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Title: The Pilot's Daughter: an account of Elizabeth Cullingham

Author: Francis Cunningham

Release date: January 10, 2012 [eBook #38545]

Language: English


Transcribed from the 1841 L. & G. Seeley edition by David Price, email


p. iiTHE









The subject of this little memoir was so well known to her neighbours, and to the many young persons with whom she associated, that I have felt sure a short account of her would not be unacceptable to them.  They knew her quiet, virtuous, consistent, pious walk, and they will, I am sure, bear witness, that I do not over-state the blameless character which she maintained.  This, as it was an example to others, so it must be a cause of heartfelt rejoicing to her friends now that she has finished her course, and entered into her rest.  To others, this little history may have its use.  It is not the account of a person of unusual powers of mind, or of attainment; nor of one placed in extraordinary circumstances, although she was blessed with pious parents, who watchfully instructed her in the truths of Religion, p. 2as well as taught her by their example.  She had only the advantages which many young persons in every village and town possess, nor did she attain to any situation in life, which multitudes may not aspire to.  But she gained a deep and well-grounded feeling of Religion.  She learned the evil nature of her heart.  She discovered and gained that treasure, which is revealed in the Lord Jesus Christ.  She laid hold by faith on his merits.  She was taught of the Holy Spirit; and the graces of the Spirit were in an eminent degree manifested in her life.  She by the same power acquired the adorning of the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of the Lord of great price.  She followed in the simple training of the ministry of the Church: neither seeking to wander from its pastures, nor exercising any want of charity towards those who differed from her, one of whom, attached to another denomination of Christians, her only surviving sister, and nearest friend, was her constant companion; with her she lived in perfect unity of Spirit.  Her circumstances then had nothing in them out of the ordinary course of human life.  She had temptations peculiar to her own character and disposition, and she met with the usual trials, which belong to her situation in life.  She had her time of health, and of sickness.  She was a p. 3daughter and a sister.  She was engaged in a variety of pursuits both to gain her livelihood, and to do good to others; but in every state,—without exhibiting any quality to which her friends and neighbours might not aspire,—she may be truly said to have walked after her measure in her Master’s footsteps, and to have adorned her Christian profession.

The father of this young woman was James Cullingham.  He had for many years been a Pilot.  He was a man of somewhat original character.  Throughout his life he had followed, without variation, the usual line of his calling, and faithfully discharged the duties of his occupation.  The business of a Pilot on this part of the coast, is to take ships coming from the North to London.  Then to return home again, to wait perhaps a few days till the opportunity occurs of another voyage.  This kind of life is one of a good deal of temptation; but it did not prove more than this to him, for he passed through it without reproach, although somewhat unsuccessfully as to his own profit.  In the depth of the winter, when the Northern Ports were frozen, his usual duties were suspended.  It was in these intervals we had occasion to observe his valuable character.  His season of rest was employed chiefly at home, reading various books; in his latter years, books of devotion; and he was rarely absent from the House of God.  In the latter part of his life, p. 4he was in the habit, when at home, of having stated prayer three times a day; and he read the Scriptures in the order of the Calendar of the Prayer Book; at this period he also gave up all watching for the coming in sight of ships on the Sabbath day; always, however, being ready to go out to them, as his profession called him to do, if there was any actual necessity.  On the week days at the prayers, as well as on the Sunday, he constantly attended the services of the Church.  I shall long remember, during the last years of his life, (the only period when I knew him,) his respectable appearance, his attentive demeanour and the animation with which he made the responses out of a large prayer book, which was his constant companion, altogether manifesting the fulness of heart, with which he entered into the service of God.  He was a fine model of a man, whose religion partook of the character of a former age.  He was deeply serious, entirely practical, strict in his attachment to the Church; but his religious feeling, although it led him sometimes to a fearless reproach of sin in others, did not so much draw him to aim at the conversion of his neighbours.  He owed very much of the expansion of his religious mind to a social Prayer Meeting, at which he was a constant attendant.  One of his family remembers the first deviation from that remarkable firmness which belonged to his natural character, on p. 5which occasion he came home from one of these Meetings, deeply affected, and witnessed by his tears, the impression he had received.  He had one remarkable deliverance from Shipwreck.  He had been called to take charge of a ship in distress which in the course of ten minutes must have perished, had it not pleased God to direct an instantaneous change of the wind.  In this danger he felt himself calm and prepared for his end.  He was, in after years, constantly sensible of this deliverance, and on two sheets of paper, nailed up in his bed room, he wrote as a memorial in his own large hand: “The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear; the Lord is the strength of my life of whom shall I be afraid?”  And “The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart hath trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart danceth for joy, and in my song will I praise him.”  Psalm xxviii. 8.  He was a man of undaunted courage, considering, that in his station of life, it was his duty to run any risks by which he might be faithful to his occupation, and acquit himself of the responsibility entrusted to him.

