This morning we are conducting a discernment process to help us listen to God and discern what we, both as individuals and as the MSA team, are meant to be doing. In preparation for this session I have been reading 2 books that I would highly recommend. One is Basil Pennington’s classic Centering Prayer: Renewing an Ancient Christian Prayer Form. Centering prayer begins with a time of silence focusing on the presence of God and reminding us that Christ is the center of all we are and do. It is very challenging as it is easy for us in our busy modern world to want to move straight into the work of the day. “At the beginning of our prayer we take a minute or two to quiet down and then move in faith to God, dwelling in our depths.”
The other is a book on the Quaker group discernment process called Practicing Discernment Together by Lon Fendall, Jan Wood and Bruce Bishop. I would highly recommend both of these books to anyone who is interested in a more participatory, Christ focused discernment process. Chapter 2 by Bruce Bishop on Cultivating Foundational Discernment Skills is excellent.
We appreciate your prayers as we move ahead in this process. This is a whole new way of running an organization. It is so easy (and seemingly more efficient) for us all to gravitate toward the world’s way of doing business and not even acknowledge that God’s way of doing things may be very different from ours.