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To JOHN CARSEN.
seek it as your garland and crown.
LETTER CLXXVIII. Grace be with you.
To the Lady BOYD. Your's in his sweet Lord Jesus, Madam, Aberdeen, March 14, 1637. S. R. I would have written to your La
dyship ere now, but people's believe
ing there is in me that which I know LETTER CLXXVII. there is not, hath put me out of love
with writing to any; for it is easy
to put religion to a market and pub. My well-bcloved and deur Friend,
lic fair, but alas! it is not so soon Every one seeketh not God; and made eye-sweet for Christ. My far fewer find him, because they Lord seeth me a tired man far bea seek amiss; he is to be sought for hind; I have gotten much love from above all things, if men would find Christ, but I give him little or none what they seek. Let feathers and again. My white side cometh out shadows alone to children, and go on paper to men, but at home and seek your well-beloved; your only within, I find much black work, and errand to the world, is, to woo great cause of a low sail, and of lit. Christ: therefore put other lovers tle boasting; and yet howbeit I see from about his house, and let Christ challenges to be true, the manner have all your love, without mincing of the tempter's pressing of them is or dividing it; it is little enough, if unhonest, and, in my thoughts, there were more of it. The serving kravish-like: my peace is,
that of the world and sin hath but a base Christ may find sale and outing of reward and smoke, instead of plea- his wares in the like of me, I mean, sures ; and but a night-dream, for for saving grace. I wish all profestrue ease to the soul. Go where sors to fall in love with grace; all ye will, your soul.shall not sleep our songs should be of his free sound but in Christ's bosom ; come grace; we are but too lazy and in to him, and lie down, and rest careless in seeking of it; it is all you on the slain Son of God, and our riches we have here, and glory inquire for hiin ; I sought him and in the bud; I wish I could set out now a fig for all the worm-eaten free grace. I was the law's man, pleasures, and moth-eaten glory out and under the law, and under a of heaven, since I have found him, curse; but grace brought me from and in him all I can want or wish ; under that hard lord, and I rejoice he hath made me a king over the that I am grace's free-holder. I world; princes cannot overcome pay tribute to none for heaven, seeme; Christ hath given me the maro ing my land and heritage holdeth of riage-kiss, and he hath my marriage Christ, my new King: infinite wis. love ; we have made up a full bar- dom hath devised this excellent gain, that shall not go back on ei- way of free-holding for sinners ; it ther side ; O if ye, and all in that is a better way to heaven than the country, knew what sweet terms of old way that was in Adam's days ; mercy are betwixt him and me! it hath this fair advantage, that no Grace be with you.
man's emptiness and want layeth an
inhibition upon Christ, or hindereth Your's in his sweet Lord Jesus,
his salvation, (and that is far best Aberdeen, March 11, 1637,
S, R. for me,) but our new Landlord.
putteth the names of dyvours, and
Adam's forlorn heirs, and beggars,, (if I may speak so,) to make a visand the crooked and blind, in the it, or to see a poor friend, sweetenfree charters. Heaven and angels eth and refresheth the thoughts of may wonder that we have got such the heart. A misty dew will stand a gate of sin and hell ; such a back for rain, and do some good, and entry out of hell, as Christ made, keep some greenness in the herbs, and brought out the captives by, is till our Lord's clouds rue upon the more than my poor shallow thoughts earth, and send down a watering of can comprehend. I would think rain; truly I think Christ's misty sufferings, glory, (and I am some-dew a welcome message from heavtimes not far from it,) if my Lord en, till my Lord's rain fall. Wo, would give me a new alms of free wo is me for the Lord's vineyard in grace. I hear that the prelates are Scotland. Howbeit the Father of intending banishment for me; but the house embrace a child, and feed for more grace, and no other hire, him, and kiss him; yet it is sorrow I would make it welcome. The bits and sadness to the children, that of this clay-house, the earth, and our poor mother hath gotten her the other side of the sea, are my leave, and that our Father hath Father's. if my sweet Lord Jesus given up house: it is an unheart, would bud my sufferings with a new some thing, to see our Father and measure of grace, I were a rich mother agree so ill; yet the basman; but I have not now of a long tards, if they be fed, care not.
O time found such ligh spring-tides Lord, cast not water on Scotland's as formerly. The sea is out, and smoaking coal. It is a strange gate the wind of his Spirit calm ; and I the saints go to heaven; our enecannot buy a wind, or, by request. mies often eat and drink us, and we ing the sea, cause it to flow again ; go to heaven through their bellies only, I wait on, upon the banks and and stomachs, and they vomit the shore-side, till the Lord send a full church of God, undigested among sea, that with up-sails I may lift up their hands; and even while we are Christ; yet sorrow for his absence shut up in prisons by them, we ad. is sweet ; and sighs, with, saw ye vance in our journey. Remember him whom my soul loveth ? have my service to my Lord your
kind their own delights. Oh that I may son, who was kind to me in my gather hunger against his long look. bonds, and was not ashamed to own ed-for return! Well were my soul, me: I would be glad that Christ if Christ were the element, mine got the morning-service of his life, own element, and that I loved and now in his young years; it would breathed in him, and if I could not suit him well, to give Christ his live without him. I allow not laugh- young and green love.
