How might we allow for spiritual deepening in our meetings using traditional Quaker practices and embracing Continuing Revelation? Join FGC’s Spiritual Deepening Program in discovering strategies and tools for co-creating worshipful community, playful community, and virtual community.
Workshop presented at Pendle Hill’s Quaker Institute, April 2023
Be aware of the spirit of God at work in the ordinary activities and experience of your daily life. Spiritual learning continues throughout life, and often in unexpected ways. There is inspiration to be found all around us, in the natural world, in the sciences and arts, in our work and friendships, in our sorrows as well as in our joys. Are you open to new light, from whatever source it may come? Do you approach new ideas with discernment?Advices number 7, Quaker Faith and Practice, Religious Society of Friends in Britain 1.02
It is a bold and colossal claim that we put forward – that the whole of life is sacramental, that there are innumerable ‘means of grace’ by which God is revealed and communicated – through nature and through human fellowship and through a thousand things that may become the ‘outward and visible sign’ of ‘an inward and spiritual grace’.A Barratt Brown, 1932, Quaker Faith and Practice, Religious Society of Friends in Britain 27.43
Opening Worship Sharing Query
What does faith as the whole of life mean to you?
Question Formulation as a Group
For this exercise, we sat with the statement We want to co-create a more worshipful, playful, and virtual community and recorded every question that arose in the group. The questions provide queries for future exploration and also reflect the Quaker experience of continuing revelation.
Practices for Everyday Spirituality
Activity: Ingredients for a Worshipful Life (or Worshipful Community, Playful Community)
Settle into worship and consider the queries below. You may want to write in a journal.
- What are the essential “ingredients” for building a worshipful life, as I understand it? These ingredients could include beliefs, behaviors, attitudes, practices, or relationships.
- What actions can I take to build this life for myself and others?
- What challenges do I face as I seek a life of deep meaning and connection? What do I need to let go of in order to live more fully?
- What prayer do I offer to Spirit for help and guidance?
Consider creating a visual representation of your Ingredients for a Worshipful Life that can serve as an anchor for you. You could create:
- a list of “guideposts” or “pillars”
- a prayer
- an illustration
- a recipe card with ingredients and instructions
- a letter to yourself or to God
- a to-do list
- a photo collage
- a ritual
Activity: Create a Ritual or Routine for Yourself
What does your soul need? What must your soul have right now? What can you let go of to make space?
Create a simple ritual for yourself.
Potential examples include: Ritual of Filling the Bird Feeder, Meditation While Watering the Houseplants, Prayer While the Water Boils, Hold in the Light While Lighting a Candle, Breathing, In and Out, Dedicating an Afternoon Walk to The Holy.
Just allow yourself to consider how you might allow yourself to be present to Spirit, for a few moments, in a way that allows you to experience the spaciousness of the sacred through making meaning out of easeful action.