FIRST EDITION OF THE FOURTH PART
Twelve years have elapsed since the period at which the third part of the Narrative of the Lord's dealings with me closes. It has not been for want of matter, that this fourth part has not appeared sooner; but the increased and ever increasing variety of other occupations has kept me hitherto from arranging the materials for the press. Of late, however, I have judged, for the following reasons, that I ought particularly to give myself to this service.
1, It has pleased the Lord so abundantly to bless the former parts of my Narrative to the comfort, encouragement, strengthening, and instruction of those who are young and weak in the faith, and to those unacquainted with the simplicity of the truth, that I consider myself to be the servant of such; and I feel that responsibility is laid upon me, to do what further I can, in this way, to serve them. And this, I confess, I do joyfully; for my spirit has oft times been not a little refreshed during the eighteen years which have elapsed, since I published the first part of my Narrative, by the many hundreds of letters I have received, giving an account of the blessing, which the writers of them have derived from the perusal of it; and I have thus been again and again encouraged to go on with the work.
2, I think it important, that the reader of the first three parts of my Narrative should have a right impression of the work in which I am engaged. He may not be acquainted with the Reports of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad, which have been published since 1844, and therefore he may know no more of the work in which I am especially engaged, than the first three parts of my Narrative give him. In that case he would not know how the work has been growing since that period; he would not be aware, that it is now three or four times as large as it was in 1844, and is still more and more increasing. He would not know in that case, that the principles of Holy Scripture on which the work of God in my hands was carried on, when comparatively small, and which then were found to be sufficient, even in these last days, are the same on which it is carried on now, though the work is now so large. This point has especially weighed with me, in desiring the publication of the continuation of the account of the Lord's dealings with me in the form of the first three parts, in order that the Living God may be glorified through this account. I judged, moreover, that, whilst the first three parts may especially furnish, to the believer in the Lord Jesus for his private life subjects for comforting and encouraging reflections; this part, besides doing the same still further, may especially be of help to the servant of Christ labouring for God on a large scale, or to the man of God who seeks to carry on business on a large scale, on Scriptural principles.
3, Though the Reports of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad have been issued generally every year or every two years; yet, as they are not bound together, they may be lost in part, and thus the chain be interrupted. Moreover, they contain, sometimes, matters which may be of moment for the time being, but not so important afterwards. The Narrative leaves out such points, and introduces on the other hand things which were scarcely suitable for the Reports. My desire, therefore, has been to give in this fourth part the substance of the Reports, which have been published since July 1844, and to bring thus together in one volume what is contained in these nine different Reports.
4, The Reports give scarcely anything of the dealings of God with me personally, irrespective of the work in which I am engaged; but I have not only to speak well of the name of the Lord with regard to His service, but also with reference to His dealings with me personally and with my family; and I desire to serve the saints in relating to them instance upon instance of His kindness to me, hoping that thus many others may be encouraged more and more fully, unreservedly and habitually to trust in God; yea, to do so in the darkest seasons.
The plan on which I have thought it best to bring the materials before the reader is, to relate in distinct periodical chapters: a, How I have been provided, simply in answer to prayer, with means for the support of the various schools of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution, for the circulation of the Holy Scriptures and Gospel Tracts and for the aiding of Missionary work. b, How I have obtained means for the support of the hundreds of Orphans under my care. c, How the Lord has led me to, and provided me with means for, the building of a large Orphan-House, and how I am now occupied in seeking to build a second still larger. d, To state, periodically, a variety of miscellaneous points in connexion with the operations of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution, in a separate chapter. e, To give separately and periodically a chapter, for relating matters connected with my own personal affairs or the work of the Lord in my hands, not immediately connected with the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad. As, however, the whole book is intended for the spiritual profit of the believing reader, and to show to those who know not God, by His blessing, the reality of the things of God, there will be found interspersed, throughout the book, such practical remarks, as the subjects may seem to call for.
21, Paul Street, Kingsdown,
Bristol, June 18, 1856.
Supplies for the School—Bible—Missionary and Tract-Fund, sent in answer to prayer, from July 14, 1844, to May 26, 1846.
Aug. 10, 1844. In the greatest need, when not one penny was in hand, I received 5l. from a brother at Hackney. I took half of this sum for these objects, and half for the Orphans.
Sept. 7. Our poverty has been great ever since the accounts were closed on July 14th. Our Tract and Bible stock is very small, and we have much reduced it on account of sending supplies to Demerara. The rents for the School-Rooms are becoming due, and other expenses are to be met. Under these circumstances I received today with Philip iv. 6, the sum of 50l. The donor writes that he thinks he is directed by the Lord to send the money. How truly is it so! I took of this sum 20l. for the Orphans, and 30l. for these objects.
Oct. 1. This evening I received a bank order for 70l., to be used as the Lord might direct me. This money came in most seasonably, as I am thus able to pay to the six teachers who labour in the six Day-schools, their salaries. I took 30l. of the 70l. for these objects, and 40l. for the Orphans.
Dec. 14. The means for these objects have been very small for some time past. Under these circumstances I received this afternoon from a sister in the Lord, who is near the close of her earthly pilgrimage, a small box, containing five brooches, two rings set with twelve small brilliants, five other rings, one mourning ring, a pair of gilt bracelets, a gold pin, a small silver vinaigrette, some tracts, and a sovereign. The donor stated on a paper, contained in the box, that the produce might be used for the Orphans or otherwise, as I might require. As these funds are in particular need, I took the contents of this little box for them, and the trinkets were soon disposed of.—The sister fell asleep very shortly after. Will she need such ornaments before her Lord? Will she regret having given them for His work? Oh! no.
Dec. 21. Today I have received the following trinkets, the produce of which I was at liberty to use for the Orphans, or my own personal necessities, or the printing of my Narrative, or for the School—, Bible—, Missionary and Tract Fund. I have put the produce to the funds for these objects. A ring set with twelve small brilliants, a ring set with one brilliant, another ring set with one brilliant, a ring set with five brilliants, a paste ring, a large brooch, two large rings, two wedding rings, two other small rings, a ring set with small pearls, three other rings, two gold pins, four gold shirt studs, and a gilt pin.
Dec. 24. I have received still further the following trinkets, the produce of which was likewise taken for these objects, it being left to me to use them as most needed. A small gold chain, a ring set with seven brilliants, five gold seals, an eyeglass silver mounted, a ring set with a head, a gold pin, a gold buckle, a silver pencil case, a gold brooch, a brooch set with small pearls, a set of gold shirt studs, a small gold brooch, nine gold rings, a gold heart, a gilt chain, and a gilt watch-chain.
Jan. 13, 1845. When there was nothing in hand towards our many necessities for these objects, I received today the following valuable donation:—Three forty-franc pieces, two twenty-franc pieces, six five-franc pieces, seven two-franc pieces, eleven one-franc pieces, fourteen half-franc pieces, twenty-one quarter of a franc pieces, and fifty-two other small Italian and French silver coins.
Feb. 3. Today, when I had again nothing at all in hand, I received from W. P. 5l.
Apr. 8. When, once more, I had nothing in hand, I received today from Yorkshire 10l., which, being left at my disposal, I used for these objects.
Apr. 24. Today were sent to me a small old gold watch, a half sovereign, a half guinea piece, two twenty-franc pieces, six small Turkish gold coins, a quarter of a franc, a threepenny piece, a silver toothpick, and a brass pencil-case. The produce of these articles likewise was put to these funds.
May 5. From Scarborough was sent to day 5l. for these funds, at a time when I had again nothing left.
May 6. About six weeks ago intimation was kindly given by a brother that he expected a certain considerable sum of money, and that, if he obtained it, a certain portion of it should be given to the Lord, so that 100l. of it should be used for the work in my hands, and the other part for Brother Craik's and my own personal expenses. However, day after day passed away, and the money did not come. I did not trust in this money, yet, as during all this time, with scarcely any exception, we were more or less needy, I thought again and again about this brother's promise; though I did not, by the grace of God, trust in the brother who had made it, but in the Lord. Thus week after week passed away, and the money did not come. Now this morning it came to my mind, that such promises ought to be valued, in a certain sense, as nothing, i.e. that the mind ought never for a moment to be directed to them, but to the living God, and to the living God only. I saw that such promises ought not to be of the value of one farthing, so far as it regards thinking about them for help. I therefore asked the Lord, when, as usual, I was praying with my beloved wife about the work in my hands, that He would be pleased to take this whole matter, about that promise, completely out of my mind, and to help me, not to value it in the least, yea, to treat it as if not worth one farthing, but to keep my eye directed only to Himself. I was enabled to do so. We had not yet finished praying when I received the following letter:
"Beloved Brother, May 5, 1845.
"Are your bankers still Messrs. Stuckey and Co. of Bristol, and are their hankers still Messrs. Robarts and Co. of London? Please to instruct me on this; and if the case should be so, please to regard this as a letter of advice that 70l. are paid to Messrs. Robarts and Co., for Messrs. Stuckey and Co., for you. This sum apply as the Lord may give you wisdom. I shall not send to Robarts and Co. until I hear from you.
"Ever affectionately yours,
"* * * *"
Thus the Lord rewarded at once this determination to endeavour not to look in the least to that promise from a brother, but only to Himself. But this was not all. About two o'clock this afternoon I received from the brother, who had, more than forty days ago, made that promise, 166l. 18s., as he this day received the money, on the strength of which he had made that promise. Of this sum 100l. are to be used for the work in my hands, and the remainder for brother Craik's and my own personal expenses.—I took of these two sums, i.e. of the 70l. and the 100l., half for the Orphans and half for these objects. When this money came in, there was only very little in hand. The last tracts had been given away, two or three days ago, but I had no money to order more: thus I was able to send off an order for 11,700. Bibles also needed to be ordered, but I had no money: I am now able to order some. It had been much on my heart to send a little help to some Missionary brethren, as a token of affectionate interest, and this I am now able to do. The Lord be praised for His goodness in helping thus so seasonably!
