Sidor som bilder
PDF
ePub

as usual, for which I have reason to be thankful. So, hoping these few lines may find thee in the same state of health, and our children also, I crave the assistance of thy spirit, that we may labour together in the unity of the one spirit, which is the bond of peace, though absent in body. I conclude. with love unfeigned to thee and our children, thy affectionate wife,

Ann MOORE. 3d of 4th mo. 1761.

The following exhortation to her children is taken from the latter part of her last will :

“My dear children, fear the Lord, and love your tender father ; be willing always to take his counsel, and to honour him in his old age, that the bless-, ing of honouring a father and a mother may be your portion, and that you may live long in the land.”

three years,

After living a single solitary life' for upwards of

I was again favoured with a near and dear companion, namely, Mary, the widow of Tho'. mas Atkinson, of Bucks 'county-for whose memory I have the following testimony :

As it pleased the Lord in his infinite goodness, once more to favour me with a companion, so I have to believe she was of his own pointing out.And now in his wisdom he has seen meet to separate us again ; for the Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away-and blessed be his name.

This I may say, that the way of our first acquaintance, and coming together, was to me, remarkable ; and I verily believe, as I have often thought, that it was the Lord's doings, and marvellous in my eyes. And since kind Providence hath been pleased to fa

vour me with such an help-meet, in gratitude for the favour, and for the tender affection she manifested to me and mine, I can do no less than leave a brief account of her virtuous qualifications, with which the Lord in mercy was pleased to adorn her.

It is said, "the righteous are taken away, and no man layeth it to heart,” yet they “shall be had in everlasting remembrance” with him, before whom we must all appear. Of my dear wife I may truly say, her tender care over me and mine hath been great. Her solid deportment and exemplary conduct, both at home and abroad, were edifying; her words being few and savoury, seasoned with the salt of the kingdom. She was of a cheerful, sweet disposition, although her countenance was grave and solid.

Her moderation appeared in all things, both in respect to eating, drinking, apparel, and whatsoever else she was concerned in. Being largely favoured with the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, she was well esteemed by most, if not all, who were acquainted with her. Her mind was not easily moved either with prosperity or adversity. In regard to a livelihood here, she was industrious, when of ability, not spending her time in idleness; but more especially she was diligent to gain an inheritance hereafter. And the Lord, in his infinite mercy, was pleased to commit to her charge a gift in the ministry, which, I often thought, she kept too much from shining, so as to give light to the whole house and family of God's church and people. But she was deeply concerned, and dwelt under a reverent fear (as she often told me) lest she should be too forward. But when she gave up to the requirings

4

of the holy witness of Truth, she generally spoke as one having authority, and like the good householder, brought forth out of the treasury things new and old. I verily believe, her secret travail and labours of love, both at home and abroad, will be to some like bread cast upon the waters, that will return again after many days.

I may safely say, she had the true marks and qualifications of a minister, for she was, in a great degree, blameless, sober, and of good behaviour ; no striker for the greatest fault, but generally bore it with patience and meekness. She was not greedy of filthy lucre (as she termed it) in comparison of that eternal weight of glory, or heavenly treasure. She was no brawler, nor lifted up with pride, but one that ruled well her own house, having her children and household in subjection with gravity. Her prudent conduct and wholesome advice, seasonably given, often kept her children both in subjeetion and fear; for she abhorred deceit and hypocrisy, and with a double tongue she had no unity.

She was a diligent attender of meetings, both for worship and discipline, at home and abroad, when of ability, being remarkable for humble waiting therein.

Her last sickness was a lingering consumption, with something of a dumb ague, which wrought together to bring her towards her dissolution, notwithstanding sundry necessary means were used for her relief, but to little purpose. Thus she conti- , nued near a year, until at length she was confined to her bed.

And although her outward man or mortal body was fast passing away, yet her inward or spiritual man evidently grew stronger and

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

stronger, and the eternal light in her shined brighter and brighter. Her chief concern seemed to be for the everlasting welfare and prosperity of the children of men.

During the time of her illness, she gave many lively and affecting cautions, both to her children and others; of which I was in part a partaker, being mostly with her. She warned and exhorted them to prepare for such a time as that, and not leave their work behind hand; often saying in a humble manner, “what an awful, bowed people we ought to be.”

About five weeks before her departure, being very weak, she wrote a few lines to her son Thomas, as follows :-"My dearly beloved child, I am now in a poor state of health, not knowing that I may ever see thee again, but I am willing to let thee know my mind concerning thee. I cannot write much, but let it sink the deeper in thy mind. My prayers have been put up, day and night, to Almighty God, for thy preservation, and my advice to thee hath been frequent, as thou knowest. I think I may say, I have done all that I can. I have discharged my duty, and am clear on thy account.”

A few days before her decease her son was sent for, and she told him in a very affecting manner, that she had said all she could say, and had done all she could do for him; and also again expressed her clearness in regard of her duty on his account. To a friend who came in to see her, she said, I glad to see thee, for I have often thought of thee. I see something good in thy countenance, and I want thee to improve it. It is a fine thing to be prepared against death comes, so as to have nothing to do but

am

to die.” At another time, her daughter-in-law coming into the room, she beckoned to her to sit down, then took her by the hand, and, as a vessel filled with love, she said, “I love thee; be a good girl, and the Lord will bless thee."

The evening before her departure, being first-day, there came many friends to see her, and she earnestly beholding them, requested that they might sit down together, and wait in God's fear, in true silence. After a season of waiting in holy awe, notwithstanding she had been scarcely able to speak above her breath, but being divinely favoured at that time, her tongue was loosed, so as to leave her last testimony and dying words after this manner :“ Friends, if you love God, he will love you; but, if you do not love God, how can you expect to be beloved of him? If you would gather your families more frequently, and sit down in his fear, drawing your minds from this world to wait in true silence, then you would grow in the Truth.” She said more to the same effect, in a tender, awful manner, desiring that they might remember her words; which I believe made a deep impression on many minds.

After this seasonable and edifying time, she desired friends might withdraw, for she found she was growing weaker, and thought her dissolution was near; yet lay in a quiet composed frame of mind, being resigned to the will of God, and not afraid to die, the terrors of death (as she had often said) being taken away. She also said she found nothing as a hindrance to obstruct her entrance into the glorious kingdom of rest and peace. She had often requested that I might freely give her up, and not mourn for

« FöregåendeFortsätt »