And I will wait upon the LORD, that hideth his face from the house of Jacob, and I will look for him. – Isaiah 8:17

*   *   *

This sense of waiting, like a good waiter in a restaurant, ready to spring into service at the appropriate moment, is at the core of Quaker worship. It extends through the practice as well.

One of the things I’ve come to appreciate about our Quaker roots is its remarkable – and radical – approach to the Bible. It’s safe to assert that nobody has ever known the Bible more thoroughly than George Fox. And, to the surprise of many, Elias Hicks possessed an encyclopedic memory of Scripture.

Still, the words are only an outline, pointing the way to encounter. Reading a menu is not the same as dining, but only a prelude.

*   *   *

And as ever they would come to know Remission of their Sins, and enjoy Peace with the Lord, who is hereby justly incensed against them, they must submit to bear his Indignation against them, that so they may be redeemed through Judgment, and brought to unfeigned Repentance; and then, and not till then, shall they know a blotting out of their Transgressions. (Elizabeth Bathurst, 1655?-1685)

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