From May 6, 1845, to May 26, 1846, we experienced no difficulty at all as to means, the Lord having always seasonably sent in the supplies, so that, without any one exception, I was always able not only to meet all the demands connected with the Day-Schools, the Sunday-School, and the Adult-Schools, but I was also able to do more, so far as it regards means, in aiding the circulation of Tracts, and helping Missionary efforts, than at any previous period of the same length. Of the donations which came in from May 6, 1845, to May 26, 1846, I only mention the following:—On June 23, with Philip. iv. 6, for circulation of Tracts and Bibles in foreign lands, or, as needed, 60l. Oct. 12, 150l. On Feb. 26, 1846, I received 200l., of which 100l. was to be used for Missionary work in foreign lands, and 100l. for brethren who labour in England, in the word and doctrine, without any stated salary. In connexion with this donation three points are particularly to be noticed:—I. The day before I received this sum, I had given 5l. to a brother, who was travelling through Bristol, and who was on the point of going out as a missionary, without being connected with any society. When I gave him this 5l. I had but very little in hand, but I said to myself, the Lord can easily give more. And thus it was. 2. Before I received this donation, I had been especially led to ask the Lord, that He would be pleased to condescend to use me more largely in helping missionary brethren. For this I had a still greater desire when I found that the money, which I had sent to British Guiana, at the end of November, 1845, amounted only to a few pounds for each brother who labours there, on account of there being so many. I had, on this account particularly, a desire to be able shortly to send another sum to British Guiana, which was thus granted to me. 3. I had also, from time to time, sought, to help brethren, who labour in dependence on the Lord for temporal supplies in various parts of England, and my desire especially had been, that, even in this particular, the Funds of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad might be more extensively useful. And thus, in this particular also, this donation cheered my heart, enabling me to assist, in some measure, several faithful labourers. Concerning this latter point I would especially notice, that whenever God has put it into my heart "to devise liberal things," He has not only blessed me in my own soul in doing so, but has also, more or less given me the means to carry out such a purpose. I mention further here, in connexion with this point, that henceforth, as God shall be pleased to supply me with means, I purpose particularly, in connexion with this work, to endeavour to assist brethren of good report, who labour in the word and doctrine, in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, but who have no regular salary. If, therefore, any donations should be given henceforth for that particular object, they shall be, by God's help, applied to that; or, if no donations should be given for that particular object, yet, as God shall be pleased to intrust me with means, I purpose by His help, to have my eye particularly on brethren who preach the Gospel without charge, and who, perhaps, besides, for conscience' sake, have relinquished former stipends or regular emoluments which they had in connexion with doing so. Have we not particularly to strive to be fellow-labourers with those who, seeking not their own things, but the things of Jesus Christ, preach the Word without being chargeable to any one? Many whom I know and love in the truth, are mindful of this; but others may not, perhaps, have sufficiently weighed the matter.
On March 10, 1846, I asked the Lord for still further supplies for missionary purposes, and while I was in prayer a letter came from C. W. with 20l. for missionary purposes. Thus also, about the same time, came in, from the neighbourhood of Ludlow, 2l., and from Keswick 5l. for Missions, besides other smaller donations for the same purpose.
It must not be supposed that these are all the donations which I received for the carrying on these objects from July 14, 1844, to May 26, 1846; but those which are referred to came in under remarkable circumstances, or, more manifestly, as answers to prayer.
I now proceed to give an account of the Lord's goodness in supplying me with means for the Orphans, from July 14, 1844, up to May 26, 1846; though here again only the most remarkable instances, on account of the great number of cases, can be given.
Supplies for the Orphan Fund, sent in answer to Prayer, from July 14, 1844, to May 26, 1846.
July 25, 1844. The need of today for the Orphans is 2l. 5s. As there came in yesterday 2l. as the profit of the sale of ladies' bags, which are made by a sister in the Lord for the benefit of the Orphans; also two donations of 5s. each, through her; 5s. from a poor sister in the Lord; and 1l. from Hackney, in all 3l. 15s.; we have 1l. 10s. left.— In the course of today the Lord was pleased to send in the following donations:—by the boxes in my house 1l. 10s., in nine small donations 16s. 11d., and the contents of an orphan-box, 3s. 01/2 d. This evening also two Christian servants gave me the following trinkets:—a ring, a gold pin, two brooches, and a silver toothpick. A precious gift, because of its seasonableness, and because it gave me joy in seeing these ornaments given up for the Lord's sake.
Observe, dear reader, only eleven day's after the accounts were closed, we were again in fresh poverty, and had to go on day by day waiting upon the Lord for the necessities of about 140 persons.
July 26. Only 6d. has come in today.
July 27, Saturday. July 1l. 14s. was in hand to begin the day with. With two of my fellow—labourers I besought the Lord between nine and ten o'clock this morning for help, when, at eleven o'clock came in, by sale of articles, given for the purpose, 7s. 3d., by sale of Reports 1s. by sale of ladies' bags 1s. 6d., and by two donations 4s. 6d. There were sent also anonymously, two coats, a pair of trousers, and three waistcoats (worn). When this parcel and money came, I was called on for money from the Orphan-Houses. In the course of the day came in still further, by sale of articles, 10s. Thus we have been helped through this day. Late in the evening was given 2s. 6d. besides.
July 28. This morning, when there was now again only 2s. 6d. in hand, I received from Tavistock 6l.; and this evening from Nailsworth, 2s. 6d.
July 29. Yesterday was anonymously put into the Chapel boxes 2l.; also by A. A. 1l. Thus we are provided for today and tomorrow. There came in still further today 1l., from an orphan-box at Barnstaple 1l., and by the profit of work, done by a sister, 5s. There was likewise given a little box, containing the following articles: a lady's bag, a pair of gloves, a silver fruit knife, a gold seal, a needle book with two farthings, a purse containing two-halfpence, 41/2 francs, and a copper coin; a little tortoiseshell box containing two old sixpences, two fourpenny pieces, a shilling, a sixpence, and a pebble; a silver vinaigrette, a seal, two patterns for worsted work, a microscope, and 6 embossed cards. This evening I received two silver pencil cases.
July 30. By the boxes in the Orphan-Houses came in today 2l. 4s. 6d., and by sale of Reports 5s.
July 3l. Immediately after having risen from my knees today, to ask the Lord for further supplies, I received 19s. by sale of stockings, knitted by the Orphan Boys. This evening was given to mc by A. A. 5l., and through ditto 2s.
August 1. This morning I was called on for 5l. for the Infant Orphans, so that again only a few shillings remained, not enough for, the other expenses of today, when I received, in the bag sent for the money from the Orphan Houses, the following donations, 1l., and 1s. 6d., 1s. 1d., 1s. 1d., and 2s. 2d. Likewise came in 1s., and I found 2s. 6d. in an orphan-box in my house. Thus I had enough for today.
Aug. 2. The day began with 2 3/4 d. in hand. A little before ten o'clock in the morning the letter-bag was brought from the Orphan-Houses for money, in which I found a note stating that the need of today was 1l. 17s., but I had only 2 3/4 d. to send. I wrote so to brother R. B. master of the Orphan Boys, intending to request him (to send up again in the afternoon, for what the Lord might have sent in the mean time. When I was going to put the 2 3/4 d into the purse in the bag, I found half-a-crown in the bag, slipped into it before it was opened. This half-crown is a precious earnest that the Lord will help this day also. It was found by me just after I had risen from my knees, having been with some of the labourers in the work in prayer for means. Before I bad yet finished the note to brother B. B., a sovereign was given to me, so that I had 1l. 2s. 8 3/4 d. to send off. About two o'clock this afternoon I received by sale of articles 10s. 6d., by sale of stockings 6s. 8d., and by the sale of ladies' bags 9s. 4d. Thus I could send off the 14s. 6d. which was still needed for today, and had 12s. left.
Aug. 3, Saturday. With the 12s. we began the day. My soul said: "I will now look out for the way in which the Lord will deliver us this day again; for He will surely deliver. Many Saturdays, when we were in need, He helped us, and so He will do this day also."—Between nine and ten o'clock this morning I gave myself to prayer for means, with three of my fellow-labourers, in my house. Whilst we were in prayer, there was a knock at my room door, and I was informed that a gentleman had come to see me. When we had finished prayer, it was found to be a brother from Tetbury, who hail brought from Barnstaple 1l. 2s. 6d. for the Orphans. Thus we have 1l. 14s. 6d., with which I must return the letter-bag to the Orphan-Houses, looking to the Lord for more. Evening. In the afternoon one of the labourers received 6s. for himself, which he gave for the Orphans. This evening I went to the usual prayer meeting, (which is held on Saturday evening at the Orphan-Houses, to ask the Lord's blessing upon the work generally), when I found that 2s. had been put into the boxes in the Orphan Houses in the course of the afternoon; also 7s. had come in by the knitting of the Orphan-Girls, and 3s. 6d. more one of the labourers was able to give. Thus we hail 2l. 13s., which was enough for today. How very kind of the Lord thus to listen to the prayers of His children, and to help us day by day!—We had not yet separated, after our prayer meeting, when a box was brought from Scarborough, containing 5s. and a number of articles. When I came home I found that there had come in still further, by sale of articles given for the purpose, 15s. 10d., and by sale of stockings knitted by the Orphans, 7s. 8d. Thus the Lord has greatly helped us today.
Aug. 5, Monday. There came in from A. A. 1s., and anonymously was yesterday put into the Chapel-boxes 2s. 6d., ditto 2s. 6d.
Aug. 6. Without one single penny in my hands the day began. The post brought nothing, nor had I yet received anything, when ten minutes after ten this morning the letter bag was brought from the Orphan-Houses, for the supplies of today.—Now see the Lord's deliverance! In the bag I found a note from one of the labourers in the Orphan—Houses, enclosing two sovereigns, which she sent for the Orphans, stating that it was part of a present which she had just received unexpectedly, for herself. —Thus we are supplied for today. In the afternoon, when I had now again nothing at all in hand, as I had paid out this 2l., there was brought to me from Oxford 1l. 2s. A sister also gave 2s. 6d.
Aug. 7. There came in, when there was not one penny in my hands, 4s. and 3s. 6d. I only found 3s. in the boxes in my house, 10s. was given as the profit of the sale of ladies' bags, and 2s. 6d. as the produce of "A forfeit-box at a young ladies' school." Likewise were given to me, two gold rings, two gold watch-keys, a pair of earrings, a gold brooch, two waist-buckles, a pair of bracelets, a watch hook, and a broken brooch. Thus we have a little towards the need of tomorrow.