Elizabeth’s Mother was a person of no common character.  She had been left an orphan at sixteen years of age.  She had spent many years in service, and at the conclusion of this time, had married.  Her character was one of great decision, and warmth of p. 6feeling.  She was a person of singular benevolence, and filled a valuable post amongst her afflicted neighbours, and in our District Society.  Her great sympathy with others, and her uncommon power of body and of mind, had led her to give up days and nights to nursing her neighbours.  This labour eventually undermined, and permanently injured her vigorous constitution.  Those only, who saw her in her afflictions, can be aware of the deep feeling which dwelt in her heart.  She was in the habit of reading a variety of common books which fell in her way.  I remember some very curious questions, which she once put to me on the family of an individual, which had figured in the History of England.  Her piety was ardent.  It was her habit to retire every afternoon to her chamber for prayer.  She had not, perhaps, as much of adherence to the forms of the Church as her husband, although she was zealously attached to it, and a constant frequenter of its services.  She was very peculiarly observant of statements of doctrine, made in the Public Ministry, giving the most marked preference to those which freely offered the grace of God to all.  She had been led to very deep seriousness of religious feeling by the ardent piety and interesting death of her second daughter, who exemplified, during eleven weeks of painful sickness, an attainment in religion, which afforded the fullest assurance of her joyful entry into the everlasting p. 7kingdom of her Lord and Saviour.  That daughter had taken a somewhat higher course of mental pursuit, than any of her family.  She was accustomed to express her devout feeling in verse, and a copy book has been put into my hands, containing a variety of little poems, which at least shew her sweetness of mind, and her knowledge of religion.  I cannot forbear quoting one of them, not particularly for its excellence, but because it serves to prove, in reply to the charge often made of ingratitude against the poor, how frequently a deep feeling of thankfulness may exist, which nevertheless gains no public expression.  These lines are on the death of a venerable Clergyman, whom I myself knew to have been frequently foremost in acts of benevolence, and often, if necessity required it, willing to stand almost alone in deeds of enlarged charity.

On the death of the Rev. J. G. Spurgeon,
Rector of Oulton.

Hark! tis the loud knell which tolling so dreary,
Announces to all, a frail mortal’s decease;
That relieved from pain, at rest is the weary,
A Christian has entered the mansions of peace.

But it tells us a friend of the poor is departed,
A benevolent friend has resign’d his last breath,
And the eye where the soft tear of pity has started,
Is now closed, and sleeps in the silence of death.

p. 8Yet while in deep sorrow, his loss we’re deploring,
His spirit is mounting to Heaven above;
To those regions of light he is rapidly soaring,
To reap the reward of his labours of love.

Peace to thine ashes! thy warfare is ended,
Thou hast fought the good fight, and hast entered thy rest;
Still a tear dims their eye, thou so kindly befriended,
And thy memory is sweet to the poor and distress’d.

On her death bed, Susan Cullingham spoke of ‘passing the dark valley, but,’ she added, ‘It is light,’ and she bade her friends go to the grave, not to weep, but to look for her in heaven.

I think that I have rarely known in their rank of life, a finer specimen, of what I might wish the whole population of my parish to be, than the Father and Mother of Elizabeth Cullingham.  They lived most happily together, and after death were not long separated.  Their death I shall have occasion presently to record.

Elizabeth’s early life was such as might be expected in her station.  She had exceedingly good health and spirits at this period.  She was fully on par with all other girls in childish pursuits.  Her disposition was, however, always careful.  She was considerate in all things, not wasteful of any thing, a stayer at home, prudent and disposed to seriousness.  At the age of sixteen, she went to fill a subordinate p. 9situation in a family in London, in which a female relative was the housekeeper.  In this situation she was exposed to no more temptation than belongs to a servant in general.  She was permitted, indeed, to partake of the usual amusements which are allowed to servants in London, but she was protected from the evils which might have resulted from those amusements, by the watchful attention of the relation under whose care she was placed, and by the preventing grace of God.

