One of the best personal things I’ve ever done
Since leaving both London Bible College and Spurgeon’s in the Eighties and over 25 years in Baptist ministry, I had been resistant to any form of evaluation of myself as person and evaluation of my soul. After all I didn’t have time for that kind of introspective, navel-gazing twaddle. I had Kingdom work to do, putting in as many hours as I could and wondering why I felt so burnt out and depleted by the time I came up to my Sabbaticals.
When I came to work at HEBA, though we get a lot of support from our team and team leader, we were encouraged to get a spiritual director. I reluctantly sought one out. Fully expecting not to enjoy it, I put up some high barriers in my early meetings. After three years, the benefits of committing to talk to someone about my spirituality, life, goals, aspirations and setting my personal targets every year has been staggering. I wondered why I hadn’t allowed myself to do it earlier. My Spiritual director offers me a mixture of spiritual direction and coaching.
What is Spiritual direction?
Spiritual direction helps people to ‘tend well to their souls’, to give priority to their inner wellbeing and their relationship with God.
The soul-shaping conversations begin right where you are and help you to experience God in deeper ways. Through regular conversations you’ll discover how you can draw close to God and learn to flourish right in the midst of life’s challenges. I meet my Spiritual director every 6-8 weeks. I also pay for their time.
Spiritual direction is for people in all sorts of life situations: those who are thriving and those who are hurting, leaders in ministry or those trying to find their way spiritually. Mine is God-focused and you-focused; it’s about intentional conversations which bring the two together into intimate relationship.
The benefits for me
My conversations with my spiritual director are tailored to my unique and current needs. I’m learning and experiencing some of the following as I follow this path:
- I became more aware of God’s presence and unconditional love;
- I’ve grown in inner freedom from the things that were hindering my growth;
- I’m learning how to still my soul right in the midst of life’s demands;
- I became more intentional about feeding and tending to my soul;
- I’m learning how to incorporate valuable spiritual practices into my devotional life;
- I’ve learned some painful truths about myself but know the beauty of grace and forgiveness;
- I’ve gained new insights and endurance to travel through a desert experience;
- I’ve also experienced divine love healing wounds which remained from my past;
- I’m more assured of God’s calling in my current role and how he wants to use me.
You come to a session as you are and, in God’s presence, insight and grace are provided.
If you’re interested in finding out more or who might become your Spiritual Director get in touch with Revd Dave Ellis: firstname.lastname@example.org