Kindling a life of concern : spirit-led Quaker action

by Jack Kirk

Other authorsChel Avery (Editor), Mary Helgesen Gabel (Designer)
Pamphlet, October 2009



Call number

CP 404 c1


Wallingford, Pa. : Pendle Hill Publications, 2009.




Friends speak of "concerns" as the spiritual promptings that come to us, revealing our own particular God-given responsibilities in a world that so truly needs our love and our service. When we yearn to act, help, or respond, how do we know whether that yearning comes from our own feeling of urgency or our own sense of obligation, or whether it is something more, something that the Holy Spirit is asking of us? Jack Kirk discusses how concerns arise and are opened to us, how we may test them, and how we may find in them a center of spiritual gravity for our lives. How do we discover our callings as individuals, and what is our calling as a community of Friends? Discussion questions included.--Publisher's description.

User reviews

LibraryThing member kaulsu
"The first motion is love." An old Quaker saying that speaks directly to the heart of what it means to be called to a concern. Responding to God's love for us, we learn to love others. Those who operate their lives in response to what they are called to do have an impact on the world that they
Show More
perhaps did not foresee. Jack Kirk first wrote this essay for [Friends Face the World], an anthology edited by [[Leonard Kenworthy]]. It was edited for Pendle Hill to bring it into the 21st century, most notably in its discussion of Convergent Friends.

When asking yourself if your concern comes from the Spirit, ask, "Does your concern bring with it a deep sense of inward peace--not peace with the injustices of the world, but a sense of assurance that you are in harmony with the guiding forces of the universe?" (14).

Among the many of "good causes" how do we discern which we should personally take on? Kirk quote Thomas Kelly: "While recognizing 'the multitude of good things that need doing, ...toward them all we fell kindly, but we are dismissed from active service in most of them. And we have an easy mind in the presence of desperately real needs which are not our direct responsibility. We cannot die on every cross, nor are we expected to" (17-18).

Kirk goes on to write: "The called person can affirm with the apostle Paul, 'this one thing I do' (Phil 3:13)" (22).

While this pamphlet is quite Christocentric in its language, it is yet very ecumenical across all Quaker lines. Kirk ends the pamphlet with a plea that we query ourselves on what we are attempting to accomplish with our activism,. Are we open to God's call, or so deeply wedded to the notion that we are one true Quaker to the detriment of the Religious Society of Friends, and more importantly, to heeding God's call.
Show Less
LibraryThing member QuakerReviews
This very wonderful pamphlet addresses the Spirit-led concern, the particular ministry or leadings that one is called to. It discusses what this is, where it comes from, and how to discern and test the leadings. The pursuit of our Spirit-led concern draws us toward wholeness and into unity.
Show More
not only is a topic of importance to most Friends (and more widely as well), but there also is some lack in the literature on it, which this excellent pamphlet helps to fill.
Show Less

Similar in this library

Call number

CP 404 c1


Page: 0.5171 seconds