Spiritual Practices

Spiritual practices help us be faithful to God; they open us up to God’s presence in our lives and to listening to and heeding God’s “still, small voice” within us. [1 Kings 19:12] To lead a God-directed life is to be aware of His presence with us throughout our days, to align our will with His will, to live in gratitude for all that He has given us, including life itself, to be healed of all the pain and suffering we have endured and all we have caused by our own sin. None of this can we do on our own without His help. We are too close to the subject matter—our own selves—to be able to see what we need and in what order and how and when and where it needs to be done.

The great gift of spiritual practices when done daily is the deepening of our lives in God, beyond just belief in God and in Jesus Christ. Bible study gives us the knowledge of God’s Word. Silent practices help us still our own noisy thoughts which are tied to the ego and the world. Journaling leads us to self-knowledge of all that we think and feel and offers us healing. Prayer, either silent communion, carrying on a dialogue with God or saying formal prayers, keeps us in touch with God. All these together lead to a deeper and deeper life in God’s arms, depending in all things on Him. Aside from building a divine partnership with our creator, we are becoming free of all the worldly and egoic influences that so limit who we think we are. We step into the real freedom to be who we were created to be, in step with the ultimate guide to life, the Holy Spirit.

There is no one way to do spiritual practices. Or even any suggestion that one should do the same thing for the rest of his/her life. On this page I describe a number of practices. Try the one(s) that really call you. Listen for God’s prompting. Start out slowly, say 5 minutes with Centering Prayer, for example, and work your way up to the suggested 20 minutes. If you try practice for a while, sense where you are being led. How you do the practices and which ones you do can evolve over time. Listen to God and what He wants for you. The three basics: Bible study, prayer and journaling, constitute a prayer life for us.