My Aunt Joyce is 87 years old. She is my mom’s sister, 5 years her senior.
When they shared a bedroom as kids Aunt Joyce convinced my mom that at night she climbed out the window and became Wonder Woman, her tights and cape hidden in the gutter of the roof. (I don’t think she realized Wonder Woman doesn’t wear a cape).
As much as I love Aunt Joyce, she lives thousands of miles away and until recently we weren’t in close contact.
Then two things happened. David got cancer, and she (who has never EVER owned a computer) got an iPad.
You might say Aunt Joyce is a late bloomer. She gives me hope for myself.
Aunt Joyce got her ears pierced at 84. But she won’t buy dangly earrings because she thinks it draws attention to her less-than-young-looking neck.
She was distressed after she had cataract surgery and she could see her imperfections more clearly. She asked me to pray for her pride because she said even Nancy, her Clinique girl would not be able to help her.
She stood in the background while David was in hospice, praying. Just praying. The whole time she reminded me of the presence of the Holy Spirit. Sure, steady, peace-filled. A quiet comforter.
She has a goal of having her whole church over to her apartment, a few at a time, for dinner. She asks me to pray for grace and patience when she is having the “elderly” over for coffee. They can be a bit cranky, you know.
Recently Aunt Joyce sent me this wonderful quote on prayer:
“Fall upon prayer as your only aid and help in this life. When you are weary, pray. When you are joyful, let your joy feed deeper prayer. When in hunger or thirst, open your heart to the Lord. When in exultation bind your life more firmly to God. When prayer itself if hard, pray all the more. For prayer is ascent to the heart of God who is its true and proper Master in every condition of this life.” Archimandrite Irenei
We all need an Aunt Joyce
- to remind us, as Craig Groeschel says, “If you’re not dead, you’re not done.”
- to remind us of the value of “small things” (Zechariah 4:10)
God is great not because nothing is too big for Him. God is great because nothing is too small for Him either. Mark Batterson
- to remind us that “A changed world begins with us … and a changed us begins when we pray.” Eugene Peterson (James 5:15b)
- to model a quiet, godly life of faithfulness that clings to God no matter what (1 Thes. 4:11)
And, like Wonder Woman and Super Girl (or Lucy and Ethel) I just stared open-mouth last year when my mom, the other half of this dynamic duo, said she thought she and Dad (82 and 85 years old) ought to take the 2-6 a.m. shift hosting the homeless at their church on Christmas Eve.
This is the same mom who texts and sends pictures on her iPhone, and dresses so hip that her granddaughters have been known to borrow her stuff.
Who are these women??? I want to be like them when I grow up.