by Jeff Imbach Contemplative prayer has been described in many different ways. Here are some of them. I think each has something to contribute to our understanding of what is happening in contemplative prayer. Opening Our Hearts To God In his wonderful book, Opening to God, Fr. Thomas Green says that prayer is not something […]
by Douglas Webber Living From The Heart participant and SoulStream Partner In the beginning I created God Out of the dust of my life HE, I created Him (SHE was a temptress) Dribs Drabs I used A little bit of My father’s distance My grandfather’s silence My sister’s rage My mother’s literalism and moralism Father […]
Discernment Issue: To Serve or Not to Serve: Victoria Police Victims’ Services by Sue McKerracher Living From The Heart – Module 4 – June 23, 2017 It seems as though my discernment issue sought me out, rather than the other way around. After returning from our May Intensive with a discernment issue firmly in mind, I […]
CENTERING PRAYER I sit. Still. Quiet. Timer set: 20 minutes Welcoming prayer: God for me. God with me . God in me. I breathe …Yah Weh A flutter in my chest Ah….there you are I let go Thoughts come, so many, never ending I watch them float away above me. I let go I return […]
By Kim Alexis I feel like I had a hard time coming up with a discernment issue that was concrete, that affected me or that was partly my choice and that was relevant to my life. In the end, the issue I chose was “Should John & I rent a place in Vancouver for one […]
by Tannis Fisher Living From The Heart – Module Four – June, 2015 When I began to consider a discernment issue, I had inklings and stirrings about what it might be. During and following the last intensive, I realized they had to do with the thread of my attachment to teaching and a possible focus for me […]
by Jacqueline Block Living From The Heart – Module Five – May, 2015 Monastic Spirituality is not principally for the sake of personal salvation or contemplative withdrawal. Monastic spirituality is meant to bring the reign of Christ to the world around us through a life of community consciousness of the will of God (141). —Joan D. Chittister, Wisdom […]
by Joey Horvath Module Five: Reading and Reflection on Contemplative Living Reference: Sabbath: Finding Rest, Renewal and Delight in Our Busy Lives by Wayne Muller I suppose I’ve always honored Sabbath to some extent; however, it wasn’t until I read the book “Sabbath: Finding Rest, Renewal and Delight in Our Busy Lives” by Wayne Muller […]
by Denice Bezoplenko Living From The Heart – Module Five – May, 2015 My daughter and daughter-in-law have taken up the craft of weaving. On the warp and woof of a lap frame they layer random bits of thread, well-chosen wool, and leftovers from other projects, to create a piece. Their experience, expressed to me on a […]
By Jan Fung February 23, 2015 Prayer has been a stumbling-block for me over the past years, as I watched and listened for a response from God to my constant cries for help within traumatic life circumstances, and none seemed to come. That I apparently waited in vain, set me up for disillusionment about prayer, […]
Northern Women, Trued Anonymous. Moments come, some brittle-bent and swift, like this one. Swooping in, a wind chill pull takes your breath and runs with it. Away. Wake up. Others shed their light in mystery, close. Comfort cats, kneading sadness with purrs and paws, into the chest of your fetaled curves. […]
by Kim Alexis Sue Monk Kidd does an admirable job of listening to God through her waiting time of a mid-life crisis. She is tempted to rush the process but instead looks at lessons from a cocoon she finds in her garden as she waits for it to turn into a butterfly. She struggles with […]
by M. K. Dallimore TOO First- Born, responsible; eager to please; belief in existing systems; strong sense of duty; values harmony & cooperation; prone to jealousy; craves approval; conscientious. I see you. Though your back is turned, Hands wringing; Mortar and pestle grinding; Mental checklist scrolling; Flushed, with frustration. What do you expect? Accept my […]
To most of the world her fawn beauty goes unnoticed. Her still and silent presence endows the landscape with subtle texture. The wind of His loving presence embraces her heart. She is seen. © SBJORNDAHL
by Rod Janz My friend Dale (not his real name) was a Marine during the Vietnam war. Today the battle continues for Dale. I’m not always too sure what to think of Dale’s stories because they are usually about conspiracies, spiritual warfare, the sad state of the church, and the end of the world. One […]
As the sun set outside my window at the monastery, I pulled my chair to the window to watch it disappear beneath the coastal mountains. This was my first time at the Abbey in Mission, B.C. Despite the beautiful views, and the fact that I was in a monastery, I was feeling dry spiritually and […]
by Rick Eitzen The church is the bride of Christ, his body made beautiful, holy and accessible to the world, the redeemed people of God reaching out with him, displaying his love, grace and forgiveness. There is nothing more beautiful than the presence of Christ in the midst of his chosen people – the poor […]
by James Murphy Joan Chittister’s Wisdom Distilled from the Daily brings Benedictine guidance at a most needful time in my vocational life. As our church’s recently appointed “Team Lead,” I have the charge of guiding our staff of six pastors through a challenging time of change. Although my role is not that of a traditional […]
