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felt a power to pray as I have often done, that I might be permitied to share in his joy, now inherited before the throne. At night, in the society, my faith was some. what increased.
December 23.-I am a woman of a sorrowful spirit. My dear child grows worse : well, I will cling to that rock, Thy will be done! This shall be my momentary employ the remainder of my life. Not one on earth to whom I can converse of the past trials through which she hath walked with me! Well, my Lord, thou knowest my solitary situation. The pain she suffers from that dread. ful cough, and a complication of complaints, would con. strain, I think, any beside herself to keep their bed. But while there is a grain of strength given to her, she will use it, both in the work of God, and in the care of our affairs. I will hang upon that word, “I will bring the blind by a way they know not: I will lead them in paths which they have not known. I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things straight. These things will I do for them, and not forsake them.”
January 20, 1800.--This morning as I was laying before the Lord the sufferings of my dear child, I thought, If the hairs of our head are numbered, then I am sure each time she has that cough, so hard, so violent, it is noticed by the Lord. I felt that it was; and asked, with submission, that it might be removed, or that he would graciously show that it was sent in love. After awhile, these words were sweetly impressed on my mind, “ The light affliction which is but for a moment shall work out for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” I felt that word, far more exceeding, so that I answered, Well, my blessed Lord, I will hold to my old word, God shall choose our inheritance for us. Give me, O Lord, to find my all in thee! Last night, in the society, those words were impressed on my mind, Seek first the kingdom of God, and all things else shall be added unto you.
March 17.-Yesterday Mary Wyke entered glory, in the nineteenth year of her age. She is a remarkable answer to prayer. In the beginning of her illness she was very careless and hard ; but after much suffering, she was brought to know herself, and to seek the Lord. He was pleased to manifest his love to her in some de. gree, but still she had a great hankering after life; and at times she was much troubled with unholy tempers, which she sorely lamented. A few months ago, her body being brought to the state of a Lazarus, she was consi. dering whether there was any likelihood of recovery, when those words were powerfully applied to her heart, “ Thou shalt die and not live.” This she told me she knew to be the voice of God; and felt all her will for life immedi. ately taken away. From that day a mighty change ap. peared upon her. She has had much of the presence of the Lord, and been kept in a sweet, calm, loving state, ripening for glory-declaring she was willing to suffer as long as the Lord should please, for she knew her pains were working out a “farther weight of glory.” Some. times she was triumphantly happy; at other times, she could only lie and groan in agony ; but even then she would say, if asked, “I am happy; and I have no will." A fortnight before her death she dreamed her grandmother, who died here in the Lord a few years ago, came to her, and a person whom she did not know came with her. That person said, “ Mary, hold faith and patience a little longer, and you shall be with us." The night before she died she was very happy. Ten minutes before she de. parted, her mother said, Are you happy, my dear? She, with difficulty, answered, “Yes,”-and soon ceased breathing. Eternity is very near! 0, for a swifter pro. gress in our souls !
March 31.- This has been a day of recollection, and of groaning after a fuller manifestation of the Lord's power. It is a time for trial. My dear child, what does she suffer! Yet how patient and passive in the hand of God! I seem left to suffer; yet I am wonderfully sup. ported too. Well, comfort is not that which I most desire. I feel my strongest desire is, that the nature of God may be more powerfully stamped on my soul.
May 21.- The Lord does not suffer my sorrowful atten. tion to binder his work. Last Sunday, I was at the Wood. Never, I think, did I feel more freedom. O my God! work for the glory of thy name on this people! I feel their souls very near to me. The Lord is with us in trouble, and my dear Sally is kept in a calm, quiet frame. Through all she suffers, she says, she has such a sense
how safe she is in the hand of God, that his time either for ease or death, is the best time.
August 1.--My dear friend is yet no better. Last night was a painful one. O that this trial may have its due effect on us both! I long for full conformity to all the will of God. I see every grace increases by use. I am called to exercise faith, and as faith gathers strength, I know every other grace will keep pace with it. I have had much temptation since I wrote last; but how can faith be in full exercise if we see all clearly?
September 24.- Lord, thine reyes are upon us! We see and feel thy help in the midst of our trials. I have little time to write, my dear child being now so very bad; but I am led to live on that word, “Thy will be done.” It is a day of clouds, and at times of thick darkness. All my help seems to be in clinging to the will of God. One sen. tence that Miss Ritchie (now Mrs. Mortimer) read in sister Johnson's letter from Bristol was blessed to me. She says, “ When we look at Jesus by faith, Satan loses his power, and, if I may so speak, his place, which is the reasoning faculty.”*
January 1, 1801.-What have I seen and felt since last I wrote ! On December 3d my dearest child and friend went triumphantly to glory! I was helped to write an account of her devoted life and happy death, and read it to the society while her precious corpse was in the house.
