Quaker Women

Jone Brooksop: An Invitation of Love Š (1661)

"And if you love the Light, you will bring your deeds to the Light, that the Light may prove them, whether they be wrought in God yea or nay: but if you hate it, it will be your condemnation, (the Light) but I exhort thee, whoever thou art, as thou tenderest the good of thy own Soul, that thou love the Light which is the Life of Men, and embrace it, and love it with all thy heart, and with all thy mind, with all thy Soul, and with all thy strength; Oh! love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and thy Neighbour as thyself; so shalt thou come to feel the Plant which the Lords right hand hath planted in thee, to grow up, if thou lovest it; for this know assuredly oh Man, that the Lord is come to look for Fruit, For he that sows to the Flesh, shall of the Flesh reap Corruption; But he that sowes to the Spirit, shall of the Spirit reap Life Everlasting; and Joy and Peace, which shall never be taken from them;. . .

". . . For the Spirit of the Lord shall not alwayes strive with Man; therefore sink down low to the witness of God in thee, that so thou mayest come to have Peace with God in thy own particular; and so being obedient unto the Light of Christ in thee, thereby thou mayest come to witness victory over all that which hath vailed from thee the Pure Seed of God in thee; and so my dearly beloved Frined, unto whom my Life reaches, that all might come to the Knowedge of Life in themselves, and live; . . .

Susanna Bateman: no title (1656)
Thinks human wisdome I can eas'ly see
The Scripture can this thing declare to me;
But it's not known by pleasure, ease or sleep,
Who finds this Pearly must dig both low and deep
And whoso finds before it be his own,
He must sell all to purchase that alone,
And cast up all his stock and look within,
Before to build this house he doth begin.
Remember Babel, do not build too high,
Nor make a Tower to reach unto the Sky,
Nor look without, but turn thy eye within,
See Christ be laid, they build thy House on Him.
Who builds not on this Rock, shall surely fall,
For hee's the Corner-stone uniteth all.
Cease then a while, you humane learned men,
And know your wisdome cannot find out him.
Thou willing and obedient, know it's thee
Whose vail is rent to see this mystery:
It's not the prudent, lerned, wife, that shall
Him comprehend, who is the light of all.
Follow the light, for surely 'twill thee bring
Where he is born, then bow and worship him.
No sooner is he born, but thou shalt see,
That Herods nature by its cruelty,
Weeks to destroy that New-born-babe in thee.

Anne Docwra: Postscript to A Looking-Glass for the RecorderŠ (1682)
The Mystery of Profession great,
And Lifeless Forms I here repeat,
That all may see, that want of Light
Makes men like Bats and Birds of Night,

Profession was a lovely Tree,
And very green appeared to bee,
With Blossoms fair as Eye can see;
And when the times with it did suit,
It seem'd as it would bear some fruit.

Great Storms of Persecution blew,
That nipt the bud, and chang'd the hew,
and so, away the Blossoms flew.
What Fruit can then expected be,
From a seared and blasted Tree?

The Husband-man did his good Will;
No fault is found, nor want of Skill:
What's done in love can think no Ill.
And when that he expected Fruits,
It brought forth nothing but Disputes.

This Tree stands still upon the Ground,
Small hopes of Life, it being Unfound.
Who know how Mercy may abound?
None can pluck up, but only he
That plants and plucks to Eternitie.

Profession thus grown out of Date,
Through change of times and change of State,
In steps the Monster of Debate.
I'll shew her in her Colours true,
And set her forth to publick view.

Make-bate Opinion, she appears,
With swarms of jealousies and fears,
Sets men together by the Ears;
And courts the times what soe'er they be,
And makes that pass for Loyaltie.

The Sun hath shin'd so long upon her,
Her brood grows great, and comes to Honor,
and strives to be as big as BONNER.
These Vipers in the Sun do play,
Makes all the year a Holyday.

But Storms will come to make them Creep
Into their Holes, in hopes of Sleep;
Instead of Rest, with Sorrow Weep.
This is the Portion that will be
Due to so great Hypocrisie.

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