Margaret Guenther 2
“Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it.” —Hebrews 13:2.
This is another quote from the beginning of Margaret Guenther’s book Holy Listening: The Art of Spiritual Direction. It had been on my bookshelf, half read for some time. I think I bought it around twenty years ago in Washington, D. C., at the National Cathedral Museum Bookstore, attracted to its cover of the newborn by one of my favorite artists, Georges de La Tour.
I am guessing that Guenther or her publisher picked this work of art because it depicts two women, one silent with a gently raised hand, perhaps in adoration or blessing, and the other looking intently at her sleeping newborn, tightly wrapped like a gift or package. What an image for conveying the essence of spiritual direction! I had been going for spiritual direction myself for many years, but it seems that the seed for fruition was planted in my heart and soul so very long ago. As people started coming to visit with me, I realized that they were seeking spiritual direction, though they were not calling it that.
I decided to take a course in short-term spiritual direction online from CDSP (Church Divinity School of the Pacific) in order to feel out the waters. I kept moving in that “direction”—and then five years later this course of action was affirmed for me when I spent two years in Spiritual Direction Study at Kanuga with the Haden Institute. So although I was greatly moved by Guenther’s cover more than twenty years ago, it took that long for my vocation to be affirmed!
Our God is a patient God who never gives up on a call.
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