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grow, they will check the growth of good seed: so will wrong things, if we entertain them, hinder our progress in the narrow way that leads to life. In that way, though strait and narrow, there is liberty enough. And when we, through patiently wearing the cross of Christ, come to experience the liberty of the blessed Truth, we shall be freed from that worst of all burdens, the world, and the idolatrous love thereof.
Oh! that I could, by thus expressing my earnest desire as a call to the beloved youth, prevail with many
of them to come, taste and see that the Lord is good to all those who fully surrender their hearts to his service. Then, dear young people, would you experience his matchless love to be sweet, and this language would be felt: Thy ways are ways of pleasantness, O Lord, and all thy paths are peace. At thy right hand are rivers of pleasure forevermore. My soul, in deep reverence, can say,
for obedience to his requirings is sweeter than the honey-comb. Oh! that it was the happy experience of all, through the refining operations of the grace inwardly revealed, to come to know the indwelling of the peaceable spirit of holy Jesus. This would put an end to jars and quarreling, -to hard thoughts and hard speeches, and we should know the coming of his kingdom in us. Men would thus be taught and enabled to love their enemies, and to bear reviling for Christ's sake, without reviling again; and they would find no better way of obtaining victory, than by overcoming evil with good.
However hard this doctrine may seem to the natural will of man, many witnesses certainly know that a state of this kind is attainable; therefore let
no one's heart fail or be discouraged. All have the offers of Divine grace to assist them to overcome evil; and none are excluded who are willing to close in with, and obey the teachings thereof, -working while their day of visitation lasteth, and often bearing in mind that the night cometh, wherein no man can work. Oh! that these considerations may serve as a loving call to my fellow-pilgrims and sojourners, throughout the land.
In the early part of the 9th month, I attended several neighbouring monthly meetings, also the select meeting for Evesham, where I had close labour in love respecting the use of things, which have appeared to me superfluous, and inconsistent with our ancient testimony, in relation to eating, drinking, wearing, using, &c. I also visited a couple newly married, who had both of them had former companions. I was concerned to speak closely on the snares and disadvantages which have frequently attended second marriages; and the necessity there is for such to live steadily in the fear of the Lord, guarding against tempers and party-views about worldly interest, particularly where they have children by former marriages.
12th. At our monthly meeting, I returned my certificate, and gave Friends some account of my late journey and exercises. I also let them know that I felt a concern to pay a religious visit to the meetings of Friends, and such service otherwise, as way might open for, in the Southern States; with which Friends concurred, and directed a certificate to be prepared, adjourning the meeting for that purpose. On the 19th, my certificate was signed by a large number of my friends; and at our Quarterly
meeting, the 23d, it was endorsed, with the approbation of the meeting.
10th month 4th. I took an affectionate leave of my dear wife and outward connexions, in obedience to the Master's call, as I believe; and though poor in spirit, I was favoured with a sweet calm. I crossed the Delaware to Philadelphia, and proceeded by Wilmington to Susquehanna river. When I crossed the ferry there, two black men who were slaves, took me over, and I paid them also, after paying ferriage to their master. Thence I went on to Baltimore, and attended the Yearly Meeting. It was to me, through the course of its several sittings, a time of suffering. But I had a little strength to discharge my trust in the way I am led, in speaking among the select members on the liberal use of wine, and smoking tobacco. This was in the first sitting: after which I bore my burden mostly in silence thro' the meeting. O Lord, be pleased to keep my head above the waters, and leave me not in the most trying seasons, which thou mayst' permit to come, and my soul shall bless and praise thy adorable name.
16th. Feeling my mind drawn to endeavour to be at the Yearly Meeting in North Carolina, and having company provided, I left Baltimore and went through a storm to a little meeting at Elk Ridge. The next evening had a large meeting at Alexandria, in Virginia, where Divine favour was extended to us.23d. Reached Wain Oak, and was at meeting there on first-day; at which was a large number of black people, who sat solidly. On discoursing with several of them after meeting, I found the manner they were treated, as to food, clothing and otherwise, was mean, and attended with considerable hardship and
difficulty. My mind was touched with sympathy, and a tender feeling for their condition.
25th. Reaching Burleigh, we were favoured with a solid, comfortable meeting there. Here I parted with Charity Cook and her sister Susanna, from Carolina, who had been in company with me to good satisfaction, since I left Baltimore. I then took meetings at Black Water, Seacock and the Western Branch, and arrived at Little River, in North Carolina, the day before the Yearly Meeting began. In the sittings of this meeting, there was much condescension among Friends. The testimony against the improper use of distilled spirits, and the making of such liquors, hath not risen high in this Yearly Meeting, although Friends had the subject before them. I also attended a conimittee on the revisal of their Discipline, and delivered my sentiments, in a close way, on several subjects. I believe there is a considerable. number of tender, honest-hearted Friends here.
11th month 3rd. I had a large meeting at Newbegun creek in Pasquotank county: many of the people could not get seats in the house. Many blacks or slaves attended, who sat in a solid manner, and appeared more humble than some of the whites. I understand the slaves in these parts, though they fare hard, are commonly of longer lives than the white people, who live sumptuously on the fruits of their toil. The allowance of the slaves, in many instances, is confined to a peck of Indian corn for a grown person, a week, to cook it as they can, without meat, fat, or other addition.My heart was often tenderly affected with their condition.
6th. Being first-day, I was at a very large meeting at Symond's creek, one third part supposed to be blacks. A number of people attended who had not been at Friends' meeting before. We afterwards visited a member of their legislature, and treated on the subject of slavery, and their unrighteous law which justifies the taking up and selling for slaves again, those who have been set free. He acknowledged that law to be unjust, and hoped for an alteration; proposing to use his influence for its appeal. Then taking meetings at Sutton's creek, Wills's, Beach Spring and Piney Woods, we turned back into Virginia.
It has been affecting, at different places, as we passed along, to observe the condition of the poor slaves; men, women and children: many of the little ones quite naked, and others who were grown up, nearly so, their covering being little else but tattered rags.
11th. We were at a large meeting at Somerton, near one third were black people, and they as well as others sat solidly, and many appeared tender. Close doctrine was delivered, which seemed to be well received. Also attended a select meeting at Western Branch, and a large meeting at Suffolk court house. It was a solid, favoured season.
But one family of Friends dwell here. We then returned to the widow Ann Scott's, near Western Branch, who -being able and open-hearted, is about building a new meeting house at her own expense. We attended their Quarterly meeting held here, which was to me dull and exercising. In the evening, had a meeting for the black people, in a school house, near the widow Scott's, being the first of the kind ever held in