Aug. 8. The money which came in yesterday was not enough for the need of today. The boxes in the Orphan-Houses were therefore opened, as I had understood that some money had been put into them during the last days, and they contained 1l. 4s. Thus we have been supplied this day also.
Aug. 9. It is just now striking eleven o'clock, and I have not yet one single penny towards the need of this day. The bag is brought from the Orphan-Houses for money, but I have nothing to send, and am therefore obliged to return the bag without anything. But my soul is waiting for help. The Lord has so repeatedly helped as again during the last weeks, and so He will surely do this day also. Evening. At half-past twelve this morning I received two notes from two sisters who labour in the Orphan-Houses, the one from the sister who, on the 6th, had sent the 2l., being part of a present which she had received, and who now sent 1l. more. She writes: "The enclosed I thought of applying to another purpose; but His thoughts are not as ours. Please to use it as you think fit." The other sister, likewise one of the labourers, sent 10s. This 1l. 10s. met our need for today.
Aug. 10, Saturday. Only 3d., which had come in yesterday afternoon, by sale of a Report, was in my hands, when the day began. A little after nine o'clock I received a post-office order for 5l. from Hackney, to be used as most needed. Of it I took one half for the Orphans, and the other half for the Day Schools. There came in still further, 2l. 5s., 5s. 10d., 6d., and 3s. 4d.
Aug. 12. Yesterday I received from a sister 5s., with James i. 17., 2s. 6d., 6d. was put into the boxes at my house, and 6d. was given by an aged friend. Thus, with what was left on Saturday, we had 1l. 15s. 5d., which met our need today.
Aug. 13. Nothing has come in, but one of the labourers, to whom 15s. was given last evening to buy herself a new gown, gave that. I am looking for more! The boxes in the Orphan-Houses were opened, in which 5s. was found. Thus we had enough, except 6s., which one of the labourers gave.
Aug. 14. Nothing at all had come in, when the bag was brought from the Orphan-Houses for money, and I had therefore to return it without any. About half an hour after, the labourers had an especial prayer meeting. At this meeting one of the teachers of the Day-Schools gave me 10s., which he had put by to buy himself some little books, but he considered it now not to be the Lord's will to do so, but that he should give this money for the present need in the Orphan-Houses. Another of the labourers in the Orphan-Houses gave 5s. Thus we are provided with the absolute necessaries till tomorrow after breakfast.
Aug. 15. Last evening I received 2s., just after our last public meeting about the Orphan-Houses and other objects of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution, at which I had testified afresh of my reliance upon the living God, though I had not then one single penny in hand for the work, which, of course, was not stated.—Now this morning, between eight and nine o'clock sister L. M. came to me and brought me 30s., which she had received for the Orphans. But this will not be enough for today. Yesterday and this morning, before this money came in, the trial of faith had been very sharp.—Evening. At eleven o'clock I received still further from A. A. 5s., and this afternoon, from one of the labourers, 5s., and from two donors 6d. each.
Aug. 16. Our poverty is extremely great. The trial of faith as sharp as ever, or sharper. It is ten o'clock, and there are no means yet for a dinner. I now thought of some articles which I might be able to do without, to dispose of them for the benefit of the Orphans, when one of the labourers gave me 1l., which she had intended for another object, and which she now considers must be left alone for the present. There was also taken out of the boxes in the Orphan-Houses 1s. 6d., and by knitting came in 2s. 3d., and from A. A. 2s.
Aug. 17, Saturday. The Lord has, in tender mercy, helped us, in sending in 3l. for knitting done by the Orphan Girls, 9s. 10d. for stockings knitted by the boys, 11s. 11d. for things sold, which were given for the purpose, and 10s. 7d. put into the boxes at the Orphan-Houses.
Aug. 18. There was put anonymously into the Chapel-boxes 1s., ditto 2s., ditto 2s. 6d., and A. A. gave 10s.
Aug. 19, Monday. Only 3s. has come in today.
Aug. 20. This 3s. was all there was in hand for this day, which was needed at the Boys' Orphan-House towards the dinner. In the other houses nothing was needed, but at the same time Nothing was left towards the next meal. Two o'clock came, and we had nothing yet. After two o'clock I opened the boxes in my house, in which I found a paper containing a sovereign and a half, and 2 half-crowns loose. Of this I took 30s. at once to the Orphan-Houses, whereby we were helped for this day. Our need had not been greater for a long time. Dear reader, join me in admiring and adoring Him, who caused that money to be put into the box, and, I have reason to believe, only a very short time before, and who led my mind to open it, to obtain thus the help which was needed. — In the afternoon came in still further 3l. 6s. by the sale of some old silver and a few trinkets.
Aug. 2l. There came in, by sale of Reports, 5s., and from Tewkesbury 1l. This sovereign came in the greatest need. I took it at once to the Orphan-Houses, and by it we were supplied for the day. When I returned home I found that a little old gold watch had been given in the mean time. There came in also 3s.; and two half-sovereigns were given this evening by two little girls, through a sister in the Lord from Bath.
Aug. 22. The two half-sovereigns, which were given last evening, were all we had at the beginning of today. There was found in the boxes in the Orphan-Houses 5s. 9d., and in a post-office order I received 1l. So we had enough for one more day.—And it is by the day I live. Were I to think of how it will be a year or even a month hence, I should be tried indeed—yea, greatly tried. "Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof," is my Lord's own precious warrant for this. He will not have me to be anxious about tomorrow, and therefore I cast my cares about tomorrow upon Him. As the weeks pass on, and I go on Saturday evenings to the prayer meetings at the Orphan-Houses, I praise the Lord for having sustained me one more week in this service, by enabling me to look to Him. Yea, as each day closes, I desire to be grateful to the Lord for having sustained my faith and patience, and enabled me to rely upon Him, especially in seasons of such great poverty, lasting for weeks, as we have been in of late. But this I must say to the praise of the Lord, that my soul is kept in peace at such times, and, through the riches of His grace, I am kept from questioning whether He will help me or not. And, indeed, it would be sinful ingratitude, after all the Lord has been doing for me in this work, not to rely upon Him. May He in mercy uphold me to the end in this service, and keep me from dishonouring His holy name, either by unbelief, or in any other way.
Aug. 23. This morning the Lord greatly refreshed my spirit; for after a long-continued trial of faith, and after long and deep poverty, there was sent me from Devonshire a check for 20l. There came in 6s. besides.
Aug. 24. 1l. 19s. 7 1/4 d. came in today.
Aug. 25. From A. A. I received today 20l. How exceedingly kind of the Lord, in an hour of such great need, on account of all the many and great wants in which I find myself just now, to have sent this sum! There came in 2l. 0s. 6d. besides.
Aug. 26. Received for Reports 1l. 7s., and 3d. besides.
Aug. 28. Altogether 1l. 11s. 2d. came in today.
Aug. 29. Received 2s. 11d. by sale of Reports, and
7s. 6d. from Bath. The brother in Bath, who sent me this money, wrote me that the 7s. 6d. was sent to him with the following letter.
27th August, 1844.
"Part of the enclosed 7s. 6d. did belong to your dear Father, J. L., Esq., value of which I stole from him in my unconverted state.—I, now a believer in Jesus, constrained by love to Him, return it to you with interest, praying that the Lord may richly bless you and yours.
"* * * *."
J. L., Esq. has been dead more than fifteen years, therefore it must be longer than that period since the theft alluded to was committed.— This 7s. 6d. came in in especially great need; for though 50l. had been given during the last seven days, yet on account of our long-continued poverty, and the heavy expenses which were to be met, this 7s. 6d. was received when there was nothing at all in hand, and was sent off at once to the Orphan-Houses.—This evening, when we were still in great need, and when means were required for tomorrow morning, 10s. was given to me. This money was sent off this evening to the Orphan-Houses, for the need of tomorrow morning. About nine o'clock a sister came to my house, who had been to Shirehampton, and had there received 1l. 10s. 6d. for the Orphans. She gave also the remaining 6d. of the change of two sovereigns. The Lord inclined the heart of this sister to bring the money at once, and we are thus supplied for tomorrow. At half-past nine this evening I received another precious donation of 10s., with the following letter:—
"Aug. 29, 1844.
"The history of this money is this. I did some work in the country some time ago, and thought I should never get the money for it, as I had repeatedly written about it, and could not get it. But some time ago I was asking the Lord to incline the heart of the person who owed me the money, to send it to me, and I told Him, that, if He would do so, I would give 10s. for the Orphans. Three days ago I had such confidence, that I should have the money, that I was enabled to praise the Lord for it; and today I was going up Park Street, and met the person coming with the money. It had been put into the party's heart the day before yesterday to pay me the money. Now, dear brother, I fulfil my promise to the Lord by giving you the money. Help me, dear brother, to praise Him for it, and that I may be enabled to trust Him more than ever I have done yet.
"Yours in Jesus,
"* * *"
This brother is a poor tradesman, himself working with his hands.
Aug. 30. Today 6s. 8d. came in by sale of Reports. This evening I met a sister from Bath, who is staying in Bristol for two or three days. She gave me her purse, and all that was in it, for the Orphans, being 5s., saying, she wanted nothing till she returned to Bath. This goes towards tomorrow's need, which will be at least 4l., and for which we have as yet only 1l. 6s. in hand.
Aug. 81, Saturday. There came in a few shillings besides, last evening and this morning, so that I had 1l. 13s. 8d. to send to the Orphan-Houses; but I find 4l. 5s. is needed.—Evening. There came in still further, in the morning, 5s. 6d., by sale of stockings, 1l. 8s. by sale of Reports, 15s. 1d. by sale of articles given for the purpose,5s. 5d. by sale of ladies' bags. And in the evening was received 2l. 10s. 2d. besides, so that I had 2l. 12s. 10d. more than was actually needed.
Sept. 3, Tuesday. Since Saturday evening there has come in, in donations 18s. 10d., by sale of Reports 2l. 3s. 1d., and by work done by the Orphan-girls 1l. 3s. 8d. Thus, with what was left on Saturday, we have been supplied these two days.
