as far as we know, that’s her lot in life. It’s just the way things have played out. There are a lot of benefits, to be sure – it’s far easier to plan vacations and go out for dinner with only one child. There aren’t sibling fights to break up, and she’ll never have to share her clothes, shoes or jewelry.
However, unless she chooses to create it, she may never experience sisterhood. Sisterhood, in all its grief and glory. The sharing of hearts, the breaking of hearts, the beauty of togetherness, and the effort that it takes to be real, invitational, honest, strong and vulnerable.
I want my daughter to know that there will be women she surrounds herself with, a sisterhood of the heart, who will be her greatest allies and fans. They can be the ones who fuel her faith, who help her love Jesus, who identify her giftings and support her callings. She can be that sister who shows up, empowers, prays, loves and comes alongside. I want her to learn to choose wisely, but to also choose broadly. To be part of a sisterhood that is wealthy with diversity, demographically, racially, culturally, and experientially. I want her to know that her soul-sisters might live next door, but they might just as easily live across continents or oceans.
I want my girl-child to know that it can be in the gathering in of the sisters, of the standing alongside, that the birthing of new things is given exponentially more opportunity. We women are good at birthing not just babies, but dreams and movements with our God-fuelled minds and our creative hearts. Oh, is there power in that creating of life. I want my daughter to know that power and be both stunned and propelled by it.
And this thing that is being birthed, from coast to coast? This gathering in of God’s women? It is not just for us, sisters. It is for the ones to come behind us – daughters, nieces, grandchildren. It is for generations that we cannot yet see or imagine. We gather in because we believe that God has more – more abundance, more harmony, more diversity, more than we have yet seen. So much more. He is doing a new thing, sister. He is not finished, and so we gather, as if to join in a war-cry against dissension, disunity and a falling-out instead of falling-in.
Would you join me?
On October 1st, sisters from across Canada will be standing side-by-side in one of the most beautiful places. We’ll worship, we’ll listen, we’ll learn, we’ll connect, we’ll grow and we’ll step out in faith knowing that when God builds a thing (like a sweet sisterhood), no weapon formed against it will stand. Let us Gather.
Ellen Graf-Martin is a slightly-granola Vancouver Island girl, committed to equipping and encouraging a life of hope and bravery, drawing on the richness of our unique contexts, giftings and experiences. She is convinced that within each of us there is great potential to become exactly what we were created to be and that together we are far more powerful than we could imagine. Ellen’s years of cross-cultural experience, her love of biblical truth, authentic communication style and sense of humour make her an effective and engaging speaker. Ellen lives with her beloved husband and gorgeous baby girl in Southwestern Ontario, where she is Founder & President of Graf-Martin Communications, a leading Canadian publicity and marketing agency.