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spoke these words, "God is love.' Instantly he catched them, as if all his powers were awakened afresh, and broke out in a rapture, • God is love, love, love! O for that gust of praise I want to sound ! Here his dear voice again failed. He was restless, and often suffered many ways, but with such patience as none but those who were with him can conceive. If I named his sufferings, he would smile, and make the sign.
“On Friday, finding his dear body covered with spots, I so far understood them, as to feel a sword pierce through my soul. As I was kneeling by his bed, with my hand in his, entreating the Lord to be with us in this tremen. dous hour, he strove to say many things, but could not. Pressing my hand, and often repeating the sign, at last he breathed out, • Head of the Church, be head to my wife.' When, for a few moments I was forced to leave him, to gather up some sheets of one of his manuscripts, which I feared would be lost, Sally said to him, “My dear master, do you know me?' He replied, “Sally, God will put his right hand under you.' She added, “O my dear master, should you be taken away, what a disconsolate creature will my poor dear mistress be!' He replied, • God will be her all in all.' He had always delighted much in these words:
* Jesus' blood through earth and skies,
Mercy, free, boundless mercy cries! And whenever I repeated them to him, he would answer, boundless, boundless, boundless! and in allusion to them, he now replied, though with great difficulty,
Mercy's full power I soon shall prove,
Loved with an everlasting love.' “On Saturday afternoon his fever seemed quite off, and a few Christian friends standing near the bed, he reached his hand to each of them, and looking on a minister, who was weeping by him, he said, “ Are you ready to assist to-morrow ? Which recollection of his amazed us much, as the day of the week had not been named in his room. Most about him could not but believe he was better, and would get over it. One said, “Do you think that the Lord will raise you up ?' He strove to answer, saying, • Raise in resur- , raise in resur- meaning in the resurrection. To another who asked the same question, he said, “I leave it all to God.'
" In the evening his fever returned with violence, and the mucus falling on the windpipe, occasioned him to be almost strangled. He suffered greatly; and it was feared the same painful emotion would continue and grow more violent to the last. This I felt most exquisitely, and cried to the Lord to remove it; and, glory be to his name, he did reinove it; and it returned no more in that way. As night drew on, I thought I perceived him dying very fast; his fingers could now hardly move to make the sign, (which he seemed scarce ever to forget,) and his speech, as it seemed, was quite gone. I said, • My dear creature, I ask not for myself; I know thy soul; but for the sako of others; if Jesus is very present with thce, list thy right hand.' He did so. I added, • If the prospect of glory sweetly opens before thee, repeat the sign.' He then raised it again, and in half a minute a second time ; then threw it up with all his reniaininy strength, as if he would reach the top of the bed! After this his dear hands moved no inore ; but on my saying, ' Art thou in much pain ?' he answered, • No.' From this time he entered into a state that might be called a kind of sleep, though with eyes open and fixed, and his hands utterly void of any motion. For the most part he sat upright against pil. lows, with his head a little inclined to one side, and so reinarkably composed and triunphant was his counte. nance, that the least trace of death was scarcely discerni. ble in it.
“ Twenty-four hours my dearly beloved was in this situation, breathing like a person in common sleep. About thirty-five minutes past ten, on Sunday night, August 14th, his precious soul entered into the joy of the Lord, without one struggle or groan, in the fifty-sixth year of his age. Often he had said, when hearing of happy deaths, · Well, let us get holy lives, and we will leave the rest to God.' But I, who was scarce a minute at a time from him night or day, can truly say that there was the strongest reason to believe,
"No cloud did arise, to darken the skies,
Or hide, for one moinent, his Lord froin his eyes.' “And here I break off my mournful story! I could say abundance more ; but on my bleeding heart his fair pic. ture of heavenly excellence will be for ever drawn. When I call to mind his ardent zeal, his laborious endeavours to seek and save the lost,-his diligence in the employment of his time,-his Christlike condescension toward me, and his uninterrupted converse with Heaven, I may well be allowed to add, my loss is beyond the power of words to paint. O sir, you know I have trodden deep waters; but all my afflictions were nothing compared to this.' Well, I want no pleasant prospect, but upward, nor any thing whereon to fix my hope, but immortality.
“On the 17th his dear remains were deposited in Made. ley churchyard, amid the tears and lamentations of thou. sands, who flocked about the bier of their dead pastor. Between the house and the church, they sung these verses :
• With heavenly weapons he hath fought
The battles of the Lord;
And gain'd the great reward.
