As a spiritual director, I also see a spiritual director for myself. I have never had a bad session, but there have been some directors who I felt talked more than I preferred. Most of what they said was helpful, so I hadn’t thought much of it. That was until I experienced a session with Pat.
Let me give you an example of a session that I had with Pat. As I spoke to Pat about an anxiety I was feeling, she asked me questions to take me deeper. She had me close my eyes, take a few deep breaths, and imagine.
Where do you feel it in your body? In my gut.
What does it feel like? Can you describe it? A hard ball or a knot
Can you imagine what it is made of? It’s my guilt. It’s black.
Now imagine Jesus there. What is he doing? He’s just looking at me, but with kind eyes, not judgemental.
Can you talk him about that ball? Yes, I want him to take it away. I want him to destroy it.
What does he do? He pulls it out and holds it in the palm of his hand.
What does it look like? It’s like a giant hair ball.
And before she could ask another question, I saw Jesus do the most amazing thing…
That ball of hair transformed into a beautiful flower sitting in the palm of his hand! How unexpected! I began to cry and release that guilt that no longer served me. He turned my shame into something beautiful and holy.
Pat created a sacred place for me to bear my soul. She wasn’t afraid of sitting in silence for as long as needed for me to feel safe or ready to share. She gently guided me without pushing or prodding. She intuitively knew the right questions to ask at the right time. This allowed me to savor my spiritual experiences or to take them deeper to new insights.
I shared this because it is important to find a spiritual director who is the right fit for you. Below I listed some steps you could take on your search.
- Think about what is the most important thing to you in a spiritual direction session.
- Then take time to interview possible Spiritual Directors before you start meeting with them.
- Try a session and see if it feels like a good fit.
- Do not think that you have to stay with the same person forever. Your needs may change and so it is important to re-evaluate at different points and be honest with your spiritual director if he/she is not meeting your needs.
Use this FREE handout to guide you in your search:
Would love to hear more of your tips or experiences in choosing a spiritual director in the comments below!