How to find a Spiritual Director in 2020

How to find a Spiritual Director in 2020

Now that you have discovered the art of Spiritual Direction and how it differs from other helping services, you may be wondering how in the world to find a Spiritual Director who is a good fit with you. While you could search Google and hope for the best, here are a few go-to resources to get you off to a good start.

  1. Read a few articles to get a broad overview of the world of choosing a Spiritual Director.
    1. How to find a Spiritual Director. In this article, the author offers an excellent overview, plus lots of links to other resources. Start here.
    2. Looking for Catholic or Protestant resources in particular? Check out these resources.
      1. Blessed is She and Catholic Spiritual Direction both provide a good overview of issues to consider and questions to ask from a Catholic perspective.
      2. Grafted Life Ministries offers a helpful article, catering to Protestant seekers.
    3. Visit Spiritual Director member sites to search by spiritual tradition, location, and specialty.
      1. Spiritual Directors International is the largest membership organization, including all faith traditions, and those with no particular faith tradition.
      2. Grafted Life Ministries provides a searchable database of hundreds of Protestant Spiritual Directors.
      3. Catholic Spiritual Direction provides a small listing of Catholic Spiritual Directors with contact information.
      4. Mayslake Ministries based in the Chicago area provides many Catholic Spiritual Directors.
      5. Hearts on Fire provides a listing of Spiritual Directors of the United Methodist Church tradition.
    4. Based upon their listing and what you learn about the Spiritual Director from their website, choose 3-5 to send an email to, asking to schedule a brief phone inquiry call. Keep in mind, that during this season of 2020, most Spiritual Directors are meeting remotely with clients on video calls. You can now meet with Spiritual Directors from virtually anywhere in the world. We are not as limited by geography as we once were.
    5. On the call, be prepared to share about yourself. And plan to ask questions of the Director.
    6. If you feel a spiritual connection with someone, by all means schedule a first Spiritual Direction session. If you are not certain, give yourself time to ponder.
    7. My own Spiritual Director advises that sometimes we seek Spiritual Direction for a reason, a season, or for a lifetime. Some of us see someone for a brief time, then return some time later. There is really no wrong way to do this.
    8. Trust that the Spirit will guide you to the person who is right for you at the right time.

If you would like to chat further, please feel free to reach out to me at laura.lies@streamsgrace.com

 

Encountering God: Receiving a Mission

Encountering God: Receiving a Mission

Reading:

“Moses was minding the flock of his father-in-law Jethro, priest of Midian. He led the flock along the side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in the flame of a burning bush. Moses noticed that, although the bush was on fire, it was not being burnt up; so, he said to himself, ‘I must go across to see this wonderful sight. Why does not the bush burn away?’

When the Lord saw that Moses had turned aside to look, He called to him out of the bush, ‘Moses, Moses.’ And Moses answered, ‘Yes, here I am.’ God said, ‘Come no nearer; take off your sandals; the place where you are standing is holy ground…’

The Lord then said, ‘I have seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard their outcry against their slave-masters. I have taken heed of their sufferings and have come down to rescue them from the power of Egypt…I will send you to Egypt…I will send you to Pharaoh, and you shall bring my people out of Egypt.’

‘But who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the Israelites out of Egypt?’ God answered, ‘I am with you…’ (From Exodus 3:1-5, 7-8a, 10-11.)”

 

Biblical Note:

Earlier in his life, Moses had showed his readiness to sacrifice for his people. He had killed an Egyptian who was beating a Hebrew slave and then fled, finding refuge in the land of Midian. At the time of this passage he had just adjusted to the life of a shepherd. Now he meets God in the form of the messenger Angel in the flame. Moses is awed, but also receptive. He is modest; therefore, he experiences some doubts and frustrations at receiving this mission. But God promises to be present. It is clear that this is God’s project, not one left to Moses, and God enables Moses’ modesty to be transformed into the humility of faith.

