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What Can I Bring to Spiritual Direction?

What Can I Bring to Spiritual Direction?

by JoAnn Campbell-Rice

At a recent poetry workshop with Naomi Shihab Nye, I became aware of what I love so much about this artist—she finds poetry everywhere, and she shares it enthusiastically with her audience. It’s enlivening being in her presence.

So too, as spiritual seekers, we can find the sacred in everything, and sharing the discoveries can be transformative. The monthly hour of spiritual direction is a time to sift through everyday life and see what comes to the surface as guidance, a nudge, or an invitation. Sometimes people think they don’t “need” to come to spiritual direction if there’s nothing major happening in their lives.

Actually, without external drama, we can attend to subtle, inner movements with new ears. In that monthly session, without an agenda, we can learn to listen more deeply to the guidance which is always leading us to our heart’s desire. For example, when there’s a troubling event, I can look for a message from the universe. When I have a negative response or reaction to someone, I can better understand my own history and beliefs. When I move slowly with openness, I can find beauty in simple movements, commonplace objects, and ordinary activities. Meaning, understanding, and beauty all nourish my spirit, one of the benefits of spiritual direction.

What could I bring to spiritual direction this month?

Small moments of grace:

Curling into a white chair when the sun hits and basking like a cat

 

Times my feelings were hurt and I want to know why:

A best friend shutting the door after twenty-one years

 

That sentence in a life story that cracks me open:

T’s appreciation of sunshine after 150 days (5 months!) “in the hole”

 

The contradiction that never heals:

A basement playroom stuffed with dolls and my childless life

Everything counts in the hour of spiritual companionship, so bring your life, every single time.

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