During the three years of her residence in London nothing occurred to mark her course.  She fulfilled her duties, and gained the character of a good servant.  She returned to Lowestoft about the month of May, 1831, in health and spirits.  Her return was the wish of her careful mother, who feared to leave her daughter at a distance, without the protection of the kind relative, who had now retired from service.  On her return, Elizabeth resided in her own family, and followed the business she had been taught; but her residence at home was under somewhat new circumstances.  At this period certain means of instruction were offered to the young people of the parish, which, under Divine help, were peculiarly calculated to meet her opening mind.  These means were 1st, a Bible Class, and 2nd, a meeting of women, belonging to the Church, for the more especial object of Social Prayer.  Both of these p. 10she frequently acknowledged to have been of great advantage to her.

In the Bible Class, the Scriptures were read, and generally explained, whilst the object constantly kept in view was to fix the word on the conscience of the young people.  Each one of these were invited to repeat some portion of Scripture or a hymn, selected by themselves.  The meeting of women was under the immediate. direction of the minister, but presided over by Mrs. Cunningham: in it the word of God was read, and a review taken of the sermons of the preceding Sunday.  Two or three of the members were then at liberty to engage in prayer.  In the latter years of her life, Elizabeth occasionally offered up prayer.  These meetings were generally seasons of edification to her, and very much tended to establish her religious mind: they had also the effect of uniting her with those of our Church who were likeminded.  Their general result I have found to be greatly beneficial to the Church itself.  It was observed by her relations that from the time of Elizabeth’s first attendance on these occasions, she devoted herself more entirely to the service of God.  Her conduct was altered: she became more serious, and she had more love for the Scriptures, and as the necessary consequence, other books were laid aside: her natural fretfulness was also brought under, and her character assumed that sweetness and p. 11quietness which it retained till the end.  For two or three years she went on in this course.  She was laborious in gaining her livelihood, and as her health was never strong, after her return home she occupied herself at needle-work, at which, however, through the indulgence of her parent, she was not required to labour more than suited her health.

She was habitually, and by principle, industrious, feeling that it was equally a Christian duty to be diligent in business, as to be fervent in spirit, serving the Lord.  I do not remember any circumstances relating to her history at this period which were of importance.  For two or three years she pursued the even tenor of her way.  She was dutiful to her parents, kind to all around her, serviceable to the Church, and in every way an ornament to her Christian profession.  The work of conversion was obviously going on in her soul.  The fulfilment of every duty, private and public, gave full proof of it.

It was about the year 1833 that she had the offer made of a situation in a gentleman’s family, of which the religious habits were particularly suited to her.  Into this family she entered, and was absent for about three years in a distant part of the kingdom.  During this time she had a severe attack of illness, which resulted in her return home.  But as this new state of servitude was somewhat of a trial to her, and it had its peculiar burden in her weak state p. 12of health, and with her naturally anxious habit of mind, so it was calculated to exhibit the strength of principle which she had attained.  I am glad to be able to bring forward a witness of her conduct as a servant during this period.  When she was dead I wrote to her late master, to ask about her, and I subjoin a part of his reply in his own words.

Brighton, July 28.

My dear Friend,

“Though we cannot but lament the removal of such manifestly bright saints as E. C. from this our lower earth, yet every such removal is like a door opened in heaven; and one seems to hear her peaceful spirit saying to us, “Be followers of me, and of them who have inherited the promises.”  Blessed are such dead who die in the Lord.  As long as E. C. was in my service, I always considered her as one of the most perfect characters I had ever seen.  She was with us, I should think, about three years.

“She always seemed to me a model of Christian deportment as a servant, for I never saw one ruffle or ripple in the even stream of her temper; I never saw her upset or put out by any hasty order or word which I might have spoken.  She was evidently always at rest in Jesus—enjoying very unusually peace and joy in believing—and this was p. 13no doubt granted to a more simple and consistent obedience than is generally seen in professors of our days.  The characteristic graces of her state appeared to me humility and quiet contentment in her situation of life.  She had no high sounding profession, but all was a meek, yet very firm, testimony to that blessed Master’s grace who had “wrought all her works in her.”

“When servants are really thus Christian, they do especially adorn the Gospel of God their Saviour.  “Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things, not answering again, not purloining, but shewing all good fidelity, that they may adorn the doctrines of God our Saviour in all things.”  Titus ii. 9.

“She did this most eminently.  Of course I can say little more: the incidents in a servant’s life are generally so few.  Hers was a blessed constancy, an even flow of calm and established piety.”

* * * * * * * * *

The testimony of this letter to the character of Elizabeth, as a servant, is remarkable.  ‘Not one ruffle or ripple in the even stream of her temper,’ of this naturally anxious, and even fretful, girl.  ‘Never upset or put out by any hasty order or word:’ ‘consistent obedience:’ ‘humility and quiet contentment in her situation in life,’ marking all her course.  How truly may we feel with her master that all this p. 14was a strong testimony to the grace of that blessed Saviour, who had “wrought all her works in her.”  Yet what encouragement does this case afford to many others who are engaged in domestic service.  She fulfilled her duty as unto the Lord, and of her Master in heaven she will doubtless receive her reward.

