THE QUAKER MEETING

Hello to all readers. The context of this short reflection is that yesterday I attended my first Quaker Meeting for a long time, and found the friendly, tolerant silence a huge relief.


The Quaker Meeting

“For where two or three gather together as my followers, I am there among them” (Matthew 18:20; NLT).

He said to Peter, “Couldn’t you watch with me even one hour?” Matthew 26:40; NLT).

Jesus replied, “The Scriptures say, ‘You must worship the LORD your God and serve only him’ ” (Luke 4:8; NLT).

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him (Psalm 37:7; NIV).

Be silent before the LORD, all humanity (Zechariah 2:13; NLT).


Lord,
Thank you
For this precious time
With Friends:
An hour to wait for you,
Watch with you,
And worship you –
In blesséd silence.

Amen.

TIME

Time

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens (Ecclesiastes  3:1; NIV).

Then Jesus said, “Let’s go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile” (Mark 6:31; NLT).

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed (Mark 1:35; NIV).


Lord,
Thank you for the luxury
Of free time –
For the mornings
When I needn’t get up early,
The days
When I don’t have to hurry,
The evenings
When I put my feet up,
And the blissful hours
When I can be alone,
With you.

At peace

At peace 

He himself gives life and breath to everything, and he satisfies every need (Acts 17:25; NLT).

For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things (Psalm 107:9; NLT).


Lord,
In contemplation,
I open myself to you,
Until my mind,
My heart,
And my soul,
Are satisfied.

Then,
I am contented,
And at peace.

Remember

Remember

Remember the LORD (Jeremiah 51:50; NLT).

Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18; NIV).

Worship the LORD with gladness (Psalm 100:2; NLT).

Obey his commands, listen to his voice, and cling to him (Deuteronomy 13:4; NLT).

Lord,
Please help me
To remember you all day,
Because when I forget you,
I also forget to thank you,
To worship you,
To listen for your voice,
And to see you in others.

Through Jesus’ name,
Amen.

The door

The door

Remember the LORD (Jeremiah 51:50; NLT).

Jesus replied, “ ‘You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all you mind’ ” (Matthew 22:37; NLT).

“Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends” (Rev 3:20; NLT).

The LORD remembers us and will bless us (Psalm 115:12; NLT).


Father,
The moment I remember you,
And open the door of my mind
To invite you in,
I find you waiting patiently outside
To greet me.

Jesus,
The moment I remember you,
And open the door of my heart
To invite you in,
I find you waiting patiently outside
To help me.

Spirit,
The moment I remember you,
And open the door of my soul
To invite you in,
I find you waiting patiently outside
To bless me.

CONTEMPLATION

Contemplation

“Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God” (Luke 12:21; NLT).

He himself gives life and breath to everything (Acts 17:25; NLT).

They will receive the LORD’S blessing and have a right relationship with God their saviour (Psalm 24:5; NLT).


Father,
Contemplation
Is even more important
Than water, food,
Medicine, shelter,
Family and friends –
For without it
We have no relationship
With you,
The giver and saviour
Of all life.

GOD WHO LOVES US

God who loves us

Jesus […] emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men (Philippians 2:5-7; ESV).

When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners (Romans 5:6; NLT).

Our God is a God who saves! (Psalm 68:20; NLT).

And this is God’s plan: Both Gentiles and Jews who believe the Good News share equally in the riches inherited by God’s children (Ephesians 3:6; NLT).

For we know how dearly God loves us (Romans 5:5; NLT).


Father,
You laid aside your glory,
Pouring yourself out
To be born on earth –
For you are the God
Who lived with us.

Jesus,
You laid down your life,
Pouring yourself out
So our sins can be forgiven –
For you are the God
Who died for us.

Spirit,
You lay open your truth,
Pouring yourself out
To live in our hearts –
For you are the God
Who saves us.

Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
You lay bare your plan,
Pouring yourself out
To offer us eternal life –
For you are the God
Who loves us.

GIVE THANKS

Give thanks

Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows (John 16:33; NLT).

And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ (Ephesians 5:20; NLT).

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28; NIV).

Let us go on instead and become mature in our understanding (Hebrews 6:1; NLT).


Lord,
You don’t make
Things happen to us,
Good or bad.

But if we love you,
And face with thankfulness
All that life brings,
You work for our good,
Helping us to learn
From each experience,
So we can grow
In wisdom
And maturity.

WITHOUT

Without

“And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words” (Matthew 6:7; NIV).

Stand in silence in the presence of the Sovereign LORD (Zephaniah 1:7; NLT).

Serve only the LORD your God (Deuteronomy 13:4; NLT).

“Love you enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid” (Luke 6:35; NLT).


Lord,
May we worship
Without words,
Serve
Without praise,
And love
Without expecting
A return.

In Jesus’ name,
Amen.

GOD KNOWS

God knows

…he knows everything (1 John 3:20; NIV).

For the LORD is a God who knows what you have done (1 Samuel 2:3; NLT).

‘God have mercy on me, a sinner’ (Luke 18:13; NIV).

…and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us (Matthew 6:12; NLT).

Then the way you live will always honour and please the Lord, and your lives will produce much fruit (Colossians 1:10; NLT).


Lord,
You know everything
There is to know
About us.

Throughout our lives,
You know what others think of us,
What they say and do to us,
And what consequences flow.

You know what we think of others,
What we say and do to them,
And, again,
What consequences flow.

Have mercy on us –
Forgive our sins,
As we forgive those
Who sin against us.

Heal our lives –
Help us to learn from all that happens,
Good and bad,
So we can bear fruit for you, at last.