As a small girl with three brothers, I longed for a little sister when I was growing up, so my parents told me to pray for one. A couple of weeks after my seventh birthday, my prayers were answered when my first sister was born.
My father had been serving overseas and was allowed to come back for the birth. My two older brothers were at boarding school, so my little brother and I were on our own with the babysitter when my parents went to the hospital.
My father got back from the hospital at about 8:30 pm, clutching a bottle of champagne. He didn't want to drink alone with the babysitter, so he woke me up to give me my first taste of champagne and tell me about my new little sister.
As we sat there drinking our champagne, my father said something to me and called me "Dearest Daughter". My immediate response was, "Daddy, you must never say that to me again. You've got two daughters now so I can't be your dearest."
He never has called me "Dearest" again - although he has told that story approximately 15,683 times over the years since then.
Two years later, we were equally delighted when my second little sister turned up as a second birthday present for my first sister.
Today, my youngest sister is away, travelling round Europe, but my first sister will be coming over for lunch with her husband and two children. I baked a cake last night and left it on the cooling rack overnight, so now I must go down and ice it, and get a few little treats ready.
I thank God for answering my prayers as a child and giving me two such wonderful sisters, and ask Him for abundant blessings for both of them in the year ahead.