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arm of Omnipotence; and its pleadings for holiness were as the gentle whisperings of love, to which my heart, my mind, my soul answered assent. How I wondered at my former darkness! How amazed did I feel that the precious light had so long shone in my way, and I never had perceived it! I resolved to make it the absolute rule of
life. “ These first days were as though they had been a foretaste of heavenly peace. Never shall I forget my first mortification at finding that sin still existed within me. There had been no actual committal of an offence that my conscience charged me with; yet a sudden and unexpected change had
come over me.
There was a cloudiness in my mind; my faith was dim; my heart had ceased to exult. It was as though all had been a bright and glorious dream, and I had now awakened to the stern realities of a cold and miserable world. Alas, the bitterness of that moment! I strove to recall my hopes—they seemed delusion. I read my Bible—the bright revealing light which had heretofore almost made the very print more clear was gone; and, although I still knew it to be the Word of God, the page had ceased to enkindle rapture or inspire emotion. I knew not how to account for this state. I had believed that the work of change and renovation had been completed, at least carried to so high a degree that it was impossible I could wilfully sin against God again. I
abhorred the thought, yet here I was in darkness, and sin palpably abounding in my heart. How sad was the sight of myself! It was the first glimpse at the inherent corruption and original depravity of my heart. It was the first of a series of painful but important lessons which convinced me that God had only hitherto instructed me in the first principles, and laid the foundation for my faith; but that the work of grace had to be carried on, and an absolute change of heart effected, by many a severe and fiery ordeal.
“ In the course of weeks, I was enabled to take a trip into North Wales ; here my connexion with the world was first re-established. All the avocations of man, that were apart from his religious duties, appeared to me to have vanity legibly stamped on them. On my route I stopped a short time in Liverpool, but the bustle and commotion excited no pleasurable sympathy; for I felt that it all was vanity. The whirl, the din, the confusion, all told me of the world's spirit; and in the countenance of the busy throng I could not read one expression in unison with my own feelings, or which came home to
heart. At Beaumaris I abode at a commercial hotel, and there, in the presence of the usual visitants of an inn, I took out my Bible, glorying in the thought that I was thus unfurling Christ's banner. One of the company entered into conversation, and boasted of his religious acquisitions, and of the high position he held
in the church to which he belonged as teacher and deacon. But gradually he drank to inebriation. I was glad to find a room to myself, and in dejection to ponder over this first instance of a false professor.
“My stay in North Wales, especially my visit to Llanberis and Snowdon, afforded my mind the healthful occupation of contemplating and adoring God as revealed in his works. To me the God of nature and the God of revelation now were one, and I began more sensibly to feel the relation wherein we stand to God by the conjoint link of creation and redemption. How glorious to know that a pathway had been opened for the rebellious sinner to the favor of the great Eternal, whose hand had formed the mighty fabric of the universe, and who had given the being and life we enjoy, but from whom I had so long been severed, and to whom I had never felt my relation, nor acknowledged my obedience! But the great Eternal was now the Lord my God; and I, the creature of his hand, could, through the Redeemer, look up and believe that the Power which guided the planets in their course would direct me in all my ways, and preserve me by his providential care. I felt that he had first loved me. I felt that God so loved the world as to give his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. I felt that it is the First and the Last who there expresses his care for all the
family of man, including myself, a worm so insignificant. At that mercy I could only wonder and adore, and, with faint conceptions of his love and grace, I could but humble myself before him.”
Christian Experience and Usefulness.
MERCY and Truth, that long were miss'd,
Now joyfully are met;
And hand in hand are set.
Truth from the earth, like to a flower,
Shall bud and blossom then;
Psalm lxxxv. 10, 11.-Milton.
I fear that much of my backwardness in spiritual matters may be imputed to my overlooking so much the work of the Spirit of God in the plan of salvation And oh! how important is His work! To
enlighten the understanding, soften the heart, remove prejudices, “shed abroad the love of God abundantly in the heart," to "witness with our spirit that we are the sons of God,” to “help our infirmities,” to “seal us unto the day of redemption."-Rev. J. Macdonald of Calcutta.