80th Celebration

We celebrated Lois' (our clerk) 80th birthday after meeting on First Day. Her son Mark decorated the downstairs dining area. It was a total surprise for her & great fun for all of us.

Salem Quarterly Meeting was held last Seventh Day. It was a blessed meeting. I have written below the gifts of ministry that were shared during worship.
Open thy heart to the shaft of Light that dispels hurt, fear, shame. May we be entirely open, laying all things before Him. Our Lord does & will speak directly to each one of us.
 Why does it matter how we live here on earth? Didn't Christ Jesus do all the work for us? God is pure, He will always be pure. If it is our desire to one day become united with God, as individuals & as a people we must become free from sin. Jesus did not say He came to free us from punishment, but to "save us from sin. "Silver mixed with tin is not pure. It is made pure by washing 7 times in a fire. This is much like our hands which need to be washed often to be kept clean. It is also the way that our God works within us as we submit ourselves to the cross of Christ, by putting aside own wills to abide in His. Some things are uncomfortable to have removed. As His Church we need to let some things go in order to purify, for God's pleasure, rather than what is pleasing in our own eyes. 
The Apostle Paul wrote, "All things are allowed, but all things are not expedient." A prophet of old time took a path that he was not shown. Even though he had clear messages from God as to what was right. In his state of self-will he could not see the sword  of death drawn to take his life. In this same way we do not immediately see the angel of death in the times we choose our own paths. 


Salem & Quote

Last First Day (Sunday) a few of us from Salem Quarter gathered for worship at the Salem Meeting house for the fourth First Day combined worship. The gathered group was smaller than usual, but the worship covered by the God of Peace. (Photo taken during announcements following worship)

We have been reading the letters & memoranda of Elwood Dean in our pre-meeting sessions. I will copy a section of a letter he wrote following the Ohio Yearly Meeting of 1887.
…"The trials of our day are so great. The spirit that has been permitted to set in upon us is a delusive one. It's plausibility, it's adaptiveness to our carnal propensities, in seeking some easier way to the kingdom; its glitter and show are captivating, and will, perhaps try the foundations of everyone. But, there is an ark of safety: 'The foundation of God stands sure, having this seal, the Lord knoweth them that are his.' Dear friend, does not the day call for suffering? 'Fill ye up, therefore, your measure of the cup of suffering for His body's sake, which is the Church' If we suffer (with Christ) we shall also reign with Him.' "…


Gone with the wind?

"The wind blows where it will. Thou hears the sound there of, but cannot tell from whence it comes nor where it goes; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit." "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, that which is born of the Spirit is spirit." "Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit he cannot enter the Kingdom of God." John 3:5-8
All humans develop in the womb surrounded by water, hence we are all born of water in the fleshly sense. Jesus told Nicodemus that he must be born again in order to see, or to know the Kingdom of Heaven. No amount of human reasoning can reveal the nature of God. "Thou hearest the sound thereof, but, knows not" the source. Belief in Jesus as the Christ/Saviour is the key to the Kingdom of Heaven. Some may look at such belief as archaic, even mythical. 
Check thy spirit, like the wind, Spirit speaks to spirit, bending or influencing thoughts. When these bodies of flesh have lived their term, will Jesus recognize thee as His Friend? He has said, "Thou art my Friend if thou does whatsoever I have commanded you." John 3:14 He has also said, "Today if ye will hear my voice, harden not your heart." Hebrews 3:7 How blows the wind of Christ in thy heart? 


The Invisible God

"There is no Speech nor language where their voice is not heard. ......moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them is great reward." psalm 19 "But I say, have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world.......All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient & gainsaying (stubborn) people" Romans 10 "Blessed be the God & Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy has begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead......That the trial of your faith, being more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise & honor & glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ; Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable & full of glory: receiving the end (outcome) of your faith, even the salvation of your souls." I Peter 1 "It is written in the prophets, & they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that has heard, and has learned of the Father, cometh unto me." 
John 6:45 spoken by Jesus 


Our God is a Consuming Fire

Dear Lord Jesus, we pray that all the doors within us be opened to thee, let no door be kept shut from thee, that thy Light will sweep through us, cleansing us of every particle that is unclean. Would that we be clear of walking contrary to thy desire for us in any way. We would be free to walk as examples that others around us know Christ is the source of cleansing. (This is some essence of a spoken prayer given in our meeting for worship)
These past two weeks our worship (both quietly & vocally) called us to a purer walk as Christians. The Psalmist wrote, "A fire goeth before him and burneth up His enemies round about. His lightnings enlightened the world; the earth saw, and trembled." 97:3,4 The fire as purifier is sent sent from above to destroy the enemy to our souls.
Malachi prophesied, "For behold, the day cometh that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall." 4:1,2
Peter wrote in his second epistle; "But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up."…... "But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever, Amen"  3:10, 18


"Wait, I Say, Upon the Lord"

We have summer picnics at least once a summer. A few weeks ago we shared a cover dish meal at Beaver Creek State Park.
Our worship last evening was greatly strengthening. I am reminded of a story a North Carolina Friend would relate of the living spiritual work God does within us, when all wait in Spirit & in Truth. He recalled a meeting, "Where not a word was spoken, but the floor was wet with tears."


River of Life

Most of us were present today for worship. One member recalled his father's experienced advice, "the Lord will provide a way." We are to quench our thirst with the water that flows from the mouth of God.

Advice # 27,   "Remember that our spiritual life will not be complete unless we have experienced an inward baptism & transformation. Growth in inward purity & outward Christian effectiveness should follow this experience, but such growth can come only if we persist in seeking to know & follow the commands of Christ."


Midweek Worship

It has been a challenge to get all the regular attenders in a photo. Usually this group, (except for Ray & Hulda), are together for midweek worship. We meet Fourth Day (Wed) evenings, at 7:30. All are welcome.

Worship & Fellowship

Last First Day Winona Friends meeting hosted Salem Quarter's rotating 4th First Day of the month worship. It was a Holy covered meeting. Even though small in number we had a nice variety of ages, from 2 up to 90 something.