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things God had done for your soul, I could not but consider your state as happy, although in the midst of many outward distresses; and your letter has greatly increased my joy and thankfulness on your account, as it assures me of your coming more and more out of the captivity of nature, into the glorious liberty of the children of God; and that you are now enabled, not only to trust him, (which in itself is a blessed state), but also to rejoice in him, as the God of your salvation, for your present as well as future salvation.
"Heaviness may endure for a night, but gladness cometh in the morning; and when it comes after a long uneasy night, it is doubly welcome, and deserves a double tribute of praise and thankfulness. O be not wanting in that sweet duty of praise, from a sense of the divine goodness, love, and patience towards you; remember that you are brought from darkness to light, to shew forth the praises of him who calleth you, and that your feet are set at liberty to run with patience the race of prayer and praise, self-denial and obedience, which the Lord hath set before you. In order that you may go on comfortably and steadily for the time to come, I shall insert a few directions which were given to a Christian friend of mine, who long walked in darkness, but who afterwards lived much under the light of God's countenance, till it pleased him to give her the full vision and fruition of himself in glory.
Live above earthly and creature comforts. Beware of flatness and lukewarmness; this, if not carried immediately to the Lord, ends in darkness and deadness. Value divine comforts above all things, and prize Christ above all comforts, that if these should fail, you may still glory in the God of your salvation. Let that which torments others be your happiness, that is, selfdenial, and renouncing your own will. Be ready to
ADVICE TO LADY GLENORCHY.
yield with joy to every conviction of the Spirit of God. Be faithful to the present grace, and aspire after a continual growth. Live the present moment to God, and avoid perplexing yourself about your past and future experience, by giving up yourself to Christ as you are at the moment, and being willing to receive him now as he is, leaving all the rest to him, and you will cut a thousand temptations by the root.' Continue diligently to search the Scriptures-these contain an inexhaustible fund of comfort when opened to us by the Spirit of God. Otherwise, clear and plain as the sacred truths appear in themselves, they will be a dead letter to us, and we shall never truly know the mystery of godliness. Every day's observation is sufficient to prove, that all the most elaborate researches of human wisdom into God's word, are insufficient to lead us into the truth, unless the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Christ is given us. How often is that divine wisdom revealed to babes, whilst the wise and prudent are ignorant of it! May we ever come as poor blind sinners to a throne of grace for light and understanding; then, although strait is the gate, we shall assuredly find it, and though the way be narrow, we shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. Let self-righteous ceremonial formalists stay themselves upon a round of unmeaning duties, and rest in a righteousness of their own imaginations; but we will make mention of thy righteousness, O Lord, even thine only;-contented to be saved by rich free grace, we gladly embrace the offered gift, and glorify that wondrous love, that raises us from children of wrath to be the heirs of heaven."
That the reader may have some view of the state of religion in Miss Hill's own mind, and the nature of
her own Christian experience, it may not be unacceptable to add the following extract from one of her letters to Lady Glenorchy.
"Easter Sunday, 1768.
"I have this day been commemorating the love of Jesus at his table with a hard and stony heart, which neither the remembrance of his cruel sufferings, nor his victory over death and the grave, could melt. O, when shall this torrent of sin and corruption, so offensive to the God of all purity, be done away? When shall I arise with Christ in the spiritual resurrection, and be so vitally united to my living head, as to be one with him by a growing conformity to his likeness? Come down, thou eternal Jesus, into my heart, and sit as a refiner's fire and as fullers' soap,-burn up all the corruptions of my nature,-wash away the guilt and stain of sin, and set my feet upon the rock of everlasting ages! Surely this is a season which should, above all others, fill the believing soul with joy, the heart with praise, and the tongue with thanksgiving, since the resurrection of Jesus from the dead is the alone foundation on which our everlasting hopes are built. We are thereby assured, that God is well pleased with his Son's undertaking, and satisfied with his one oblation. The majesty of heaven cannot now but be reconciled to those who plead the offering of his Son, for in him mercy and truth are met together, righteousness and peace have kissed each other. Whatever before was interruptive of our peace is now removed, and we have the most satisfying grounds of never-ending consolation in a crucified risen Saviour, who has triumphed over death, broke its iron bars asunder, and cast away all its cords. O for grace to rise from the death of sin to a life of righteousness, that we, having part in
the past resurrection, may not only escape the second death, but see the eternal joy of his salvation! Alas! my dear friend, I am utterly confounded when I review my unprofitable life and conversation, and see any thing of that hidden mystery of iniquity in my own heart;-but blessed be that inexhaustible fountain of divine grace, which wants no legal performances or qualifications of mine to make me a fit object of mercy. O what wondrous love was that which plucked us as brands from the fire, awakened us to see our danger, and showed us that the Lord had laid help on one that was mighty, and not only mighty, but willing to save! I have more hopes with regard to the spiritual state of my friend, Mrs, than I had. Her situation some time ago makes it appear evident to me, that the Lord has thoughts of mercy towards her soul, although at present I do not see those marks of conviction in her I wish to see. In an illness she had some time ago, in which she suffered the most excruciating agonies of pain, without the smallest appearance of her recovery, and during this time of great extremity her husband grudged her common necessaries,-amidst these, and many more distresses which I will not now repeat, the concerns of her soul were uppermost in her thoughts. Death would, indeed, have been a welcome messenger to have delivered her from her torture; but, alas! she feared his sting, and shrunk back at the thoughts of his advancing, and assured me, that her outward trials were not to be compared to the desponding thoughts that were within her. An offended God, a broken law, stared her in the face; the uplifted arm of justice she saw ready to fall upon her, and sink her into the bottomless pit, and made her earnestly cry for redemption through the blood of Jesus. O,' said she,
could I but get the least glimmering hope of my sal
vation, how glad I should be to die!
but all is dark
Then would she
ness, horror, and despair within me.' pray with the utmost ardency, that Christ would reveal himself to her soul, give her some token of his love, and not suffer her to continue under such dreadful apprehensions of God's wrath. This she did for a long while without receiving any answer of peace; but at last the Lord lent an ear to the voice of her groaning, and although she was so ill and weak before, as not to be able to move in her bed without help, she now raised herself suddenly up, in an ecstasy not to be expressed, clasped her arms, and with great vehemence said, O, he is come, he is come; Jesus is come indeed! let me embrace him, let me hold him fast and never let him go. What raptures do I feel! how is my soul filled with ecstasy! I have the fullest assurance of my salvation, and desire to depart and be with Christ.' These extraordinary comforts by degrees abated, (perhaps God seeing they were more than her weak frame could bear), and were succeeded by a sweet and delightful calm, in which she lay waiting with a hope full of immortality for her dissolution, which according to all human appearance was very near; but it pleased God to raise her up for fresh trials, which, I will still hope, are only to try her as gold is tried in the furnace, and that she may be purified. She frequently speaks of the above experience, and says it has left a strong and abiding impression.—I am sorry for your situation, having none to whom you can open your heart concerning the things of God; but he is ever near to hear you, and you may unbosom yourself to him with a certainty of redress in every hour of need. The post waits, so have only time to entreat you to be faithful,-be bold to follow the leading of the Lord. Be steadfast in faith, and all will be well."