For my birthday about two years ago, my older sister Jess gave me a Giving Key with the word BRAVE engraved on it.
My sister is my rock. She had seen me break off a relationship promising riches and social status, because it was void of love and passion, and watched as I rebuilt my individuality and my trust in God. It meant so much that she acknowledged my struggle and the bravery it took to make that choice and start over.
I clung to that necklace for two years as a token of encouragement and love.
Recently, I found out that one of my closest friends had been physically and verbally abused by her father for her entire childhood, and she now watched as the abuse passed on to her siblings. Because of that damage, she became involved in unhealthy relationships and found herself lost and deeply hurt.
One evening, staying up late talking and drinking wine, I realized - She needs to be Brave. I ran and got my necklace, gave her a little speech about what it had meant to me and what I intended for it to mean to her, and with shaking hands, handed it over.
My heart ached slightly at the loss of such a precious token of my sisters love, but I knew it was the right thing to do. And I know now that it meant the world to her. My hope is that she will cling to it in the hard times and know that she is BRAVE and there is someone who believes in her.