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My Hero is Retiring

A couple of days ago, my hero wrote that she was retiring from her annual ministry in India (Africa appears to be safe for now). Since 2008 I've had the privilege of knowing this amazing woman of God. Of course, we met in India. It wasn't her first assignment in the nations, nor was it mine. You get to know someone if you spend months together in a third-world country. You share common food (breakfast, lunch and dinner), hear common noises (especially at night), and overcome common fears (like the money running out and other things beyond your control - i.e. the traffic to and from the school). You share a common life style (no air conditioning, no hot water). You hear each other pray - publicly and privately. You learn each other habits - early riser, or late night person. You help each other find Ethiopian Coffee in the market and laundry soap that won't destroy all your clothing. You share the french press to make coffee and any biscuits purchased are left on the kitchen table to share.

She's a widow since age 49, mother of five, grand-mother (and great grand-mother) of a couple dozen more. But mostly Miss Joyce Wright is a culmination of grace, beauty, brains, wisdom and refinement. As the saying goes, "they don't make them like they used to." It has been my absolute pleasure to call her a friend and my co-laborer in Christ - although our age difference suggests being her son. In India and Africa she has countless children - all by adoption (theirs and hers). Joyce has never been wrong, because she married "Wright".

I guess with such omniscience that we'll all have to trust her judgment as she "hangs up the cleats" (a sports expression meaning retirement), because after all - how many of us know what it is like to travel alone to the nations of the world in your 7th, 8th and 9th decade of life? So enjoy my reflection on her excellence - as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. Love you Joyce, but I'm a bit sad this has all come to an end...

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