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but, if it please God, that I may render him a little more service. It is a blessed thing to live above the fear of death, and I praise God, I fear it not. The means I am about pursuing to save life, so far as I am solely concerned, are, to my apprehension, worse than death. My profuse night-sweats are very weakening to my emaciated frame: But the most distressing nights to this frail body have been as the beginning of heaven to my soul. God hath, as it were, let heaven down upon me in those nights of weakness and waking. I am not suffered once to lose my hope. My confidence is, not that I have lived such or such a life, or served God in this or the other manner: I know of no praver I ever offered, no service I ever performed, but there has been such a mixture of what was wrong in it, that instead of recommending me to the favour of God, I needed his pardon, through Christ, for the same. Yet he hath enabled me in sincerity to serve him. Popular applause was not the thing I sought. If I might be honoured to do good, and my heavenly Father might see his poor child attempting, though feebly and imperfectly, to serve him, and meet with his approving eye and commending · sentence, well done, good and faithful servant,—this my soul regarded and was most solicitous for. I have no hope in what I have been or done. Yet I am full of confidence And this is my confidence; there is a hope set before me: I have fled, I still fly for refuge to that hope. In him I trust; in him I have strong consolation, and shall assuredly be accepted in this beloved of my soul. The spirit of adoption is given me, enabling me to cry, Abba, Father. I have no doubt of my being a child of God, and that life and death, and all my present exercises, are directed in mercy, by my adored heavenly Father."
While he was deliberating on the scheme of going to Lisbon, his principal objection to it was, the great expence, that must necessarily attend it. He doubted in his own mind, whether, with so very precarious a hope of its being beneficial to him, he should pursue it; when his family, which, in case of his decease, would be but slenderly provided for, would suffer so much by the expence of his voyage. It will, I hope, appear to every considerate reader, a glorious circumstance in the Doctor's life, that it was sacrificed to the generous, disinterested service of his great master, and benevolence to mankind; that, with the advantages of a genius and qualifications, equal to the highest advancement in the establishment, and without being chargeable with want of economy, he should find himself under the painful necessity of preserving the little remainder of his life, by an expence, disproportionate to the provision made. for his family, dear to him as his own life. He just hinted this cir
cumstance to a clergyman of the church of England, (who, though he had no previous acquaintance with him, behaved in the most kind and respectful manner to him at Bristol,) as the principal reason why he demurred about the voyage, which his physicians and friends so warmly urged. This worthy and benevolent man, without the Doctor's knowledge, took an opportunity to express before a lady of considerable fortune, who was a dissenter, his esteem and respect for the Doctor, and the great concern it him, that a person, who did so much honour to christianity and the dissenting interest in particular, and who (as he was pleased to express himself) " if his conscience had not prevented, might have been in one of the first dignities of their church," should, on account of his circumstances, be discouraged from taking a step, on which perhaps his life depended: And he added, that he thought it would be an everlasting reproach to the dissenters, as a body, if they who knew of his circumstances, did not take some immediate and vigorous methods to remove his difficulty. This gentleman had no sooner given the hint, and set a handsome precedent, than it was chearfully pursued; and the generosity of the Doctor's friends there and in other places, who knew of his embarrassment, equalled his wants and warmest wishes. This seasonable and unexpected supply was greatly enhanced to him, and the hand of providence appeared more evident in it, as it was procured by so unthought-of an instrument, and without his own desire or knowledge.
A friend in London*, who had for many years generously managed his small temporal concerns, thus wrote to him upon this occasion; "Your friends here will think there is cause either to blame themselves, or you, if the expence of your present expedition (so unavoidable as it seems to be) should create you an hour's uneasiness. Many of them, you are sensible, desire to be ranked among the disciples of Christ; and it exceeds not the humility he hath prescribed to the meanest of them, to aim at a share in a prophet's reward. Instead of selling what you have in the funds, I believe I shall be able, through the benevolence of your friends, to add to it, after having defrayed the expence of your voyage. Besides this, you go with a full gale of prayer; and I trust we shall stand ready, as it were, on the shore, to receive you back with shouts of praise: But it becomes us also to be prepared for a more awful event. O Sir, the time is hastening, when these ways of the Lord, which are now so unsearchable, shall appear to have been marked out
* Mr. Neal, whose kind offices to Dr. Doddridge's family were eminent and invariable.-K.
by the counsels of infinite wisdom; and we, who may be left longest to lean upon and support one another by turns, in this weary land, shall fix our feet on those everlasting hills, where our joys shall never leave us, nor our vigour ever fail us."
The Doctor was so affected with the extraordinary kindness of his friends, and his gratitude to heaven was so intense, that it was too much for his weakened frame, overwhelmed his spirits, and he could never speak of it, but with raptures of joy and thankfulness.- -He thus writes to one of his friends upon this occasion; "It would amaze you, were I to enumerate the appearance of divine providence for us, in raising up for us many most affectionate friends, who have multiplied the instances of their civility, hospitality and liberality, in a manner that has been to me quite wonderful. This is a great encouragement to me to follow, where such a God seems evidently to lead, though it be into a temporary exile. Who would not trust and hope in him?" And to another; "I will freely acknowledge to you, I am not philosopher enough not to be grieved to think, how much of the little provision I had made for my family must be sunk by my voyage and though I know how little this, in comparison, affects them, it toucheth me not the less. But I were the most inexcusable wretch on earth, if I could not trust my experienced, Almighty Friend, to take care of me and mine; especially after some late instances of his astonishing goodness, in raising me up friends, and truly, important ones, whose names a month ago were unknown to me."