Christ's ter upon myself, when he is away: stamp and seal would go far down yet he never leaveth the house, but in a young soul, if he would receive he leaveth drink.money behind him, the thrust of Christ's stamp. I and a pawn that he will return; wo, would desire him to make search wo to me, if he should go away, for Christ ; for nobles now are but and take all his flitting with him ; dry friends to Christ. The peace even to dream of him is sweet. To of God our Father, and the goodbuild a house of pining wishes for will of him who dwelt in the bush, his return, to spin out a web of sor- be with your Ladyship. row, and care, and languishing, and Your's in his sweet Lord Jesus, sighs, either dry or wet, as they Aberdeen, 1637.
S. R. may be, because he hath no leisure
LETTER CLXXIX. water-side ; look
your accounts ; To the Lady CARDONESS, Elder.
ask for your Guide to take you to Worthy and Well-beloved in the Lord,
the other side; let not the world be GRACE, mercy
your portion; what have ye to do
you. I long to hear from you on paper,
with dead clay ? ye are not a bastthat I
know how your may
ard, but a lawful begotten child; soul
pro spereth, My desire and longing is, therefore set your heart on the in to hear that ye walk in the truth, heritance ; go up before-hand and see and that ye are content to follow your lodging ; look through all your the despised, but most lovely Son Father's rooms in heaven, in your of God; I cannot but recommend Father's house are many dwelling him unto you, as your Husband, places; men take a sight of lands your Well beloved, your Portion, ere they buy them. I know Christ your Comfort, and your Joy; i hath made the bargain already; but speak this of that lovely One, bebe kind to the house ye are going cause I praise and commend the to, and see it often; set your heart ford (as we use to speak) as I find on things that are above, where it. He hath watered with his sweet Christ is at the right hand of God, comforts an oppressed prisoner; he Stir up your husband to mind his was always kind to my soul, but own country at home; counsel him never so kind as now, in my great-to deal mercifully with the poor est extremities ; I dine and sup with people of God under him; they are Christ; he visiteth my soul with the Christ's, and not his ; therefore devisitations of love, in the night sire him to shew them merciful watches. I persuade my soul that dealing and kindness, and to be this is the way to heaven, and his good to their souls. own truth, I now suffer for. I ex. to write to me. It may be, ihat hort
you in the name of Christ, to my parish forget me : but my wit. continue in the truth, which I de-ness is in heaven, I can not, I do livered unto you: make Christ sure not forget them: they are my sighs to your soul; for your day draweth in the night, and my tears in the nigh to an end. Many slide back day. I think myself like a husband now, who seemed to be Christ's plucked from the wife of his youth ; friends, and prove dishonest to him; O Lord be my Judge, what joy it but be ye faithful to the death, and would be to my soul, to hear that ye shall have the crown of life. This my ministry hath left the Son of span-length of your days, whereof God among them, and that they are the Spirit of God speaketh, Psal. walking in Christ ! Remember my xxxix will within a short time come love to your son and daughter; de. to a finger-breadth, and at length sire them from me to seek the Lord to nothing. O how sweet and com- in their youth, and to give him the fortable shall the feast of a good morning of their days ; acquaint conscience be to you, when your them with the word of God and eye-strings shall break, your face prayer. Grace be with you. Pray wax pale, and the breath turn cold, for the prisoner of Christ: in my and
your poor soul come sighing to heart I forget you not. the windows of the house of clay of Your lawful and loving Pastor in his your dying body; and shall long to
only Lord Jesus, be out, and to have the jailor to Aberdeen, March, 6. 1637. S. R. open the door, that the prisoner may be set at liberty ; ye draw nigh the
I desire you
LETTER CLXXX. about
you, and your attendance and To Mr. JAMES HAMILTON. train for your safety, is far beyond Reverend and dearly-beloved in our Lord, your pursuers' force or fraud; it is GRACE, mercy and peace be to you. good under fued 10 be near our war. Our acquaintance is neither in bodi- house, and strong hold. ly presence, nor on paper; but as do but little to resist them, who sons of the same Father, and suffer- persecute us and oppose him, but ers for the same truth. Let no keep our blood and our wounds to man doubt, but the state of our the next court day, when our comquestion, we now forced to plaints will be read. If this day be stand to by suffering exile and im- not Christ's, I am sure the morrow prisonment, is, If Jesus should reign shall be his. As for any thing I do over his kirk or not? O if my sinful in my bonds, when now and then a arm could hold the crown on his word fa!leth from me, alas it is very head, howbeit it should be stricken little; I am exceedingly grieved off from the shoulder blade! For that any should conceive any thing your ensuing and feared trial, my to be in such a broken and empty very dearest in our Lord Jesus, reed: let no man impute it to me, alas ! what am I, to speak, to com that the free and unbought wind fort a soldier of Christ, who hath (for I gave nothing for it) bloweth done a