 

Meditation (to be read slowly):

Close your eyes. Become quiet and take a few slow, deep breaths. Become aware of yourself as a shepherd walking along tending your flock…you are walking along, and you notice something which catches your attention because of its awe…you turn aside, and as you turn, you hear God speak to you…God speaks your name…you respond…God tells you to take off your shoes, for this is holy ground; you do that…God tells you that he has seen some concern in your life or the life of others. He mentions this and you listen…He informs you that you can do something about it, and you listen…you question what you can do…

Allow yourself to ask any questions that you want…share any doubts that you might feel or any other concerns or hopes…allow God to reassure you that He is with you always…allow yourself to sense this…communicate anything else that feels necessary…

When you are ready, finish your dialogue with God and continue herding your flock…as you are tending your flock, think back on what has occurred and let it soak in…when you are ready, open your eyes.

 

Debriefing

Give attention to the guidance received for action and take the next step…

(Source: Opening to God: Guided Imagery Meditation and Scripture. By Carolyn Stahl.)

 

Looking for more support? Please reach out to me at laura.lies@streamsgrace.com

 

Special Speaking Engagement for Laura in Santa Fe at the Spiritual Directors International Global Conference–Making Good Decisions

Special Speaking Engagement for Laura in Santa Fe at the Spiritual Directors International Global Conference–Making Good Decisions: Practicing using the Ignatian Discernment Framework

Join us in the sacred land of Sante Fe next April 2021 during the Spiritual Directors International 30 Anniversary Conference, “Spiritual Companionship for our Times.” Laura is honored to be giving a workshop “Making Good Decisions: Practicing using the Ignatian Discernment Framework.” Learn more here

Can’t make it all the way to Santa Fe? No worries. Check out this great article from my website about the Discernment process.

https://streamsgrace.com/2018/05/02/how-can-i-clearly-discern-gods-will-for-me/

Want to chat further about a decision that you are currently discerning? Email me at laura.lies@streamsgrace.com about scheduling a brief phone chat to see about working together one on one.

 

Discerning God’s Call for Social Justice: Questions for Personal Reflection

Discerning God’s Call for Social Justice: Questions for Personal Reflection

  1. What is your deepest longing? What does your soul long for? What is your deepest discontent? What is shaking you up?
  2. Are you rooted, or are you stuck? How are you grounded?
  3. How is your heart closed? Are you receiving enough? What is needed in your life now?
  4. What brings you peace? What brings a free-flowing joy through your heart?
  5. What is God’s invitation to you right now? What is the right next, sacred step now?
  6. How are you taking a loving look at what is going on in your life right now?
  7. What comes up most often in your conversations?  Do an Examen. Look for patterns. What is your natural tendency?
  8. Where do you hesitate to go?  Where does your shadow come out?
  9. Where do you have a voice? What is the spiritual fruit in this moment? In this story?
  10. How do you connect to mystery?
  11. How is God inviting you to respond? What does a contemplative response look like?

(From Spiritual Directors International Webinar series: Social Justice & Spiritual Direction. Fall 2018.)

Spiritual Director who wears many hats

Spiritual Director who wears many hats

As is true for many of us, I bring a unique blend of experiences to my Spiritual Direction work. This allows me to reflect upon things from multiple perspectives.

As clients share about situations, I sometimes find myself offering to speak into their experience “wearing a variety of hats.” For example, a Career Coach might say…a mentor might say…a Spiritual Director might say…

Let’s take an example of a pastor dealing with a difficult church member on their board.

A mentor might say–As their pastor, Lord give me the eyes to see them in their brokenness. Lord how do you see them? How may I or others minister to them?

A career coach might say–How does this situation relate to my career as a pastor? How am I being stretched to learn new skills here?

A Spiritual Director might say–As a child of God, how do I cooperate with you Lord in what you are up to in my very soul? I wonder why this situation so difficult for me?

Please feel free to reach out to me at any time to explore the idea of Spiritual Direction. Laura Ann Lies, Certificate in Spiritual Direction

 

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