by Wilma van der Leek “If we’re not spiritual where we are and as we are, we’re not spiritual at all.” I like this idea very much in Joan Chittister’s book. The simplicity of it makes me surprised all over again that Christian spirituality for goodness sake ever came up with the idea that a […]
by Kai Garmo Ward As Henri Nouwen wrote in his Geneses Diary: “People expect too much from speaking, too little from the silence,” I too find that my deepest prayer experiences are those without words. For me, music often instigates these moments when my heart strings are strummed either in a rumbling purr or a […]
by Glenn Loewen Jesus provides a welcoming invitation to our home, the heart of God. Foster states, “The key to this home, this heart of God, is prayer.” There are several important theological realities about this key identified in his book, Prayer: Finding the Heart’s True Home, which assisted my positive response to this wonderful […]
by Shauna Bjorndahl The Wolf Willow Maiden is Naked Now… But – For a String of Pearls. She Waits for Her Lover to Cover Her Shoulders With His Glistening Blanket, Under Which She Will Rest For a Time. And when the Morning of Spring Comes, Her Silver Green Garment Shall Be Restored to Her. And the […]
by Donna Anderson There once was a wee little girl who was knit together in her mother’s womb by her Daddy God. When it came time to be born her mother fought to live. Both the mother and the wee one were terrorized by death. Both lived, but neither bonded, and it was a lonely […]
by Katherine Kroeker In reading James Finley’s book, “Merton’s Palace of Nowhere” I encountered two new spiritual friends, Finley and Merton, both of whom seem happy to share what they have seen and learned as they surveyed this spiritual journey. I loved Finley’s turn of phrase, perhaps due to my own passion for good words […]
by Karen Wallace For a period of time, I have struggled with the term “journey” as it relates to one’s spiritual life. As I sat with my discomfort, I began to uncover it was connected to my legalistic theological training. The pressing on to the mark, measuring “spiritual victories’ and picking the right companions for […]
by George Klassen I’ll take salvation but I don’t like surrender Of my independence I’m a passionate defender On the bed of self-sufficiency I will rest in hope defined by me So I’ll take salvation but don’t ask surrender A little religion to follow salvation It maintains respect in all my human relations But I’ll […]
by Rod Janz Five days a week I (used to) work out in a gym. The gym is noisy, and according to my wife, who seems to have a superior sense of smell, it smells funny. On Saturdays I like to get away from the noise and the smell, and go run in the park. […]
by Esther Hizsa If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. Psalm 139:11,12 After my spiritual direction session with Joel, I felt light. That […]
by Esther Hizsa Joseph’s master took him and put him in prison…. But while Joseph was there in the prison, the LORD was with him… Genesis 39:20,21 It was lab day for our spiritual direction class. That meant we took turns giving each other spiritual direction. Our teachers called these sessions “real plays” because we […]
by Elaine Voth God has given me so much more insight into how I listen, through both the classes at King’s Fold, and the preparation of this assignment. He had been gradually revealing to me my self-absorption: my tendencies to control, to live in my head, and to analyze and figure things out, so that […]
by Michelle Newsham October 30, 2005 As I was sitting in a small group setting one day, apparently caught up in my own thoughts, someone made the comment to me that I was off in “my own little world.” I quickly corrected them, informing them that my inner world was, indeed, a big one. Perhaps […]
by Katherine Kroeker As I begin to understand discernment from a contemplative perspective, three decision making stances emerge; decisions based on my flesh or the needs of my false self, decisions based on a charismatic view and theology of God, and thirdly, the stance of true desire and self knowledge. In the process of distilling […]
by Coreen St. John I have really struggled in putting this report together mostly because I didn’t know where to start so I decided to write from a place of my heart that I identified strongly with. I know one of the postures or themes on living a contemplative life is living from the heart, […]
by James Murphy Our module on Contemplative Living opened with the prayer of the Apostle Paul for the Ephesians, that we might be able “to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge.” No greater goal than this could be stated […]
by Cindy Klassen Contemplative living used to be such a vague hazy kind of topic. In some respects, that’s why it’s so tantalizing. Today, this is a lifestyle I need for quality of life to be present; I need to navigate through the haze to the core of Spirit and my humanity. This paper comes […]
by Oz Lorentzen I read Henri Nouwen, The Genesee Diary, and parts of Basil Pennington’s Centering Prayer. The main impact these readings had on me has to do with the importance of silence, and the role of silence in prayer. Silence as both withdrawing and refraining from external noise, sound and speaking, and refraining from […]