Sept. 4. Only one farthing was in my hands this morning. Pause a moment, dear reader! Only one farthing in hand when the day commenced. Think of this, and think of nearly 140 persons to be provided for. You, poor brethren, who have six or eight children and small wages, think of this; and you, my brethren, who do not belong to the working classes, but have, as it is called, very limited means, think of this! May you not do, what we do, under your trials? Does the Lord love you less than He loves us? Does He not love all His children with no less love than that, with which He loves His only begotten Son, according to John xvii. 20—23? Or are we better than you? Nay, are we not in ourselves poor miserable sinners as you are; and have any of the children of God any claim upon God, on account of their own worthiness? Is not that, which alone can make us worthy to receive anything from our Heavenly Father, the righteousness of the Lord Jesus, which is imputed to those who believe in Him? Therefore, dear reader, as we pray in our every need, of whatever character it may be, in connexion with this work, to our Father in Heaven for help, and as he does help us, so is He willing to help all His children who put their trust in Him. Especially do not think, that because you may not be called by God to establish Orphan-Houses and Schools for poor children, therefore you are not warranted to rely upon God, in all your need; for the blessedness of depending upon the living God may be enjoyed by all the children of God, though they are not all called by Him to such a work as this Narrative describes. Nor must you suppose, that our only trials in this work arise from want of means, so that, in carrying it on, we have to rely upon God for nothing besides this. I assure you that the want of means is the smallest trial, and that I have had far, far greater exercises of faith on account of other things in connexion with this work than those arising from the want of means. But the trials connected with the want of means I dwell upon so particularly, because that is a matter which can be understood by all, and in which the senses themselves almost force us, so to speak, to acknowledge the hand of God.—Well, let us hear then, how God helped when there was only one farthing left in my hands, on the morning of Sept. 4, 1844.
A little after nine o'clock I received a sovereign from a sister in the Lord, who does not wish the name of the place, where she resides, mentioned. Between ten and eleven o'clock the bag was sent from the Orphan-Houses, in which in a note it was stated that 1l. 2s. was required for today. Scarcely had I read this, when a fly stopped before my house, and a gentleman, Mr. —— from the neighbourhood of Manchester, was announced. I found that he was a believer, who had come on business to Bristol. He had heard about the Orphan-Houses, and expressed his surprise, that without any regular system of collection, and without personal application to any one, simply by faith and prayer, I obtained 2000l. and more yearly for the work of the Lord in my hands. This brother, whom I had never seen before, and whose name I did not even know before he came, gave me 2l., as an exemplification of what I had stated to him.—There came in still further this morning 10s., being profits froth the sale of ladies' bags. From the same donor who had sent the sovereign this morning, I received, two hours later, a box containing the following articles:—Three mourning rings, three other gold rings set with cameos, two gold watch keys, four gold lockets, a gold brooch, a silver snuffbox, six medals, three gold ear-drops, a pair of mourning earrings, a purse, two pairs of babies' shoes, a pair of card-racks, two necklaces, five ornamental hair pins, a wafer-stamp, a paper-knife, two book marks, and a great variety of polished pebbles.—Oh! how good is the Lord, and how seasonably comes His help, in our great, great need, when so much is required for clothes, &c. There came in likewise through a sister in Bath 1l., and 5s. 6d. more. Thus, besides all the articles, which have been mentioned, altogether 41l. 5s. 6d. has come in this day, at the commencement of which I had only One farthing left.
Sept. 6. Besides the money, spoken of on the 4th, only 6s. 10d. more had come in, so that, after this day's necessities had been met, there was now again nothing at all in hand. Soon after I received 3s. 6d. this also was presently spent, except 9d., when a brother from Essex came, who gave me 2l.
Sept. 7, Saturday. Having had to pay out 10s. more, immediately after the receipt of the 2l., this day began with 1l. 10s. 9d. in hand, whilst the need was 3l. 15s. This 1l. 10s. 9d. I sent off to the Orphan-Houses, trusting in the Lord for more. And this time also my hope in God was not put to shame; for in the course of the morning came in 10s. 6d. by sale of Reports, by a donation 10s., by sale of articles 2l. 8s. 8 1/2 d., by sale of stockings 1s. 8d., and by sale of ladies' bags 4s. It was very kind of the Lord to send in this money in the course of the morning, thus providing us not only with the 3l. 15s. which was needed for housekeeping, but enabling us also to meet other unexpected expenses. In the Evening I received still further, after the need of the day had been met, but when all again was expended, a sovereign, four small old silver coins, a pair of coral earrings, and a brooch.
Sept. 8 There was the sovereign in hand which came in last evening, as a little towards the need of Monday, when I received this morning 50l., to be used as most needed. It is impossible to express how seasonably this help came, as, though our daily wants had been met day by day, yet very much is required in the way of clothes, &c. But as the need for the other objects is as great or greater, I took of this sum 30l. for them and 20l. for the Orphans. We are thus greatly encouraged to continue in prayer. Our poverty has scarcely ever lasted longer than now, yet the Lord has helped us as our absolute need has required it. The donor of this 50l. wished me to enter it with the text Philip iv. 6, judging that this text must have been often a refreshment to me in seasons of trial, as indeed it has.
From Sept. 8th to 17th came in 23l. 2s. 6 1/2 d.
Sept. 18. From A. A. 5l., by sale of Reports, 13s. 8d., and by the boxes in the Orphan-Houses 14s. 11d.
Sept. 19. This morning came in 10l. from Scotland. By this 10l., and what came in yesterday, I am able to meet the expenses of today, which were more than 16l.
Sept. 21, Saturday. Yesterday came in from Clapham, at an hour of need, 1l. 12s. 10d., together with several articles, also 1l. from Clifton; and today by sale of Reports, 1l. 15s. 4d., and by sale of articles 14s. 9d. Thus we are brought to the close of another week, though the expenses of it have not been less than 110l. (part of which had been put by beforehand). At the close of the week I have not more than 3s. left but the Lord will provide.
Sept. 22. Lord's-day morning. This morning I received from the neighbourhood of Crediton 10l., and from Sidmouth 10l., of which 8l. is for the Orphans, and 2l. for my own personal expenses. Likewise from A. A. 2s. 2 1/2d., for Reports 4s., and in the Chapel boxes was put anonymously 6d., ditto 2s. 6d. ditto 2s. 6d., ditto 6d. with these words: "Be still and know that I am God." How precious this word, and how have I seen today again the truth of it!—Three days ago a sister in the Lord, who is a servant, came to me, and brought me 9l. 16s. which she had drawn out of the Savings' Bank, considering it the Lord's will that she should not keep it there any longer, but spend it for him. She gave me the money that I might do with it as I thought right. However, I sent her home again with the money, advising her to weigh the matter still further, and to pray still further about it, and to count the cost; and if she was of the same mind, after some days, to come again to me. Now this afternoon this sister came again, with her little all, 9l. 16s. As she had now, for a long time, weighed the matter (according to her own statement), and as there had three days more passed away since I had sent her home again with the money, and as I found her grounded upon Scripture for what she was going to do, I could not refuse the money. See portioned it out thus: 2l. for her father, brother, and sister, 1l. 10s. for the poor believers in fellowship with us, 1l. for the Chapel expenses, and 1l. for missionary purposes. This left 4l. 6s., of which she would give me 2l. which I declined, in order that there might not be even the appearance as if I had persuaded this poor servant to draw her money out of the Savings' Bank. She then wished me to give brother Craik 1l., which I accepted for him, and as I saw she wept, because I would not receive anything for myself, I said I would take a sovereign. This I did, that she might not think I refused her Christian kindness because she was a poor servant. The remaining 2l. 6s. she gave for the Orphans. —By the donations which have come in today I am able to meet almost all the expenses connected with the procuring of many articles of clothing and furniture, for which I have long been praying.
Oct. 1. Since the 22nd many pounds have come in, though not any sums above 5l. Now this evening I have received a bank order for 70l., to be used as the Lord might direct me. The donor wishes me to let him know if anything particular should be connected with this donation. There is indeed much connected with it, as it comes most manifestly in answer to prayer; for thus I am able to supply all that is needed in the way of articles of clothes for the Orphans, for which I have been long waiting upon the Lord, and as the winter is now drawing near, the winter-clothes need to be got ready; further, I am able to have the Boys' Orphan-House painted inside and coloured down, which is much needed; I am able to furnish all the labourers in the Orphan-Houses with some money for themselves, which, on account of our long-continued poverty, I had not been able to do for six months. Yet; though the donation comes in so seasonably, I cannot write to the kind donor thus, lest he should be induced to give more, by my exposing our circumstances, and lest also the hand of God should not be so manifest, in providing me with means for the work, as otherwise it would.
—I took of this money 40l. for the Orphans, and 30l. for the other funds.—During the last two weeks I have had to pay out for the work about 200l., and this week I shall have to pay out again about 60l. Thus the Lord helps continually.
Nov. 1. Since Oct. 1st there has come in such an abundance, that without any difficulty I have been able to meet all the expenses for the Orphans, though during the week ending Oct. 5th I had to pay out 59l., during the week ending on the 12th above 40l., during the week ending on the 19th nearly 40l., and during the week ending on the 26th about 50l. Of the many donations which came in during this period I will only mention the following: From a small town in the kingdom of Wirtemburg 1s. 8d.; from Nice, in France, 1l.; from a missionary in the East Indies 14l. 12s. 6d. Notice, dear reader, how the Lord sends donations from Wirtemburg, France, and the East Indies! Great, however, as our income had been, we were now again poor, on account of the heavy expenses, when, in answer to prayer, there came in today, from some sisters near Coleford, 2l. 10, by sale of Reports 2s., and from A. A. 10l. 7s. 7 1/2 d. The post was out this morning and nothing had come; but my heart said, the Lord still can send, though the post is out; and these donations were soon after given to me.
Nov. 11. From Nov. 1st up to this day we went on easily. There came in again many donations. Now, however, we were again very poor, having had again very heavy expenses. In this great need a ten pound note was this afternoon put into an Orphan-box in my house. This evening I received also still further, from a brother who labours in Demerara, 1l., and 1l. 10s. besides.
Nov. 13. Yesterday and today came in again more than 10l. Our expenses having again been very great, as during these three days above 30l. had been paid out for the Orphans, we were still poor, notwithstanding the considerable income during the last three days. Under these circumstances a ring was given to me this afternoon, set with one large and six small brilliants. How kind of the Lord, thus to help us continually in the work, and to listen to our supplications, which, day after day, we bring to him! Daring no time, since I have been engaged in this service, have the expenses been heavier than during the last four months; yet the Lord has always given us what we have needed.
