View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Spiritual direction chat

I met with the priest I’d contacted to discuss the possibility of his being my spiritual advisor.

I filled him in on some of the details about my spiritual life – warts and all.

Mostly warts, really.

I pointed out that I tend to be lazy, and undisciplined; have a hard time persevering; I’m too proud.

I told him what I needed is someone to give me deadlines of the sort I had as a journalist. That’s how I got articles done – unlike the novel I’ve been “working” on for 25 years. I often need to have the force of a meeting date to spur me to action.

He asked about my spiritual practices (a few, like morning prayers with the breviary), whether I’d been on retreats (rarely due to work, family obligations, and not making it a priority), if I read the Bible (in the past I’ve read the entire New Testament, and a chunk of the Old, but not in a regular way), and if I was familiar with the great spiritual traditions (I have some knowledge, but not in any depth).

He asked what I saw as the goal of spiritual direction. I said what I hoped for was some direction to keep me on track, some guidance on reading and practice, some answers when questions and confusion arise.

What I said I really need from spiritual direction is to help me to be truly open to God’s guidance and not just be swayed by my own pride and pseudo intellectualism. I need to let God run things, and not let my own will hold sway – that’s what often gets me into trouble of the kind the canon lawyer is currently considering before I can apply to the deacon program.

The priest said he wanted to pray about it. Fair enough.

But he did recommend a book he was reading as something I might fight helpful: My Life with the Saints by Father James Martin, SJ.

I had to stop at the library on the way home to drop off something anyway. There was a copy there.

I will start reading it tonight.


Anonymous JSU said...

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8:42 PM  

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