Q & R from Ireland … on spiritual friendship

Here’s the question:

just a ‘wee’ note from ireland to thank you so much for coming to share with us @rehab………my husband and i have been in youth ministry for over ten years and recently took a fresh direction in our adventure with Jesus..anyway just wanted to say thank you..what you said really spoke to us and encouraged us …it was so inspiring and we look forward to hearing you again in the future..
Just a quick note: saw you at Summer Madness and was definitely intrigued by your points of view. I like being perplexed by different opinions, it’s good for my soul.
We have a group of guys who meet in a pub where we live in Hillsborough (County Down, south of Belfast – you’re welcome any time!), on a monthly basis, and it’s a sort of informal arrangement that a few of us hope will gently evolve into some kind of accountability group. Nothing written down per se, just an informal collection of people who have the opportunity – whether we take it or not – to ask difficult and challenging questions of themselves and one another in a space and time away from all that preoccupies us.
I was wondering, therefore, if you wouldn’t mind dropping me a quick line with the ‘soul friendship’ brief questions you had at the seminar you took on the friends from your past and present, or pointing me in the direction of whichever book of yours talks about it:I forgot to bring a notebook and am not technologically savvy enough to remember to put such things in my phone! … Hope you returned safely and thanks once again for your gracious answers to some good questions.

Response after the jump …

The Quakers and Methodists picked up on the old Celtic tradition of “anam cara” or soul friendship … and they practiced using queries (soul questions) to deepen the spiritual value of their friendships. Here are some queries I have used in friendships and small groups over the years …
How goes it with your soul?
What is draining you lately?
What is recharging you lately?
How have you felt God speaking to you?
How have you been able to see and serve Christ in the elderly, the poor, the young, the needy, or the rejected?
What has been a spiritual high point? Low point?
What challenges are you facing in the coming days?
My book which goes into this area of spiritual practices is Finding Our Way Again. I hope you’ll enjoy it!