Nov. 18. The produce of the ring, together with about 10l, more, which had come in since the 13th, was nearly all gone again, on account of the expenses of the past week having been nearly 50l., when this morning a Christian gentleman from Devonshire called on me, who, on leaving, left a letter on my table, containing two five pound notes, of which five pounds was for the Orphans and five pounds for three other objects. This evening I found a five pound note in one of the Orphan-boxes in my house. Thus we are again helped for the present. The name of the Lord be praised!
Nov. 21. The need of today was 4l. 5s., but there were only a few shillings in hand. I opened the boxes in my house, in which 1 found a sovereign and a shilling. The sovereign could have been put in only last evening. After family prayer I retired again for prayer, about the work as I do daily, by which means I have been helped not only to meet the very heavy expenses since July 15th, but have been helped through many and great difficulties in other respects, and have been enabled to bring many blessings upon the work. While in prayer, I received a letter from the neighbourhood of Leeds, with 5l. Thus we are helped for today. This afternoon came in still further, by sale of articles 1l. 9s., by the boxes in the Orphan-Houses 1l. 6s. 3 1/2 d.; and this evening I received 5l., being the profits from the sale of a Hymn book, which has been printed for the benefit of the Orphans. Thus we have something for the need of tomorrow also.
Nov. 23. As yesterday's expenses had to be met out of what had come in on the 21st, only 11s. 10d. having come in yesterday, and as the need of today for housekeeping was 4l. 10s., we had not enough in hand. Our precious universal remedy, prayer, was now again resorted to. About ten minutes after, I received a Post-office order from Stafford for 2l. About twelve o'clock this morning came in still further, by the sale of some books and prints, given for the purpose, 3l. 1s., by the sale of other articles 3l. 7s. 9d., by the sale of Reports 1s. 1d., by the sale of ladies' bags 13s. 5d., and by the sale of stockings 2s. 6d. This afternoon came in still further from Glasgow 5l. Thus the day, which commenced when we had not enough in hand for its necessities, has ended in comparative abundance, though there is still little in hand for present use, as we need to provide for the rent of the houses and for the purchase of oatmeal, and therefore put by a part of the money given today. Yet we are brought to the close of another week, having been able to meet all its expenses.
Nov. 24. This morning I received a letter from the neighbourhood of Dublin, with four five pound Post-office orders. Thus the Lord has done according to my expectation; for in our usual weekly prayer meeting last evening at the Orphan-houses with the labourers in the work, I was enabled to praise the Lord, that He would provide for the need of this week also.
Dec. 2, Monday. During the last week the income had been again about 36l. But having had still many extra expenses, and, also to put by money for the rents due on the next quarter-day, there was nothing left at the close of the week. Yesterday came in 5s. 10d., 4d., 5s., 19s. 10d., and 1l. By this money we were able to meet the housekeeping expenses of this day, being only 2l. 5s.; but, having 2l. to pay out, besides the current expenses, and having understood that a brother in the Lord from Birmingham, with two other strangers, had visited the Orphan-Houses, and that money had been put into the boxes, they were opened, and 3l. 3s. 1d. was found in them. Thus I was able to send off the 2l. There came in also this afternoon 10s. for work done by a young lady, and this evening, by sale of Reports, 4s.
Dec. 3. As only 1l. 15s. was required for housekeeping today, we had enough, by what had come in yesterday afternoon and evening, and I had twopence left.
Dec. 4. The Lord has again, in the love and compassion of His fatherly heart, multiplied "the handful of meal in the barrel, and the little oil in the cruse." The twopence have been multiplied more than a thousand fold. Yesterday came in from Clapton 2s. 6d., from the county of Dorset 10l., and from A. A. 10s., being (as the donor writes) "the produce of a needless article of jewelery."
Dec. 7, Saturday. Only 2l. 10s. 10d. having come in during the last two days (among which was a remarkable donation of 10s. from Calv, in the kingdom of Wirtemberg), I had again, after I had paid out yesterday what was required, only 2l. 10s. 3d. left, which I knew would not be half enough for this day. Yesterday afternoon came in from Sherborne 6s. This morning I had an unusually full assurance that the Lord would help us this day again, though I knew that more than 8l. would be needed today, towards which there was only 2l. 16s. 3d. in hand. I praised the Lord repeatedly this morning beforehand for the help which He again would grant this day. By the first delivery arrived 10s. from the neighborhood of Kingsbridge. Thus we had 3l. 6s. 3d.; but for housekeeping we needed 5l. 10s., and for other expenses 3l. 1s. 5d. However, when the Orphan came with the letter-bag, to fetch the money, I received in it a letter from Bath, containing 5l. Thus we had enough, and more than enough, for the momentary need, as to the house-keeping expenses. About twelve o'clock came in the following sums besides: by sale of articles 4l. 5s. 8d., by sale of Reports 8d., by sale of stockings 2s. 2d., by sale of ladies' bags 3s. 9d. This evening came in still further, from Dublin, for Reports 1l. 2s., and 1l. as a donation, together with some prints, some books, etc. for sale. Thus we had all we needed, to help us to the close of the week, and were able to put by some money for the weekly rents and other expenses, to be met on quarter day.
Dec. 9, Monday. Though we had been helped abundantly on Saturday, yet, as some money needed to be put by, we had still nothing for the beginning of this week. Yesterday came in for Reports 7s. 4d., and anonymously was put into the Chapel-boxes 1s. and 2s. 6d. There was also anonymously put into the Chapel-boxes a 50l. note, with these words: "25l. for the Orphan-Houses, and 25l. for clothing and blankets for the poor." Thus we are again most seasonably helped, and are now almost entirely prepared to meet all the expenses coming upon us a few weeks hence.
Jan. 18 1845, Saturday. Since Dec. 9th we had always supplies sent, before the last money was given out; it was a season of rich abundance, for there came in (including the 25l. last mentioned) about 140l. Now, however, this evening, after all the expenses of the day had been met, there was nothing remaining. But admire with me, dear reader, the goodness of the Lord! This very evening He has again kindly supplied us with means for the commencement of another week. The boxes at the Orphan-Houses were opened (our need leading us to do so) in winch was found 10l. 16s., one of them containing a ten pound note. Is it not, dear reader, a precious thing to trust in the Lord? Are not ten pounds, thus received out of the hands of our Heavenly Father, as the result of faith in God, most precious? Will not you also seek to trust in Him, and depend on Him alone in all your everyday's concerns, and in all spiritual matters too? If you have not done so, do make but trial of the preciousness of this way, and you will see how pleasant and sweet it is; and if you have done so in a measure, do so yet more and more, and you will never have cause to regret it. But, perhaps, you are not a believer; if so, you cannot trust in God, and go in all circumstances to Him, as to your Father, except you are first reconciled to him through our Lord Jesus. What you have then to do is, to learn that you are a lost, ruined, guilty sinner, deserving nothing but punishment. But, at the same time, you have to remember that God, in the greatness of His love to sinners, sent His own dear Son, that He, in their room and stead, might bear the punishment due to them, make an atonement for their sins, and fulfil the law of God in their stead, in order that every one, who believes on Him, might obtain the forgiveness of his sins, and be reckoned righteous before God. If you believe in the Lord Jesus, i.e., if you receive Him as the one whom God has declared Him to be, even the Son of God (as to His person), and the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world (as to His work), and if you rest upon Him, trust in Him for the salvation of your soul, then all your sins shall be forgiven. Though you have grown old in sin, though your sins have been very many and very grievous, yet the blood of Jesus Christ cleanseth from all sin. Do but believe, and you shall be saved. And when thus you are reconciled to God, through faith in His dear Son, walk before Him as an obedient child, seek in child-like simplicity to go to God for every thing, and do really treat God as your father.
There arrived also this Saturday evening, from the Isle of Wight, a small box, containing 14s. and many articles for sale.
Jan. 20, Monday. 3l. 11s, has come in besides the 11l. 10s., which came in on Saturday evening; but as, in addition to the ordinary house-keeping expenses, I had this afternoon to order material for boys' clothes, all the money which had come in since Saturday evening was now again gone. About an hour afterwards I found that two five-pound notes had been put into one of the boxes at my house, and at the same time I received a bank order for 16l. from a poor missionary brother, who labours about 3,000 miles from Bristol~ in dependence upon the Lord for his temporal supplies. Of this 16l. the sum of 12l. is to be employed in sending him Bibles and New Testaments, and 4l. he gives to the Orphans. What ways has not the Lord to help His children who trust in Him! Who would suppose that a poor missionary would send 4l. for the Orphans, from a distance of 3,000 miles? But rather must the ravens again bring supplies, as in the days of Elijah, than that the children of God, who trust in their Heavenly Father, should not have their need supplied. —Thus the Lord has again given 14l. for the Orphans, when all was gone.
Jan. 25, Saturday evening. We have been helped through the heavy expenses of this week, without lacking any thing; but now we have nothing left.—This evening, about ten o'clock, I received from Barnstaple some articles for sale, and a Spanish dollar, two 1/4 of a franc, and a sixpence; also 1l. and 2l. Also sixpence for Reports.
Jan. 27, Monday. Yesterday I received from F. E. B. 2s. 6d., from "Friends to the Institution" 4l.; and 2s. 6d. was put into the Chapel-boxes anonymously, ditto 10s., ditto 2s. 6d. Thus, by what came in on Saturday evening and yesterday, I am able to meet this day's demands, being 4l. 5s. 6d.—Evening. This afternoon I received from Camerton 5l., of which 3l. is for the circulation of the Holy Scriptures, and 2l. for the Orphans. Thus, as the money goes out, the Lord kindly sends in supplies, and all without speaking to one human being about our necessities, but making them known to Him only; yea, determined, by His help and support, rather to endure many trials, in order that through our difficulties the Church of Christ at large may be comforted, and those who are weak in faith be strengthened, than to go away from the door of our Heavenly Father to that of brethren.
Feb. 1, Saturday. We are brought to the close of another week, and have been supplied with all we needed; but there is now again nothing left.
