Spiritual Director Profile: Kami Pohl
One of my favorite activities in life is to take a nice, long walk. I love to walk in my neighborhood and see how the scenery changes with the seasons. I enjoy watching my neighbors with their children and pets. Sometimes prayers of thanks for all that I am noticing seem to bubble up effortlessly. But there are other days I lace up my shoes and head out the door because I’m not sure what else to do. I may feel out of sorts, lonely, anxious, or afraid. I may not pay as much attention to creation or people during these walks, but my mind may be a little clearer and my heart a little steadier by the time I’m slipping off my shoes and heading inside. Maybe this is why I’m so drawn to the Gospel story of the two disciples who were walking to Emmaus after the death of Jesus. I can imagine their sadness and confusion when things did not turn out like they had expected. When they weren’t sure what to do that day, I can almost hear one of them say to the other, we could take a walk to Emmaus.
My own experience with spiritual direction began at a time in my life when I found myself stuck and confused. I was ready to transition back to the workforce after time at home with my family, but I wasn’t sure I was being called to the same kind of work I did before. I longed for my spiritual journey to be integrated into all areas of my life. I needed help to figure out my path forward again with God. Walking alone was not going to get me there. I needed a companion on the journey.
Having a spiritual director walk beside me, hold space for me, and listen deeply while I reflect on the experiences of my life is a gift. A well-timed question, a noticed theme, pointing me towards Christ present with me on my journey helps me move forward in life and sustains me through the ups and downs of life. While becoming a spiritual director was never part of my life plan growing up, when I sensed God inviting me to walk with others on their roads and help them notice Jesus Christ walking with them, I gratefully said yes. To notice the Holy One in another life, to unpack that gift together, and to notice our hearts burning within us as Christ is present in our midst is pure grace.
Like those two disciples on the road to Emmaus, I’ve come to realize I don’t have to walk alone and neither do you. If you are longing for a companion to walk with you as you seek to notice and reflect on the ways the Holy One is present and active in your own life, I invite you to consider meeting with one of the spiritual directors associated with the Benedictine Center. Someone to walk with you as you go deeper on your spiritual journey. Sharing where you are noticing God in your daily life, reflecting on times of light and spiritual growth as well as times that seem dark and dry, exploring together how a certain spiritual practice might be a way to humbly place ourselves in a position to hear from God. Let’s accept the invitation to journey together into a life of love and goodness with God and our neighbors.