Elizabeth now having returned home, took her place in the parish.  She sought to be serviceable to others as well as to gain her livelihood: she was a constant helper to the ministry, and a great comfort to her parents, with whom she dwelt.  Her religious mind appeared to be continually progressing.  At the close of the year 1836, she began a private journal, which has been lent to me.  It contains chiefly notes of sermons which she heard, and of the impression which they produced on her mind.  How happy it is when the soul is brought so to hunger and thirst after righteousness, that it feeds upon all the food which is presented to it; when the means of grace are used not without profit, when sermons are listened to, and applied to the heart, when the word of God is read, and marked, and inwardly digested, so that the hope of everlasting life is embraced, and held fast.  It was so with Elizabeth C.

No word seemed to be received without attention and application.  I wish that her example may be p. 15followed in this matter, and with the same blessing.  I will now make some extracts from her journal; they will serve to shew the very inside of her mind.  It begins Dec. 18, 1836.  ‘Mr. C. preached from Isaiah xl. 3, 5.  I felt my mind much impressed with the sermon.  O that the Lord may remove every mountain that impedes my way to Him.’  Saturday being the last day of the year she writes—‘When I look back on the past year, how many short comings and backslidings, how much coldness and lukewarmness have I to mourn over: O blessed Lord, enable me to dedicate myself afresh to thy service, in entering upon another year, and do thou pardon all that is passed.’  January 1.  ‘The first text which caught my eye this morning was Isaiah i. 25.  “O blessed Lord, purge away all my sins, and make me to walk humbly before thee.”  Mr. C. preached from Rom. xii. 1, 2.  How was my mind impressed when he pointed out the necessity of giving the whole heart to God.  I was led to pray earnestly that the Lord would enable me to do so for Jesus sake.  January 2.  Attended a Prayer Meeting at the Vicarage, to implore the outpouring of the Spirit.  O Lord, hear the prayers which have this day been offered up.  January 15.  Mr. C. preached from 1 Cor. ii. 9.  The sermon was truly interesting and affecting, as he spoke to us of the death of two individuals, p. 16Mrs. R., and Mrs. C., well known to us, who died under very affecting circumstances.  Mr. C. pointed out what it was to love the Lord, and what was prepared for them that love him.  We have no doubt but our dear friends are now enjoying those things which are prepared for the righteous.  O blessed Lord, prepare me for every change and condition of life; but above all prepare me for death, that I may be ready to meet thee with joy.’

I may be permitted to digress from my subject for a few moments, to relate the history of the two individuals alluded to.  The elder of the two died full of years, many of which had been spent in the Service of God.  She was 91 years of age, and the Parent, in the fourth generation, of a large number of our Congregation.  Although surrounded by many witnesses at her death, she departed so quietly, that none could know when she took her flight.  Of her it might be truly said, she had “fallen asleep in Christ.”  The other individual was Mary Rackham.  She was the Mother of a large family; she acted a prominent part in her husband’s much frequented Butcher’s shop, and this brought her into the observation of the whole Parish.  She was well known by her constant attention to business, being inferior to none in the active pursuit of her daily duties.  She was confessedly the woman in the parish, who appeared to me to have the largest share of varied p. 17occupation.  She was however in the midst of all her duties, distinguished for her obliging manners to all about her.  In her family, the utmost good order and consistency were observed.

She had lost one child, whom she trusted she had trained for God, and now her longing anxiety was, that all the rest of her family should follow in the same course.  How entirely her heart was set upon this I could well judge, who was often led into conversation with her on that subject.  But her labours and conflicts, and her victory in her own soul were still more conspicuous.  She was naturally of an eager and sanguine temperament, but that this had an entirely new and spiritual direction was manifest to all.  Her disposition was not to entertain high notions of herself; yet was she confident in her Saviour, and she never testified any doubt as to her portion in Him.  Her zeal for the Service of God was very great, and her attendance at his house, considering her circumstances, was remarkable.  On Thursday Evening, as on Sunday, she was always to be found in her place.  She was an attendant at the latest Sacrament, and twice at the services on the last Sunday of her life.  But her seasons of private devotion were as regularly maintained.  She was watchful to secure her morning and evening retirement;—and in order to keep up the Spirit of devotion, which she feared might flag through the hurry of business; she constantly p. 18retired in the middle of the day, when her business had a pause, for the purposes of reading and devotional exercises.  She was a member, and a constant attendant, when she was able, on the Society for Social prayer.  She died after her confinement; and we had the opportunity of witnessing only an awful, but a calm and cheerful delirium which filled up her latest hours.  But a more beautiful and instructive example of holy devotedness to every duty, performed in the faith of Christ, we could scarcely have had the opportunity of witnessing, than that which she exhibited in her daily walk and conversation.  She died at the age of 35 years, leaving five children behind her.

