Spiritual Direction

As a part of my doctoral program at Fuller Seminary, I was trained as a spiritual director. Spiritual direction is an ancient Christian practice that has become more common in contemporary Protestant circles in recent years. Spiritual direction shares some similarities to pastoral counseling in that it is comprised of a one on one listening relationship. The main difference is that spiritual direction is focused less on finding solutions to mental health or relational problems, and more on helping people navigate the challenges of the spiritual journey, discern God’s leading, and cultivate a deeper awareness of God in the midst of life.

Spiritual directors William Barry and William Connolly define spiritual direction as:

Help given by one believer to another that enables the latter to pay attention to God’s personal communication to him or her, to respond to this personally communicating God, to grow in intimacy with this God, and to live out the consequences of the relationship. The focus of this type of spiritual direction is on experience, not ideas, and specifically on the religious dimension of experience.

Spiritual direction is not primarily about teaching or discussing ideas. Spiritual directors listen to a person’s spiritual experience, highlight significant things that they hear from a directee, and provide guiding questions for further reflection and action. Spiritual direction is actually not very directive. A director is not primarily an advice-giver or a teacher, but a contemplative listener that provides a context where people can develop deeper insight for themselves into the ways God is at work in their lives. You might think of it as verbal journalling with a good listener to help clarify and offer insight into what you are sharing.

If you are looking for a spiritual director please e-mail me at: philip_rushton@hotmail.com

I am able to meet in person if you are in the Longview area and I am also available to meet on Skype / Facetime / Hangouts. I also am part of the spiritual director’s network in the Pacific Northwest Conference of the Evangelical Covenant Church. I am available to provide free spiritual direction for pastors and leaders in the ECC.






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