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Holy Invitations: Exploring Spiritual Direction Holy Invitations: Exploring Spiritual Direction by Jeannette A. Bakke
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“The opportunity to tell our story unhindered, uninterrupted is rare. Most of the time people are so involved in their own concerns they do not listen with complete attention. It can be quite startling, therefore, to feel another person fully attending to you, present with you and for you, setting their own struggles aside in order to be available to God an dyou. Sometimes this is wonderfully freeing and at other times it is paralyzing. We find ourselves listening to ourselves, weighing our words, and considering if we speak authentically or frivolously. ... But telling our spiritual director is often a pure gift. As we spekk we begin to see connections that were hidden. Insights arise or our perspective about circumstances or ourselves may shift. There are Divine and human affirmations and confirmations. Sometimes the words we needed to hear come from our own lips.
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Interior developments arise out of silence that are beyond our clear view. We just know that something has moved or changed and that God is active...

The opportunity to tell our story opens us to hear God's story more deeply - God's presence and participation in our lives and in the life of the world. In God all human stories connect and when we participate in spiritual direction, we seem to notice more of the connections.”
Jeannette A. Bakke, Holy Invitations: Exploring Spiritual Direction
“Do not expect trust to appear suddenly and in a state of completion. Trust grows gradually as we venture forth little by little, with God and each other. As our trust grows, so will our willingness and courage to speak and listen with greater freedom. Seeing things more clearly is often one of the fruits of our growing trust.”
Jeannette A. Bakke, Holy Invitations: Exploring Spiritual Direction
“As we mature in faith, our willingness is tested, expanded, and refined. We become more conscious of our limitations and turn to God. The necessity of God's grace becomes clearer as we become more attuned and accurate in our recognition of our dependence on God and less sure of anything that causes us to describe ourselves self-righteously. At times, when confronted by the less-than-ideal behavior of others, we may recognize that we are capable of similar actions and give thankds to God for helping us avoid unwelcome pitfalls. Scripture instructs us to be holy as God is holy, yet we increasingly realize the impossibility of holy behavior unless it is brought about by the Spirit's empowerment and our willing responsiveness and cooperation. Many people use spiritual direction as a window through which to notice and attend to their own expectations of willingness and willfulness.”
Jeannette A. Bakke, Holy Invitations: Exploring Spiritual Direction
“We define Christian spiritual direction then, as help given by one Christian to another which enables the person 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 experiences, not on ideas, and specifically religious experiences, i.e., any experience of the mysterious Other whom we call God. Moreover, this experience is viewed, not as an isolated event, but as an ongoing expression of the ongoing personal relationship God has established with each one of us.”
Jeannette A. Bakke, Holy Invitations: Exploring Spiritual Direction