Spiritual Navigation Systems
Spiritual Direction is like a navigation system to walk the Pathway of Wisdom.
Have you ever used a navigation system in your car? Do you trust your navigation system?
At times, the navigation system in my vehicles hasn’t been updated regularly. In local driving, I often found it easier to plot my own route and deal with “re-routing” repeatedly.
With the newer map options that are updated regularly with crowd sourced data, wherever I am I have a trustworthy map to follow. The map plans and sends me around construction zones. It helps me to avoid chaos. The navigation system gives me clear directions and allows me to get where I am going with a minimum of difficulty. This past week when I travelled to another city, it was a welcome gift to have a good guide!
Spiritual Direction or spiritual guidance can be similar.
If we don’t trust our Spiritual Director, we might avoid telling them information that would make their guidance more trustworthy. Perhaps we don’t do what together we hear the Life-giving Spirit inviting us to do. Sometimes it’s because we have trusted an unskilled guide in the past and we’ve been disappointed with our results.
When we have a skilled Spiritual Director, the challenges of life will still come, but we have a pattern to follow to walk the Pathway of Wisdom. Our spiritual guide may still encourage us to do challenging things, but we can trust them to have our best interests at heart and to walk with us through the consequences of our decisions. The goal of Spiritual Direction is always to help the Spiritual Directee to be in relationship with God and to listen to the Life-giving Spirit.
Mary, the mother of Jesus, had a Spiritual Guide
Today we can read and retell the story of Mary, the mother of Jesus. The pattern of Mary’s life stirs hope in me.
- Seek out discernment and prudence as we follow the Life-giving Spirit’s leading revealed in Scripture, creation, and history.
- Begin with gratitude (My soul magnifies the Lord);
- Retelling the stories of God at work in Scripture (Miriam, Hannah, and the Psalmist);
- Find the words and the story of God at work in our own lives (creating a new telling of God in our lives).
Getting on the Pathway to Wisdom
There are challenging times – now and in the future – and there is a Pathway of Wisdom. Having met Lady Wisdom, we can see how Wisdom worked in the lives of people who came before us. Mary is one of those people. When she was pregnant and unmarried, she hurried to Elizabeth. Elizabeth became her skilled spiritual guide.
Develop the Story that we want to Live and Write
Mary didn’t run first to Joseph or even to her parents. She listened to the messenger from God who mentioned Elizabeth to her. Mary was already in conversations with the Divine. Off she went. And in this experience, God created a safe space for Mary and for Jesus in utero. While Mary took responsibility for turning towards her God and her skilled guide, God could speak directly to Joseph and take care of him. How often we increase trauma when we are deceived into thinking we need to blather everything to everyone! Mary chose the Pathway of Wisdom even in challenging times. Spiritual Direction became a navigation system for Mary.
And we can join this cycle. We can seek out discernment and prudence as we follow the Life-giving Spirit’s leading revealed in Scripture, creation, and history. When we begin with gratitude (My soul magnifies the Lord), we can then move on to retelling the stories of God at work in Scripture (Miriam, Hannah, and the Psalmist); and then we can find the words and the story of God at work in our own lives (creating a new telling of God in our lives).
Relationship, Conversations, and Practical Steps
Like Mary, run to your skilled guide to acknowledge the Pathway of Wisdom for you! You’ll find relationship, conversations, and the personal steps you need to write yourself in the story of God at work in the world. You, too, can make Spiritual Direction part of your navigation system.
And if you don’t have a Spiritual Director yet, contact us! Book a complementary session to see if the style of Spiritual Direction that we offer is a good fit for you. We offer Spiritual Direction and Spiritual Direction Supervision by web-meeting, as well as partner with other organizations to offer online Retreats.
Living Faith at Home helps individuals and organizations incorporate Spiritual Direction and Spiritual Care into their lives and work with bite-sized practices for everyday faith experiences.
Send us a note to let us know what your questions are!
May your living faith give you the skill and the relationships you need to walk the Pathway of Wisdom today.
Grace and peace to you,