Erin is 16 years old and loves to sing and write music. Recently she sang some of her songs at a fundraiser for the Joni and Friends Area Ministry in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She says that her younger sister Carly, who was born with a disability, has influenced her songwriting, and we wanted to ask her more about that!
So listen in…
In what way has your sister influenced your songwriting?
Carly has taught me a lot about compassion and has shown me a new way of looking at people in need. Everyone has their struggle, sometimes we just need a little help to push through it and that's why I write the songs I write.
Can you give an example of something that has been disappointing or hard for you in having a sister with special challenges?
I always wanted to be a big sister and when Carly was born, I felt like I could never be the big sister I wanted to be. She would never come into my room when she was scared in the middle of the night, and we would never have tea parties together, or do makeovers, or play hop-scotch together. But I learned I was still her big sister just the same, it was just different. I learned to enjoy doing other big sister things with Carly—like helping her learn to swim or teaching her new things in her therapy. Although being a big sister to Carly is different than I thought it would be, it is no less an absolute joy.
How would you like to encourage other kids who have a sibling with disabilities?
Even when it is hard, remember the blessing that your sibling is. You may sometimes think that it would be so much easier if they were just a "normal" kid, but do not forget that God made them exactly the way they are for His perfect purpose… just like He made you exactly the way you are for His purpose! God made you their sibling for a reason which is meant to bless you and cause you joy and it is helping to form you into the person that God wants you to be. When things get hard, don't forget that God sees the big picture and knew exactly what He was doing when He put you in your sibling's life — and them in yours.
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