Faye had outlived most of her closest friends. Life had become quite tough for her. She didn’t like that some people call it “the golden years.” There wasn’t much golden in old age for her. In fact, her vision was almost gone, deteriorated over the years. She could hardly even hear. Books on CD were about the only way to pass the time. Sometimes a good soul would come and read the church newsletter to her. Sometimes the good soul would even read it twice.
I visited Faye every now and then, between the busyness of committee meetings and all-to-important “missed call” notices on my desk. Being a good pastor consists in taking advantage of such minutia. But I should have visited Faye more often than not. I regret that I didn’t have as much time for her as Jesus would have wanted. Sometimes, though, I’d give the seemingly more pressing items a rest and drop by her room at the nursing home. This part of the nursing home should have been renovated for her, though. It was too institutional, too stagnant, too lifeless. Faye was still alive and needed things to be alive around her.
When I visited Faye, it actually seemed like Faye was visiting me. There was catching up about the kids, talk of the weather, talk about her ailments. But then Faye knew just how to make a turn in the conversation to God. I envied her for that. Some people just know how to bring God up and do so without it feeling like a theological lecture. Faye was blind, nearly deaf, bed-ridden most of the time, almost friendless, and struggled with hopelessness. But Faye prayed. She prayed like Jesus prayed. This may sound a little cheesy, but I could feel Faye praying for me. I never knew how much of an advocate that I had until I met her. Knowing that Faye was praying could get me through just about anything.
In the next weeks as we “Google God” and talk about how Jesus prayed, one of my goals is to be more like Faye. Let me encourage you be more like her too. Let’s be prayer warriors. There are so many people around us who are hurting and grieving. You can be their advocate in prayer. And you can know that you have people praying for you. Journey family, pray for each other. You’ll feel it.