by Karen Webber I made a move last month. Actually, it was the final of a series of moves. This was the 6th move in 4 years, the 3rd in 6 months, and the 2nd in 1 month. The preceding month had been a bit crazy. My husband and I had been in Sweden to […]
by Esther Hizsa Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High Will rest in the shadow of the Almighty… He will cover you with his feathers And under his wings you will find refuge. Psalm 91:1,4 Here in the shelter of God’s wings, I am safe and warm. I can hang up the worries […]
Seventy meters up from the Zambezi stands a little wooden dock and a clothesline like cable. On the dock I was quickly briefed and harnessed in. My companion cheered as I ran off the end of the dock into space like a cartoon coyote. Held fast by ropes and cables I ‘flew’ out over the […]
by Mary Holland Response to reading: Where God Happens By Rowan Williams In ‘Where God Happens’, Williams has opened for me a much deeper awareness of the significance of what I bring to the act of listening – or more accurately, the significance of who I am as a listener. “My own awareness of my failure and […]
MY SABBATH WAY Chaos and Clutter Monkeys chattering in my mind Tangled tasks Unfinished The time has come, the time is now… No, not yet Wait, wait Laundry lingers Must, I must… Loaded lists Appointments and schedules STOP Light the candle Breathe Be Still Close the Door Open my heart Grateful heart, loving heart, blessed […]
Open my heart as well as my mind today. Sister Eileen is correct, I have been looking at this as an assignment to be completed not an invitation to attend. I am mindful that is an opportunity for you (Jesus) and me to look at the issues of intimacy and surrender. My gifted history is […]
“Ripe” Life living in sound Particles of energy alive in my chest my lungs my throat Rhythmic breathing Up down In out Slow strong free Warm power Here now Moving and Still at the same moment Flesh pulsing with oxygen Trillions of swirling systems Infinite and small Chemical explosions Teaming and contained Universe within universe […]
by Carolyn Kwiatkowski I could not have foreseen the impact that taking this course (Living from the Heart or LFMH) would have when I first signed up. Even though I’d been skirting around the edges of contemplative practices for about ten years prior, it was just a foretaste of what I’ve since learned contemplative living […]
By Gail Chung, August 2014 This past year has been an amazing spiritual journey for me. It is as if God had taken me by the hand and led me on a delightful journey of discovery and insight. He placed a pair of God-lenses on me and gave me the opportunity to see the world as […]
Does the heart have a narrow door? Will it allow in just one more of every beast and flower and bird and every song it has ever heard? Just one more child, just one more flower, one more relinquishing of power to that sane and sacred foolishness of living by inclusiveness? Does the heart have […]
Gather Us In Gather us in, the lost and the lonely, the broken and breaking, the tired and the aching who long for the nourishment found at your feast. All: Gather us in, the done and the doubting, the wishing and wondering, the puzzled and pondering who long for the company found at your feast. […]
Good is the flesh that the Word has become, good is the birthing, the milk in the breast, good is the feeding, caressing and rest, good is the body for knowing the world, Good is the flesh that the Word has become. Good is the body for knowing the […]
I’m convinced that when we can surrender to the Great I AM, the Great Universal Being, the great shared consciousness that we all are, God gives us courage to accept our own I am in all of its eccentricity and in all of its brokenness. Your participation in the Universal Being or I am-ness of God gives you the […]
Fresh Wind Press is a small publishing company dedicated to helping quality authors take their manuscripts through editing, proof-reading, layout, and cover-design to final print. Kevin Miller (author, teacher, editor, screenwriter) oversees the work of a network of professionals who get self-published authors onto the bookstore shelves.
Fresh Wind Press specializes in the “Listening Prayer Resources” of Brad and Eden Jersak. These include books and study guides that equip all of God’s people to hear the voice of God more clearly, more accurately, and more frequently.
Henri Nouwen spent his life helping people respond to the universal “yearning for love, unity, and communion that doesn’t go away”. Is it possible to touch and taste the love of God? How can we live a spiritual life that embraces the pain and suffering of our lives and in the world, and gives us the freedom to love deeply wherever we are? Join us in this way of the heart!
Programs include a number of non-degree initiatives including a Centre for Spiritual Formation which provides interactive engagement focused on the disciplines and practice of the spiritual life. Academic programs include Master of Pastoral Ministry and Doctor of Ministry Degrees.
An Everyday Pilgrim (Esther Hizsa’s Blog)
Consciousness Examen – We learn to attend to God’s loving action in our everyday experience in the Examen.
Prayer of Imagination – Encountering Jesus with you in the gospels.
Lectio Divina – Reading and hearing the word of God.
If you are interested in finding a spiritual director, please email us for names of SoulStream Spiritual Directors in your area.