"Knowledge may take us to the threshold of God, but love enters into the mystery," ~ Ilia Delio *
"Love transforms because love unites," ~Bonaventure *
Spiritual Direction happens at the intersection of where people have come to the threshold of God with knowledge, and know it’s not enough. They are the ones who are hungering for something more, something deeper, something more significant. My privilege as a Spiritual Director is to companion the daring souls who have arrived at this threshold. It is in this place where I hear things like,
"What's wrong with me?" or
"If only I could figure out _____ (life, God, faith)..." or
"What's wrong with God?" or
"Why doesn't what I used to do to connect to God work anymore?"
Those who have arrived at this place know they don't need another book, seminar, workshop or formula. Many are the "dones" - I'm done with church, I'm done with going through the motions, I'm done with organized religion. In a quiet moment they may utter something akin to this:
"Please, (sigh), tell me there's more..."
And like a pesky pebble that resides as an irksome irritation in the sole of a shoe, so too this sheepish question pricks the human soul.
The Good News - there is so much more...and the kingdom of God is often found in such little things as seeds and yeast and stones. These little "pebbles" which disorient and disillusion and cause a person to become dissatisfied with life and faith, are the mysterious gift of a loving God designed to open a soul to desire the so much more. And when such a daring soul ventures to utter her disillusionment and doubts in the sacredness of our session, she looks surprised when I respond: "Isn't it wonderful! God is inviting you to a deeper love, a more expansive way of seeing and being."
Mind you, it doesn't feel wonderful...oh, how I know that from my own journey! I've been at this long enough to know that our conversions are ongoing on this journey and like Elijah, there are many times when the journey feels too much for me.** God's invitations continue to allure us to open our hearts to trust his love - a love that looks nothing like whatever we've reduced it to. And this is why a companion is so helpful in these threshold spaces...someone to reassure you that what's on the other side of the door is a spacious place of a higher, deeper, wider, broader love beyond all you can ask or imagine.*** Sometimes a Spiritual Director exists just to validate what feels crazy but is actually an invitation to awaken to love. And love both invites and enters the messy of mystery.
What do you want in life/faith?
In what ways are you current questions and/or methods helping you open toward your longing? In what ways, if any, are they not satisfactory?
What adjectives would you use to describe the disorientation in your soul?
What are the questions that you are asking about faith/life/love?
Who is a trusted soul who won't fix, solve or give you advice but to whom you can express your places of disorientation?
*in Clare of Assisi, Loc 2058 of 3406)
** 1 Kings 19