Getting A Little Closer
There is a quote by a Trappist monk that says, ""There is only one problem on which all my existence, my peace and my happiness depend: to discover myself in discovering God. If I find Him I will find myself and if I find my true self I will find Him."
Over the course of my life I have found this to be true, but only to the extent that I make it an intentional journey. The last six years have been a journey of getting a little closer. Well, I can see that my whole life has been that, but I have become more aware of late.
In 2009 I felt the Holy Spirit lead me through scripture to show me that God has made me to be like Silas, as one who comes along side and is sent out to help others. Soon after receiving this word, the opportunity came to accept a position of assistant pastor at Hope Church, a fitting call for this word. This role has felt like a natural fit and I have been very happy serving in this role, coming along side of our lead pastor.
As I have come to learn more about myself over the years, I have come to learn more about God and how he has made me. During my seminary years I came to a better understanding of how God made me as an introvert and if He made it, it must be good. I began to embrace this attribute and stopped seeing it as a negative thing. This also helped me in seeing the goodness of God in who He created me to be and then to live into it.
This last fall I began a journey of spiritual direction to not only learn how to offer this to others, but to also help me in learning more about myself, the true self God had created. It has been an exciting journey, one that feels again like a natural fit for how God has made me.
Today, as I was working on homework for spiritual direction reading from Seeking God Together, I came across a simple three word sentence that caused me to pause, sense Holy Spirit well up with in me and recognize I just got a little closer. The context of the sentence is a chapter about the power of listening in spiritual direction and the role of a spiritual director, which is "Coming along side." There it was again, a word given some nine years ago revealing a deeper meaning to it, confirming the call to follow in spiritual direction. In that moment I felt so close to God, a sense that Jesus was right next to me almost waiting in anticipation for me to get to that sentence. It was one of those moments of discovery that reveal a little more of His plan for me. I can confidently say that part of my true self is one who comes along side. I'm getting a little closer.
On our journey of faith it is good to pause along the way to look back on where we've come from, to remember the words or directions He has given us and to see how we've gotten a little closer to Him. This gives us encouragement for the journey that still lies ahead and reminds us that we have a traveling companion in Jesus helping us along the way and every once in a while He points to a deeper meaning to something He shared with us earlier.
How have you gotten a little closer? For some you can recognize it right away, for others you might need to pause, take a breath, look back on the path and allow your traveling companion, Jesus to show where you've come from and give clarity to what is still to come.