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progress of my pen was arrested, by circumstances, which have prevented
any further addition being made until this day, when the way now seems to open for resuming the subject, our departure being at hand.
Among the many multiplied mercies and blessings which unceasingly flow from the bounteous and compassionate hand of Him, who
crowneth the year with his goodness, and satisfieth the desire of every living thing,' I feel bound to acknowledge with humble thankfulness and admiration, our long detention on these shores. Notwithstanding there have been many gloomy days, and days of darkness,
as the morning spread upon the mountains,' and many long and dreary winter nights to pass through, when the raging storm has again and again whitened with foam the surface of the agitated deep around us; and not only the strife of elements to witness without, but a conflicting and spiritual strife within, “tossed with tempest and not comforted;' yet how unspeakably great the faithfulness of our good and gracious Lord God; his compassions fail not,' but have been, and still continue to be
new every morning,' as the returning day; for in moments of greatest conflict and trial there has been something permitted, like the bow in the cloud,' for the poor mind to look at, to animate, and cheer, and strengthen with hardness to endure, and stand firm.
“But although moon after moon hath waned, and faith and patience have been beset as on the right hand and on the left, and the afflictions of the Gospel have at times been permitted to abound, yet to the glory, and honour, and praise of Him, (whose name ever excellent and adorable, shall be great among the nations, from the rising of the sun to the going down of the same,) the consolations of the Gospel have also abounded, in a degree of the fulness of that heavenly blessing which makes truly rich, and whereunto no sorrow is added: when faith hath been mercifully strengthened, and patience renewed under the tribulations of the day. And notwithstanding an untrodden path has been my portion, yet after all, though weakness and fear are my constant companions by the way, safety and peace have been hitherto found. I would therefore encourage all my beloved friends to keep near to their Heavenly Teacher and Leader, who, if faithfully followed, will not only conduct their steppings to a hair's breadth, but will preserve and keep the mind in calmness and serenity, securely, as in a pavilion, “from the strife of tongues.'
“In addition to the marvellous loving kindness I have thus endeavoured to pourtray, many other mercies and blessings have been showered upon our heads, during the apparently long and unaccountable detention of our little bark upon her own coasts, these I have often had to number with grateful sensations, when the light has shone brightly, and manifested clearly to my finite understanding how much we should have missed, if our progress had not thus been arrested. So that with myself, instead of this delay having been productive of regret, or the cause of letting in fear or doubt, to stagger or depress my tribulated mind, I do, my dear friends, hail it with gratitude and thankfulness, as the gracious and compassionate dealing of my Lord and Master, not only as a time of Diviné favour and condescension, but as an earnest of his love and merey for our encouragement, instruction, and future benefit, graciously vouchsafed—a time of preparation for the important work before us, and of weaning, from every dependence and guidance which are not of Him, to strengthen our confidence, and put our whole trust in his power, to help and deliver out of every distress, who not only commands the storm, but at whose rebuke the mountain billows cease to undulate, and lo, ' there is a great calm.
“Within the last two or three days the prospect of liberation has begun to dawn with clearness, but I trust, that if even a further detention should be meted out to us, either here or in some other port, the same resignation to the Divine will, will be vouchsafed : for although I have for more than two years past, felt anxious to move forward in a work, which has yet to begin when the decay of nature is visible, and the shadows of the evening proclaim, as they lengthen around me, the steady decline of life's setting sun, yet I have been frequently comforted by a renewed evidence that we have not yet been here one day too long.
· It will, I feel assured, afford my dear friends much satisfation to know that the crew of the vessel, notwithstanding the frequent though unavoidable communication with the neighbouring shore for so great a length of time, have given no cause for uneasiness by improper conduct, and have at all times behaved (with searcely an exception) in an orderly and agreeable manner, and the Captain now provided for us seems to be judiciously selected, and the man who, beyond all expectation, is admirably adapted to aid and assist by example and experience in the accomplishment of the important object before us; so that I hope what has past, and what may yet be in store for us to come, will be found and acknowledged to be among the all things that work together for good. I must not omit adding, that the solemn covering frequently witnessed mercifully to prevail and preside over us, when sitting together before the Lord, is worthy, with humble gratitude to be commemorated, as the strongest and most indubitable evidence for our encouragement, that at seasons · He is with us of a truth.'
