Posted by: Sherry Goodwin | September 19, 2008


                           (Extracts from Letters to Miss E. J. Whately.)

. . .Though I have had plenty of invalided times, and of short sharp suffering, this has been my very first experience of really severe and prolonged illness (since October); and I do not merely think I ought  to feel, but I DO feel, that it was the crowning blessing of a year of unprecedented blessing and yet of many trials.  “Great is Thy faithfulness” shines on every day of it; and “I will fear no evil” is more than ever a very song to me.  It was as if, while layng His own dear hand ever so heavily upon me, He kept the enemy completely at a distance, and did not let him even approach me, encompassing me with a wall of fire. . .For three or four weeks I was too prostrate for any consecutive prayer, or for even a text to be given me; and this was the time for realizing what “silent in love” meant (Zeph. iii. 17).  And then it seemed doubly sweet when I was again able to “hold converse” with Him.  He seemed, too, so often to send answers from His own word with wonderful power.  One evening (after a relapse) I longed so much to be able to pray, but found I was too weak for the least effort of thought, and I only looked up and said, “Lord Jesus, I am so tired!”  And then He brought to my mind “rest in the Lord,” with its lovely marginal reading, “be silent to the Lord,” and so I just was silent to Him, and He seemed to overflow me with perfect peace, in the sense of His own perfect love. . .I was more astonished at finding that He could make me quite as glad and willing to live and suffer, as to go straight away to heaven, than at anything I think.  And it is just the same now. I have no idea how long I may have to wait, for (though not now ill, but only invalided) what with relapses and results I am making very slow progress, and not likely to be able for any sort of work for months yet:  but I do so feel the truth of “blessed are they that wait for Him.”  It seems a necessary sequence of the first part of the verse, “therefore will the Lord wait,” for waiting for Him is waiting WITH Him.
. . .It is so nice to meet those with whom one is in full sympathy.  One meets so many who only go such a little way; I mean really Christians, yet taking such faint interest in Christ’s cause and kingdom, all alive as to art, or music, or general on-goings, yet not seeming to feel the music of His name. One does so long for all who are looking to Him for salvation to be “true-hearted, whole-hearted.”  And I have been thinking how inevitabley such half-hearted Christians will be at a disadvantage when “He cometh,” as compared with those whose whole gladness is from Him only, and whose whole interests are centered in His kingdom and that which advances it.

Frances Ridley Havergal from MEMORIALS


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