Feb. 2. When now again there was nothing left last evening in my hands for the beginning of the coming week, there have been today, by two different donors, two five-pound notes put into the Chapel-boxes, ditto 2s. 6d., ditto 2s. 6d., and also 2s. 6d. was given besides. Thus we are again supplied fur the present. O Lord, fill my—heart with lively gratitude for all Thy goodness! Lord help me, not only to trust in Thee more and more, but also to love Thee more and more, seeing that Thou dost condescend to use such a poor sinful servant!
Feb. 8, Saturday evening. Above 30l. has come in during this week; but as there have been bought eight hundred weight of rice and eight bushels of peas, besides meeting the regular housekeeping expenses, again only a few shillings remain.
Feb. 10, Monday. Yesterday 2l. was sent to me, from a physician residing in Bristol; anonymously was put into the boxes at Bethesda Chapel 2s., ditto 1l., and ditto 2s. 6d. Also by A. A. was given to me 7s. 2d. I was thus able, with the few shillings that were left on Saturday evening, to meet the expenses of this day, after which 7s. 10d. remained. This morning I was kept, through pressure of engagements, from having prayer, on account of the work, at the usual time; but at half-past two I united with my beloved wife and her sister in prayer, and I asked the Lord, among other blessings, also for means. As to the latter, we had answer upon answer before the close of the day. For this afternoon 1l. 5s. 9d. arrived from Stirling. This afternoon also five sovereigns were put into the box in my room, which I happened to find out soon after. I received also this evening 5s., which had yesterday been anonymously put into the boxes at Salem Chapel. A poor brother likewise gave me 2s. Still further came in 11s. 5d.
Feb. 11. This morning I received still further a donation of 2l. This afternoon I received, as the profit of the sale of ladies' bags, 1l., and 2l. 17s. 4d. came in by sale of articles.
Feb. 12. After I had sent off this morning the money which was required for the housekeeping of today, I had again only 16s. 2 1/2 d. left, being only about one-fourth as much as is generally needed for one day, merely for housekeeping, so that there was now again a fresh call for trusting in the Lord. In the morning I met again, as usual, with my dear wife and her sister, for prayer, to ask the Lord for many blessings, in connexion with this work, and for means also. About one hour after, I received a letter from Devonshire, containing an order for 22l., of which 10l. was for the Orphans, 2l. for a poor brother in Bristol, and 10l. for myself.—Besides having thus a fresh proof of the willingness of our Heavenly Father to answer our requests on behalf of the Orphans, there is this, moreover, to be noticed. For many months past the necessities of the poor saints among us have been particularly laid upon my heart. The word of our Lord: "Ye have the poor with you always, and whensoever ye will ye may do them good," has again and again stirred me up to prayer on their behalf, and thus it was again in particular this morning. It was the coldest morning we have had the whole winter. In my morning walk for prayer and meditation I thought how well I was supplied with coals, nourishing food, and warm clothing, and how many of the dear children of God might be in need; and I lifted up my heart to God to give me more means for myself, that I might be able, by actions, to show more abundant sympathy with the poor believers in their need; and it was but three hours after when I received this 10l. for myself. —This evening was left at the Infant Orphan-House an anonymous letter, containing a sovereign for the Orphans, with the letters C. T. D.
Feb. 15, Saturday evening. 6l. 1s. 4d. has come in since the 12th. All the wants of this week have been richly supplied, but now there was again scarcely anything left towards the coming week, when this evening, just before I was going to our usual Saturday evening prayer meeting at the Orphan-Houses, a bank post bill for 10l. came to hand, being the gift of an aged clergyman. Thus we have a little for the next week, and we have also been able to order two hundred weight of soap, which it was very desirable to have, in order that there might be no need of using new soap for washing.
Feb. 16. Today the Lord has given still more. Anonymously were put into the Chapel-boxes the following sums: A twenty-pound note, a sovereign, 2s. 6d., and 6s. There was given also by A. A. 3s. 7d., and a lady from Nottingham sent 5s. It was particularly kind of the Lord to send in this rich supply, because soon again a ton and a half of oatmeal will need to be ordered from Scotland, the rents need to be provided for, and I desire soon to be able to give again some money to the labourers in the Orphan-Houses for their own personal necessities.
March 4, Besides the 32l. 7s. 1d. that had come in on the 15th and 16th of Feb., there came in up to this day 38l. 17s. 1d., so that there was not any difficulty to meet all the demands. After I had met the expenses for housekeeping yesterday, all our means were again gone, and there was therefore nothing in hand towards the expenses of today. But the Lord helped us again; for two five-pound notes were found in one of the boxes at my house, whereby I am able to meet the need of this day, which is 3l.
Dear Reader! does your heart admire the hand of God in these instances? Does your heart praise the Lord for His goodness to us? Does it, or does it not? If not, then I beseech you to lay aside this account of His dealings with us, and fall on your knees, and ask God to have mercy upon you, and to soften your heart, that you may be sensible of His goodness to us. Surely if you can read this account of His goodness, and it makes no impression upon you, it is a sign that your heart is not in a right state before God. I do not expect that all the readers will, as much as I do, by the grace of God, see the hand of God in all these matters, though I could wish that they did so, even a thousand times more than I do; but yet all should adore God for His great goodness to us, and should remember that what He does for us, in answering our poor sin-mixed petitions, for the sake of His dear Son, He is willing to do for them also.—Particularly notice, that the help never comes too late. We may be poor, yea, very poor; yet the help comes at the right time. We may have to wait upon the Lord, yea, even a long time; but at last He helps. It may seem as if the Lord had forgotten us, by allowing us to be poor, and very poor, and that week after week; but at last He helps abundantly, and shows that only for the trial of our faith, both for our own benefit and the benefit of those who might hear of His dealings with us, has He allowed us to call so long upon Him. —By the grace of God my heart is not troubled now, whether there be much or little in hand. I am sure, that, in the best time and way, God will send help; and thus it is not only with reference to temporal supplies, but also as it regards other things that we may need, or when we may be in peculiar difficulties in other respects. When boys need to be apprenticed, or situations have to be found for the girls, and there are difficulties in the way, as we never send them out, except to believing masters and mistresses, my soul is yet at peace, because I betake myself to my Heavenly Father. When there have been infectious diseases in the Orphan-Houses, whereby, looking at it naturally, many children might be taken away through death, my soul is at peace, because I cast this burden upon the Lord, and He sustains me. When one or the other of my fellow-labourers have left the work, and I needed their place supplied, and knew of no suitable persons, I have been looking to God for help, and that has kept my heart in peace, though this is no small difficulty, as not only can no hirelings be engaged in this work, but also, in case, the individual is a true child of God, there are yet so many things to be considered as to fitness and call for the work. When all kinds of lying reports have been spread about the work and about myself in connexion with it (though they have been very much less than might have been expected), I have committed my case to the Lord; and such things, instead of casting me down, often have greatly cheered me, because they have been a fresh proof to me, that God is at work, and that, therefore, the devil is angry, and stirs up these lies. When I have had for months to leave the work, as in the year 1838, for about four months, in 1843-4, for seven months, and in 1845, for three months, being called to labour on the Continent, or being ill, as in 1838, my heart has been in perfect peace, committing all the concerns of the whole Institution into the hand of God, considering that it was not my work but His, and that, therefore, I might be without carefulness about it. I seek to believe more and more what God says about Himself in His holy word, and it is this which gives this rest and peace to my heart, not only with reference to all the various objects of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad, but also about my own body and soul, my dear wife and child, my other dear relations, the temporal supplies for myself and family, my service in the Church in which I labour, now consisting of more than 700 believers, and the state of the Church of Christ at large.
March 8, Saturday. 11l. 17s. 1 3/4 d. more has come in since March 4th. Thus I have been able fully to meet all the expenses during this week, but now hare again only a few shillings left towards the necessities of the coming week.—Late in the Evening.—After our prayer-meeting this evening four sovereigns were given to me, two for the Orphans, and two for the other objects. This is the beginning of the help which the Lord surely will give during the coming week also.
March 11, Tuesday. Only 17s. 6d. had come in since Saturday evening, and therefore, after the expenses of yesterday had been met, there remained again only a few shillings in hand, on account of which my prayer was, that the Lord would be pleased to send in something for this day. When I came home last evening from the meeting, my dear wife told me, that there was some money in the box in our parlour. I opened it, and found it to contain five sovereigns. Thus we are supplied for today.
March 13. Yesterday I had sent off all the money, which was remaining in my hands, to the Orphan-Houses for housekeeping. Also the boxes were opened in the Orphan-Houses, but only 10 1/2 d. was found in them. We were comfortably supplied yesterday with all that was required, but there was no money at all in hand for today. When the letter-bag was brought this morning for money, I found that the need for housekeeping for today was 2l. 15s.; but there was nothing at all in hand. Therefore, while the boy was waiting at my house, I disposed of some trinkets, which had been sent a few days since, for 2l. 15s. 6d. Thus we had enough, and 6d. over. There came in also 8d. by sale of Reports.— Evening. This afternoon came in, by sale of articles, 17s. 6d., and by a donation 1l.
March 14. The need of today is 2l. There was 1s. 4d. more needed than I had in hand, when 5s. 6 1/2 d. came in from two Orphan-boxes. Thus we are helped for this day.
March 15. Yesterday afternoon half-a-sovereign was brought to me. In the evening 19s. 4d. came in by sale of articles. But this was not enough for the need of today. While the Orphan boy was waiting for the money, I received the following letter from Bath:—
"Beloved Brother in the Lord,
"My sister E. and myself feel it laid on our hearts to send a little for your need at this time, thinking it must be increased by the severity of the weather. We send the inclosed in much love, and thankfulness to the Lord for permitting us to do it, half for the Orphans, and the rest to be applied as seems good to you. Etc."
The letter contained two sovereigns, of which I took one for the Orphans, and the other for the School fund. (The latter sovereign was needed today towards the payment of the teachers in the Day-schools.) Thus we had all that was needed today for the Orphans. This evening I found a sixpence in the box in my room.
March 17, Monday. The sixpence which I took out of the box in my room on Saturday evening was all there was in hand, when yesterday came in the following donations:
A. A. 1l. 2s. 4 1/2 d., anonymously 6d., ditto 2s. 6d. When this morning I had the bag sent from the Orphan-Houses, I found that the amount needed for house-keeping was 2l. 5s.; but there was only 1l. 5s. 10 1/2 d. in hand. Immediately after, before the bag was fetched, one of my fellow-labourers sent me 1l. for the Orphans, so that we had enough for today, and 10 1/2 d. over. When now only 10 1/2 d. remained, I received from Swansea a letter containing a franc and a half, with the words "Jehovah Jireh."
