Wednesday, June 22, 2011

time for the seed...

A message from J.F.W Ware to those attending General Assembly:

"The American Unitarian Association held its Fiftyfourth Annual Business Meeting, in Hollis-street Church, on the morning of Tuesday, May 27, 1879. (the following words are from Ware)

Friends, this is the day of our opportunity. Do not ask whether the fields be ripe to the harvest. If it be not the time for the sickle, it is the time for the seed, and without the seed the sickle shall hang and rust through the eras of eternity. The seed is good. It wants sowers. The field is broad; but we have dropped sparingly, only in a corner here and there. Go ye out, all of you, into the broad acres between, and fling it broad, fearing neither bird of the air nor tread of foot. Broadcast it everywhere. Living here, you do not know the value, the power, of your faith. You do not dare to trust it to its God-anointed work; you do not know, you do not believe, in what it can do, what it is doing. You do not realize its worth, its power, its vitality. And you cannot know these till you see for yourselves what it does when you get it out of its ruts, away from antecedent and precedent; from handsome church and silk gown; from the respectabilities, the graces, the antecedents; — till you get it among the far away, and the ignoraut and poor. There is no man who has stood at an outpost of duty, no man who has taken it among the lowly, but could tell you what this faith we think too little of can do, only it be properly applied: how it makes waste places blossom; how it is felt to be as a very revelation from on high; how hungering and thirsting recognize, accept, and are blessed by it. It has a mighty career before it, only you are wise and true. Do not lay the burden upon the officers of your Association, but take hold of it according to your several ability, clergy and laity. The work has got to be done by the temper of the whole body, by unity within the whole body. Let every unoccupied clergyman put himself, by Sunday next, at some mission-post among the people, and every layman consecrate some part of his owning to carry the gospel just where it is most wanted, and our next anniversary will be glad with hallelujahs over the new promise of the kingdom."

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