I’ve been re-visiting old friends of late. I’m not sure what’s brought that on: maybe I’m getting nostalgic in my maturity; maybe I”ve caught the scent of new fragrances hidden in old bottles.
I first read Thomas Kelly many years ago and I am still struck by his stunning, limpid, luminous prose.
He’s been called the Quaker Brother Lawrence, and for good reason: his ‘method’ – if there really is one – is simplicity itself.
I get the impression, when I read him, that I can hear his distinctive, reassuring voice. It’s like listening to a trusted old friend.
Here’s a snippett from his Testament of Devotion:
Deep within us all there is an amazing inner sanctuary of the soul, a holy place, a Divine Center, a speaking Voice, to which we may continuously return. Eternity is at our hearts, pressing upon our time-torn lives, warming us with intimations of an astounding destiny, calling us home unto Itself.
Yielding to these persuasions, gladly committing ourselves in body and soul, utterly and completely, to the Light Within, is the beginning of true life. It is a dynamic center, a creative Life that presses to birth within us. You who read these words already know this inner Life and Light. For by this very Light within you, is your recognition given.
In this humanistic age we suppose man is the initiator and God is the responder. But the Living Christ within us is the initiator and we are the responders. God the Lover, the accuser, the revealer of light and darkness presses within us. “Behold I stand at the door and knock.” [Rev. 3:20] And all our apparent initiative is already a response, a testimonial to His secret presence and working within us. The basic response of the soul to the Light is internal adoration and joy, thanksgiving and worship, self-surrender and listening.
PS: You can find the full text here: https://archive.org/details/in.ernet.dli.2015.90258