What is Spiritual Direction?
Spiritual direction is meeting with a guide, a true expert in Christian spirituality, to help grow and develop your relationship with Christ through the Holy Spirit.
For many, the journey of faith is not an easy one. We attend church, read books, listen to podcasts and YouTube videos, and spend time in prayer daily, but we still feel lost.
Spiritual direction might be the solution for you.
Normally, spiritual direction is a 1-hour monthly session that is similar to sitting down with a priest, pastor, or therapist. That might be in-person or through an online tool like Zoom.
In that session, you will share your faith journey with someone trained to guide you further along that path. You can talk about your struggles and get advice to overcome them. And when you do, you can celebrate your successes together.
For many, meeting with a spiritual director helps them to realize that they are not alone on this journey.
Why You Need Spiritual Direction
First, let me begin by saying that I meet with my own spiritual director monthly, and he has been a constant in my life during some challenging times. But why might you need a spiritual director?
Our priority as Christians should be to develop a relationship with God. The problem is that many of us do not know how to get there. You’ve followed the recommended path but still feel distant from God.
You’ve read countless books but don’t know how they apply to your own life.
You spend time in prayer every day yet never feel a connection with God.
Each day, you read Scripture and don’t really understand what it means.
After church each week, you feel uplifted, but that joy doesn’t last throughout the rest of the week.
You attend Bible studies and leave with more questions than answers.
You’re not alone.
Many Christians struggle with these same issues. Reading about discipleship and becoming a disciple are two very different things.
That’s where your spiritual director comes in.
Your Spiritual Director
A good spiritual director is someone who is mature in their faith and has been trained to guide others down that same path. They are experts in directing you towards a deeper relationship with God.
Spiritual directors come from a variety of backgrounds, denominations, and paths. Some will meet with anyone, whereas I limit myself to just Christians (regardless of denomination).
With these different backgrounds, each director has their own method or process. I take a more practical approach to faith - showing people how to incorporate faith into their daily lives. Others may focus on more contemplative practices. In the end, go with someone who fits with your own personal journey.
What qualifies someone to be a spiritual director?
Sadly, there are no formal certifications, so it will be up to you to do some research. Many turn to their priests and pastors, but with their busy schedules, it would be impossible to meet with everyone in their church.
Enter the laity.
There are plenty of programs at universities that train people in spiritual direction, such as the Master’s program I took at Loyola University Chicago. There are also organizations that specialize in training spiritual directors for the task. Either way, ensure that your spiritual director has had some formal training.
If you want to know even more about spiritual direction, go to my Directional Faith website’s guide to spiritual direction.
Looking for a Spiritual Director?
Currently, my schedule is full, but I will start taking on new clients in the Fall (2023). If you would like to stay informed, make sure you subscribe, and I will post information about my upcoming Fall schedule.
To be notified when spots open up, stay subscribed and listen for the announcement.