Are you burned out? Do you feel stuck spiritually? Do you struggle to find a safe and confidential place to talk about your joys, your struggles, your spiritual experiences, or your doubts? Do you desire soul care? Are you looking for an opportunity to be your true, authentic self?
There is an ever-increasing need for ministers and other people of faith to have qualified individuals available to walk alongside them as they discern matters of faith and life. Maybe you’re feeling called to seek out a spiritual director.
What is a spiritual director?
A spiritual director is an individual who is invited to accompany and witness the spiritual journey of another person. Attention is placed on the relationship between the “directee” and God, rather than the relationship between the directee and the director. This often looks like meeting monthly (or as desired), one-on-one, with a trained or certified spiritual director to unpack matters of spiritual experiences and discernment.
Liz Budd Ellmann with Spiritual Directors International (SDI) has this to say about spiritual direction…
Spiritual direction explores a deeper relationship with the spiritual aspect of being human. Simply put, spiritual direction is helping people tell their sacred stories everyday. Spiritual direction has emerged in many contexts using language specific to particular cultural and spiritual traditions. Describing spiritual direction requires putting words to a process of fostering a transcendent experience that lies beyond all names and yet the experience longs to be articulated and made concrete in everyday living. It is easier to describe what spiritual direction does than what spiritual direction is. Spiritual direction helps us learn how to live in peace, with compassion, promoting justice, as humble servants of that which lies beyond all names.
Why might a person be interested in working with a spiritual director?
- Spiritual directors are concerned with building trust, fostering a safe environment for authenticity and transparency
- They have been trained to listen deeply, helping others on their spiritual path
- They celebrate the free will and discernment of each individual regarding spiritual matters, avoiding coercive techniques, such as advice-giving, problem-solving, and influence-seeking
- They provide space for contemplation and meditation to help people become aware of the inner movement of the Spirit
- They ask observant questions so as to help people connect to their authentic selves
- They accompany people who seek to have stronger relationships with God and others
- They follow principles of ethics such as confidentiality, kindness, and most importantly, they seek to “do no harm”
How can I find a spiritual director?
Seeking the Spirit Within, a ministry of the Nebraska Synod ELCA, offers a 2-year program that trains and certifies individuals to become spiritual directors.
The Omaha Presbyterian Seminary Foundation (OPSF) has established a scholarship fund to pay half the cost of spiritual direction for a maximum of eight sessions for clergy. Click here for more information.
Email email@example.com for more information