Meet Christopher Eaker, Spiritual Companion
Please meet my colleague Christopher Eaker. Christopher is a Spiritual Companion who is based in the Knoxville, Tennessee area. He works with clients locally and from around the world. Tune in below as Christopher shares about What is Spiritual Direction, his work with those in transition in their faith, and experience a short guided meditation. Reach out to Christopher at his website: https://www.steppingstoneslife.com/
Please learn more about Christopher and his calling into Spiritual Direction below.
“Stepping Stones has been my metaphor for the spiritual journey for the last several years. One Spring as I was sitting next to a creek on a silent retreat, I was wrestling with and contemplating an important life change. About a year prior, I thought I felt a call into the priesthood. I never considered myself clergy material and, quite honestly, didn’t want to do it. That’s why I was wrestling with it so strongly. Also, I had just started getting trained as a spiritual director and now I was wrestling with another huge change. I asked God to help me with this wrestling. Am I supposed to be a spiritual director or am I supposed to be a priest? Can I do both?
As I sat there, eyes closed, listening to the running water in the creek, an image entered my mind of a stepping stone path through the forest. I was standing on one of the stones and could see stepping stones extending out in front of me for as far as I could see. Suddenly, all the stepping stones disappeared except the one I was standing on. Immediately, I knew this was God’s message to me: “Stand firmly on the stone you’re on now, Christopher. When I want you to step on the next stone, it will become clear.” I knew the stone I was currently standing on was for me to become a spiritual director and embrace that calling fully.
Over the next few years, the wrestling about the priesthood died down, and so far, that stone has not appeared in front of me. But other stones have appeared. I have stepped out in faith on them and trusted God to place the next one in my path at the right time. At times that path has felt treacherous and rocky, other times, slow and steady. Now I describe my spiritual journey as a stepping stone pathway and trust that God will place the stones in my pathway to step on at the right time and place. Until I see another stone placed in my path, I stand on the one I’m on and camp out there for a while, trusting God to bless that time, place, and experience.
Maybe you have felt a longing or calling for something more in your life–maybe a stepping stone has appeared in front of you, and you wonder if you should step out in faith. Maybe your stepping stone is no longer big enough for you and you feel called into a wide-open space. Spiritual direction is a ministry of listening that fosters an intimate connection with God and can help you discover where God is moving.
If you would like to speak more about spiritual direction and if it is for you, please reach out to me at my website. You can find me at https://www.steppingstoneslife.com/. I would love to hear from you.”
5-Minute Centering Exercise (adapted from “20-Minute Retreats” by Rachel Harris, PhD.)
Imagine a wonderful smooth, calm lake. No boats, no people. Maybe a few birds are flying about. Nothing disturbing the water or air. The surface of the water is like glass, reflecting the surrounding trees and mountains. Then imagine a rock dropped into the middle of the lake, with concentric circles of ripples extending outward like waves in all directions. They are dramatic at first, then they slowly begin to dissipate. As the surface of the water is gradually restored to its original calm, mirror-like quality, similarly allow the energy and emotions within and around your body to calm to a clear, quiet quality of mirror-like reflection.