To Friends In Bristol, In The Time Of Suffering (1670)
Dear friends, now is the the time for you to stand; therefore put on the whole armour of God, from the crown of the head to the soles of your feet, that you may stand in the possession of life: and you that have been public men, and formerly did travel abroad, mind to keep up your testimony, both in the city and in the countries, that you may encourage Friends to keep up their meetings as usual thereaway; so that none faint in the time of trial; but that all may be encouraged, both small and great, to stand faithful to the Lord God, and his power, and truth; that their heads may not sink in the storms, but may be kept up above the waves. So, go into your meeting places, as at other times: and keep up your public testimony, and visit Friends thereabouts, now in this time of storms for there is your crown, in the universal power and spirit of God. So let your minds, and souls, and hearts, be kept above all outward and visible things; for God took care for man in the beginning, and set him above the works of his his hands: and therefore mind the heavenly treasure, that will never fade away; and dwell in the seed, in which you may know your election. It is hard for me to give forth in writing what is before me, because of my bodily weakness; but I was desirous in some measure to ease my mind, desiring that your may stand fast, and be faithful to the truth. Of my travels and weakness it is like you have heard, and of my affliction, both by them that are without, and also by them that are within, which are hard to be uttered and spoken. My love is to all faithful Friends.