Page images

was thou alone, O gracious Father, that called me from the earth; thou leddest me through the waters and through the wilderness, and thine own arm hath brought salvation—therefore no flesh can boast. Oh! continue to save me by thy power, and support me by thy strength; wash thoroughly my defiled garments, that I may dwell near thy holy habitation. I love thy purity, and seek a nearer acquaintance with thy love. Into thy hands I commit my spirit; I will trust in thy word. Oh! keep me humble and low before thee, and though thou tarry, I will wait for thee.

Gracious Father, I have cried unto thee, and thou hast inclined thine ear and heard me in my distress. Thou hast, in thy mercy and goodness, filled my soul with a comfortable hope. Oh! be pleased to sustain my weak, unstable mind, and be thou to me a place of refuge to flee unto in seasons of trial and difficulty. I greatly desired thee in the night of my distress, when thick darkness surrounded me; and when mine enemies pursued me, and said, God hath forsaken her; then was my prayer unto thee and not unto man.Thou wast a God nigh at hand, hearing prayer, and not a God afar off. And still my cries are, day and night, unto thee, the Father and Fountain whence all good cometh, that thou wilt establish and build me up in the most holy faith. Thou knowest, O God, my Saviour, that I seek thee oftener than the morning: uphold me by thy power, vanquish and subdue mine enemies, that so, O Father, I may praise thee for thy goodness forever and ever.

Blessed be the Lord; his mercy is over all his works. A glorious prospect is set open before me;

one after which my desires are fervent, and ту

heart earnest to reach. Lord, lead on: though the through baptism and through death, thy arm is sufficient to sustain me. Thou canst sever the precious from the vile, and snatch me as a brand from the burning. Though evil beasts have been ready to deyour me on the way, thou hast been merciful, and hast delivered; thine arm hath rescued from the lion's jaws. Oh! may a deep sense of gratitude clothe my spirit! and Oh! mayest thou continue thy saving grace, and let nothing ever pluck me out of thy hand.

How can I be silent? This is a day of favour and exaltation;-a day of light and strength;-a day of peace and consolation. And yet, while I enjoy a heavenly communion of spirit, I feel a secret travail and watch to guard against the enemy who would fain intercept the glorious prospect opened before

Oh! my God, in thee will I trust until thou bring forth judgment unto perfect victory.


Take courage, my soul, behold thy King cometh to reign in the earth, and to subdue his enemies before him. Strengthen me to put my whole trust in thee, O my God, the supporter and succourer of thy little ones who cry to thee for sustenance, and are not content with husks, the dry and barren food of worldly vanities.

What shall I render unto thee, O Lord, for all thy benefits and great kindness towards me? who hast redeemed my life from the grave, and my soul from the jaws of the devourer. I cried unto the Lord with my whole heart, and he inclined his ear, and heard me out of his holy hill.

O Lord, thou art my God. I will exalt and praise thy name, for thou only art worthy of all praise.Oh! uphold, strengthen and sustain me; be thou my rock, my fortress and my high tower; make me wholly free from all sin, that I may sing on Zion's mountain that thou art my Redeemer. Surely I will wait upon God, for from him cometh my salvation. . Be thou exalted above all the earth, and let thy power be known amongst the children of men, causing them to acknowledge that thou art God alone.

When God, in his infinite wisdom, goodness and mercy, awakens and calls mankind out of sin, and the bonds of darkness and iniquity, to an earnest pursuit after eternal felicity,—then it is that the dragon exerts his strength and power to destroy the holy birth begotten of God in the soul, which, through grace, promises to be an heir of the kingdom. Of a truth I have known this declaration of the evangelist confirmed in myself, “ There was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought, and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in hea.ven.

Oh! the mystery of the power of God, working out man's redemption from the fall! The scriptures are sealed as with seven seals, until the Lion of the tribe of Judah, Christ himself, clearly shows unto man, by his spirit and all-powerful word, the things that are written therein. Then is understood by deep experience, that “the holy city, new Jerusalem, hath no need of the sun, neither of the moon, for the glory of God enlightens it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.” The redeemed soul is born anew, and made willing faithfully to follow the Lamb whithersoever he leads, being baptized with the one saving baptism, which is compared to fire, whose nature is to consume and purify. Thus the righteous are tried in the fire, and acceptable men in the furnace of adver


God knows his own children, and they know him, and are not deceived:—but he is hid to them who walk not in the light of Christ; who choose death rather than life, for the sake of a few fleeting enjoyments which must soon pass away, leaving behind the bitter reflection, that they once had an offer of salvation but would not accept it, preferring the gratifications and pleasures of sense to the pure love of God. But how happy are they who deny themselves, take

up their daily cross, and follow on, even though they suffer persecution and the loss of all things, that they may win Christ. These know a partaking of that

peace which the world cannot give neither take away.

On account of the change in my religious principles, I received the following communication from

my father.

Shrewsbury, December 30th, 1771. My dear child,-Lately I saw a letter you wrote to your sister Hannah, by which I find you have indulged yourself in a serious way of thinking and sedateness of mind, more than is common to persons of your years; which temper, if not kept within proper bounds and well regulated, may lead you into many fatal errors and mistakes. Your father's advice and assistance may be of advantage to you, in

[ocr errors]

travelling such an intricate road; he having gone the same path before you these many years, and almost arrived at his temporary journey's end. I know not but this temper of yours may be hereditary; for, by the time I was ten or a dozen years old, I had an unextinguishable thirst after knowledge and the truth of things, and read all authors I could lay my hands on. About this time the contest among

the Quakers,–George Keith and his friends on one side, and the rest of the Quakers on the other,-ran very high. I heard abundance of it, and read their books on both sides, and compared them one with the other, and with the scriptures: so that by the time I was twenty years old, I was master of that subject as well as most men. And ever since, through all parts of my life, both in conversation and books, I have been searching for and finding out the truth, and how to make my calling and election


We do not find, from Adam to Moses, that there was any way to communicate one man's thoughts to another but by word of mouth; writing not being known. Although every man was born with reason, the characteristic of man which is called the image of God, and, being diligently attended to, was sufficient to deter them from idolatry; yet, in about sixteen hundred years, the whole earth was corrupt and full of violence, so that almighty God destroyed the whole earth, except one family. But Adam was living above half that time, and Methusalem died only the year before the flood. Yet almighty God, out of his exceeding love to man, revealed his will to several before the flood,to Noah,and in a particular manner afterward to Abraham, with whom

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »