TO A YOUNG MINISTER
One wishes you God’s blessings in basket and in soul, in your going out and your coming inÂ—always unto the end.
The road will indeed be very rough and just where one will not expect it there it will be met; but the greatest foe will be just yourself in the depth of the wickedness which will ever be working, do what you may and cry out all you may. Oh! this evil heart! Satan could not hurt you nor me if it were not for the fact that we have his friends in our own heart ever ready to open the door and invite him in. How sadly one has, and still does, suffer from this affliction.
Now, let that be a good and useful key for your speaking;
ever bearing in mind that the people before you are not one whit better than youÂ—they may not know itÂ—very few indeed do know the real depravity of the heartÂ—but if they feel it and deplore it, then like you, they will need strong medicine and not the quack stuff of free will and “Do this and do that” so many jabber about.
Bend all your toils on just two thingsÂ—try to tell them of the hell of sin within them, and the only remedy that can wash hopeless sinners clean. And as sure as you do that always and without flinching you will soon see who’s who and what’s what!
It is a great work and none of us is sufficient for it, and that grows as years increase, and if God will but stoop to use a helpless sinner to help another as helpless as himself, then grace gets the glory always.
We are glad your wife and bairn are well; that is a great mercy for all and may that favour continue to you; and we daresay
as the babe gets older you will see more of yourself in him than ever! They bring sorrow but they bring a pleasure. May he prove to be a real Jonathan!