On Saturday, January 30, 2010, the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation in Bethesda, Maryland, held a contemplative leadership day. There were 20-25 of us in attendance on what turned out to be a very snowy Saturday on the next-to-last day in January.
I found out about spiritual direction from a Pastor of a church I'd visit. This was my first time I'd ever experienced anything like this. The prayer time was so peaceful, and I felt I actually got connected to the Spirit of the Living God. Then when I started journaling I could actually see the Holy Spirit moving (directing) me closer to God. I could actually feel the Presence of God in a new more powerful way that I hadn't experienced in a long time almost as if I was becoming one with God as everything else began to fade away becoming less of importance.
It was such a great experience I would encourage everyone to try it at least once in their lifetime. It was a great privledge and I am so grateful to that Pastor for taking her time.
One of the presents I received for my sixth birthday was Now We Are Six by A. A. Milne, a collection of poems. The poems were funny and several contained words that were unfamiliar. For example, "Sneezles" describes a physician's efforts to diagnose Christopher Robin's illness. The doctor wonders if Christopher Robin has sneezles or wheezles or reazles or even phtheezles. I remember laughing when I read "Sneezles" and I usually read the poem over and over again.
However, my very favorite poem in the book was "Solitude." As a six year old with a very verbal two year old brother, I realized that my true inner self craved solitude "a place where I could go, where there is no one, but me."
The need for silence and solitude continued as I grew and when I was an adult, I finally was able to create a designated place where I could have time alone--my desk.