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Wesley’s Forgiveness

Sunday, 24, was a useful day to my soul. I found more than once trouble and heaviness; but I called upon the name of the Lord; and He gave me a clear, full approbation of His way, and a calm, thankful acquiescence in His will.

I cannot but stand amazed at the goodness of God. Others are most assaulted on the weak side of their soul; but with me it is quite otherwise; if I have any strength at all (and I have none but what I have received), it is in forgiving injuries; and on this very side am I assaulted more frequently than on any other. Yet leave me not here one hour to myself, or I shall betray myself and Thee!

In the remaining part of this (November) and in the following month, I prepared the rest of the books for the “Christian Library”; a work by which I have lost about two hundred pounds. Perhaps the next generation may know now the value of it.

1753. Saturday, January 20.—I advised one who had been troubled many years with a stubborn paralytic disorder to try a new remedy. Accordingly, she was electrified and found immediate help. By the same means I have known two persons cured of an inveterate pain in the stomach; and another of a pain in his side which he had had ever since he was a child. Nevertheless, who can wonder that many gentlemen of the faculty, as well as their good friends, the apothecaries, decry a medicine so shockingly cheap and easy, as much as they do quick-silver and tar-water?

Saturday, February 3.—I visited one in the Marshalsea prison, a nursery of all manner of wickedness. Oh, shame to man that there should be such a place, such a picture of hell, upon earth! And shame to those who bear the name of Christ that there should need any prison at all in Christendom!

Thursday, 8.—A proposal was made for devolving 1919     correct all temporal business, books and all, entirely on the stewards; so that I might have no care upon me (in London at least) but that of the souls committed to my charge. Oh, when shall it once be! From this day?

In the afternoon I visited many of the sick; but such scenes, who could see unmoved? There are none such to be found in a pagan country. If any of the Indians in Georgia were sick (which indeed exceeding rarely happened till they learned gluttony and drunkenness from the Christians), those that were near him gave him whatever he wanted. Oh, who will convert the English into honest heathens!

On Friday and Saturday I visited as many more as I could. I found some in their cells under ground; others in their garrets, half starved both with cold and hunger, added to weakness and pain. But I found not one of the unemployed who was able to crawl about the room. So wickedly, devilishly false is that common objection, “They are poor only because they are idle.”  If you saw these things with your own eyes, could you lay out money in ornaments or superfluities?

Thursday, 15.—I visited Mr. S---, slowly recovering from a severe illness. He expressed much love, and did not doubt, he said, inasmuch as I meant well, but that God would convince me of my great sin in writing books; seeing men ought to read no book but the Bible. I judged it quite needless to enter into a dispute with a sea captain, seventy-five years old.

Friday, March 16.—I returned to Bristol; and on Monday, 19, set out with my wife for the north.

Saturday, 31.—I preached at Boothbank, where I met Mr. C---, late gardener to the Earl of W---. Surely it cannot be! Is it possible the earl should turn off an honest, diligent, well-tried servant, who had been in the family above fifty years, for no other fault than hearing the Methodists?

Sunday, April 15.—I preached in the afternoon at Cockermouth to well nigh all the inhabitants of the town.  Intending to go from thence into Scotland, I inquired concerning the road and was informed I could not pass the arm of the sea which parts the two kingdoms unless I was at Bonas, about thirty miles from Cockermouth, soon after five in the morning. At first I thought of taking an hour or two’s sleep and setting out at eleven or twelve. But upon further consideration, we chose to take our journey first and rest afterward. So we took horse about seven and, having a calm, moonshiny night, reached Bonas before one. After two or three hours’ sleep, we set out again, without any faintness or drowsiness.


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