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“Sun. July 7.-I preached this morning from Matt. xi. 28.—While I was endeavouring to encourage and comfort burdened sinners, I could get little comfort myself. I continued much in the same state till family prayer, when my mind was in some degree quickened. About ten o'clock, my dear wife and I retired into my study, to spend some time in reading over the covenant with God which we signed and sealed on our marriage day, and to join in social prayer. While we were together, a sudden power descended into my heart, and I felt as if emptied of all evil, and filled with all good. My dear wife thought I was fainting, as I appeared quite pale, and let the hymn book fall out of my hand. I could only cry with such holy awe as I never before experienced, 'Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts, &c. and and sometimes, ‘Glory, glory, glory,' for a considerable time together; and at intervals, 'Oh! I am filled; I am filled with God.' My dear wife also was greatly blessed. Our intercourse has been much sweetened with the divine presence. I preached at noon in the open large congregation with much freedom; and at Leeds at night with uncommon liberty in the chapel. Much assisted and blessed also in meeting the society. Laid me down in great peace of mind. This is the best day I
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“Tues. 16.—Rose early and spent some time in meditation and prayer. I am much in doubt this forenoon about my present state. I have not a doubt, but on Sunday, 7th inst. the Lord cleansed my heart from all sin; yet I cannot fully determine whether I have not given way to self-seeking. I would not deceive myself. O Lord, shew me my real state, I beseech thee; this was my prayer. I spent much time in earnest wrestling with the Lord. I longed for some private place where I might pour out my heart fully before him.
In the evening, the Lord favoured me with another baptism of his Holy Spirit; every cloud was removed, and the Lord shone fully and clearly on my mind. Blessed be his
I was led to see how absolutely necessary it is for me to keep my heart with all diligence, and constantly to watch and
pray. Sun. July 28.—I have abundant cause to be thankful this morning for thę late mercies which I have re
ceived. I find the intercourse open between God and my soul. For some days last past, I have had little time for retirement, having had to appoint the preachers coming to Conference their lodgings, and to attend to other matters which have taken up my time. I bless God, that amidst this hurry, nothing has happened which brings condemnation on my mind. I was much blessed this morning under a sermon preached by Mr. M'Allum from 2 Peter i. 19; and exceedingly profited in conversation with Mr. Bramwell, who is a pattern of deep and genuine piety; and also in conversation and prayer with my dear wife. O Lord, may I never grieve thee more.
“ Thurs. Aug. 8.—The business of Conference has hindered my writing for some time. My mind has not been so composed at all times as I could have wished, owing to the continual hurry and bustle, to which I have been unavoidably exposed. Yet the Lord has frequently blessed me in an extraordinary manner. I have had the honour, the pleasure, and the profit of the company of most of my venerable and aged brethren, or rather, fathers in the ministry, who have frequently made our house their home during the time of Conference. There has been much of God in this Conference.
Mr. Hopper and others of the oldest preachers say, they never saw so excellent a spirit at any time, or felt so much of the Divine presence.
“ The subject of greatest difficulty, was that of the Sacraments. Many of our Societies requested to have the Lord's Supper administered to them by their own preachers. The subject was debated with much candour and coolness; a spirit of moderation and mutual forbearance evidently governed the brethren on both sides. Mr. Pawson being in the chair could say but little; but what he did say* had a tendency to promote peace. At
*" I endeavoured to guard them against all undue warmth of temper, against all personal reflections and personal altercations, and entreated them to endeavour to govern their own spirit and temper, so that we might get through our business comfortably. We were again in no small danger of dividing: many fully expected that we should, and laboured to accomplish it: but they
length, after being debated for a whole day, it was put to the vote, whether those societies which unanimously desire it, should have the Lord's Supper administered by their own preachers or not? There were for the Lord's Supper eighty-six; against it, thirty-eight; majority fortyeight. I hope this will be a bond of union. Most, if not all, the preachers appear to be well satisfied; and brotherly love has been greatly increased.
“The Lord's Supper was administered in our chapel at Leeds, on Sunday, Aug. 4. The place was exceedingly crowded, which rendered it less comfortable than it otherwise would have been. Yet there was much of the divine presence felt. In the evening my dear uncle, being President, preached from Isaiah lii. 7. · How beautiful on the mountains,' &c. after which, in public, before about four thousand people, he admitted twentythree* young preachers into full connexion. They all stood
up in the front seat of the gallery before the pulpit. He asked them many questions respecting their experience, &c. which they answered. He also gave them suitable advices and admonitions; particularly reminding them of the great number of persons who were witnesses of their solemn engagements. The young men, some of them at least, wept exceedingly. Mr. Mather gave them an exhortation and prayed: then Mr. Hopper prayed in a most melting manner; after which my uncle prayed and concluded. The service continued three hours, yet none seemed weary. It was like another Pentecost. People, both professors of religion and others, were weeping on every side. From what I have since heard, I believe it was a time of general refreshing.
