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ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me: for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls." He was made sensible that this world is not the place of rest for man, but that it is intended for a probationary passage to, or preparation for, a state of unin. terrupted happiness hereafter; and that this preparation can only be effected by the taking up of the cross to all the corrupt desires and passions of fallen nature.
During these exercises, he believed it to be required of him to decline the practice of singing, in which he had taken great pleasure, and had been a noted singer in that called the parish church of his native place; but he continued some time longer to attend that place of worship. Being now convinced that, as God is a spirit, and that they who worship Him, must worship Him in spirit and in truth, the forms and ceremonies practised there did not furnish that edification and comfort which his soul longed for; yet his regard for, and sense of duty to his tenderly affectionate mother, made the thoughts of
separating from her, in the solemn and important duty of public worship, very trying to him; though at times, when present with her, he was so much distressed, and felt such strong convictions that he was not in his
proper place, that, to use his own words, his knees have been ready to smite together.
In reference to this season of his early* and Divine visitation, in a conversation with a religious person, not a member of the Society of Friends, a few years before his decease, he feelingly remarked, that he had never since, for a moment, had to doubt the certainty or the source of those convictions which were thus, at a very early age, so remarkably and so indelibly stamped on his mind; that shortly afterwards, he attended a meeting of the people called Quakers, at Morley, a village about two miles distant from his native place, where he found, publicly professed and advocated, as the principles of a religious community, doctrines
* The time of this remarkable visitation is not clearly known, hut from several circumstances, which he has occasionally mentioned, it is probable that it was about his fourteenth or fifteenth year.
consonant with the convictions which had operated so powerfully on his mind, adding, that if he were only preserved in the way of his duty to the end, which then could be at no great distance, he should have cause to rejoice, and be thankful through eternity, that his lot had been cast amongst them.
It appears, by the records of Morley Monthly Meeting, that in the year 1762, in the twentieth year of his age, he applied for, and was received into membership by that Meeting. For some years after his admission into the Society of Friends, he had to pass through many and deep baptisms, in being made willing to bear the cross patiently, and to become an humble follower of a crucified Redeemer; to renounce the world, with all its friendships and interests, the flesh and the devil, and daily to make war in righteousness against the enemies of his soul's salvation—the pride and selfishness of his own heart.
He was often made sensible of the depravity of man, how prone he is to feed upon vanity and pride, and that even in his best pursuits; and to seek his treasure and
comforts from earthly things, instead of being willing to become as a stranger and a pilgrim on the earth; but, by continuing in faithful obedience to the manifestations of that Divine light, by which he had been early visited, he was often renewedly strengthened to offer up himself an unreserved sacrifice to the Divine disposal, and to petition the Father of all his mercies that he would sanctify the offering to Himself. In the seasons of his deepest temptations, he was made to believe that he was not wholly forsaken of his God; that He, who had condescended to visit him when he was as one lost and blind, would not leave him, (if he continued faithful, when he had become enamoured of His ways. After many proving seasons, he was brought to know an anchoring upon the everlasting Rock, Christ Jesus; and it became more and more his delight to do the law of the Lord his God, and to live continually as in His holy presence. Thus he came to know the accuser to be cast down, and to experience the glorious liberty of the sons of God.
In 1763, he removed to London, as ap
pears by a short letter, dated the 20th of the 9th Month in that year, addressed to an intimate friend.
From the circumstances in which his mother was left by the death of his father, it may reasonably be concluded that his education was comparatively limited; but, however this might be, his removal to London greatly facilitated his access to books and the means of information; and possessing a comprehensive understanding, he very much improved himself, during his residence there, in the knowledge of various branches of useful learning. The following account of his conduct when in London, being well authenticated, may be worthy of record. A relation, who accompanied him from the country, and with whom he had joint lodgings, and his oldest brother, an officer in the army, a man of talents and general knowledge, formed, for some time, nearly the extent of his acquaintance. With these companions, who were his superiors in information and learning, and for whom he felt the attachment arising from relationship, he at times delighted to converse; but, through