Here I sit… contemplating this amazing word… “Kindred.” Defining it for the joy of this very moment and reflection of all the places that hurt… It embodies… the allied connected, matching each others steps, dreams that are similar, resembling each other in experiences, harmonious in the views that matter, united in battles against the enemy of this world, willing and friendly, sympathetic towards other’s pain and triumphs, understanding when the journey is just too hard and peaceable in all life’s chaos. These are some of the beautiful pearls that I have found hidden among all that is common in the world of words… and the hurts and losses of humanity, God loves so much. Their luster and glow have permeated the wounded and aching places. They fall from my hands, into the treasure chest where I store everything… I want to share.
What is it to have someone kindred?
This is to accept a loving relationship with Jesus. As these pearls so precious, are sifted between my fingers, they are mixing with my salty tears of remembrance. How each one looks different, in the way it was formed, because of what God has allowed it to endure… and to share. They are all similar in the luminescence they are leaving across my heart. Oh this kindred fellowship… it is the joy of the family of God, those precious treasured people God placed into my life as I journey. In the past 2 years, I have been ministered to repeatedly. God has sent friends, who have become brothers and sisters, so sympathetic becoming understanding allies…. kindred spirits if you will. Dear ones who have walked roads similar to mine, just similar enough, to shine a light on the way that is still dark for me. They are connected enough to see we serve the same risen Savior and that we walk roads, sojourning together toward our home in… heaven. To have someone kindred, is to know the joy and blessings God has promised to us in times of great pain and heartache. It is also the gracious gift of knowing that we are not being singled out to be persecuted… but rather to know this broken world is filled with broken people who need Him and each other, reminding one another of Jesus. And to encourage each one to take steps forward, until He comes again to carry us home. To have someone kindred, is more then having a friend… it is having family… a sister or a brother, to fellowship with and share the load with and to draw closer to Jesus arms with. It is a reminder… that we are all in this together. And Oh friends, it is, most importantly… how Jesus proves Himself. To have someone kindred, is to know Jesus. His beloved ones, so kindred to Himself cannot help but be like Him. And they will know who we are… because of His love… His kindred, holy, gracious love.
What is it to be someone kindred?
Now, this is harder to answer. It is to be like Jesus and it requires us… taking the responsibility of who we are in Christ. To be someone kindred, is to truly and graciously pour ourselves out. Being vulnerable and transparent, being present in the pain of others, being generous and sacrificial, being the ears with silent mouths, being the one to speak God’s word into the lives and hearts of His beloved ones, being the “Jesus hug” when another needs the tangible Jesus. Oh, to be kindred, is to know first how loved we are… so that we can be poured out into another. Friends, this is so hard. And please know, we cannot do this, Christ does this. Our own strength is not enough. To be someone kindred, requires us to allow Jesus to be intimately acquainted with us. To allow His hands to move ours, His feet to walk in ours and His heart to be poured out into us. Gracious and loving are the thoughts He presses into our very souls, until our very cries are His words. “Let us consider how we can encourage one another… and even more so as we see the day approaching.” Let us be kindred… in the joy that we paint upon each other’s souls. Let us consider pouring hope into the cups of our parched brothers and sisters. Let us, in our own journey’s battles and victories, hold a dear one’s hand, and leave behind the inky hand print of our Father’s great love for us. Let us speak… and even sing… the beauty of His cadence and melody of peace into a few weary hearts. Because, dear ones, this is what it is to be… someone kindred.
My kindred pearls…
Jesus has become the most precious treasure. I am still learning to grasp this relationship. Its value is beyond comprehension. I cannot fathom why and how He could love me. He was there when I took my first breath and was there when my beloved took His last. Jesus is who I want to be most kindred to.
My favorite parts of Psalm 139 (The Message)
I’m never out of your sight.
You know everything I’m going to say
before I start the first sentence.
I look behind me and you’re there,
then up ahead and you’re there, too—
your reassuring presence, coming and going.
This is too much, too wonderful—
I can’t take it all in!
If I flew on morning’s wings
to the far western horizon,
You’d find me in a minute—
you’re already there waiting!
Then I said to myself, “Oh, he even sees me in the dark!
At night I’m immersed in the light!”
It’s a fact: darkness isn’t dark to you;
night and day, darkness and light, they’re all the same to you.
Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth;
all the stages of my life were spread out before you,
The days of my life all prepared
before I’d even lived one day.
Investigate my life, O God,
find out everything about me;
Cross-examine and test me,
get a clear picture of what I’m about;
See for yourself whether I’ve done anything wrong—
then guide me on the road to eternal life.
My earthly kindred friends would only want you to know it is by His grace and in His power that these pearls have been shared… the name of Jesus illuminates from these precious gifts. I want you to know the qualities and beauty I have personally been blessed to have given to me. These are true stories, and only a brief taste of the reason I know true love in Jesus Christ is mine to share….
Before my husband was diagnosed with cancer, God was placing kindred people in strategic places, awaiting the time when He’d use them to shine his love. Many such people were there, lining the path, we’d soon find ourselves on. Two such people come to mind just now. Precious was the beauty and luster of the shine God had polished them with. So, when Chris was diagnosed with cancer and the outlook was grim, at best, God sent them in. They became and remain… kindred to my heart… as friends, mentors, family and precious treasures. When the battle was crushing our very bones, they stood… on their knees and carried our burdens to the throne of our Father. God graciously poured out in them, and they in turn shared that by pouring it out upon us. When Chris’s battle was finished and Jesus held him close. It was evident I was not alone. I was encouraged to seek, to cry out, to press into Jesus side, to get wise counsel and to take care of myself. God taught me through them, that strength is not in us, but in Him and He will use willing servants to walk close by and remind us that this is our journey and that we are loved in every single step of it.
During my husband’s battle with cancer, I took a bold step. Out of my normal character and comfort zone, and made a connection with a perfect stranger, a widow whose husband also battled cancer. I had heard from dear friends of her journey… similar… but different. We corresponded now and again as time allowed. When my husband went to heaven… I was so grateful for this precious treasure God had been making of our friendship… which I’d call a sisterly fellowship now. I have yet to give her a real hug… for now the cyber ones will have to do… someday. And so this pearl, I treasure, shone the value and importance of having those kindred ones, who have walk where you walk. They shine light on the steps I have yet to take.
In the glow of a morning song… as my beloved husband of over twenty years, was ushered into the intimate embrace of Jesus arms…. Jesus held me too. Probably the most precious of pearls, is the embrace of the family of God. There is one such blessing that was wrapped around me, standing out today. Because of the words spoken with it… “remember who is really holding you right now… Jesus.” I will never forget, how Jesus held me that day. So many embraces, that I couldn’t help but stand up and keep taking steps forward. And I pray for an opportunity… to do the same for someone else.. someday.
After a few months, someone reached out to me. A perfect stranger, who walked a widow’s journey. I hesitated, unsure of how much I had to offer, as a friend. And then I remembered the friendship I’d reached out to make only a few short months ago. This widow sister has become a beautiful pearl to my heart. Sharing the load, in some ways and praying for each other has added life to my journey. God continues to paint beautiful pictures, both literally and spiritually, upon our friendship…. as sisters.
Becoming kindred and accepting kindred, a blessing that cannot be fully expressed here. These little stories are only small pieces of a grander picture. May God show you how to seek after the pearls of being and having someone kindred. God has made us for fellowship and this joining together for encouragement is a treasure. Pain is not erased, but its burden is eased in the sharing of the load. Joy, when shared, becomes great joy. Friends please know that you have great value and can give great value… because of Jesus.