Written by Kathy DeVet
In early February of 2020, I got an email asking if I was interested in having a Lenten prayer partner from our sister parish in Baltimore City. The idea was that the two parishes would begin to form closer personal relationships through this initiative. My first impulse was to think, “I’m too busy. I just don’t think I can add one more thing.” But something kept me from deleting that email.
Throughout the week, my thoughts kept coming back to the email. Finally, realizing that I might be getting nudges from the Holy Spirit to respond “yes” to that request, I sent an email on Sunday before Ash Wednesday. “I don’t know if you still need prayer partners, but I’m willing to do it.” An answer came back right away: “There is one woman who we didn’t have a partner for; I’m so glad you responded.”
At that moment, I was glad I responded too. I felt bad thinking about the woman from the other parish who would have been left out if I hadn’t. I thanked the Holy Spirit for nudging me to respond.
When I called Barbara to set up how we were going to pray together, I was nervous. She said she was, too. We didn’t know each other, and we were going to be praying together. We set up a time to call weekly and she said she liked to pray with Scripture. That sounded great to me, so we arranged that one week one of us would choose a Scripture reading and the other would pray in response to that. The next week, we’d flip the roles.
Well! Did God have more to teach me than I thought! Two weeks after Lent started and Barbara and I started praying together, everything shut down because of the global pandemic. All of a sudden, I was not very busy at all. And, not only that, I needed to pray a lot more!
Barbara and I have been praying together weekly for over two years. A friendship and a love have grown between us that means so much. We have prayed with and for each other, strengthening and rejoicing with each other as our lives have unfolded. We catch up a bit before we start to pray so we know about the ups and downs of our lives. I know she’s praying for me during the week, and I pray for her and her intentions each day. We’ve been blessed to meet in person a few times, but the experience of praying together each week has brought us close even though we don’t see each other much. My relationship with Barbara has enriched my prayer life and my life in general. I am so glad the Holy Spirit didn’t stop nudging me and that I had the presence of mind to respond to those nudges!
How is the Holy Spirit nudging you this week? Pray for the discernment to notice the nudges and respond to them.