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I spent the most remarkable time of
life. The conflict I felt, I cannot express ; but, however, doatingly fond as I was of my beloved charge, I felt at once, not only a wil. lingness ; but an earnest desire to resign him up into the hands of that God who gave him. Never did I entreat more earnestly, than I did, that it might please the Lord to cut short his work in righteousness and house my suffering lamb from the storm. My prayers were answered—I received the intelligence of his death with thankfulness; and, since the moment of his departure, glory be to the name of the LORD, I have not had a single wish for his return, if that were practicable. No—as I have said to those about me, if I could, by a breath of mine, breathe into hiin the breath of life, I would not do it. No-not for ten thousand worlds. I am, as I have been many times before, a wonder to myself. I can look upon my dear departed dust and ashes with a thankful plea
sure. Sometimes nature rebels, and calls to my tortured remembrance many tender circumstances, which serve to renew and increase my grief; but, upon the whole, grace abundantly prevails; and I have far more pleasant than painful feelings upon the occasion. Now I know emphatically, what it is to rejoice in tribulation. My nature has never had such a shock as this; but the LORD has made me, not only resigned and submissive, but, even to glory in my present affliction. Yes, if ever my tongue uttered the language of my heart, it did, when I said to my beloved husband, “ He gave, he hath taken “ away, and blessed for ever blessed be his “ name !"-Yes, from my inmost soul, I can say, “ Thy will be done.”—The exercise of my mind is various. Sometimes I call to mind the pains and uneasiness of pregnancy, and the severe suffering I had in bringing him into the world—and then I think, are not the ways of the LORD mysterious? What end was it to answer? Then I severely chide and reprove myself. Have I not been made the honoured instrument of bringing that into existence, which shall be eternally blessed? And is not this worth suffering for? Oh yes--I feel it is.—At some periods the enemy of my soul seems to gain a trifling advantage by insinuating thus, · You can't “call this a divine support—it is insensibility '--you want susceptibility-sure you did not
love the child, or you could never look at, • or think about him without weeping.' But had I ever a greater proof that he is the father of lies than this! What! persuade me that I did not love that which was perhaps too much my idol. At other times when I am endeavouring to console myself by reflections on his present blessed state, I seem to be attacked by a new sort of temptation, and I am harassed by infidel objections to the reality of the future state ; but upon the whole, grace and consolation have by
far the predominancy. Now I am in the school of discipline ;—and fain would I learn all the lessons my heavenly Father has to teach me by this providence. Love has guided the rod-Oh that I may never more rebel. Ah what a sweet peace and calmness of soul do I at times experience! My spirit seems broken at the foot of the cross. So may it continue, and may he who best knows my besetting sins, enable me often there to come and crucify them; hoping, praying, and desiring that they may there die, never more to revive. Hear my prayer, so far as consists with thy will; and, gracious God, grant a continuance of thy support, through all the painful circumstances I am yet to be exercised with.
January 3, 1800.
I am ashamed, and yet obliged to confess, that I live at a great distance from my God. It is very true, that I do not omit the forms
of prayer; but I lament that I feel no more the power and spirit of it. Sometimes however, I must say, I have happy seasons at a throne of grace; but I am often afraid that my outward conduct is but little influenced thereby. Hence it is, that I too often feel the strength of unholy tempers and unmortified affections: and for these cursed evils I am continually brought into bondage. Oh, who shall deliver me from the plague of my own heart? I am sure, if the LORD at my first outset in religion did not see fit to show unto me the exceeding sinfulness of sin, but the beauty and excellency of Christ and Christianity; he has since been pleased in a measure to reverse the order of his working; and I bless the SPIRIT of God that he is teaching me (however hard the lesson) the evil of sin, and thereby leading me to know the depth of my own heart. With respect to providential things, the