Quaker Heritage Press > Online Texts > Isaac Penington's Works > Isaac Penington to Widow Hemmings (1675)
MY DEAR FRIEND,
I have not forgotten thee; but have often inquired after thee, and many times breathed for thee.
O my friend! look not out at what stands in the way; what if it look dreadfully as a lion, is not the Lord stronger than the mountains of prey? but look in, where the law of life is written, and the will of the Lord revealed, that thou mayst know what is the Lord's will concerning thee; and then show thyself a faithful daughter of Abraham, and be like Sarah, not terrified with any amazement. So soon as I had read thy letter, this arose in my heart to thee as God's counsel, proper to thy state. Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove <510> them. Be not straitened in thy spirit, as fearing what thou shalt suffer for Christ's sake; or as if God would not stand by thee, or carry thee through. Be thy sufferings as great as possible, yet he is faithful, who hath promised thee an hundred fold in this life.
Oh! what can hurt thee, if thy God stand by thee? Be faithful to his testimony in thy place, and he will stand by thee. Take heed of joining with dead worships, which the seed of God in thee disowns, and cannot relish; but meekly and in fear, testify against and abstain from what thou feelest not to be of the Lord.
This was what was in my heart to thee at present, in true and tender love, and in melting desires for thee, that the Lord may guide and preserve thee, and give thee of the Lamb's courage and strength, who by meekness and sufferings is now to conquer. What if the wicked nature, which is as a sea casting out mire and dirt, rage against thee! There is a river, a sweet, still, flowing river, the streams whereof will make glad thy heart. And learn but in quietness and stillness to retire to the Lord, and wait upon him; in whom thou shalt feel peace and joy, in the midst of thy trouble from the cruel and vexatious spirit of this world. So wait to know thy work and service to the Lord every day, in thy place and station; and the Lord make thee faithful therein, and thou wilt want neither help, support, nor comfort.
Thy friend, in the truest, sincerest, and most constant love.
London, 1st of Ninth Month, 1675