Today’s post is by Patience Robbins Group spiritual direction, also known by other names such as sacred listening circles or prayerful listening circles, is a wonderful process for nurturing values such as mutuality, reverence, deep listening and compassion. Mutuality speaks of a circle model, in which everyone participates. No one is an expert or the […]
Today’s post is by Bonnie Wallace The call to discernment is a call to deep rest and abiding presence. This type of rest is a source of renewal and openness. As Tilden Edwards explains in Sabbath Time, “Our minds and our prayers need to relax their frequent weekday grasping, striving, judging, fearing. Full rest is […]
Article by Tilden Edwards (in September 2016 eNews) The medieval mystic Hafiz said, “Like a great starving beast, my body is quivering, fixed on the scent of Light.” That’s a radical thought for us to bring to spiritual direction, both as director and directee. That quivering in me is the strong, graced desire for communion — […]
Today’s post is by Laura Bratton As a student at Princeton Theological Seminary, I was wrestling with deep theological questions that seminary students ask: Who is God? How do I understand God’s presence in the world? I was also struggling with another question. What is my identity? As a person who had recently become blind, […]
Lately my thoughts have turned to letting go and being afraid, the prompts for two spiritual journey writing groups. I struggle with these, not because I haven’t been afraid or haven’t let go but because each time I think of possible topics—traveling to Guinea to start a refuge school, starting my own business, taking my weavings to galleries, traveling abroad alone, being pregnant—there no energy rises around the fear I once had. When I consider our children going to college or my release of things I once loved like West African drumming or my professional work, I feel nothing. I can’t go there now. They just don’t resonate with me today. Or yesterday. Or the day before.
I was rescued by an angel named Gabriel. It was the last day of our retreat and our leader offered some suggestions. She said it was best to not rush off from the retreat to try to catch up on all the things we didn’t get done. She encouraged us to take our time, drive slowly and rest as we eased back into our busy work schedule. Of course, I felt that somehow I was exempt from her instructions.
The minute the retreat was over and we said our goodbyes, I hopped into my car, threw my bags in the backseat and tried to get out of the parking lot before it got jammed up. Not more than 40 seconds later I found my car bucking, jerking, revving, and on the verge of stalling at the next traffic light. I was horrified and immediately filled with dread. I had no time to deal with a problem car.
Lucky for me I made it to the next large building, a spa. I found it interesting to have just left a retreat center and to barely have made it to the parking lot of a spa. I parked the car, gave it a grimacing look, and went to the spa to call Triple A. I growled at myself for not having listened to our retreat leader and wondered if I was being punished for not following the directions.
By Stephanie Gretchen Burgevin. Stephanie is a writer and retreat leader. She is an associate faculty member of Shalem and a graduate of theirLeading Contemplative Prayer Groups and Retreats Program and leads spiritual and secular programs. Stephanie manages Shalem’s blog and is one of the social media coordinators for the Shalem Institute Facebook page. The first […]
by Jean Link As I sit down to write about my experience of leaving the Spiritual Guidance Program staff this year, all that comes to me is to simply say, “Thank You.” Reflecting back on my 25-year experience with Shalem, I remember when I was first introduced to Shalem. Barbara Osborne, a long-time Shalem staff person, brought me to […]
by Carolyn Metzler When I started Lent by offering a conversation about mortality to my congregation, I did not know how close I was to the subject! Subsequent events reshaped me spiritually, brought me face to face with the frailty of the human body and resilience of the human spirit. I was invited into a dark blessing, a holy […]
by Ann Siddall It is early morning at Stillpoint Spirituality Centre in the Adelaide Hills in South Australia. A cool breeze stirs the gum trees, the kookaburras are laughing joyously, and the earth is fragrant after the first soaking rain for three months. As I set up for a small retreat, check the diary, and respond to e-mails, a […]