A crown which cannot fade;
Shall place it on his head.' • The service was performed by the Rev. Mr. Hatton, rector of Waters-upton, whom the Lord moved in a pathetic manner to speak to his weeping flock on the sad occasion. In the conclusion, at my request, he read the following paper :
“ As it was the desire of my beloved husband to be buried in this plain manner, so out of tenderness he begged that I might not be present; and in all things I would obey him.
" Permit me then to take this opportunity, by the mouth of a friend, to bear my open testimony to the glory of God, that I, who have known him in the most perfect manner, am constrained to declare, I never knew any one walk so closely in the ways of God as he did. The Lord gave him a conscience tender as the apple of an eye. He literally preferred the interest of every one to his own. He was rigidly just, but perfectly loose from all attachnient to the world. He shared his all with the poor, who lay so close to his heart, that on the approach of death, though his speech was so gone that he could utter nothing without difliculty, he cried out, 0, my poor! 'what will become of my poor ! I am deuil to my poor! He was blessed with so great a degree of humility as is scarcely to be found. I am witness how often he has taken a real pleasure in being treated with contempt ; indeed it seemed the very food of his soul to be little and unknown. When he said to nie, · Thou wilt write a line or two to my brother in Switzerland, if I die,'—I replied, • My dear love, I will write him all the Lord's dealings with thee. “No, no,' said he, • write nothing about me. I desire to be forgotten ;-God is all !!
“ His zeal for souls I need not tell you : let the labour of twenty-five years, and a martyr's death in the con. clusion, imprint it on your hearts. His diligent visitation of the sick, laid, to appearance, the foundation of the spotted fever, which, by God's commission, tore him from you and me ; and his vehement desire to take his last leave of you, with dying lips and hands, gave (it is sup. posed) the finishing stroke, by preparing his blood for putrefaction. Thus hath he lived and died your servant. And will any of you refuse to meet him at God's right hand in that day?
“ He walked with death always in sight; and about two months ago he came to me one day, and said, My dear love, I know not how it is, but I have a strange im. pression death is very near us, as if it be some sudden stroke upon one of us ; and it draws out all my soul in prayer that we may be ready. He then broke out, Lord, prepare the soul thou wilt call ; and 0, stand by the poor disconsolate one who shall be left behind.
“ A few days before his departure, he was filled with love in an uncommon manner, saying to me, I have had such a discovery of the depth of that word, God is love, as I cannot tell thee half, but it fills me, it fills me. O Polly! my dear Polly! God is love ! shout his praise ! I want a gust of praise to reach to the ends of the earth.' And the same he testified as long as he had voice, and continued to testify to the end, by a most lamblike patience, in which he victoriously smiled at death, and set his last seal to the glorious truths he had so long preached among you.
“ Three years, nine months, and two days, I have pos. sessed my heavenly minded husband ; but now, the sun of my earthly joy is set for ever, and my soul filled with an anguish which only finds its consolation in a total aban. donment and resignation to the will of God: an exercise to which my dear husband and I had of late been par. ticularly drawn. When I was asking the Lord if he pleased to spare him to me a little longer, the following answer was impressed on my mind with great power, and in the accomplishment of this word of promise I look for our reunion, "Where I am there shall my servants be, that they may behold my glory!' Lord, hasten the hour' “I am, Rev. and dear sir, &c.,
“Mary FLETCHER." “ The Rev. Mr. Wesley."
My anguish was extreme. All outward support seemed to be withdrawn; appetite and sleep quite failed me; and even the air, I often thought, had entirely lost all its vivifying powers. As I never before had any conception of the bitter anguish which the Lord saw good to visit me with at this season ; so I can give no just description of it. “Known unto God are all his ways ;” and I was assured, even in the midst of my trouble, that all he did was well, and that there was a needs be for this heavy trial. But what bound all my other trials upon me was, I felt continually the keenest accusations from Satan, con. straining me by every possible suggestion to look at my extreme sensibility in suffering as being deeply sinful! What, thought I, has made this change! If Jesus was my all, should I not feel as keenly the sense of his having suffered for me, as I do in the thought of my dear hus. band's kindness, and in the dreadful feeling of my separa. tion from him? And because I could feel but very faint touches of sensible communion with God, I was torn as it were in pieces. All my religion seemed shrunk into one point ; viz., a constant cry, Thy will be done !* I will, yes, I will glorify thee, even in this fire !
Yet it seemed to me I did not glorify him; and so
* This is a fruit of the Spirit that never fails those who abide in the faith, even in the darkest hour.-ED.