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

That though neither Brother Craik nor I am strong in body


5.

Another mercy I mention is, that it has pleased God to keep us from some most awful characters, who either actually had proposed themselves for fellowship, or desired to do so, and who, so far as the testimony by word of mouth went, could fully satisfy us. From several such individuals who lived in open sin, we have been kept, by the Spirit constraining them to confess, and that, perhaps, even against their own will, their wicked deeds, which they were practicing; in other instances we suspected them, and, on making inquiry, found out their sins.

6. Another mercy which the Lord has kindly bestowed on us is, that though neither Brother Craik nor I am strong in body, yet we have been helped through much work; and, at the time when we were laid aside, the Lord made up our lack of service, either by sending help from without, or by putting into exercise the gifts of the brethren among us. At those seasons disunion might so easily have sprung up among the brethren; but the good shepherd of the sheep watched so graciously over the flock, that they were kept together in much love and union, whereby also a testimony was given for God, that their faith stood not in the power of man.

7. Sometimes, when particular trials were laid on us, and things appeared very dark, the Lord most mercifully not only supported us under those trials, but also unexpectedly delivered us much sooner out of them, than we could have at all

anticipated. May this especially encourage brethren who labour in word and doctrine, or who rule in the church, to trust in the Lord in Seasons of peculiar trial!

8. My temporal wants have all these five years been most richly supplied, so that not once have I lacked the necessaries of life, and generally I have abounded; and all this without having one shilling of regular income. I am not tired of this way of living, nor have I even for once been allowed to regret having begun to live in this way.

II. The work of the Lord in our hands.

1. It has pleased the Lord to continue to bless the word preached by us to the conversion of many sinners, and there seems to have been no period during these five years, in which this work has been stopped by Him. There have come again several cases before us lately, in which individuals have been recently brought to apprehend their lost state by nature, and to see that Jesus of Nazareth alone can save them. The whole number of those who have been converted through our instrumentality in Bristol, and who have been received into fellowship with us is 178; besides this, the Lord has given us many seals to our ministry in this city, but the individuals are now either only standing on the list of candidates for fellowship, or are united to other churches in and out of Bristol, or have fallen asleep before they were united to us.

2. The whole number of the brethren and sisters, now in fellowship with us, is 370: 189 at Gideon, 181 at Bethesda.

3. It is now three years and four months since brother Craik and I began, in dependence upon the Lord for funds, to seek to help the spread of the Gospel through the instrumentality of schools, the circulation of the Holy Scriptures, and by aiding Missionary exertions. Since then there have been circulated through our instrumentality 4030 copies of the Scriptures; four Day-Schools for poor children have been established by us; 1119 children have been instructed in the six Day-Schools, and 353 children are now in those six Day-Schools. Besides this, a Sunday-School, and an Adult-School have been supplied with all they needed, and Missionary exertions in the East Indies, in Upper Canada, and on the Continent of Europe, have been aided. In addition to this the word of God has been preached from house to house among the poor, in connexion with the Scriptural Knowledge Institution, by brother C-r, within the last two years.


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