Response: February 2014 Issue

Responsively Yours: Whispers of the Spirit

Responsively Yours: Whispers of the Spirit
Responsively Yours: Harriett Jane Olson.

New York City, 5:00 a.m. The alarm in my phone sounds, and I struggle out of a tangle of bedclothes and head to the other room to turn it off. This would have been fine on a day of work on behalf of United Methodist Women, but this happened on my day to catch up on a little sleep. Added to my frustration was that the thought to check the alarm had crossed my mind several times the day before—during the plane ride home, in the airport checking email, waiting for my bag, and, briefly, as I plugged the phone in for charging when I finally got home.

What happened? I thought about the alarm, but I didn’t do anything about it.

How many times have you thought about someone you wanted to invite to a United Methodist Women program or event and didn’t do it? Sometimes I think about this during an event. “I could have called Jane—she would have loved this, and it would have been fun to be here together.” Sometimes I think about it when I read the announcement in the bulletin or hear about it in a meeting. “Ooh, Tanya might want to come in from Drew for this event.” Or, “Wouldn’t it be cool if the college student attending our church could come with me.” Or, “If we plan this effort with the United Methodist Men, we’d have a powerful response to domestic violence action.”

Perhaps you experience this too. A thought goes through your mind, and you feel a little stir of excitement, but it is not a convenient time to act. When a more convenient time comes, we forget the image of the possible and let habit take over.

What if these are not just fleeting thoughts, but whispers of the Spirit about what might be?

Can you and I grab those glimpses of what’s possible and make it a new habit to put some of them into action? Perhaps we could carry one of those little United Methodist Women notebooks or the Quadrennial Calendar with us and write those ideas down when they occur to us so that we have a reminder. Perhaps we could carry the Prayer Calendar for that purpose and note the possibilities in the next week so that we’re reminded during our devotions and get another chance to follow up. Perhaps I could send my friend a message during the meeting: “What’s your schedule like for April 25? I’ve got a great idea for something we can do together.”

Let’s think, pray and act on the glimpses of the possible, and just maybe we’ll make it a habit to follow the promptings of the Spirit in other ways as well.

Harriett Jane Olson
General Secretary
United Methodist Women

Posted or updated: 1/31/2014 11:00:00 PM
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