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my time; but yet, though there had been no meetings there for about three months, above twenty had assembled, and this number was made up to five-and-twenty, which comprised above half the Protestants for a considerable district round. I was much indulged as I rode along in weeping out my sorrows, petitions, and desires to the Lord, that He would graciously go before me-attend me—and bless my message. Most ardently was I led to beg that eternal life might enter the soul of some poor
sinner there present. Oh that my tears and cries may be answered ! I spoke to them from Luke ii. 10, 11; and, taking advantage of the present starving condition of the population of this country, from the almost total failure of the potato crops, reminded them how much better the tidings I had brought them from afar than any tidings that had respect to the poor perishing body merely. They listened with great attention, and thanked me for coming among them. In fact, such gratitude I never witnessed. Oh that God may bless the Word! I felt access in prayer-great and earnest pleading with the Lord. Strong cries and Tears were poured forth. Oh that they may have entered into Thy heart, Holy Father! Do indulge me by sealing home the feeble testimony! It was feeble; I felt it so; but Thou dost use the feeblest instrument-a ram's horn, the jaw bone of an ass—anything or nothing; it is all alike with Thee. Seal it home, then; apply it, bless it, and oh, do Thou counsel me! Don't leave me to myself; keep me from having my own way. If it is not Thine own free-will, choice, and pleasure that I should enter the Church of England, why, then, frustrate it; lead my mind away from it, and grant me to give it up. But, if otherwise—if Thou hast appointed it; if it is Thy pleasure if Thou hast ordained that I should preach the Gospel to poor perishing sinners within her pale, why, then, make it clearly manifest ; open still the way, grant me to attain a moderate share of the Greek, and let me go forth in the fulness of the blessing of the Gospel of Christ. Even so. Amen and amen.-I can but add, how every fear was taken away whilst riding this day through this most troublous district, where there are scarcely anything but Romanists. I had not a fear. I sat weeping before the Lord for poor sinners, those to whom I was going with a message of mercy. “ Counting not my life dear unto me, so that I might finish my course with joy.” I could but think, as I passed along, that a mob with bludgeons or with guns would in my then state of mind make no impression upon me. I was told but last night that the young man who formerly—about a twelvemonth since -had been in the habit of going to the identical place where I was going to, and have been, was stopped by three men and told he should be killed if he did not desist and immediately leave the country. He did desist, and left the country forthwith. But I-so timid, so fearful generally-had not a fear ; perfect calmness, composure, resignation to the mind, will, and pleasure of the Lord.
Monday Night.-Thanks to the dear Lord for good tidings from home this morning. What a blessed season the Lord indulged me with as I sat at breakfast; such a precious transport of love. Sweet Jesus and His poor timid servant alone present! Lord, "Let thy visits more frequent be, or let them longer last." Endear Thyself yet more and more, and graciously lead me on in Thy way, for Thy great name and mercy's sake. Let me feel the inward promptings of Thy precious love, and let my soul be taken up with Thee; having more rich manifestations of Thyself, Thou lovely Jesus—more light into the divine mysteries of Thy dear
Word—and, as Thou shalt see fit to send me out, the opening of the mouth in the midst of the people. And now take charge of me and mine. Let my dear family rest in Thy sweet embrace. Take special care of thum, Lord, and cause us in Thine own time to meet in Thy fear, favour, and precious love. Amen and Amen.
Thursday Night, Nov. 15.--I have been up among the mountains again to-day; met the school; twelve children only ; but really felt peace and sweetness in going, and whilst there. I talked to the dear children with freedom, and had precious liberty in prayer in taking them to the Lord. It was an interesting sight to see these poor children, varying in ages from six to fifteen, listening to me, and then bowing the knee in prayer. And, in walking thither and returning (making altogether a distance of about ten miles), I found a pleasing interest excited in the villagers, to whom I talked upon the all-engrossing theme, the famine in the land. I cannot but be taken with the people of this country. There is a something which I have not met elsewhere; but my soul has been much distressed since, because my mind seemed so entirely locked against the attainment of the Greek. It seems to me so strange that the Lord should first control the enmity of the mind-make me willing to come over herebrought me here, most clearly (for never has my soul been more established upon any point than this)--and now my mind still has the greatest distaste, disrelish, and inaptitude for the acquirement of the Greek; and this, to all appearance, is to be the turning-point about my going into the Church. Perhaps it says—perhaps it speaks loudly—that I am not to go into the Church. God in mercy prevent it if I am not! But oh that He would in mercy convince me; oh that He would lead merguide me-establish me! My exercises of mind have been dreadful over this Greek grammar within the last hour. I have been upon the very point of cursing and swearing over the book, and I have been full of trembling. Lord, have mercy upon me, and give me not over to the rebellion of my heart; for I should curse Thy great and holy name, after all Thy mercies, if Thou wert to leave me. Preserve mekeep back Thy servant from presumptuous sins; let not any iniquity have dominion over me!”
