You would be right in having some questions about spiritual direction, so let me briefly answer a few of the common ones here ~
First, what IS Spiritual Direction? It is a companioning relationship that involves listening to another’s concerns and together bringing those concerns to God in prayer. “Holy Listening” if you will, for God’s voice and guidance. It is an ancient practice which has had a resurgence in popularity in the past few decades.
Second, what should you expect in this kind of relationship? In general, spiritual direction occurs on a monthly basis, and the meeting lasts for an hour. As the meeting begins, we enter into silence and prayer. After a few moments of reflection, you are invited to share what’s on your heart, whether it is a troubling concern, worry, relationship difficulty, a joy, happy anticipation, or some other prompting. We listen together prayerfully, paying attention to such things as memories, feelings and emotions, Scripture, thoughts or images that come to mind, and allow time and space for the Holy Spirit to speak and guide through these.
Third, what is your part in this relationship? In the days before your time of direction, pay attention to your thoughts, feelings, prayers, dreams, and the state of your heart. God may highlight something that God would like you to explore. Any topic is worth of exploring: areas of consolation or desolation, questions, doubts, confusion, a difficult decision to be made, . . . There is no topic which God does not want to discuss with you! Even a sense of the absence of God ~
Fourth, what is my part? I will be listening to you, noticing any physical or emotional changes as we speak, praying with you, and listening to the Spirit on your behalf during out time together. I may ask some clarifying questions, bring changes I notice to your attention with curiosity. During the time between our meetings, I will pray for you regularly. Your sessions will be confidential, however, and I will not pass along any of your concerns to others.
If you think you might benefit from Spiritual Direction and would like to make an appointment please contact me.
Photo: Dawn over Kibbutz Tzuba, Israel, V. Shields photographer