“ As it is now a period of the year when ships seldom sail to those parts to which we are destined, whether we proceed by the Cape of Good Hope (which is most probable) or by Cape Horn, in either case a wintry season awaits us; but my trust is in the Lord, not doubting but that we shall have the privilege of the prayers of the faithful for our preservation, and though conscious of our own weakness and utter unworthiness, and often under a feeling of being less than the least of all my dear brethren and sisters that are alive in the unchangeable Truth, yet I think I can say that these things trouble me not, nor move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry which I have received of the Lord Jesus to testify the gospel of that grace, which bringeth salvation,
and hath appeared unto all men,' teaching all, that so from the uttermost parts of the earth songs of praise may be heard, and the grateful tribute of thanks be to God for his unspeakable gift, may resound to His glory; for it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy; “it is not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord of Hosts.' And
my heart is bearing towards the Isles afar off,' the same constraining love, which wrought the willingness to leave all for my gracious Lord's sake and His Gospel's, extends its binding influence to all my dear brethren and sisters, of every age and of every class, wherever situated, and however circumstanced; desiring in tender and affectionate solicitude, that they may be found stedfastly following the footsteps of those honourable and worthy predecessors in the same religious profession with ourselves, who have long since rested from their labours, and whose memorial is on high,—who bore the burden and heat of a day of deep suffering, in the faithful discharge of their duty for the support of those principles, which have been transmitted in their original purity and brightness to us. If any should feel sensible of having fallen short in this important work, let me in tenderest love encourage such to be willing to humble themselves under the mighty hand of God, even to the state of little children, and turn inward to the pure, unflattering witness which cannot deceive nor be deceived ; to be willing to enter into a diligent and heartfelt search, and patiently and impartially examine how far those indispensable conditions are submitted to on their part, without which none can be followers of the meek and lowly Jesus. Where is that self-denial and the daily cross He first enjoined? Are we denying ourselves those gratifications of time and sense which cherish and keep alive in us the evil propensities of fallen nature, which separate man from his Maker, and like 6 the little foxes spoil the tender vines,' designed in richest mercy to bud, blossom, and bring forth fruit, lastingly to remain to the praise and glory of the great Husbandman? but without faithfulness, there will be no fruitfulness. It is not giving up or forsaking this or that little thing (which to part with is little or no sacrifice or privation) that will suffice; a full surrender of the whole will in all things, must be made to Him, whose sovereign right it is to rule and reign in our hearts ;—and let none plead for disobedience in these little things on the ground of their being such, for if such they really are, they are the more easily dispensed with, and not worth retaining; and a tenacity in wishing to preserve them, assuredly indicates that they have more place in our affections than perhaps we are aware of:
-He that loveth father or mother more than me, is not worthy of me; and he that loveth son or daughter more than me, is not worthy of me; and he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.'
“And now, my dear brethren and sisters, “ May the God of peace, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, keep all your hearts and minds, make you perfect in every good work to do his
will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus hrist, to whom be glory for ever and ever.
“In the love of the everlasting Gospel, accept this expression of Farewell, from your affectionate friend and brother,
DANIEL WHEELER.” “15th of 3d mo. at Sea, and clear of the
Needle Rocks, all well.”
Some particulars of the passage of our dear friends to Rio de Janeiro will
appear in the following extracts from D. W's letters. In a letter, dated 2nd of 4th month, 1834, he writes: “ After despatching our letters by the pilot on the 15th ult., we made sail into the offing at half-past four P. M. and stretching from under the shelter of the Isle of Wight, soon partook of a strong and favourable breeze; great progress was made during the night ; next morning brought an increase of wind along with it. From the state of the weather and the harassed situation of the crew, and other circumstances, although it was the first day of the week, we were compelled to give up the idea of assembling together in the cabin, and to content ourselves with reading the Holy Scriptures twice in the course of the day to the Captain and Mate. At five P. M. we were abreast of the Lizard light-house on the Cornish coast, from whence our final departure was taken: as the night approached, the land was lost sight of, and the wind being strong and fair, we launched rapidly away from the mouth of the British Channel. On second-day morning, the 17th, the wind veered more to the southward, and considerably increasing, soon raised a heavysea, which occasioned one side of the vessel to be frequently buriedunder water.
