Our Collective Journal

June/July 2012


"I have often felt a motion of love to leave some hints

in writing of my experience of the goodness of God." 

--John Woolman  


Chapter 7

When has following the Light led you to a change of heart, despite initial resistance?


The Light (Oil) by Charles T.


The Turning Point

Introduction:  Last year, a week or two after we published the first chapter of Minding the Light, Fred Edera came to me and said, "I have a story."  At that time, Fred was losing his ability to speak, but he was able to tell me the bare bones of the story... [more]


Just When You Think You Are Done

When I was young, my church taught that women were to be submissive, under the authority of some male:  father or husband or church leader.  Women were not to have authority over men.  This is a common teaching in Christian churches, but that did not make it easy for me... [more]


The Unwelcome Change

It began when my son came out as Gay during his senior year in high school.  My husband quit talking to him, although living in the same house. That only increased my commitment to support him--I loved this creative, sensitive, gifted son.


I learned from books and movies about LGBT issues... [more]



Bear him. Bear him lightly,

as an incense bearer

swings the censer,


as a dancer bears

the air above her and

across her shoulders,


as bread is borne home

hot and light from market

in a basket,


as bell notes borne

on waves of air from open,

arched courtyards,


bear him. Bear him like

that Job, who bore sharp

news with song,


who heard from... [more]


Joining West Hills Friends Church

In 2006 I joined West Hills Friends Church. This was not a transfer from another Friends Church nor a simple transfer from another church body. I had been a member of the Presbyterian Church, and an ordained minister of that church for over fifty years.


I had spent part of the... [more]


A New Purpose

I don't know that this story fits the query for this Chapter, but I offer it anyway.


A few years ago I was minding my academic business, largely doing what I had been trained to do: research in the basic biophysics of proteins. This work took me in a number of... [more]


Jesus Under the Bridge

In the evening light

on a river walk

as we dipped under

the thundering traffic

a picture of Jesus

pasted high on

the undergirder beam

smiled down at us

How fitting it was

posted on a span

that crossed the waters

and sad, that as in life,

He too was trod upon,


by the feet of those

who need Him most.    

—K. L.... [more]


Resisting Dream Wisdom

Until reaching middle age, I rejected the information dreams offered as mere concoctions of my unconscious mind, influenced by happenings of my day, or what I ate before going to bed.  I now see dreams as gifts from a loving God who is guiding me day and night. 


Around 1983, I... [more]


"His name is Elmer, we have to take him"

My ears perked up when I heard the announcement in our small Quaker meeting concerning a young Guatemalan boy, crippled from the effects of polio.  He had been cleared to receive medical care in Portland and needed only a foster home for his time here.  My husband had also wrestled... [more]


Death Wasn't Part of the Plan

Twenty-five years ago, I worked as a summer intern at Reedwood Friends Church. It was a great opportunity.  The church had four very competent pastors on staff.  In that company, “I felt like a grasshopper in my own eyes.”  I felt very inadequate.

Because my internship was during the summer,... [more]



Stories in this Chapter


The Turning Point


Just When You Think You Are Done


The Unwelcome Change




Joining West Hills Friends Church


A New Purpose


Jesus Under the Bridge


Resisting Dream Wisdom


"His name is Elmer, we have to take him"


Death Wasn't Part of the Plan