Many other kind providences attended him at Bristol and in the view of his intended journey, which I must not particularly enumerate: But cannot omit, that a servant in the family, where he lodged, offered herself to attend him to Lisbon on very reasonable terms; whereas other infirm persons, intending the same voyage, had found it very difficult to procure one, even by very large offers; and that the learned Dr. Warburton, now Bishop of Gloucester, who honoured him with his friendship, in the most obliging manner procured an order from the post-office to the manager of the packet-boats at Falmouth to furnish him with the best accommodations for his voyage. During the Doctor's absence from home, and using the prescribed means for the restoration of his health, he often mentioned it to his friends as a singular happiness, that God had given him an assistant*, to whom he could chearfully consign the care of his academy and congregation, and (as he expresseth it in a letter
*The Reverend Mr. Samuel Clark, (Son of Dr. Clark of St. Albans) now minister of a congregation at Birmingham, to whom I take this opportunity of acknowledging myself much obliged for considerable assistance in this work.
to a friend from Bristol) "whose great prudence and wise disposition of affairs made him quite easy as to both."
It may answer my leading design, before I proceed in the narrative, to observe, that during all his fatigue of travelling, wearisome nights and weeks of languishing, patience had its perfect work. No complaining word was uttered by him; no mark of an uneasy discontented mind seen in him. A heavenly calm dwelt in his breast. He seemed continually pleased and chearful; expressed in obliging terms his thankfulness to the meanest servant, that shewed him any kindness or gave him any assistance, and dropped some pious hints, that might be serviceable to them in their best interests. No one, however fond of life, could be more punctually observant of the regimen prescribed to him and in this he acted from a principle of duty, and a conviction that in past instances he had been too regardless of his life and health. He acknowledged this to a young minister of a tender constitution, with whom he had an interview at Bristol, and earnestly recommended to him the care of his own health, in order to prolong his usefulness. The most painful circumstance in all his illness was, that as speaking was hurtful to him, his physicians had forbid him conversation. He submitted as much as possible to this piece of self-denial, and seldom opened his lips, but to express his gratitude and affection to his friends, and his thanksgiving to his heavenly Father, for all those blessings, with which he was so richly furnished both for body and soul. He never, in his most painful and declining state, expressed, any regret, but what arose from that generous ardour, which filled his soul, and the strong desire he felt to testify, by longer and more distinguished services, his gratitude and love to his divine master. In this view he would sometimes express his desires of the recovery of his health; but these desires were bounded by the meekest and most entire submission to the divine will.
When his friends reminded him of his fidelity, diligence and zeal in his master's service, even to his power, and, as he then felt and they saw, beyond his power, he used to reply, "I am nothing, all is to be ascribed to the free grace of God." He often told them, that he could not be sufficiently thankful, for the honour and happiness God had conferred upon him, in that he had been enabled sincerely to endeavour, though very imperfectly, to do him and his glorious cause some little service in the world; that this, when compared with his delightful hopes of that future eternal reward, with which he had been so often animated and cheared, filled him with such a sense of his infinite
obligations to his heavenly Father, and to the dying love of his blessed Redeemer, that all he had done, or ever could do, to serve his cause in the world, appeared to him as nothing, yea, less than nothing. Nor did the meanest and most useless christian, with greater humility renounce all self-dependence and every shadow of merit. He often professed, that his only hope and joyful expectation of pardon and acceptance were absolutely founded on the mercy of God, through the merits and intercession of his Redeemer, that it was a great satisfaction to him to reflect, that, through the whole course of his ministry, it had been his constant concern to direct and recommend his hearers to this only foundation, on which, he then felt, he could so safely and joyfully trust his own soul. He often professed his cordial belief of the truth, importance and excellency of those doctrines, which it had been the business and delight of his life to explain, illustrate and enforce and it was his fervent prayer, that God would, by his spirit, lead the minds of ministers into a just knowledge of them; and give their eyes to see, and their hearts to feel, their reality, power and sweetness, in the same manner as he did. What doctrines he referred to, his writings sufficiently shew.- -But it is time to return to the narrative.
He left Bristol, Sept. 17th, and after a fatiguing journey of ten days, occasioned partly by the badness of the season and roads, and partly by his great weakness, he arrived at Falmouth, in Cornwall. There he was received in the kindest manner by Dr. Turner, to whom he had been recommended by his physicians at Bristol and Bath: In his house he was generously entertained while he continued there, and he also recommended him to the care of his nephew Dr. Cantley, at Lisbon. His most painful and threatning symptoms had been suspended during his journey and stay at Falmouth, but returned with greater violence the night before he sailed: So that Mrs. Doddridge thought it necessary to propose, that he should either return home, or stay a while longer there; to which, having some hope from a change of climate, he returned this short answer, "The die is cast, and I chuse to go." It shewed no small degree of faith and courage in him to venture, amidst such weakness and through so many perils, on such a voyage; especially into so bigotted a country as Portugal; where, if his profession were known, and his writings had been seen, by any of the romish priests (as they probably might, being in several hands at Lisbon) it might have been attended with deplorable consequences to him and his friends. In this undertaking, he acted by the unanimous advice of the most competent judges; he had earnestly sought the direction of providence, was deter