March 18. "Jehovah Jireh" (i.e. the Lord will provide) has been again verified in our experience. 10 1/2 d. remained in hand, and the need of this day was 6l. 3s. But the Lord knew what we should need today, and he helped accordingly. I opened the box in my room, and found a ten-pound note in it. Thus we have more than is needed for the present moment.
March 19. Yesterday afternoon I had to pay out 3l. more, for one of the apprentices. Thus the expenses of yesterday were altogether 9l. 3s. How kind therefore of the Lord to have put it into the heart of the donor of the ten-pound note to give that money just then. And now we had again only 17s. 10 1/2 d. left towards the need of today, which is 3l. 5s. But our most faithful Lord has been again mindful of us at this time also. For there came in yesterday from a lady at Sheffield 1l., by sale of Reports 8d., by the profit from the sale of ladies' bags 15s., and by three donations from Bristol donors 12s. Thus there is again all we need for today, and 6 1/2d. left. Immediately after I had written this in my journal, the Lord began to increase again "the handful of meal in the barrel." I received from Barnstaple 5s.
March 20. Yesterday morning, when I was going to send off the money to the Orphan-Houses, I found 2s. 6d. in the letter bag, slipped in anonymously. I found also 1l. 5s. in the boxes at my house. Thus we have 1l. 13s. 0 1/2 d. for the necessities of today, which I find is sufficient.
March 21. All the money being spent, the boxes in the Orphan-Houses were opened yesterday afternoon, in which were found a sovereign, half-a-crown, and a penny. This is all we have for today.
March 22, Saturday. We were able to get through yesterday with the 1l. 2s. 7d. found in the boxes; but in this way our stores become much reduced. Now, however, was Saturday before us with its heavy expenses, and there was nothing yet to meet them, when I went last evening to our public meeting, to minister in the word. However, my soul has been in peace, by the grace of God, during all this week and the last, though again and again we have had nothing. I have reminded the Lord repeatedly during this week, that it is His commandment to His disciples to be without anxiety, and that I am so, because it is His commandment that I should be so, but that now He also, on His part, graciously would be pleased to continue to help me, as He had done hitherto. And now observe how the Lord again has helped! After the meeting last evening, between 8 and 9 o'clock, when I had nothing at all in hand, towards meeting the necessities of this day, which I had every reason to believe would be several pounds, one of the labourers in the Orphan-Houses gave to my wife 5s., Miss E. N. sent 10s., and a sister in the Lord, who arrived last evening from Hull, put the following letter into the hands of my dear wife, addressed to me:—
"Hull, March 20, 1845.
"I send you a small box of articles, which perhaps you can dispose of for the Orphans, and 5l. 5s. 7d. in money. Accept it in the Lord's name as a tribute of love from the brethren here. We shall be always glad to see you if you travel this way.
"Yours affectionately in the Lord,
"* * * * "
The box contained the following articles:—a gold cross, two gold pins, two brooches, three gold rings, a small gold seal, two gold bracelet snaps, a pair of silver studs, a mourning brooch, necklace and ear-rings, a silver pencil case, a stone cross and heart, a gilt waist-buckle, a dozen new cloth caps, two books, two new cotton frocks, three new pinafores, a new white lace veil, two waistcoats, a gown, a pair of lady's boots, three veils, two lace capes, two lace shawls, two muslin aprons, a lady's bag, four waist ribands, three pairs of cuffs, a little scarf, three necklaces; 4l. 5s. 7d. for the Orphans, and 1l. for the circulation of the Holy Scriptures.—Today there came in still further, by sale of articles 8s. 6d., for Reports 8d, and by sale of stockings 6s. 8d. Also from Thornbury 2s. 6d. Thus we have enough for today, and something left.
March 24, Monday. Yesterday and today came in only 7s. 6d. altogether. We have enough for today, and 6s. 6d. left, as the demands were only 2l. 10s.
March 25. When there was again only 6s. 6d. left, 4s. 6d. came in yesterday evening. There was also 5l. put into one of the boxes at my house. This morning I received from a brother from the neighbourhood of Birmingham 2l., and 10s. came in by another donation. Thus I had more than sufficient for the need of today, which is 4l. 15s. There came in still further from Bridgenorth 10s., and from a sister in Bristol 2s. 2d.
March 26. Only 3s. 2 1/2 d. came in today, by the boxes in my house.
March 27. Yesterday morning I sent off for housekeeping all the money I had left. It was enough for yesterday, but only enough. Only 1l came in yesterday, and this morning 4d. This 1l. 0s. 4d. was all I had to send to the Orphan-Houses. There came in 5s, 4d. besides, and thus we were helped through this day also.
March 28. Nothing has come in. While the Orphan Boy was waiting for the bag to be made up, 1l. 5s. 1d. came in for a few trinkets, which I had sent out to be disposed of. This was all I could send.
March 29. By the 1l. 5s. 1d. we were helped through yesterday. But there was now again not only nothing at all in hand, but we required the more, as the last two days there had been so little laid out for housekeeping, and also because today was Saturday. However, as the Lord never once has forsaken me in the work during the last eleven years, so it has been at this time also. About five o'clock yesterday afternoon a note was given to me in which was enclosed 5l., which a physician of this city kindly sent. In the evening I received 10s., being the profit from the sale of ladies' bags, and this morning came in still further by the sale of articles 9s. 6d., and by the sale of stockings 13s. There were also last evening, anonymously left at my house, a gold seal, a brass seal, and a pair of gilt ear-rings. There came in still further 10s., and 10s.
March 31. There came in yesterday and today anonymously from Hayes-Town, near Uxbridge, 1l., and 2l. 10s. besides.
April 1. On account of the expenses of Saturday having been great, and of yesterday likewise, there remained again but a few shillings. Our gracious Lord, however, who day after day looks on our need, yea, so to speak, inspects our stores, knew this, and therefore yesterday caused ten pounds to be put into one of the boxes at my house. Last evening came in also still further 1l. 7s. from the Isle of Wight.
April 2. As I had to expend today more than 10l, for the Orphans, I was again reduced to a few shillings, when this morning 15l. was sent to me by two donors from Liverpool. Also at the same time came from the neighbourhood of Worcester 1l.
April 3. After having been comparatively poor, the Lord is now again pouring in means, which come very seasonably for the replenishing of our stores, for the obtaining of certain articles of clothing for the children, etc. Today I received the following donations: 19l. 5s. from the brethren assembling at Bethesda Chapel, Sunderland, from two sisters 6s., from A. A. 18s. 5d., and by sale of Reports 1s. 4d.
April 4. Still further from Sunderland 15s., from Sherborne 8s. 6d., from Sidmouth 1l., and from "S. P., Dublin," 1l. 10s.
April 12, Saturday. 33l. 19s. 7d. more has come in since the 4th. After the expenses of today had been met, there again remained scarcely anything, when, in addition to all the ordinary expenses during the coming week before me, a fresh supply of oatmeal needed to be purchased. The boxes in the Orphan-Houses therefore were opened, but only 1l. 8s. 6d. was found in them. There came in besides from A. A. 7s.
April 13, Lord's-day. This morning I received a letter from Hampstead, containing four post-office orders of 5l. each, of which 10l. is for the poor believers among whom I labour, and 10l, for the Orphans.
April 30. From the 13th to this day came in altogether 57l. 13s. 2d. Thus we were well supplied with all the means which were needed during that time; but yesterday morning I had sent off to the Orphan-Houses the last money I had in hand. In the afternoon a sister in the Lord from Bath called, and gave me a sovereign, when I had not one penny in hand towards the need of today. This morning came in still further 18s. 10 1/2 d, by needlework done by the Orphan-Girls. Also 4d. by sale of a Report. Thus we were supplied for today.
May 1. When this day began I had only half-a-crown in hand, which I had taken last evening out of one of the boxes in my house. When I was this morning, on my usual walk before breakfast, bringing my circumstances before the Lord, I reminded Him of His word, "Take no thought for the morrow ", (i.e. be not anxious about the morrow), and I told Him that yesterday I had not been anxious about today, and prayed that He would now be pleased to help me. I was in perfect peace, though I had not the least natural prospect of having the necessities of today supplied. Of the money put by for the rent I would not take. Our need was my comfort. When I returned to my house at eight o'clock, I found that there bad been sent from the Orphan-Houses 5s., given there, and 2s. 6d. for knitting. Also a person had brought yesterday to the Orphan-Houses the contents of an Orphan-box, which had in his room, having felt himself, as he said, much stirred up to do so. It was 3s. 6d. Also a sister from Worcestershire had sent 10s. Before money was sent for from the Orphan-Houses, I received this morning from Stafford 10s. Thus I had 1l. 13s. 6d, to send to the Orphan-Houses for the need of today.
May 2. A little after I had sent off yesterday all the money to the Orphan-Houses, a brother in the Lord from Cornwall called on me and gave me 1l. In the afternoon a sister, who had received peculiar mercy from the Lord in the way of temporal help, called on me, and gave 10s.; and a christian servant, who had received a fee, gave it, the amount being 2s. Thus I have 1l. 12s. to send for the need of this day.—I had written this in my journal, but the bag was not yet gone, when I received from a distance of about 50 miles for Reports 4s. 1d, and from "a Field Officer" 3l 10s.2d., so that I could send all that was needed today, being 3l.
May 3. Yesterday afternoon I received half-a-crown more, and this morning 3s. by sale of articles, and from Kendal 1l 10s. The money from Kendal came about two minutes before the boy came from the Orphan-Houses to fetch the supply for this day's necessities. It was a most seasonable help, as this is Saturday, and we needed today 3l. 15s., and I had not nearly enough in hand.—There came in further this morning 2l. 1s. 2d. by sale of articles, and in the evening 10s., being the contents of an Orphan-box in the neighbourhood of Coleford. — We are thus brought to the close of another week, and have a little left towards the heavy expenses of the next, as, besides the usual housekeeping expenses of about 20l., there are ten tons of gravel for the playgrounds to be bought, and a ton of oatmeal.
