personal spiritual direction

In rereading Seven Story Mountain, I ran across one of his pensees or reflections on his experiences.  He is still a boy, about 12, and is talking about the sessions with the “Protestant minister who came to the Lycee to evangelize us….I am grateful that I got at least that much of religion, at an age when I badly needed it…However, it was practically useless.  What is the good of religion without personal spiritual direction?”  

Believe it or not, it was not my experience in the Jesuits which taught me the value of “personal spiritual direction” but my experience in AlAnon.  Perhaps the groundwork was laid and the reality of the need brought out its efficacy.  Ibid. for the daily examination of conscience and regular confession.  It is rather awe-inspiring to look back in wonder at the ways of God in our lives.