“It is easier to find guides, someone to tell you what to do, than someone to be with you in a discerning, prayerful companionship as you work it out yourself. This is what Spiritual Direction is.” — Eugene Peterson
I place a high value on the journey and process of spiritual formation. I have studied this process of Christian Formation at Denver Seminary where I received my certification as a Spiritual Director and have also completed Dr. Larry Crab’s Spiritual Formation program.
As a counselor, this perspective lends depth of insight into my client’s journeys and informs my observations and counsel. Simply stated, Christian formation is the process of transformation of the human heart until Christ is formed within. As we walk with Jesus through seasons and trials of life our hearts are being transformed such that, as described by Dallas Willard, its “natural expression comes to be the deeds of Christ done in the power of Christ.”
I have included below a short article from Dr. Larry Crab on this subject. If you select the link at the end you can watch a brief video on his website.
Article by Dr. Larry Crab:
“As we conceive it, Spiritual Direction is the process of exploring and understanding the interior world of another, recognizing both the work of the flesh and the work of the Spirit, and following the Spirit’s work in transforming the person’s interior world to become more like Christ.
- Spiritual Direction moves deeply through the self-protective demands of the false self to discover and touch the holy and loving uniqueness of the true soul that lies beneath in every redeemed heart.
- In simplest terms, the Spiritual Director follows the Holy Spirit in promoting spiritual formation.
- Central to NewWay Spiritual Direction is the close attention paid to the inner life of Spiritual Directors, particularly the passion that rules his or her conversation with the directee.
- The NewWay approach to Spiritual Formation deals with the internal dynamics of the soul that are normally thought to be the province of counseling and therapy.
- Wisdom for understanding the human soul and encouraging Spiritual Formation is dependent on biblical anthropology, on what God reveals in His Word about people as fallen image bearers who can be restored through the provisions of the New Covenant. There is a NewWay to live.”
Source: New Way Ministries, Dr. Larry Crab New Way Ministries page and video on Spiritual Formation