February 24, 2008

Receiving Spiritual Direction

2 Timothy 1:11-14; 2:1-2

There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
Proverbs 18:24


A spiritual director friend of ours calls spiritual direction ?the help given by one Christian to another which enables that person to pay attention to God?s personal communication to him or her, to respond to this communicating God, to grow in intimacy with this God, and to live out the consequences of this relationship.?

Many of us grow in our relationship with God through prayer and Scripture reading, by attending wor?ship or by participating in Bible study or a Christian discussion group. And yet no one knows our deepest thoughts except God himself. We have no one to hold us accountable, challenge us, or affirm that we are on the right track. Timothy learned to walk with God through the apostle Paul, his spiritual mentor.

A spiritual director does not tell you what to do; nor is she or he necessarily wiser or more experienced than you. Rather, your director will remind you that you live in God?s presence and urge you to see how God is working in your life. In some Christian traditions receiving spiritual direction is a common and expected practice for growing in relationship with God. In other traditions this ancient practice is almost unknown.

In your practice of spiritual disciplines, have you considered finding a spiritual director to accompany you on your spiritual journey?

God of all people, forgive us for trying to find our way with you in our own strength. Give us trusted people who can walk with us alongside you in our journeys. Amen.

About the author — James and Rose Dekker

James C. Dekker is the pastor of Covenant Christian Reformed Church in St. Catharines, Ontario. Previously he served other congregations in Alberta and Ontario. Rose Dekker serves as a refugee coordinator for the Christian Reformed World Relief Committee in Canada. She also serves as a certified spiritual director. The Dekkers were missionaries for nine years with Christian Reformed World Missions, serving in Costa Rica, Guatemala, Venezuela, and Cuba.

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