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101h mo. 5th. I was at the burial of Ann Evans, widow of my much esteemed friend, Joshua Evans; a very ancient, afflicted woman, but very much preserved in the innocency. To me it was a favoured, strengthening time among the people at the house.
19th. Very busy getting in corn, fodder, &c. Moderate labour is good for body and mind; but orermuch is a great hurt to both. It seems to me that too much hard labour, cumber, hurry and fatigue, are almost as hurtful to the mind, as strong drink;-we become disqualified thereby for meditation. David said, If I prefer not Jerusalem to my chiefest joy, let my right hand forget her cunning.
In the 2d month, 1807, in company with Thomas Lippincott, I visited the families of Old Springfield and Ancocas meetings. We had about eighty family visits; some of them with such as were not in membership with Friends. Altho' in some families, religion seemed to be at a low ebb, and we had divers trying seasons, yet, on the whole, it was a highly favoured, owning time. In many places much tenderness appeared, both among aged and youth; and we returned home with sweet peace and satisfaction. 6th month 13th. A cold storm. But
the storms of life, inwardly and outwardly, we sometimes are favoured to experience a calm, altho' they seemed to threaten confusion, desolation, ruin and disgrace. How fitly is our standing compared to a sea of glass, mingled with fire! How easily we may lose, in one minute, all we have been struggling to gain in forty years! How necessary is the watch tower! How needful to live without a will of our own! and how dangerous, to indulge our own selfish wills, even in small or secret things! David said,
“Lord, into thy hands I commit my spirit.” And so do we, when we deny our own wills; but when we are not obedient, we take ourselves into our own keeping. “Little things are little things; but to be faithful in little things is a great thing." 10th mo. 25th. Heard of the death of
beloved friend, John Parrish. Our acquaintance began in the year 1772, previous to my cousin William Hunt's going to Europe; and an uninterrupted friendship has subsisted between us ever since. I mostly lodged at his house during Yearly Meeting time, as well as at other times when in town; and we were well suited in each other's company; never being at a loss for agreeable and profitable conversation when together. Very pleasant and edifying was his company and converse to me; in which he often related anecdotes, or gave accounts of things, wherein were manifest tokens of a hand of Providence. His name stands, and I believe deservedly stands recorded among the first religious characters in Philadelphia. He was a sound gospel minister, tho' not of abundance of words; very tender-hearted, and very acceptable in his communications; being well-founded in the Truth, and sound in the faith.
Great was his tender, fatherly care, and sympathy for the poor of every description and colour; especially the blacks and Indians. I think he was foremost in his care and feeling for the poor and the oppressed; and that he has left a clean and blameless character, and a good savour in the city of Philadelphia, where his residence has chiefly been; and every where else where he was known, his name is savoury. He went to Baltimore, and attended the Yearly Meeting: and as he was conversing with his friends in the evening
of the 16th instant, he was suddenly struck with the palsy, which deprived him of his speech, and he spoke no more, tho' he continued till the evening of the 21st, when he departed this life, aged near seventy-eight years. It may truly be said, he died in a good old age, as a shock of corn gathered in its season.
On the 12th of ilth mo. I went to the burial of my very intimate friend, Lucas Gibbs.
His memory and faculties have been much impaired for several years, with a paralytick stroke; but he so far recovered as to be conversable, and got to meetings till near the last, being very fond of his friends' company. Our acquaintance began in early life, perhaps forty years ago, and our friendship has continued without interruption, and, as I believe, without dissimulation, to the close of his days.
In the 1st mo. 1808, our monthly meeting gave me a minute of concurrence with my prospect of visiting some meetings in Bucks and Abington Quarters. I set out on the journey on the 21st, and got to Mount Holly week-day meeting; thence by way of Bordentown, Crosswicks and Trenton, in company with Hinchman Haines. On first-day, I was at the Falls meeting to satisfaction; thence to Makefield, Solebury, Buckingham, Richland, Wrightstown, Middletown and Bristol. Also visited a school, and several aged and sick people. Jonathan Kirkbride and John Balderston accompanied me. After this, in company with William Blakey, I attended Abington Quarterly meeting, and several of the meetings belonging to it. Then returned home with peace and satisfaction in having performed this little service.
3rd of 2nd mo. I attended a burial, where was a vast concourse of people; and their appearance with their carriages and costly array, occasioned this language to run through my mind; Ye have crucified to yourselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to open shame. He is a stranger among you, and ye have not taken him into your hearts; and yourselves are strangers to the covenant of promise, and aliens from the commonwealth of Israel; too much like the heath in the desert, that knows not when good cometh;-or like the deaf adder that listens not to the voice of the charmer, tho' charming never so wisely. Yet this is not the state of all: there is a considerable number of another sort, who are in a good degree as the salt of the earth, and as lights in the world. - By their fruits ye shall know them.”
In the 3d month, we heard of divers dreadful accidents by fire, in different places-several houses burnt and children in them-and horses in stablesone woman, reaching after something on the mantel her cotton dress caught fire, and before it could be put out she was so burnt that she died in a short time. Thus, “as one day goes, another comes, and oft times shows us dismal dooms;" some of which, no care or 'precaution of ours seems as if it could prevent. So strange and unexpected do accidents oceur, and from quarters least suspected,--that it is as Seneca says respecting the uncertainty of time, and of all sublunary things: “When we go to sleep, we know not that we ever shall wake again: when we awake, we dont know that we ever shall sleep again. When we go out, we dont know we shall ever come in again; and when we come in, we dont know we ever shall go out again.” If we should keep an account of what are called accidents that happen, we should often see the truth of these sayings; and what a book it would make! May we be instructed, and learn to be ready.
4th mo. 8th. Having the unity of Friends, I set out with Charles and Rebecca Hubbs to visit some meetings and places, in Salem Quarter. It was a very cold, snowy, stormy time; but we had satisfactory meetings at Scull-town, Pilesrove, Sharp-town, Mulica-hill and Upper Greenwich. Many of other sects and those not in membership with any society, attended, and sat solid, quiet and attentive, and divers expressed satisfaction with our visit. Returned to our monthly meeting, at which was William Flanner from Carolina, and David Sands from New York state. They also attended our Quarterly meeting, and had sweet, pertinent and excellent service.
8th mo. 3rd. Have lately attended a number of burials, and to-day was at one of a man that died after about a week's illness with the flux. But Oh! what little impression do these repeated, solemn calls make on the minds of the people in general! Oh! the want of deep inward thoughtfulness! How little the people are acquainted with this inward labour and exercise;—this highly necessary and important business of duly considering our latter end! Oh! how it is put off till the last! How outward and raw are the minds of many! The concern to prepare for death, seems as if it was out of their element: but as respects the cares and affairs of this world, how bright,-how wise and knowing;-how capable and diligent, they are! as if it was all, and all that is necessary for us to attend to. Oh! with what trifles people suffer themselves to be diverted from the main business,-the