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had sufficient experience before I reached home from the convention, I am now speaking of.
The bishop was to hold an ordination at Petersburg, immediately after the convention, and I was desired to go by that place to assist in examining the candidates. I did so—and for good reasons I refused two of them. But what did that avail ? Another clergyman was called in, and I had the mortification to hear both ordained the same day. I say hear, for it was a sight I did not wish to see.
Now, if you, or any one, can tell me what possible end it can answer for me to go to conventions, I shall be obliged, and will act accordingly. But as I am pe: suaded no good end can be attained by my going, I shall think I may be better employed, by staying away.
I shall, for the present, break off my narrative, and close this letter, by assuring
Your sincere friend,
136 THE LIFE OF THE REV. D. JARRATT.
· P. S. Should any matters occur worth mentioning, I shall make them the subject of another letter.
Bath, January 17, 1795. REV. AND DEAR SIR,
THIS is the day of my nativity :-I have now lived in the world just sixty-two years; and am entering on the sixty-third, which is usually termed the grand climacteric. What great changes may befal me, this year, I cannot foresee, nor am I anxious to know—but as wisdom and prudence dictate, and religion enjoins, I purpose, by divine grace, to make it my study and endeavor to be ready for all events-whether of prosperity or adversity-ease or pain-sickness or health-life or death. To him, who is truly devoted to God, nothing can fall out unfortunate or premature. "All things shall work together for good to them that love God, and are called according to his purpose.” To such even crosses and afflictions are blessings in dis
guise; and though, for the present, they be not joyous but grievous, yet will they be attended with no real and lasting injury, but rather serve to purge from dross-refine the soul, and stud the crown of life with richer gems.
Few men, perhaps, have enjoyed a greater share of health than I have, in the general course of my life: though I have had some portion of affliction and chastisement, and that of the most painful kind. Sixteen years ago, I was attacked with a calculous disorder, which was attended with extreme pain, for six or seven months
though not without frequent intermissi. ons. But at last, by the kindness of God, I was relieved by passing a flinty stone near the size of a bean. From that time I felt little pain, or inconvenience, from that quarter, for about eight years. I was then attacked again with great violence. But after struggling with the disorder from April till November following, I passed another stone of a much larger size than the first. This was about an inch round. From that time to the present hour, I have had scarce any symptoms of: a calculous complaint. It is now about eight years since the second stone came away. I mention this now, because it was omitted in my for
mer letters, and because I would have it numbered among other very great and singular favors, which I have received at the hands of God, and which ought to be recorded with gratitude and praise.
An uninterrupted series of health and prosperity is seldom the lot of mortals in this world : few could share that lot, and improve it to advantage. It is good for me, said the psalmist, that I have been afflicted. Pain, as a great poet hath said, is Heaven's last effort of good will to man–When pain can't bless, Heaven quits us in despair. By the suspension of health, we learn to estimate its value; and by how much the more excruciating the pains we suffer, by so much the more sensible are we of the blessing of health, and of the goodness and mercy of God in sending Telief, and restoring our wonted vigour. Of all maladies inci.. dent to mankind, that of the stone and gravel is thought to be the most painful and excruciating and as it hath pleased the Lord to lay this infliction on me, with kind and gracious intent-and also, in his own good time, to send repeated relief, my prayer is that I may make a right improvement both of the one and the other.
I have had a slight attack of a bilious complaint this winter; however, I am