Kami Pohl received her training as a spiritual director from the Franciscan Spirituality Center (La Crosse, WI) and currently serves as the Director of Community Engagement at Messiah Church in Plymouth. Kami has experience in classroom teaching, being a full-time Mom, organizational development and training, and she holds a master’s degree in human resource development from the University of Minnesota. She and her husband live in Plymouth and enjoy time with family, friends, taking long walks, listening to live music and reading.
My own experience with spiritual direction began in the fall of 2012. Due to some health issues with a family member, I chose to set aside my work to care for them. As their physical health improved, I felt stuck. I realized in the time away from work that I did not feel that I was living out my call from God. I longed for my spiritual journey to be woven into the way I lived each day. I needed help to figure out how to pick up my life, change my perspective and move forward with God. Meeting with a spiritual director provided a place to unpack and examine my life with God. Having someone else listen deeply was like having a mirror held up as I was speaking so that I might hear and notice God speaking to me through the wisdom of my own voice. I often find myself surprised by what I say in spiritual direction. These ah-ha moments feel like a gift dropped in my lap. While transformation, freedom and healing have not happened overnight, month by month I continue to move deeper with God. The slowing down while paying attention process of spiritual direction has helped me find a better balance between prayer and work in my life. Along the way I am finding my voice. I have begun work that I see as a way of faithfully living out my calling, and I continue to live a more integrated spiritual life including all areas of my life. Over the years, I have found spiritual direction to be a key monthly spiritual practice along with centering prayer, lectio divina, worship and service in and through my local church community. Having an attentive companion listen carefully to me, ask thoughtful questions, and help me notice God at work in my life has been a rich gift that I am delighted to share with others.
My own life experiences continue to shape who I am as a spiritual director. My work at Messiah Church involves hospitality, discipleship and building relationships with those in the church and people in the community around us. While many have asked if I have ever considered becoming a pastor, I feel that God has invited me to live as a lay person and spiritual director. I find my experience with living out a non-traditional call to church ministry mirrored in many people with whom I meet. I also find a strong connection with those I meet with who might be finding their way back to faith after a long absence. I believe we are all spiritual people, but it may look different because of varied life experiences. We have much to learn from each other. In addition, because of my paid work on a church staff, I enjoy offering spiritual direction to pastors and other church leaders. I can understand the desire and need to grow in your own faith outside of prepping for a sermon, teaching a class, and all the other ways church leaders care for and raise up strong and mature leaders in faith. I appreciate the hope and encouragement that spiritual direction can offer as it encourages us to keep going even in seasons when it might seem easier to stop. Finally, my time as a full-time wife and mom helped me discover for myself that all of life is part of the spiritual journey if we pause, notice and reflect.
I continue to find purpose and meaning in life by walking with others as they seek to go deeper on their spiritual journeys. This is a journey I am making as well. Listening as people share where they are noticing God in their daily lives, 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 or how taking care of our bodies through movement might draw us closer to God is holy ground. I consider it a sacred honor to remind each person I meet with that they are beloved, called and chosen by God. Letting that good news wash over and into us is a way we might accept the invitation to a life of vitality and abundance with God.