hundred times more for that upon an empty reed; I am his overworthy and honourable cause than I burdened debtor; I cry, Down with can do ! but I know, those, of whom men, down, down with all the ex. the world was not worthy, wan-cellency of the world; and up, up dered up and down in desarts, and with Christ ; long, long may that in mountains, and in dens, and caves fair One, that holy One be on high; of the earth ; and that while there my curse be upon them that love is one member of mystical Christ him not. O how glad would I be, out of heaven, that member must if his glory would grow out, and suffer strokes, tiil our Lord Jesus spring up out of my bonds and sufdraw in that member within the ferings ! certainly since I became gates of the New Jerusalem, which his prisoner, he hath won the yolk he will not fail to do at last ; for and heart of my soul: Christ is even not one toe or finger of that body, become a new Christ to me, and his but it shall be taken in within the love greener
than it and now I city. What can be our part, in strive no more with him, his love this pitched battle betwixt the Lamb shall carry it away; I lay down and the dragon, but to receive the myself under his love; I desire to darts in patience, that rebound off sing, and to cry, and to proclaim us upon our sweet Master; or rath- myself, even under the water, in his er light first upon him, and then common, and eternally indebted to rebound off him upon his servants ? his kindness; I will not offer to quit I think it a sweet north-wind, that commons with him (as we use to bloweth first upon the fair face of say) for that will not be. All, all the Chief among ten thousand, and for evermore be Christ's. What then lighteth upon our sinful and further trials are before me, I black faces; when once the wind know not; but I know Christ will bloweth off him upon me, I think it have a saved soul of me, over on hath a sweet smell of Christ; and the other side of the water, on the so must be some more than a single yonder-side of crosses, and beyond cross, I know, ye have a guard men's wrongs. I had but one eyes
and that they have put out; my one I have little stuff at home, that is joy, next to the flower of my joys, worth the eye of God's servants. Christ, was to preach my sweetest, if there be any thing of Christ in sweetest Master, and the glory of me (as I dare not deny some of his his kingdom; and it seemed no work) it is but a spunk of borrowed cruelty to them, to put out the poor fire, chat can scarce warm myself, man's one eye. And now I am and hath little heat for standers-by: seeking about to see if suffering will I would fain have that, which ye speak my fair One’s praises ; and 1 and others believe I have; but ye am trying if a dumb man's tongue are only witnesses to my outer-side, can raise one note, or one of Zion's and to some words on paper: 0 that springs, to advance my Well-be- he would give me more than paper. loved's glory ; oh if he would make grace or tongue-grace! were it not scme glory to himself out of a dumb that want paineth me, I should have prisoner ! I go with child of his skailed house, and gone a begging word; I cannot be delivered ; none long since; but Christ hath left me here will have my Master ; alas what with some hunger, that is more hot aileth them at him? I bless you than wise, and is ready often to say, for your prayers; add to them • If Christ longed for me, as do praises; as I am able, I pay you for him, we should not be long in home. I commend your diving meeting ; and if he loved my comin Christ's testament; I would I pany as well as I do his, even while could set out the dead man's good I am writing this letter to you, we will to his friends, in his sweet test- should flee in other's arms:' but I ament; speak a prisoner's hearty know, there is more will than wit, commendations to Christ: fear not, in this languor and pining love for your ten days will over. These Christ; and no marvel, for Christ's that are gathered against mount love would have hot harvest, long Zion, their eyes shall melt away in ere midsummer. But, if I have any their eye-holes, and their tongues love to him, Christ hath both love consume away in their mouths, and to me and wit to guide his love; and Christ's withered garden shall grow I see, the best thing I have hath as green again in Scotland: my Lord much dross beside it, as might curse Jesus hath a word hid in heaven ine and it both; and if it were for for Scotland, not yet brought out no more, we have need of a Saviour Grace be with you,
to pardou the very faults, and disYour's in his sweet Lord Jesus, eases, and weakness of the new man, Aberdeen July 7, 1637.
S, R. and to take away (to say so) our
godly sins, or the sins of our sancti. fication, and the dross and scum of
spiritual love. Wo, wo is me! O LETTER CLXXXI.
what need is there then of Christ's
calling to scour, and cleanse, and Mistress,
wash away an ugly old body of sin, Grace, mercy
and peace be to you. the very image of Satan! I know I am sorry that ye take it so hardly, nothing surer, than that there is an that I have not written to you. I am office for Christ amongst us: I wislı judged to be that which I am not: for po other heaven in this side of I fear, if I were put to the fire, I the last sea that I must cross, than should melt away, and fall down in this service of Christ, to make my sheards of painted nature; for truly blackness beauty, any deadness life,
To Mrs. STEWART.