Silence


One of my favorite spiritual practices is silence, especially centering prayer. I am always thinking, and it’s so restful to regularly shut it off for a time when I let the jibber-jabber in my head just pass by me. I don’t always have a 20-minute session of centering prayer; nor do I always practice it … Continue reading Silence

Examen for Joy


“Count it all joy, my brothers and sisters, when you meet trials of various kinds.” (James 1:2) That sounds nice on paper, but can feel extremely hollow the moment we face something difficult. Another way to translate the verse is: “Examine your situation for real joy.” Now this rings true! The most joyful times in … Continue reading Examen for Joy

Live Hope


Over the next few months, the SFSAZ will be posting reflections submitted by various local spiritual directors. These brief collections will focus on an aspect of the spiritual life or a specific spiritual practice. We hope you’ll find them encouraging and inviting. Hope begins with acknowledging we are poor in spirit, and then rests in … Continue reading Live Hope

What is Spiritual Direction?


Spiritual Direction is a spiritual discipline that has been around since the early days of the church. Here are answers to a few commonly asked questions and you might also check out the video below: What, specifically, is Spiritual Direction? Spiritual Direction (SD) is the practice of prayerfully discerning how God is at work in … Continue reading What is Spiritual Direction?

Why Pastors Need Soul Care


There is crisis in the church today. It’s not that people in our churches are not committed or consumeristic or mirroring the world. It’s a leadership crisis. In the late 1970s, author and professor Henri Nouwen made the following observation in his book, The Wounded Healer: “The first and most basic task of the minister … Continue reading Why Pastors Need Soul Care

Assessing Stress and Burnout


If you are involved in ministry, taking care of your own spiritual health is vital! Yet, as a good friend of mine (Steve Macchia) likes to say, “The soul is most neglected part of the leader’s life.” It can feel selfish or perhaps its never been modeled, but taking care of one’s soul is a … Continue reading Assessing Stress and Burnout