Jan. 8, 1812.
Dear Friend in our dear Lord,
I WISH to send a few lines, but my hand shakes. I have had some soul-travail and hard labour of late; and "as soon as Zion travailed she brought forth; yea, before her pains came she was delivered" of a man child. "Who hath heard such things? who hath seen such things?" The man child is Christ formed as the new man. Christ, who is our life, entered and quickened the dead soul, which made her feel her bearing pains. Thus everlasting life appeared at her conception, and love at her deliverance; which is the wonder of wonders. I have this morning received another account from the country of a flaming professor, who had long walked in the light of his own fire - a full assurance, and a claim upon the Saviour as his own; - the moving of his passions was the love by which his faith worked, and his tears were the refreshings from the presence of the Lord. Two years and a half had he laboured in town at this work, and still his heart was in heaviness. At last he found us out, and soon perceived that we dealt in goods which he knew nothing of. His presumption soon failed, and he gave up his claims upon that Saviour whom we profess. Then he went into the stripping room, where he lost the sheep's skin, and sat naked, and covered with- shame. But, when I preached three discourses from "that they may be one in us," he received, as he tells me, a better entertainment, and a better garb.
Thus the promised work goes on; they build up, and God throws down; they speak peace, and God declares war; they daub, and God destroys the morter. They load me with reproaches, and charge me with errors and the worst of immoralities, and with being of a bad spirit; whilst God sends his children from all parts of the nation to get truth, to try their profession, and to finish their education, under me. "They that honour me I will honour." They set themselves up, and labour to support themselves, and .to pull down all whom God exalts. But God sets us up, and keeps us standing, that we may pull down self, and exalt him.
I heard last night that our poor dear old King is much better both in mind and body. I have been much led of late to pray for him, and now it appears that the Spirit made intercession according to the will of God. Tell Ben. that, if he ever got one live coal from our altar, or if he ever warmed either his heart or his hands at my fire, to remember the stove.
God save the King!