and constitution gave hopes that he might have been eminently serviceable for many years. How often does the Lord write. Vanity upon all our expectations from men! He visited a person ill of a putrid fever, and carried the seeds of infection with him to London, where he died. Mrs. ***** is a very excellent and accomplished woman, but exceedingly delicate in her frame and spirits. How can she bear so sudden and severe a stroke! But yet I hope she will afford a proof of the Lord's all-sufficiency and faithfulness. O madam, the Lord our God is a great God! If he frowns, the smiles of the whole creation can afford no comfort; and if he is pleased to smile, he can enable the soul under the darkest dispensations to say, All is well. Yet the flesh will feel, and it ought; otherwise the exercise of faith, patience, and resignation, would be impracticable. I have lost in him one of my most valued and valuable friends: but what is my loss to that of his people!

The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord increase you more and more, you and your children. The Lord lift

up the light of his countenance upon you, and

I thank him for leading you to us, but especially for making your visit there in any measure agreeable and profitable to yourself. If I have been an instrument in his hand for your comfort, I have reason to remember it among the greatest favours he has conferred upon me. And now, dear madam, once more farewel. If the Lord spares our lives, I hope we shall see each other again upon earth. But above all, let us rejoice in the blessed Gospel, by which immortality is brought to light, and a glorious prospect opened beyond the grave.

There sits our Saviour thron'd in light,
Cloth'd with a body like our own.

give you

There at least, after all the changes and trials of this state, we shall meet to part no more.


am, &c.


My Dear Madam,

1775. I SHOULD have been more uneasy at being prevented writing immediately, had I any reason to apprehend my advice necessary upon the point you propose, which by this time I suppose is settled, as it should be, without me. I smiled at Miss M****'s disappointment. However, if the Lord favours her with a taste for the library of my proposing, she will be like the merchantman seeking goodly pearls, and will count all other books but pebbles in coinparison of those four volumes, which present us with something new and important whenever we look into them. I shall be much obliged to her if she will commit the third chapter of Proverbs to her memory, and I shall pray the Lord to write it in her heart. You surprise me when you


that the incident of my birth-day was noticed by those I never saw. Be so good as to return my

unknown friends, and tell them, that I pray our common Lord and Saviour to bless them abundantly. His people while here are scattered abroad, separated by hills and rivers, and too often by names and prejudices; but by and by we shall all meet where we shall all know and acknowledge each other, and rejoice together for evermore. I have lately read with much pleasure, and I hope with some

thanks to my


profit, the history of the Greenland Mission. Upon the whole, it is a glorious work. None who love the Lord will refuse to say, it is the finger of God indeed. For

my own part, my soul rejoices in it; and I honour the instruments, as men who have hazarded their lives in an extraordinary manner for the sake of the Lord Jesus. Sure I am that none could have sustained such discouragements at first, or have obtained such success afterwards, unless the Lord had sent, supported, and owned them.

I hope we shall have an interest in your prayers. I trust the Lord is yet with us. We have some ripe for the sickle, and some just springing up; some tokens of his gracious presence amongst us; but sin and Satan cut us out abundance of work as individuals, though through mercy as a society we walk in peace.

The toad and spider is an exhibition of my daily experience. I am often wounded, but the Lord is my health. Still I am a living monument of mercy; and I trust that word, “Because I live you shall live also,” will carry me to the end. I am poor, weak, and foolish; but Jesus is wise, strong, and abounding in grace. He has given me a desire to trust my all in his hands, and he will not disappoint the expectation which he himself has raised. At present I have but little to say, and but little time to say it in. When


think of this place, I hope you will think and believe, that


have friends here most cordially interested in your welfare, and often remembering you in prayer. May the Lord be your guide and shield, and give you the best desires of your

heart. I pray him to establish and settle you in the great truths of his word. I trust he will. We learn more, and more effectually, by one minute's communication with him through the medium of his written

word, than we could from an assembly of divines, or å library of books.

I am, &c,




My Dear Madam,

August - 1775, It is not owing to forgetfulness that your letter has been thus long unanswered. It has lain within my view this fortnight, demanding my first leisure hour; but affairs of daily occurrence have been so many and so pressing, that I have been constrained to put it off till now. I trust the Lord, by his Spirit and providence, will direct and prosper the settlement of your children. I desire my love to Miss M**** My idea of her enlarges. Methinks I see her aspiring to be as tall as her mamina. I hope likewise, that she increases in


and wisdom, as in years and stature; and that hearing our Lord's flock is a little flock, she feels an earnest thirst to be one of the happy number which constitutes his fold.


There the Lord dwells amongst them upon his own hill,
With the flocks all around him awaiting his will.

If she has such a desire, I can tell who gave it her, for I am persuaded it was not born with her; and where the good husbandman sows, there will he also reap. Therefore, dear Miss M****, press forward : knock, and it shall be opened unto you, for yet there is room. O what a fold! O what a pasture! O what a shepherd ! Let us love, and sing, and wonder. . I hope the good people at Bristol, and every where else, are praying for our sinful, distracted land, in this

than we.

dark day. The Lord is angry, the sword is drawn, and I am afraid nothing but the spirit of wrestling prayer can prevail for the returning it into the scabbard. Could things have proceeded to these extremities, except the Lord had withdrawn his salutary blessing from both sides? It is a time of prayer. We see the beginning of trouble, but who can foresee the possible consequences? The fire is kindled, but how far it may spread, those who are above may perhaps know better

I meddle not with the disputes of party, nor concern myself with any political maxims, but such as are laid down in Scripture. There I read that righteousness exalteth a nation, and that sin is the reproach, and if persisted in, the ruin of any people. Some people are startled at the enormous sum of our national debt: they who understand spiritual arithmetic, may be well startled if they sit down and compute the debt of national sin. Imprimis, Infidelity: Item, Contempt of the Gospel: Item, The profligacy of manners: Item, Perjury: Item, The cry of blood, the blood of thousands, perhaps millions, from the East Indies. It would take sheets, yea quires, to draw out the particulars under each of these heads, and then much would remain untold. What can we answer, when the Lord saith, “ Shall not I visit for these things ? Shall not

my soul be avenged on such a nation as this?" Since we received the news of the first hostilities in America, we have had an additional prayer meeting. Could I hear that professors in general, instead of wasting their breath in censuring men and measures, were plying the throne of grace, I should still hope for a respite. Poor New England ! once the glory of the earth, now likely to be visited with fire and sword. They have left their first love, and the Lord is sorely contending with them.

« VorigeDoorgaan »