praying-handsA dear friend of mine phoned earlier this evening.  She refers to herself as my “spiritual mother” and I very much believe it.  She’s in her late 80’s, and is simply beautiful. I describe her as a piece of pure light wrapped in a tiny piece of increasingly frail human flesh.

We connected about a year and a half ago.  She had been reading my newspaper columns in the Denton Record Chronicle and phoned to talk with me and see if perhaps the church I serve would be able to embrace her and her unique understanding of Christian spirituality.  I assured her she and her husband would be both welcomed and celebrated here. An immediate friendship sprang up between us.

This dear saint has practiced regular, focused prayer and meditation for decades, and the the lifelong habit of that spiritual discipline gives her powerful awareness of things many of us just can’t see.

I’ve been having a bit of a tough time recently over some personal issues.  This has brought some sadness.  That sadness has been coupled with an unusually hard hit for me this year with my lifelong struggle of coping with the shorter and darker days of fall as we approach the winter solstice.  Simply put, I am more than a bit down.

A few minutes before she phoned me, the Spirit of God spoke to my friend and told her, “tomorrow, you will do a novena for Christy.”  She called to let me know.  Very simply, every hour on the hour for nine consecutive hours, she will stop everything she is doing and go to concentrated prayer for me.

The tears sprang to my eyes as I said a simple “Thank you.”  This will be hard on her physically, and will interrupt some needed rest time, but I would not dream of suggesting she should not be obedient to God.  It is a giant, huge, gift of love for me.

I already feel enfolded by it.  It’s like nestling in fluffy down comforter on a crisp night, sleeping with an open window or even outside, but knowing warmth holds me.