Discernment is the process of recognizing where God is active in your life, your community, and your world, and listening closely to hear what God wants you to do. Prayerful discernment involves letting go of preconceptions about the direction that the answers will take, instead remaining open to the leading of God. The Wesleyan quadrilateral of scripture, tradition, reason, and experience can help us to test the questions we bring to the process against these important elements of Christian wisdom.
This week use Wesleyan Discernment to seek guidance on the following question: How is God calling you to witness to the community and the larger world at this time?
Begin with scripture. What scripture passages inform Christian witness to community? How do people in the Bible respond to the challenges of social problems and conflict? What words do the prophets speak to those in power?
Next consider tradition. How do Christian creeds, statements of faith, or other teachings address the needs of the world? What did Wesley teach about the responsibilities of Christians? What do the UMC Social Principles teach?
Third, look to reason. In what ways can Christians speak hope to the world? What resources are available to United Methodists to enact change? What are possible pitfalls?
Finally, weigh the question against your experience. What need of the world or your community has a special place in your heart? Where have you been effective in the past? What new concerns has God raised to your consciousness?
Towards what actions and ministries is God calling CUMC?