Tuesday Night, Nov. 24, 1846.-Went to my lecture again on Sunday; had twenty-eight or thirty : subject, 1 Peter v. 7. Their attention and gratitude were great. This day I have been to my other lecture ; about three miles up the hill-country. Asked the Lord for a subject, and John x. 16, dropped into the mind. When I reached the cottage, I found the owner-just one of these Irish small farmers, having a few acres of land to cultivate—with his wife, in great trouble; six sheep, all they had, had been stolen. Night after night, at midnight, had he left his bed to go down the meadows, and see that they were safe; but now they were stolen. This gave scope to my subject, and opportunity to speak of that good and gracious Shepherd who had declared that “ His sheep should never perish, neither should any pluck them out of His hand." The Lord graciously bless the few remarks made in His great name! I sow in hope, sometimes in a measure of the confidence of faith. I feel the truth and blessedness of the Lord's words, “My word shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please; and shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it;" therefore, while I strive to address myself topoor, lost, destitute sinners-pointing out their real state by nature--and the needs be for the regenerating power and operations of the Holy Ghost, I leave it in His blessed hands. I may not hear—nor do I expect
to hear-of any fruits, yet I believe the Lord will not have brought me here in vain. The seed is sown; it may long lie buried in the earth; but surely in His own time it shall spring up, to the praise of the glory of His own grace. I pray that He may give me faith and patience to go on Sowing beside all waters," “knowing not which shall prosper, this or that.”_I feel satisfied to commit His own word, and the feeble testimony which He enables me to bear, unto His own gracious care and keeping, to do with as shall seem good in His sight. I have been anxious these two days about
dear wife and children. She wants to come to me. I have written for her, and this day have feared whether prematurely. Lord, do Thou decide the matter; do Thou lead the mind; and, if Thou dost approve-if Thou seest it would be for our mutual good, give favourable weather, and bring my dear wife and children here in peace and in safety ; if thou seest fit to defer it, then so lead our minds, and give us patience to wait Thine own time and way. Grant it, O Lord, for Christ's sake! Let it be Thy way, and not ours.
Sunday Morning, Nov. 29, 1846.-Dear Father of mercies and God of all comfort, I am just again going up among the mountains, to testify of the death in sin, and of the life that is in Christ Jesus. May I hope for Thy dear presence, blessing, and special favour? What am I without Thee ?-a poor, vile, worthless worm of the earth, that stands amazed at Thy forbearance and mercy.
O Jesus! Jesus! precious, all-loving Jesus! to Thee, to Thee alone, would my heart and eye be directed, for it is only in Thee, and by Thee, and through Thee, that I have hope. Thy blood, Thy righteousness, Thine own blessed Person, are my only plea. Let me rejoice—increasingly rejoice-in Thee, as my Portion, my All in all. Remember, O Lord, the poor Irish sinners up among whom I am now going. Give insight into Thy Word-indulge, if Thy holy will, with the opening of the mouth in the midst of the people-prepare the heart of some poor sinner to receive it (if such be Thy covenant purpose), and let the Word—thine own Word-drop with power into the heart; "like bread cast upon the waters, to be found again after many days.”
Monday Night, Nor. 30, 1816.— I had a sweet time yesterday-my heart was warmed in talking to the people from that precious language of our Lord, “ Lazarus, come forth !" Strove to set forth the death in trespasses and sins—the giving of spiritual life by the voice and power of Jesus—and the blessed effects of that life. Surely the Lord was present! Coming home, it was suggested, “Ah! you have spoken this afternoon, but where will you get another text?” Whilst thinking, "Well, I can trust the Lord for it,” Isaiah lxi. 1, dropped sweetly into the heart, and instantly brought tears to the eyes from the sweet softening effects.Heard, to my great joy, that poor Davis had had his sheep restored. The thief was overtaken by daylight, and was forced to abandon his prey. Thus the Lord answered prayer.-Am to-day but poorly, and once again deeply exercised about the Greek, fearing whether my slowness and inaptitudo in attaining it, is not the voice of the Lord to prevent my going into the Church of England. Lord, decide the doubtful case, and lead me in Thy way. Make my path plain before
There are two or three remarks which we would make with respect to the foregoing.