* An undue dependence of the reasoning faculty is indeed Satan's strong hoid, and highest delusion. Any repulse to this temptation, he will suggest, must amount to a renunciation of that noble gift of God! It is thus " the strong one, armed” with the pride, self-will, prejudice, and worldly spirit of the sinner, (which he will call his rcason,)“ keepeth his house, and his goods are in peace.” In this state our Lord found the fallen Jewish nation; and in this state Luiher (not to mention other reformers) fou d the fallen Christian Church. Almost in this state (but with a pure doctrine in the established creeds, and liturgy) did Mr. Wesley and this favoured kingdom. In this state. also, does the Spirit of Christ" find every natural man, however learned or wise. But who will sink under that sentence of death which the Holy Spirit pronounces, John xvi, 8-11, against all this deceivableness of unrighteousness ? Only the man who submits to have faith placed on the throne usurped by the “reasoning faculty.” Nor can any man know "the salvation that is through faith,” but the man who resolutely maintains that Divine allegiance;—who steadily walks by the same rule', and minds the same things.-ED.
I have now scarce strength to look it over. How does the Lord help us in the needful hour! In the ordering of her funeral, and various things which fell on me alone, I have been brought through, and proved her dying words, “ He will put his everlasting arms underneath you." He doth, and I am borne up. But 0 what a loss do I sus. tain ! God only knows what she was to me, and himself alone can fill the aching void! What adds to the weight is, I have not that communion with God I long for. I am amazed at the resignation which I feel. Yes, I do, I will adore him, for taking away my all from me.* I fear I hung too much on her. I did nothing without her coun. sel, and truly I was dearer to her than herself. To the last she felt in the most tender manner for me, and often said, “ If the Lord saw good, how gladly would I drink this bitter cup instead of you; and close your eyes instead of you closing mine! But the will of God is all to us; in that we are agreed; we live in • Thy will be done.'” I do not know indeed the heart of a stranger ; and I do trust the Lord is about to make me 6 his own habitation through the indwelling Spirit.” Now and then, for a moment, I have such a display of God, as I know and feel would turn my gloomy night into a bright day. But it is but for a moment, and then seems to shut up again, I must re. member my dear Sally's words, “ We are both waiting for the Lord;” and “it is good to hope, and quietly to wait for the salvation of God.” I begin this year as a hermit : ah! that I may end it as a saint. Come, Lord Jesus, and fulfil all thy gracious promises to my waiting soul!
I sometimes feel her as being present with me. We had all things in common here, and I trust I shall partake of her heavenly inheritance. Thinking of that one night when I was very sad, in a moment all the gloom went off, and such a sweetness came over my soul as seemed to wipe away all grief. I dropped asleep, and these words sounded in my ears all night :
"They drink the deifying stream, .
And pluck the ambrosial fruit.” March 11.–What cause I have to bless the Lord! How often have I feared, if I lost my dear friend I should not
* This was beyond the highest sensible consolation.-ED.
be able to glorify God, that I should have no spirit to go through any thing. But it is not so. I never felt more light and liberty in speaking to the people than I do now; and though very trying circumstances have occurred in the work of God, as well as in my family affairs, yet I have been carried through all in a manner that amazes me. How faithful is the Lord!
· June 5.-I continue to feel my loss severely ; yet I also feel I love and adore the will of God. Yea, and I admire it. What wisdom and love do I see in all this cutting dispensation! I cleaved too much to that precious gift, which was lent to me in order to raise my soul to God. One night I dreamed I saw her standing before me. I cried out, O my dear love, are you come? I have waited for this. She expressed the tenderest regard, but without words, and it left a sweet sensation on my mind. Another time I dreamed* I was involved in great trials, and thought, O if my Sally had been now with me all would have been nothing. Immediately I saw her just by me! and she gave me to know she was nearer than I thought. I know our friends are not really divided from us; they are only become invisible. Perhaps if we saw the spirits of our dear companions at such seasons, we might be much tempted to put our trust in them. A veil is therefore drawn between; and all for our eternal good. But the Scripture declares, “We are come to the spirits of just men made perfect ;” but this is far more plain to their eyes than to ours, which are as yet under the veil. Lord, give me to rely on thyself alone!
July 14.-I had this morning a comfortable season while meeting the class. Those words of Fenelon were much on my mind, " I will, with John, lean on his breast, and feed on love, by joining my heart to his.” Sometimes, while speaking on faith, such a sweetness overspreads my soul, as if I had run into the bosom of my Lord. I see, at those times, such an all-sufficiency in the Saviour, and
* In this way of Divine direction and encouragementt the Lord acts as a Sovereign, and gives as he sees good. To this the holy Scripture bears full testimony. Mrs. Fletcher was often thus favoured. But how mercifully was she preserved from placing any undue dependence on these favours ! The word of God was the guide to which she referred every thing, and by which she tried the spirits whether they were of God."-ED.