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A labyrinth works as a spiritual gift when we connect it to our journey of wholeness. It combines the imagery of the circle and the spiral into a meandering, but purposeful path. The labyrinth represents a journey to our own center and back again out into the world. Labyrinths have long been used as meditation and prayer tools.
The labyrinth is not inherently a Christian symbol, but it has been used since at least as far back as the 4th century AD. Ruins of them have been found in Christian basilicas from that period. Scripture such as Psalm 16:11 can be useful in seeing how this discipline can connect to our spiritual journey. “You show me the path of life. In your presence there is fullness of joy; in your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
I have found that entering a labyrinth is especially helpful as we mindfully focus our journey through them on not the exact moment we are in, but on the breadth of our spiritual life. The goal is not so much to finish the maze (although that is a secondary goal), but instead to connect the path to your own journey. As an example, you will often see labyrinths inviting you to an entrance that appears to directly take you to the goal only to turn you around. This can remind us (amongst other things) that often what we think is simple and quick will take time and lead us in directions we at first didn’t expect. I would encourage that at each turn you take a moment to pray and connect the next movement in the labyrinth to your own life.
There is not one right way to encounter the labyrinth. The best advice I can give is to be open to God working in this way and give yourself time. This is not a race. There are labyrinths all over the place and they can be experienced using small mazes like children use. However, I do find it better to immerse yourself in one.
If you would like to find some local ones you can use this link: Click here. There are more around than you might think, and I’m sure that there are others to find on the internet as well. As with many things, a reminder that making this a God moment and not just a maze is up to you, but by all means try it. They are fun and interactive.
You can’t go to a labyrinth every day, so many of our spiritual prompts invite you to look at other ways that you can sort out and bring order to your journey.