I keep being surprised that people are surprised to find that christians are not the "straw man" they seem to be expecting. Jesus is reported as starting the saying after all - "Matthew ch7 v21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven." I guess it baffles me that so many people amongst Quakers seem to be in the fellowship of the holy spirit, drawn into this church (Quakers) and yet denying… Continue
Added by Alice M Yaxley on 6th mo. 9, 2009 at 6:02am —
I was just reading a brief, possibly unfair account of a charismatic Anglican clergyman of the 1840's. 'Men were quaking; women were fainting' during his sermons. His bishop clamped down, and soon this man had gone off to start a church of his own, where his ceremonial public attempt to render a female disciple immortal unexpectedly (to him!) rendered her pregnant.
Okay... So we need more 'enthusiasm,' in the root sense of God being more manifestly 'in us'--but 'enthusiasm' in the… Continue
Added by Forrest Curo on 6th mo. 9, 2009 at 12:33am —
I am quailing at posting this but I do so in the faith that we must be willing to address the heart even of issues which might be terribly divisive. What light can God send us, if we are willing to listen and learn together?
I have just been wondering what a christian response could be to reduce the demand for women and children to have pregnancies terminated (abortion). I am talking about my vision of the world to come. Who can throw the first stone?
People would be… Continue
Added by Alice M Yaxley on 6th mo. 5, 2009 at 7:38am —
Replying to comments by Martin, Callid, Wess below a previous post, on Scott McKnight's stuff about community.
I'd agree we have to be willing for everything to be pruned away, whilst we hold to the cross which we can rely on. My model is that "being a Quaker" is
living in that willingness to give up everything, to be re-formed by Christ amongst us into the church God intends us to be. That's what I mean when I use the word, what do you mean? Sounds like you want to use the… Continue
Added by Alice M Yaxley on 6th mo. 4, 2009 at 6:30am —
It has twice happened that I was traveling some distance on public transport and found myself in possession of two bonnets. I wear one bonnet every day, but to be in possession of two and to be traveling about is more rare. Now, I once traveled with a Friend in the same predicament and she accomplished it with no problem, so I will not say it is something anyone else would have to worry about. But I, I am inattentive to bonnets that are not on my head and I have allowed them to suffer squishing… Continue
Added by Isabel Penraeth on 6th mo. 4, 2009 at 1:00am —
There are a whole lot of Friends who don't think the Bible matters much, one way or another. There are a great many who consider it vitally important, but figure it has a simple meaning which they accept and others reject. And by the American Assumption, anyone who doesn't know must be sure that the truth lies somewhere "in the middle"? My position is: None of the above.
I've been laboriously neglecting this Bible blog I blundered into (kwakerskripturestudy.blogspot.com) and ended up… Continue
Added by Forrest Curo on 6th mo. 2, 2009 at 9:00am —
I'm starting a new daily Quotes blog over on this new Quaker Quotes of the Day blog
. My apologies for the duplicate posting, I'm just getting the system in place! See also: my post about this on Quakerranter.org
Added by Martin Kelley on 5th mo. 30, 2009 at 9:30am —
We don't live in the old times where debts got written off every seven years in Jubilee. How many of the people you know and who live near you are tied into their lifestyles of bad work and bad consumption by the need to repay debts?
I think the traditional Quaker understanding that a person had to be free of debt to be a good disciple is pretty radical. I want all people to have freedom to choose but how free can we be if debts keep people trapped in bad work, bad consumption to… Continue
Added by Alice M Yaxley on 5th mo. 29, 2009 at 9:31am —
Patience is a forced virtue. My hypotheses is that you learn it and practice it involuntarily. My personal circumstances over the past two years have put me in a situation where God has forced my hand: I have no control over the timing or outcome of things, only the control over how I respond to the events He has placed in my life.
A personal note: Nearly two years ago, I accepted a role in my company that requires I live/work in the Northwest, and since then, I've been commuting… Continue
Added by Deb Buerkle on 5th mo. 28, 2009 at 10:46am —
[Taken from my response to Marv Ostberg's blog post.]
