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A Narrative of Some of the Lord's Dealings with Ge

Laboured in bristol with brother craik



JULY, 1837.

I. Some of the mercies which the Lord has granted to us during this period.

Concerning all this time I have most especially to say, that goodness and mercy have followed me every day. My blessings have been many and great, my trials few and small. To the praise of God I will mention a few of the many mercies which He has bestowed on me.

1. I consider it one of the especial mercies that, amidst so many engagements I have been kept in the ways of God, and that this day I have as much desire as ever, yea more than ever, to live alone for Him, who has done so much for me. My greatest grief is that I love Him so little. I desire many things concerning myself; but I desire nothing so much, as to have a heart filled with love to the Lord. I long for a warm personal attachment to Him.

2. I consider it likewise a great mercy, for which I can never sufficiently praise God, that, whilst during these last five years so many of His children have fallen into great errors, and even those who once ran well, I, who am so faithless to Him, should have been kept from them. There is scarcely one point of importance, comparatively speaking, respecting which I have had scriptural reason to alter my views, since I have come to Bristol. My views concerning the fundamental truths of the

gospel are the same as they were at the end of the year 1829 though I have been more and more established in them during these last five years, and have seen more minutely the mind of God concerning many truths. My relish for the study of the word of God has not decreased.

3. I consider it further an exceeding great mercy, that I have been kept in uninterrupted love and union with my brother, friend, and fellow-labourer, Henry Craik. Very few of the blessings that the Lord has bestowed on him, on me, and on the two churches, whose servants we are, are of greater importance. There is not one point of importance, as it regards the truth, on which we differ. In judgment, as to matters connected with the welfare of the saints among whom we labour, we have been almost invariably at once of one mind. (Lord, to Thee is the praise due for this!!!) We are as much, or more than ever united in spirit; and if the Lord permit, we desire to labour together till He come. Who that knows the proneness in man to seek his own, and to get glory to himself; who that knows that the heart naturally is full of envy; who that is acquainted with the position which we both hold in the church, and the occasions thereby occurring for the flesh to feel offended:--who that considers these things will not ascribe our union, our uninterrupted union and love, entirely to the Lord? Let the brethren among whom we labour praise God much for it! Let the brethren everywhere, who may read this, praise God for it! This union has glorified God! This union has sprung from God! But, for this union we depend now as much as ever upon God, and therefore let the brethren pray, that God in mercy would give us grace, to put aside every thing that might hinder it.

4. We have had much joy on account of the scriptural conduct of many of the children of God among whom we labour. The two churches have on the whole shown, in some measure, that even in our day there can be love among the brethren. I do not mean that we have been without trials on account of the behaviour of the saints under our care; nor do I mean to say, that either we or they have followed Christ as we might or ought to have done; but only, that we have been mercifully kept hitherto from great divisions; that the cases in which acts of discipline were needed (as the list at the end of the last two years shows) were so few; that we have had much more joy than sorrow on account of the brethren and sisters:--these are matters, worthy to be noticed among the special blessings which God has bestowed on us during the last five years.

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