LOOKING UNTO JESUS
Dear Christian friend,
A friend of yours has written to tell me that you have a great desire to see me, the desire having arisen from a blessing the Lord was pleased to give you in hearing me preach some years ago, the same sermon having again refreshed your mind.
I need not tell you that all power in this matter is of the Lord. That sermon could have done you no good unless the Holy Spirit had accompanied it with His blessed communications of grace to your soul. The remembrance of that sermon would not have refreshed unless the same blessed Spirit had revived it upon your mind. Lord, what is man? We ministers have the treasure in earthen vessels: the excellency of the power must always be of God.
You wish to see me. It is not wrong that you should entertain a special regard to those whom the Lord has made a blessing to your soul. But still the language of one of old is good and true, “What will ye see in the Shulamite? as it were the company of two armies.” I might visit you, and talk and pray with you, and all prove disappointment; I might be no use, no profit, no blessing to you. You might hear me preach again from the same text, and I might only be as a dry breast to your poor hungering soul. It might be otherwise, for God might accompany my words, and thus again bless you. All depends at all times upon the Lord. I want you, then, to give Him all the glory due unto His name. His is the sweet kingdom of grace, mercy and love; His is the power, and His alone to set it up in your heart; and to Him therefore must belong all the glory. He can say to the troubled mind, “Peace be still.” He can remove all fears of death, and can make us say with the poet:
“I long to lay me down and die,
And find eternal rest.”
Well, dear friend and child of God, I cannot comply with your desire to come and see you, but I can tell you of One to
whom time and distance is nothing. Christ can visit you; He can come leaping upon the mountains and skipping upon the hills; He can shew you the sweet beams of His grace and eternal love; can sprinkle your conscience with His blood and adorn you with His robe of righteousness, and make the bed of languishing or dying pillow, if so it is, sweet and soft to you. O, how sweet is Jesus to the heart that knows Him!
“How sweet the name of Jesus sounds
In a believer’s ear,
It soothes his sorrows, heals his wounds,
And drives away his fear.
Dear name! the Rock on which I build.”
Yes, that is it; the name of Jesus, His name of mercy, grace and love; the name of SaviourÂ—perfectÂ—completeÂ—eternal SaviourÂ—a name which is above every name of sin, and law, and wrath, and death, and hell, which is against us.
O, may that Name cheer you; may that Name support you; in Him may you find all your need, and to Him may you cry still, “Lord, help me.” Had we a thousand tongues, a thousand harps, we never could tell out a thousandth part of the sweetness, blessedness, and loveliness which there is in Jesus.
To Him I commend you; He is near to help; He is close to the poor and needy, the longing, praying heart. The ladder which reaches to heaven is also close to the poor child of God on earth, and never is seen to be closer than in the time of necessity.
At Luz, when separated from his friends and father’s house, when left alone, when none could help but God, Jacob had heaven opened to him and Christ, the way to God, most sweetly revealed. This changed Luz into Bethel. The place of separation, sorrow and distress, into the very house of God and the gate of heaven.
I must add no more. May these few lines, as directing your mind far away from man to the Friend of sinners, the dear and dying, risen Jesus, prove to be of some use to you, and to the Lord shall be the glory.
Yours in hope of eternal life,
G. HAZLERIGG April 10th, 1879.
The person to whom this letter was written (Mrs. Dadswell), and to whom the Lord made it of real blessing, entered into rest eight days after it was received.