I'm pretty young and idealistic I guess, but here, I'll try to describe the way I'm seeing it: God's justice is peacemaking, it tells me I have to work together with you and everyone to find the way we can live on the planet even with those who hate us and blame us and don't want us to exist. That's why we have to pray for our enemies. When I pray for my enemies I get really changed by it. I can see them as people. I hope for them… Continue
Added by Alice M Yaxley on 5th mo. 25, 2009 at 5:03pm —
here is the thing: i am a navy vet and even though i never had to fire a gun in defense or anger i am aware that in some way i may have contributed to deaths even though i served in peacetime - the eisenhower presidency. but i was also there as a representative of our culture to japan and other places in the far east. yet, i humbly concern myself that in some way i may have contributed to violence.
now then i do not hear any of the same type of humiity from quakers or others of the… Continue
Added by marv ostberg on 5th mo. 24, 2009 at 9:25pm —
At the moment I have such a strong sense that following God is a communal activity. I don't know if any of us are strong enough to do it alone. Jesus was upset, he needed his friends to watch and pray when he was facing the difficult stuff.
I have a Meeting relatively close (1.5h walk, 35min bus) but I want to have Meeting with the people in my street and the surrounding streets.
I hear a lot on this site about isolated Friends who are struggling feeling alone on your path… Continue
Added by Alice M Yaxley on 5th mo. 23, 2009 at 9:19am —
Just a suggestion... but how long does it take a typical Quaker to get tuned in?
My impression is that it takes longer than an hour.
I know we've had some groups experimenting with at least occasional longer meetings. Even considering the fact that these would be self-selected, unusually spiritually-inclined members in the first place--I understand that the results have been generally good.
Over an hour is not unusual for a church service.
Among other… Continue
Added by Forrest Curo on 5th mo. 23, 2009 at 7:31am —
Yesterday I got a strong sense of why traditional Quaker preachers were so keen to suppress their own personalities.
I still think it was an error, from applying a crude theology to reality: the notion that we are a Christ spirit tangled within an unruly animal self--within a personal self that must be murdered to let Christ rule in us all alone.
But I had this responsibility to not blow it, to pass on the Transmission with the cleanest possible signal.
I'd just… Continue
Added by Forrest Curo on 5th mo. 21, 2009 at 6:30pm —
I know, I know I said I was taking a break but seriously read this if you are interested in evangelising/Gospel Order.
If reading the Bible as Story teaches us anything, and we need to emphasize this one more time, it teaches us that God's work in this world is to form communities that visibly demonstrate the power of God at work in this world.
This is explaining some stuff I've been… Continue
Added by Alice M Yaxley on 5th mo. 21, 2009 at 4:23pm —
Forrest wrote: If we bring to bear the collective attention of a group of interested people, mentally centered and open to whatever message the Spirit may have for us, on some specific occasion, then we can see God at work, using it in and among us!
Yeah! I guess this is where I'm at. I want to live in this living tradition with all of you, but I don't see how we can do that unless we are doing it together, like we are here on QuakerQuaker and in our Meetings. If we're not… Continue
Added by Alice M Yaxley on 5th mo. 18, 2009 at 5:59am —
For me all the reasons I am a Quaker are more superficial and it is not about the qualities that define my Quakerism, but my relationship to God/Spirit.
As I have learned to see 'that which is of God' in every one, I have learned to give up judgment and love each person for who they are, regardless of their beliefs and practices. I fully understand that some people need different practices in their religious services than the… Continue
Added by Scott Holloway on 5th mo. 17, 2009 at 5:00pm —
Final: part 3
I did church crawl the next week. I went to a yuppy church near my apartment. This is one of those churches were there's one old couple, but everyone else is 20-30 somethings. The opening hymns were played by a rock band. I had to give them credit for being great musicians--even if they were the type of Christians who creep me out. They seemed to be of a self-righteous bent. These are Christians who are frustrated because they limit themselves to tools and…
Added by Darrin S. on 5th mo. 17, 2009 at 2:00pm —
Here's part 2:
I went to the meeting the next week. I couldn't resist. Those three hours I'd spent at meeting the week before had been the shortest of my life. I felt completely at home. I had read everything I could find on the internet about the Quakers. I had to know if that was a fluke or if that experience was my home, at least for now.
I will say that the next meeting was less impressive than the first, but still excellent.
I managed to show up…
Added by Darrin S. on 5th mo. 17, 2009 at 1:30pm —
I had almost forgotten how I discovered the Quakers! So I'm grateful that I left detailed comments in my first blog post on this site. Here they are reproduced, from May 17th, 2009 (5th mo. 17, right?):
I'm considering expanding this blog a bit.
One day, I conceived the idea of doing a church crawl - a trip to a different church every week. After much hemming and hawing, I managed to drag a friend along. We went to a Catholic church in an up and coming…
Added by Darrin S. on 5th mo. 17, 2009 at 1:00pm —