1. Sundry doubts are expressed in the quotations, prior to our ordination, as to what might be the will of God with regard to it. This arose partly from the great difficulty we found in giving the mind close application to study, after our many years' business distraction and turmoil; and, principally, because there was one most devoted friend in particular, who herself had seceded from the Church of England, had declared her conviction that we should never enter the ministry within its pale. Singular to say, she was the first person who introduced us to the beloved Bishop of Cashel. Her object was, that we might hear from his lips facts about Ireland which might be interesting to our readers. But God had wisely and graciously other purposes in view with respect to that introduction. Although ten minutes before we were in the presence of that loved servant of God, we remarked to our friend, that we knew not why we were going to see him, immediately upon being introduced to his lordship, there came over us a strange and unaccountable influence, under which we were led to confer with the Bishop about our deep exercises with rogard to the ministry for the previous twenty years. Still, however, when matters were coming to an issue, and knowing as we did her deep spirituality and near access at the throne of grace, we had, at least at times, grave doubts as to whether she might not prove a true prophetess. But now, after the many years' experience we have had in the ministry of that Church, we are bound to declare that we have never had the slightest reason to regret our connexion with the Church of England. Our way was made perfectly clear into it. We have enjoyed a freedom of speech and liberty and non-interference with our plain and simple testimony, which would render any attempt on our part to leave the Church a manifest running in the face of that Providence which clearly directed our steps within its pale. Were the slightest constraint put upon us, or any effort made to prevent our giving free and full utterance to what we have tasted and handled and felt of the good Word of life, and which we believe to be the truth of God as laid down in His blessed Word, God helping us, neither the Church of England, nor any other form of Church government or control, would retain us. But, whilst we continue to enjoy the freedom and non-interference we have so long experienced, we shall remain where we are.
2. Under date, Tuesday night, Nov. 24, 246, reference is made, as will have been seen, to the stealing of six sheep from a poor farmer at whose house we went to lecture. Perfectly do we remember, at the close of that little lecture upon Christ, as the Good Shepherd and the Keeper of His sheep, looking up to the Lord, in the presence of that weeping group, and asking Him to sanctify the loss; and, if it were His will, to restore the sheep. But to this day do we recollect the burden that was upon our mind, at the very moment we thus sought to plead with the Lord. Knowing that there, in the centre of the dreaded Tipperary, and in the midst of that fearful famine, they were stealing on every hand, and merely leaving the skins of both oxen and sheep, in order to escape detection, it seemed so unreasonable to present
such a request as that the sheep might be restored. But numberless times, dear reader, the after-circumstances have come to mind, in connexion with this very "hoping against hope," to strengthen and stimulate us in prayer, under discouraging aspects. By reference to the entry under date Nov. 30, it will be seen how prayer was answered, in that the sheep were restored,
3. In further connexion with the fact just alluded to, under a later date (Dec. 31st, '46) reference is made to the distribution of a certain amount of Indian-meal to the poor starving Irish. That may be said to be the commencement of our work in Ireland. Through the kindness of our readers and other friends, such timely aid was rendered to the poor starving peasantry, that we have been saluted by perfect strangers with the exclamation, “Sure, sir, it was God Almighty sent you over to us at this time; for, if
you had not come, hundreds of us would have been under the clay.” Ah, how marvellously was the whole of God! Often have we said, “ We would cheerfully go through all those distressing scenes again, in order to witness the same amount of gratitude. At a meeting of the parish vestry at Templemore, we were informed, subsequently, that a special record was made in the parish register of what the Lord had been pleased to do for that place in connexion with our_feeble instrumentality. We state this fact simply to show how the Lord's hand was in the whole matter; yea, and we may add, that it was an essential link in the chain of every after-movement, and to our being fixed in the sphere where we have been privileged to labour during the last thirteen years. Oh, reader, if we know anything of our own heart
-base as that heart by nature is there is a something, in spite of that baseness, ingratitude, and unbelief-another nature, and a counteracting principle, which loves to trace and to acknowledge the good and gracious hand of our God upon us, in all the merciful and marvellous way He has been pleased to lead to this present hour. Oh, Lord, Lord, whilst to us belongeth “shame and confusion of face,'
," to Thyself—Thyself alone—are due admiration, adoration, and glory! St. Luke's, Bedminster.
THE EDITOR. POSTSCRIPT.—When walking down to the service on Sunday morning, Nov. 5, we were joined by the dear brother and fellowlabourer (the Rev. WILLIAM SAUNDERS) whose letter appears in another page. He likewise was about to enter upon the labours of the day, his parish adjoining ours. He formerly (like ourselves) had been immersed in the business-life of the great London. We were then toiling in the busy world for the bread that perisheth, just about the same distance locally from each other that we are now, when mutually engaged in the service of our dear Lord and Master. Upon the Sunday morning just referred to, pointing to the railway station hard by, we remarked, “Five-and-twenty years ago this day, when passing through Bristol on our first visit to Ireland, had a person