Spiritual Direction and Election Anxiety

For highly sensitive people like me, news in the fall of a presidential election year feels like a sharp and constant hammer to the head. The harsh rhetoric, the reality of the deep division between those on the left and those on the right, the way every single emotion-evoking event is turned into a partisan [Read More…]

5 Ways Spiritual Direction Promotes Freedom

  Spiritual direction takes freedom very seriously. We want to feel free to be the person we were created to be–with as few internal fetters as possible, barriers such as negative self-talk, low self-esteem or dependencies. A spiritual director is trained to notice where you may not be as free as you want or need [Read More…]

Spiritual Direction and the Clergy Person

We need healthy religious and spiritual leaders in our faith communities–bright, energetic ministers who embody joy and compassion and know when and how to draw appropriate boundaries. A new book due out this fall, Sacred Habits: The Rise of the Creative Clergy by Chad R. Abbott addresses a number of ways clergy can lead more balanced [Read More…]

Spiritual Direction and Young Adults

Young adulthood is full of adventure and options. So much so that many young adults become adrift in a sea of possibilities. If you say “yes” to one option, you are saying “no” to others, and that can be difficult. Spiritual direction, especially when it’s focused on vocational discernment for young adults, can be a [Read More…]

Holding our Pain: A look at “The Gift of Hard Things” by Mark Yaconelli

This post is part of a roundtable discussion about the new book The Gift of Hard Things by Mark Yaconelli, now featured at the Patheos Book Club. It’s easy to be spiritually focused when life goes well for us. Not so easy when grief, suffering, pain and frustration fill our days. Spiritual director and storyteller [Read More…]

Don’t Give Up!

The division and violence of the last few weeks compels me to promote the spiritual practice of perseverance. I can feel a collective exasperation on social media, in conversation, even in worship with every violent disturbance we hear about. Persevere in any way that feeds your faith. Rev. Dr. Jeff Hood, a Baptist minister and [Read More…]

Spiritual Direction and the Homebound Person

  For most spiritual directors, the directee comes to the director’s office, home or other pre-arranged location. But how do those people who are not mobile or confined to their home receive spiritual direction? The director must either visit them at a distance (phone or Skype) or come to them. For the past six months [Read More…]

Spiritual Direction and Transgender Persons

Spiritual direction can be a wonderful, life-giving experience for gender non-conforming people. With the right director—someone empathic and nonjudgmental—it can be a safe place to explore all of who God created you to be without fear of discrimination or harassment (two facts of life for many transgender persons). Spiritual directors who want to be open [Read More…]

Spiritual Direction and the Non-theist

One trend I have noticed in spiritual direction over the past ten years is persons describing themselves as non-theists coming for spiritual guidance. There are non-theistic strands in almost all world religions. A non-theist is someone who may or may not believe in God or a higher power. The term non-theist covers a lot of [Read More…]

Spiritual Direction and the Medical Professional

Caring for people’s physical well-being can be highly rewarding and extremely stressful. Medical professionals may find they need good soul care in order to provide good medical care for others. Monthly spiritual direction is a practice some medical professionals find helpful for processing and integrating their work experiences as part of their spiritual journey. It [Read More…]