“ From the 17th to the 20th there was little variation in the weather. The latter being fifth-day, my dear Charles and myself sat down together to wait upon the Lord, (our usual meeting-day when at home, but although we were scarcely able to retain our seats from the motion of the ship, yet I humbly trust we were favoured, poor outcasts as we seemed to be, to look towards his temple, to fear Him, and think upon his name.
Notwithstanding the weather became more and more tempestuous, yet the fair wind never once forsook us, but on the 22nd the sea ran so high, that it was dangerous for any one to be upon
the deck, and Captain Keen began to fear that we should be under the necessity of turning the head of the vessel towards the sea and wind; accordingly the storm canvass was prepared in readiness to use when it should become no longer safe to run before a sea, which now followed in mountainous succession, rising to an alarming height, and threatening at times to overwhelm us altogether. In the night of the twenty-second there was some abatement of the wind and the sea, though still very heavy, but running true in more unbroken swells we yet ventured to run before it. 23rd. From the boisterous state of the weather, although first-day had again revolved, we were prevented from collecting the crew for devotional purposes, and could only read some portions of Scriptu reas before. By this time our little vessel had been pretty roughly handled
and tried, and had given full proof of her capability. The Captain acknowledged that she had done wonders, and had greatly surpassed the idea he had formed of her, and the crew expressed their satisfaction to a man; and I saw myself no cause to alter the favourable opinion that I had constantly entertained from the first sight of her. We are all aware of the advantage which would have resulted had she been large enough to have carried a greater supply of fresh water and coals, without being so deeply buried in the water, which continually exposes us to the drench of the sea, even in what may be termed favourable weather, but in rough we are frequently debarred from all exercise upon the deck in fresh air, to avoid the risk of being injured from the wash of the sea.
I feel, however, grateful and thankful in my present allotment, and for the accommodation thus rendered by my dear friends, humbly trusting that we shall be sustained through all to declare the mighty acts of the Lord, and to show forth his praise in the presence of a people who have not heard his fame, nor seen his glory, neither conceived the majesty of his kingdom within, of righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost,' which stands mercifully revealed in the hearts of those, who are concerned above all things to seek first this heavenly kingdom, and to believe therein, to the saving of the soul.'
On the twenty-fourth there was an evident change in the temperature of the atmosphere; the sun shone brightly, and its warmth gladdened our hearts, as we sat on a small space near the stern of the vessel, which had been preserved pretty free from the spray of the sea ; the wind, although still favourable, had lessened; the white-topped breakers had considerably diminished, and our deck was this day more free from water rushing from side to side, than had been the case for more than a week past; some floating turtle were seen near the ship, and things altogether around us began to wear a brightening aspect; but what tended most to enliven and make all things smile was the marvellous condescension of my dear Lord and Master, who, in the greatness of his love, was graciously pleased to open my spiritual understanding, and permit me to behold, to a certain extent, the nature of the service upon which I should have to enter in some places, where my
be cast. Greatly do I desire for myself, and all my dear friends, that we may be brought more and more into such a state as to be fit and able to bear further portions of the many things which our great and heavenly Teacher, in his wondrous and never-erring counsel, has to say to such as fear, and love, and follow Him in the great work of regeneration: “I have many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now; and if we were but sufficiently willing to hearken to his voice, he would still, I am persuaded, not only have many things to say unto us as individuals, but unto the church also, by that Holy Spirit which searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.' Then may all our hearts be so cleansed and purified through the efficacy of his grace, as to be prepared to receive the promised and ever abiding Comforter, who will take of the things of Christ, and show them unto us, yea, 'He will show us things to come.'”