“ On Thursday evening, Aug. 8th, after the business
were again happily disappointed. I entreated my brethren to sit down as in the presence of the Lord, and in the fear of his sacred name, with a single eye to his glory, take into their serious consideration the state of our societies; and laying aside all bigotry and party spirit, endeavour to find out what is necessary to be done in order effectually to promote the glory of God and the spi ritual prosperity of his people. Accordingly, after long and serious consideration, it was carried by a large majority, that in those societies where the people are unanimous, they shall have the Sacrament; bnt nowhere besides.”—Mr. Pawson's M.S. Journal.
* Of these twenty-three, four only survive :-John Kershaw, John Denton, Thomas Simmonite, and William Shelmerdine.
of the Conference was over, we solemnly engaged to devote ourselves wholly to God and the work of the ministry, in which I believe all present were deeply affected. Then, we received the Lord's Supper together. Here again my heart overflowed with love. Three of the old preachers, my uncle Pawson, Mr. Thompson, and Mr. Mather prayed, and God was indeed very present and precious.
“ The next morning, Friday, Aug. 9, we met at five o'clock, and after some friendly conversation, and several had prayed, we finally parted. It affected my heart much to see the old men, Mr. Hopper particularly, weeping; and to hear him say, he had lived to see glorious days ;—that this was the best Conference he had attended in upwards of forty years. Glory be to God.”
My father was re-appointed to the Leeds Circuit this Conference with the Rev. Messrs. Thomas Hanby and John Allen. Mr. Percival was removed to York, and Mr. Allen relieved of the cares and responsibilities of superintendency by Mr. Hanby. In being appointed to labour with such colleagues, my father felt that “the lines had fallen to him in pleasant places,” and under a deep sense of obligation, he entered upon the labours of the year with greater zeal and devotedness than ever before. The circuit was visited with a remarkable outpouring of the Holy Spirit this year; an extraordinary revival of religion took place, and not less than twelve hundred members were added to the society. My father's own words will best describe the character of his religious experience, the extent of his labours, the success with which they were attended, and the trials by which he was disciplined during this period.
“ Sat. night, Aug. 17.—I am now resolved to read, and meditate, and pray, and preach, and live, as I never have done before. O help me, 0
God! “Mon. Sept. 9.—Yesterday was a day of much labour and much rest. I preached at seven in the morning at Leeds, from Matt. xii. 35, with much pleasure and profit to my own soul. Then I met two large classes, in which I found much of the divine presence. At ten o'clock, I rode to Wortley, and read prayers and preached in Mr. Floyd's chapel; returned home to dinner, and met three classes. Preached in the evening at Leeds, and met the
society. When I had done, I was much fatigued, but my soul was like a watered garden. I then spent a profitable hour in my little happy family, in spiritual conversation, singing, and prayer. We experienced a little heaven. My dear wife is growing in grace, and our servant maid is much devoted to God. Oh! what cause I have to praise the Lord.
" At five o'clock this morning I preached in much weakness of body from ‘My meditation of Him is sweet.' Blessed be God, my heart was like melting wax before the Lord. I was enabled to live the rest of the day in a watchful, prayerful frame of mind. In the evening I preached at Leeds with great freedom from Heb. xiii. 9.
“ Sun. 15.—A day of almost uninterrupted labour, but constant inward rest. I preached twice and met the classes at Brømley. The people here are generally falling out among themselves. I had much trouble with two of them, who seemed as if they would bite and devour each other. Oh! what a religious world do we live in. How few live constantly in the Christian spirit and temper.
• Sun. 22.—Mr. Hanby administered the Lord's Supper at Holbeck this forenoon. The people informed me to-night, it was a blessed season: their souls were filled with consolation, and their faith and love much increased. What a pity that any of our people should oppose the administration of that sacred ordinance among us.
Although it had been decided by the Conference that the sacraments should be administered where the socie. ties unanimously desired it, it will be seen from the preceding quotation, that some of the people still continued to oppose this reasonable decision. Mr. E. thus refers to the subject in a letter to Mr. Reece, dated Oct. 4, 1793.
"I have delayed writing in order that I might give you some information respecting the state of our affairs, since our “innovations' as some call them. Mr. Hanby has administered the Lord's Supper at Thorner and at Holbeck; which was attended with a remarkable blessing. The accounts which the communicants give of both these seasons would delight you. The Lord was most powerfully and graciously present; insomuch that some who had been unfriendly to the administration of the Sacrament by their own preachers, and went rather as