Contemplation in Action
I desired spiritual direction long before I came across it. As my involvement in church and pastoral ministry grew and I became more preoccupied with others’ needs and lives, I realized I had little to no idea about what God was doing in me. I was active, but not contemplative. Where was the time and how did one embody this perspective, anyway? My ignorance was concerning. I longed to maintain a vibrant, interior life with God amidst the exterior activities in which I was engaging. I also knew enough people who burned out because of an imbalanced life and didn’t want to become another casualty.
Awareness and Intimacy
Through the guidance of God masquerading as happenstance, I got a spiritual director early in 2015. It was entirely life changing. More than ever, I became aware of what God was doing in my life, and how and what he was communicating to me. And I also became far more aware of what was beating in my own heart – hope, fear, weakness and all. Naturally, and perhaps most wonderfully, my intimacy with God deepened. And with intimacy came greater freedom and (as St. Ignatius calls it) “holy indifference.” Now I often tell people that I can’t imagine how I lived without a spiritual director for so long, and that I imagine I’ll have a spiritual director till I die.
I’ve always found immense joy in being with people as they experience God. Propelled by this joy and realizing that it’s a significant part of my vocation, I began Sustainable Faith’s two-year School of Spiritual Direction in 2015. In addition to actually seeing directees during this time and receiving peer supervision, the most rewarding experience was making the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius in the 19th Annotation.
After I completed the program in 2017, I continued seeing directees for spiritual direction, though I never called myself a “spiritual director.” I didn’t feel I was ready despite wanting to be so. Just before the summer of 2018, as a result of some interior clarity and outward confirmation, I felt it was time to finally call myself a spiritual director.
Even before I trained to become a spiritual director, I had the desire to teach spiritual direction. I presented this desire regularly to God, though I never told anyone except my wife. In 2017, I was invited to intern with our School of Spiritual Direction teacher for two years and afterward was invited to become a teacher in the school in my own right. Teaching spiritual direction is a wonderful, vital part of my vocation as a spiritual director.
In 2019, I was invited to become a member of Sustainable Faith Affiliates
Training, Membership, Experience
- Certificate in Spiritual Direction (School of Spiritual Direction, Sustainable Faith: May, 2017)
- Member of Sustainable Faith Affiliates (since February, 2019)
- Teacher in Sustainable Faith’s School of Spiritual Direction (since October, 2019).
- Certificate in Spiritual Exercises Accompaniment (School of Ignatian Spirituality, Sustainable Faith: May, 2022)
- Last year, I offered around 180 hours of spiritual direction to various directees.
- I have regular (~monthly) appointments with my own spiritual director and am in regular (~quarterly) supervision.