That, there--that is what spiritual companioning looks like to me. It is mutual presence, openness, attention to the details that matter, and easiness; it's the sharing of everything from joy to sorrow. It is listening without judgment. It is responding in love and with deep kindness.
I've spent a good deal of time noticing my weaknesses lately, but last night I noticed one of my great strengths. In my vulnerable listening, I am a strong companion. Out of silence, Spirit speaks through the tears and tremors and tentative smiles of my friend, and my heart perceives messages that run deeper than words.
But I have yet to fully accept the companionship of others when I am the one who brings tears, tremors, and tentative smiles. What trust it takes! What boldness, when trust has been violated in the past!
My friend inspires me to trust more readily when my fear might otherwise paralyze me. Step by small step, I inch forward. By receiving her trust, I expand my own capacity to trust, to draw Spirit's breath into my body and live.