July 10. From May 3rd to this day was a season of comparatively rich abundance. The total amount which was received amounts to 268l. 10s. 6 1/2 d. Immediately after the 3rd, the Lord sent considerable help, so that I was able to meet the extraordinary expenses which are referred to under the last date; for on the 4th came in 6l. 0s. 3d., on the 5th 9s. 6d., on the 6th 70l. and 100l., of which two sums one-half was put to the Orphan-Fund, and the other half to the fund for the other objects. On the 10th of May I had to leave Bristol on account of my health, and was absent three weeks, and had to pay away, for the Orphans, about 100l. within one fortnight after. How seasonably, therefore, came these two donations! When these two sums came in there was only 10s. 3d. in hand, and, as has been stated, ten tons of gravel were needed, and a ton of oatmeal, also money for the apprentices, besides the daily current expenses. Of the other donations, which came in during this period, I only mention: from Negro brethren in Demerara, twelve dollars. All the money, after this long time of comparative abundance, was today, July 10th, reduced to 1l. 6s. 0 1/2 d., and 2l. was needed. The boxes in the Orphan-Houses were opened, in which 16s. 1d. was found. Thus we had enough, and 2s. 1 1/2 d. was left.
July 11. Yesterday afternoon came a box from Newport, in the Isle of Wight, with many articles for the Orphans, and a little money for the other objects. This was a precious encouragement to continue to wait upon the Lord. At the first delivery this morning I received several letters. The first I opened was from a brother in Devonshire, with a post-office order for 8s. for the Orphans. He writes thus; "My box for the Orphans still yields but little, but I have been frequently inquiring of the Lord, when that little should be sent. For the last few days it has appeared to me that the time was come to send it to you, I therefore sent for the amount in an order, which I this day received, and now send, in hope it may be of some help in a time of need." This 8s. was a further precious encouragement.—The next letter which I opened was from a christian gentleman at Edinburgh, containing a bank order for twenty-five guineas, of which twenty guineas are for the work of the Lord in my hands, and five for my own personal necessities. There came in still further today, from brethren at Perth 2l., and from the neighbourhood of Glasgow 5l.
July 12. This morning I received a legacy of 5l. for the Orphans, from the relatives of a dear departed sister in the Lord, who, from the commencement of the work up to her last days, had taken the deepest interest in it. Also from Jersey, together with a gold ring, 4l. Also 3l. 2s. 0 1/2 d. by sale of articles and donations, so that during these two days we have had above 40l. coming in.
From July 13th to 19th, came in 16l. 6s. 8d. more. On July 19th I left for the Continent, to labour for a season in Germany, and returned to Bristol on Oct 11th. For about eight months before this, I had seen it to be the Lord's will that I should go again this year to the Continent for a season, and had made my journey and service a subject of prayer from Nov., 1844. Besides asking the Lord's blessing upon my service, I also sought His help for means, and for this also I had not to wait on Him in vain. For as the Lord had sent me, before I went in 1843, the sum of 702l. 3s. 7d. for various purposes, and for the work in Germany in particular, so He gave me again, on May 3rd, 1845, the sum of 500l, for the work in Germany, yet so, that the surplus which there might be should be employed for the Orphans and other work in my hands. From the conditions under which this donation was given to me, it was obvious then, that whilst on the one hand, when it plainly could be seen that only a certain part of the money would be needed for the present service in Germany, the remainder might be used for the benefit of the Orphans, or the other part of the work; yet, on the other hand, we could not begin at once to apply any part of this money to the objects of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution; for at the commencement I could not know how much might be expended on the service in Germany, particularly as my intention was to do as much as I could for those on the Continent who are in darkness and in the shadow of death, and also as I wished as much as possible to help the Church of Christ in that part of the world. Therefore those who said: "We are quite sure there must be much money in hand for the Orphans, else Mr. Muller would not have gone to Germany," were quite mistaken. Often have I had similar things said to me, or about the work, when we have been in the deepest poverty, simply because in faith a certain step had been taken, or a certain thing had been done, which was connected with great expense. At such times, of course, my fellow-labourers and I have had to be silent. For we could not say it was not so, else it would be exposing our poverty, and would look like asking for help. Therefore we have had to be content with something like this: "Lord, it is said that there is much money in hand, whereby some who would otherwise help us, it may be, are kept from doing so; now, Lord, do Thou nevertheless, as the work is Thine, lay our need, the real state of things, on the hearts of Thy children, that they may help us." Thus it was during my service in Germany in the summer of 1845 also. My fellow-labourers in Bristol and my dear wife and I in Stuttgart, poured out our hearts before the Lord, seeking His help upon the work, and asking Him also for means, and He did not despise our cries. There came in, during the twelve weeks that I was away, for the Orphans alone, 200l. 5s, 5 1/2 d. This, together with what was in hand when I left, and with come money that at the end of my stay in Germany (when I saw that I should scarcely need one half of the 500l.) I could order to be drawn out of my bankers' hands in Bristol, richly supplied all the need, during my absence. But the labourers were repeatedly in straits, and several times the last money was gone; but the Lord refreshed their hearts by seasonable help.—Of the 500l. given for the service in Germany, and for the printing of tracts, there remained 311l. 18s, 1 1/2 d., of which I took for the Orphans 161l. 18s. 1 1/2 d., and for the other objects of the Scriptural Knowledge Institution 150l.
Jan. 17, 1846. From the day of my return to Bristol, on Oct. 11, up to this day, there has been no difficulty at all with regard to means. The many donations which have come in, together with what came to the Orphan-Fund from the surplus of the sum given for the work in Germany, enabled me, without any difficulty, to meet all the expenses, though they were many and great. Of the donations which came in during this period I only refer to the following:
On Nov. 19th heft Bristol to labour for a little while at Sunderland. I had but little money to leave with my dear wife for the work; but my path was plain to go, and therefore my hope was in God, as to the work in Bristol during the meantime, being assured that He would care for it. And thus it was. Rich supplies were granted by Him. On the very next day, after my departure, Nov. 20th, the following anonymous letter was left at my house, containing six five-pound notes and two sovereigns.
"My dear Brother in the Lord,
"About six or eight weeks since, anticipating soon a remittance by a bill, which would become available about a week previous to this date, I was led to ask the Lord what He would desire to do with the money which might remain in my hands when I should receive the money for this bill, and your name was immediately presented to my mind with these words: "the Lord has need of it." I therefore enclose the amount, viz, thirty-two pounds, and remain,
"Yours affectionately in the Lord,
"Nov. 20, 1845. &c. &c."
Look at this, dear reader! Is not the hand of God most manifest in such cases? This unknown donor prays what to do with the money, and my name is brought to his or her mind. See also how seasonable the help!
This 32l. was put to the Orphan-Fund, as there was but little in hand. By this and the other sums which came in during my absence, my dear wife was helped without any difficulty, through all the expenses.
There being now again little in hand, I asked the Lord yesterday (Jan. 16, 1846) that He would be pleased to send in supplies, when almost immediately after a sister in the Lord, who had unexpectedly received a rich remittance from distant relatives, gave me 10l.; and today a lady, who on her way from Cornwall to London was staying for a day or two at Clifton, kindly sent me 20l. Thus we are again supplied at least for a week.
March 2. Goodness and mercy have followed us again in many respects with reference to the work, since the last date, Jan. 17th, up to this day; and with regard to means, there has been again a rich supply granted to us, so that I have been able to meet all the expenses of the work, though they have been for the Orphans alone. 180l. 19s. 1d., and more than 100l. for the other objects, during these six weeks. But there remained now scarcely anything in hand, when I received this morning, from a distance of about 200 miles the following letter with 15l.
"Enclosed is the produce of the sale of a pianoforte, which I thankfully send for the Lord's work in your hands, having received blessing to my own soul by means of that work, and not the least in being weaned from some of those things I once found pleasure in. I have been waiting payment of the amount for some time, but, having money now in hand, I send it without further delay, as you may possibly need it now. The 15l. you will kindly allot as you see most desirable. That our God would fulfil in you all the good pleasure of His goodness, and the work of faith with power, that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, is the prayer of
"Your affectionate Brother,
"* * * * Feb. 28, 1846. * * * *"
March 18. Up to this day also we have been helped, though but little, comparatively, has come in. When yesterday, March 17, all the means were gone, a brother gave me 1l. as a thankoffering for having received a sum of money unexpectedly, as a dividend from a bankruptcy. In the afternoon I received a half sovereign as the profit of the sale of ladies' bags made by a sister in the Lord for the benefit of the Orphans, and 2s. 6d. was put into an Orphan-box at my house. This morning I received the following letter from Devonshire, together with a Post-office order for 5l.
"I send you an order for 5l., half of which will you accept for yourself, and the other half appropriate for the Orphans; or, if they happen to be well supplied at present, you may apply it to the building you have in contemplation. Job xxii. 21-30.
"Believe me very affectionately yours,
"* * * *"
The half of this money was taken for the present need of time Orphans. There was also sent 1l. 13s. from Weymouth. Thus we are again supplied for the present need.
March 20. Today I have to send more money for housekeeping to the Orphan-Houses, and the Lord has kindly given me yesterday afternoon and this morning the means for it. Yesterday came in by sale of trinkets, &c., 3l. 8s. 4 1/2 d. and by two donations 2s., and this morning I received 11s, from Marlborough.
March 21, Saturday. Since yesterday morning, when I had sent off to the Orphan-Houses the very last penny in hand, the following sums have come in: A sister from Worcester gave 2s. 6d., and in the boxes in my house I found 10l. This morning 10s. came from the neighbourhood of Castle Cary, from a sister in Bristol 2s. 2d., by sale of articles 1l. 15s. 8d., and by sale of stockings 5s. Thus I have been enabled, during this week also, to meet all the expenses, though they have been more than 30l.; and 7s. 6d. is left towards the coming week. My heart is in perfect peace, though there are between 140 and 150 Persons to be provided for (including the teachers and matrons in the Orphan-Houses and the apprentices), and though there is heavy sickness in two of the houses. — Saturday Evening, The Lord has already increased "the handful of meal in the barrel, and the little oil in the cruse." This afternoon I received 3l. 14s., being the contents of an Orphan-box at Barnstaple. There came in 3s. 6d, besides.