When our Discerning Vision team met this month, I asked them to do this Guided Imagery meditation to invite God and their own imagination offer a vision of the future St. Luke’s.
Get into a very comfortable and relaxed position. Focus your awareness on your breathing. Breathe in easily and effortlessly. Then breathe out. Each breath allows you to go deeper and deeper inside.
As you allow yourself to go deeper into a state of relaxation, remember a time when you stood before a pond, noticing how quiet and peaceful it was.
You may have dropped a pebble into the center and noticed the ripples rippling out, one ripple after another, flowing outward farther and farther. Slowly the water returned to its original calm and peaceful way.
I’m going to invite you to imagine that your body is like that body of water. As you drop a pebble into the center of your body, you can feel ripples of relaxation rippling out throughout your body; up through your torso, into your chest and your back; up through the vertebrae and spreading out into each and every muscle of your back. Through your shoulders and arms, up through your neck, your jaw, face, and scalp. Feeling those ripples just relax as your muscles let go and become soft and loose.
You can now feel the ripples of relaxation flow down to the bottom of your torso, flowing through your abdomen and your pelvis, down through your thighs, calves, ankles and toes. Know that each time you drop a pebble in the center of your body you become more and more relaxed. As you become more relaxed, you find yourself becoming more quiet and peaceful.
I want you to imagine yourself standing in a beautiful forest. Off into the distance is a church. You can hear the bells ringing as you approach. Something seems very familiar about this place.
It should. You see, this is the future St. Luke’s, a few years from now. Notice what the campus and buildings look like. What can you smell as you approach? And what noises do you hear?
Take your time. Get a good sense of this place…
And now, walk to the door and know that on the other side is our future church and your Future Self, waiting to greet you.
As the door opens, what do you see? . . . What do you hear? . . .What do you feel?. . .
Greet your Future Self, and notice the way your Future Self returns your greeting, welcoming you into this time and place several years into the future.
Take in this person…your Future Self. What do they look like? Notice how they hold their body, what they are wearing, what they were doing when you arrived. Get a sense of their essence. Notice how you are feeling while in their presence.
Now look around at the inside of the church. What kind of person worships and ministers here?…
Now move with your Future Self to a comfortable place for a conversation. Perhaps your Future Self offers you something to drink or eat. Really settle in and make yourself comfortable. Begin your conversation by asking the following questions to your Future Self:
1. What do we need to pay attention to most right now at St. Luke’s?…
Take a moment now to hear the answer…
2. Knowing what you now know, is there one piece of advice you can give us?…
Listen to what your Future Self has to say.
3. Now take a moment and ask your Future Self your own questions…
Wait for the response…
And now it’s time to finish your conversation with your Future Self. Thank your Future Self for being with you today and for sharing their wisdom with you. Say goodbye and head out of the church. As you begin to walk away, turn around and look at the St. Luke’s campus one more time. What was spoken, and what will you remember most about your experience?
And now, very slowly, very slowly, hold on to this experience and come back to the now. Notice how your body feels and if there is any air movement. Notice what here and now smells like. What can you hear?
And as you open your eyes to the present, stretch and move your body and take a moment to remember your encounter with your future self at the future St. Luke’s.
If you do this meditation, please send me an email to let me know what you see and hear and notice.