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By Lorraine Watson

Painted Rocks by Christine Hall

Rocks painted by Christine Hall, Director of Way of the Spirit

ILOVE THAT THANKSGIVING FLOWS INTO CHRISTMAS, setting the tone for the Christmas season with gratefulness. In thinking about gratitude and gratefulness, there is often a significant link to generosity. Gratitude begets generosity as feeling grateful naturally spills over into generous actions. Cicero said that gratitude is the parent of all other virtues.

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Lessons Learned about Group Discernment

by Lorraine Watson
Pastor, North Seattle Friends Church

One Way signIam drawn to group discernment as the Quaker way of finding way forward as a congregation. I firmly believe that we can discern the mind of God as we are gathered in community. I wrote a SEEDS article in April 2010 about discernment. (See https://www.goodnewsassoc.org/seeds-pdf/seeds10-04.pdf.) But doing group discernment is a learning process and through personal experience I’ve learned several lessons about discernment since then.

First, the gathered community is key to discerning God’s Leading. As a child I remember learning that Quakers don’t vote because the majority might be wrong. God can speak through even one dissenting voice so it behooves us to listen to everyone that is part of the community. Individually we hear imperfectly, but as we come together in community with a commitment to hear God’s Leading, we put our pieces together and continue to listen. What is God doing with this? How can these seemingly disconnected pieces fit together? Continue reading