[I] was bidden by our Lord to go to an anchoress in [Norwich] named Dame Julian. And so [I] did. She showed [me] the trace that God put in [my] soul of compunction, contrition, sweetness, and devotion, compassion with holy meditation and high contemplation, and very many holy speeches and fellowship that our Lord spoke to her soul and many wonderful revelations which she showed to the anchoress. [Margery wanted to know if she was deceived in her own visions, and sought Julian] because the anchoress was expert in such things, and could give good counsel...(This modern translation gets the sense of The Boke of Margery Kempe, Ch. 18:954-975)
The anchoress, hearing the marvelous goodness of our Lord, highly thanked God with all her heart for this visit, counselling [me] to be obedient to the will of our Lord God and fulfill with all her right whatever He put in her soul if it was not against the worship of God and profit of her fellow-Christians, for it is were [contrary], then it was not the moving of a good spirit, but rather of an evil spirit.
[omitted passage from original post; interpolated from Julian's Revelations]
The Holy Spirit may never do anything against charity, and if He did, it would be contrary to His own Self for He is all Charity. Also, he moves a soul to all chasteness, for chaste lovers are called the Temple of the Holy Spirit [I Cor 6:19], and the Holy Spirit makes a soul steadfast in the right faith and the right belief. And a person with a divided soul is always unstable and unsteadfast in all his ways. He that is always and evermore doubting, is like to the flood of the sea, which is moved and borne [i.e., carried] about with the wind, and that man is not likely to receive the gifts of God. What creature has these signs, he must steadfastly believe that the Holy Ghost dwells in his soul. And much more when God visits a creature with tears of contrition, devotion, or compassion, he may and ought to believe that the Holy Ghost is in his soul.
If that's not a textbook example of spiritual direction done right, what would be? Julian, asked by Margery if her voices and experiences are real, asks: Do they lead to peace, stability, charity? Do they lead to security in God's love and a reciprocal love for God, as well as a practical, real world active love toward one's neighbors? For Julian, the gifts of the Spirit are known by their fruit.
Some years I write about Julian's visions--the hazelnut, "all will be well," "Christ our mother"--so much riches there to choose from. But in this time of flux in our nation, in our Church, and even in my own discernment of vocation--Julian's questions as to discerning the will of God speak to me most vividly.