“No matter how much light I carry within me, there will always be times of feeling lost, being confused, seeking direction. It is the way of the human heart.” - Joyce Rupp
No one is an island and everyone from time to time needs a companion or a guide to share the load of life. Spiritual direction is also known as “soul friendship”. It is a relationship that is designed for the sole purpose of supporting you as you discern God’s presence in your life and to encourage you as you listen to the movements of your soul.
The spiritual direction relationship is often compared to the relationship a midwife has to a pregnant mother giving birth. The director is a companion, an encourager, and a gentle listening guide, working with you and bearing witness to what God is “birthing” in this season of your life. A spiritual director is a person who has experience in the spiritual journey and is willing to be in service to a person’s desire to open to, and discern the presence of the Divine (God/Spirit/Source) in their life.
People often seek out a spiritual director when they are wanting to deepen their relationship with God, want to discern God’s presence and action in a given situation or transition in life, or when God seems confusing, distant, or absent.
Whether you have been a person of faith for a long time, are in a season of doubt and disorientation, or coming into a brand new awareness of God in your life, regardless of tradition or creed, spiritual direction can be a valuable support on a person’s spiritual path.
Christa Hesselink has been guiding individuals and groups as they dig deeper into their spiritual life
for her entire twenty-year career working in church ministry, education and not-for-profit settings.
Christa is a certified coach, certified yoga instructor, and is training
to become a spiritual director with the Haden Institute which is rooted in the Christian tradition. She is also being trained with the Narrative Enneagram.
In pastoral ministry for over ten years, she holds a Master’s of Leadership and a Master’s of Theology
degree, and is a well-respected speaker, workshop facilitator, and retreat leader.
Christa has been a member of ‘Spiritual Director’s International’ since 2017.
"Spiritual direction is, in reality, nothing more than a way of leading us to see and obey the real Director — the Holy Spirit hidden in the depths of our soul. -Thomas Merton
1. Spiritual direction is not therapy, counseling, mental health care, or treatment for substance abuse. The director is not functioning as a licensed mental health professional and spiritual direction is not intended as a replacement for counseling, psychiatric interventions, treatment for mental illness, recovery from past abuse, professional medical advice, financial assistance, legal counsel, or other professional services.
2. Spiritual Direction is for people who are basically well adjusted, emotionally healthy, functioning effectively, and wanting to pay attention to their spiritual life and connection with the Divine.
3. Spiritual Direction will be an on-going relationship that might take a number of months/years, although either person can bring the relationship to an end at any time. On occasion, some, or all, of the direction might be through telephone or online contact.
4. Spiritual Direction can and may involve periods of extended silence, prayer, listening, values clarification, identifying plans of action, accountability, examining lifestyle, and questioning currently held beliefs.
5. Spiritual Direction is most effective when both parties are honest and straight forward in their communication.
6. Spiritual Direction is a confidential relationship and the director agrees to keep all information strictly confidential, except in those situations in which such confidentiality would violate the law or could jeopardize the safety of the client or others.
7. Each meeting will last approximately 1 hour. There will be no predetermined length of commitment. This will be determined as the relationship progresses. Each meeting will be scheduled approximately 4 weeks apart. Efforts will be made to accommodate each other’s schedules. This agreement may be extended or ended by either person at any time, and both agree to inform the other of the need to cancel an appointment. Except in unusual circumstances, this cancellation will be given no less than 24 hours prior to the scheduled appointment time.
What to expect in a typical session:
We engage in silence, active listening, and a prayerful posture throughout the session
The directee will be prepared to share what they want to bring to the session - it may be a thought, a question, a concern, a prayer, a pain, as it relates to their life and in particular, their spiritual life.
Christa will listen deeply, echo back to the directee, ask questions, and provide support all in service to the person’s soul journey.
A session may include engaging in a contemplative practice to support the directee in his/her journey.
Christa will often provide a resource that can be used in between sessions.
8. The fee per session is determined in consultation with Christa and payable in advance of each session - either cash, e-transfer, or cheque.