Psychology Informs Spiritual Growth, Always.

Our own individual subjectivity when approaching the experience of God is inevitable. While many would like to define "correct experience" vs. "wrong experience" in regards to Christianity (prophet vs. heretic), it doesn't necessarily work according to our-own-will-presented-as-God's-will, which is what presentations of theological beliefs are likely to elicit. Like gravity, it is certain we will shape our own faith walk through our own individual psychology.   If we try to make our experience match up perfectly with a sense of biblical orthodoxy, we will of course shape our biblical interpretations in the likeness of our own psycho-social development.

This is nothing new for priests, pastors, and spiritual directors: we must look at our own "stuff."  Yet for some reason there are still many who are simply not ready to realize that development is not static, nor is growth a matter of choosing just "one thing," whether it is the Bible, church authority, what the therapist says, or what the doctor says.  All ranges of knowledge are part of the same spectrum of Awareness and Existence. I have never quite understood folks who consistently view their doctor in "one category," and their priest "over here," and then their counselor "over there," compartmentalizing aspects of their spiritual development as if they do not overlap in the least. And I do believe that if we are to be truly spiritual in our walk with Christ, we must learn from multiple strains of knowledge and maintain the humility to learn from them.