The Journal of E. C. goes on.  ‘Thursday Evening, March 5.  Mr. Hogarth preached from 2 Cor. v.  He described the body as a tent, which must soon be dissolved, and the miseries of the wicked, who have no hope beyond this life.  None said Mr. H., but the followers of Christ can take up the language of the text.  Enable me, O Lord, thine unworthy servant, experimentally to feel that I, even I, have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.  March 8.  Mr. C. spoke of a dear Christian friend, S. J. who was called to put off her earthly tabernacle last Sabbath.  We feel assured she had a building of God, an house prepared p. 19for her disembodied Spirit—to her, said Mr. C. may the text be applied.  “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter thou into the Joy of thy Lord.”  Give me grace, O Lord, to improve the talent committed to me, that when thou callest me to give up my account, I may be ready as thy servant was.’  Susan Jones, the person here alluded to, was an individual of great interest.  She illustrated a valuable little tract, entitled the “Single talent well employed.”  She was one of three sisters, who lived together in Lowestoft.  She had resided with a family in Scotland, whose testimony to her worth, as well as that of the heads of the family in which she died, I shall venture to insert.  She was one of the brightest ornaments of our little Christian Society, and much beloved by all who knew her.  I will copy the account of her inscribed in the memoranda of a friend.

‘This morning’s post brought me the tidings of dear Susan Jones’ death, or rather of her being on the point of death, and a request that I would inform her sisters of it.  Another valued member of our Society, a true sister in the Lord—one much beloved by us and by many here is now departed!  The letter was from Mr. S. a Clergyman, with whom she had been staying at Woodbridge about three months, in order to nurse Mrs. S. in her confinement.’

p. 20The following is an extract of his letter.

‘Poor dear Susan was apparently well this morning, and engaged as usual, till about 11 o’clock; when upon her stooping down, she felt an acute pain; but as she was subject to this, we were not alarmed.—Finding, however, that the pain continued, we sent for our medical attendant.  The suffering for a short time became acute, and the symptoms so alarming, that it was soon evident there was no hope of her life.  It is considered that a vessel near the heart had given way, and that she is sinking from internal bleeding.  She is indeed as one fallen asleep.  Her mind is calm, and her heart is fixed;—her gratitude to God, her patience, love, humility, combined with simple trust, are all so conspicuous, that I cannot perceive which is the greatest.  She appears not to have a thought in the world, and has not said one word regarding it.  Her thoughts are all towards God, and the voice of praise and prayer to him, for spiritual blessings are her only theme.  “Thy will be done,” seems the first and uppermost feeling of her heart.  You may feel assured when you receive this, that her Spirit is in Heaven, with her beloved Saviour.  All her words are now either to, or of her God and Saviour, and she appears to have closed her senses to this trying scene.  Her bodily sufferings now are small.  I feel as though in parting from her, I was losing p. 21one of my best friends, and I only pray that the Almighty, in his mercy, may so help me, that I may see dear Susan in another and better world.  With every good wish and prayer,’

Believe me,
Yours faithfully,
J. P. S.’

February 27th.  ‘Received this morning the account of dear Susan Jones’s death.  The following is an extract from Mr. S’s. second letter.’

‘Poor dear Susan was called away a few hours sooner than we expected.  She breathed her last a quarter before one o’clock this morning, when she exchanged a Sabbath day on earth, for an eternal Sabbath in heaven.  I feel as strong a confidence that she is now in glory, as I can feel of any person I ever knew.  The verse for the day in the Christian Almanack, 26th February, is, “There remaineth, therefore, a rest for the people of God,” as it were greeting me on my coming down stairs this morning, with a most welcome and appropriate assurance, and as it were in confirmation of my feelings.  All I can say of her in her life, and in her death, would come short of the reality, and I can only hope and pray that I may be kept from abusing the privilege I have had in her friendship; and that her image and example may, by God’s p. 22blessing, be the means of assisting my weakness, and helping me on to an entrance into glory for ever and ever with her!’

May we seek to follow her humble and Christian course, blameless and harmless as she was, loved by all, and loving all.  She was not quick to discover, or speak of the faults of others, being too humbly alive to her own.  I never remember to have left her after the fullest communications with her, distressed or perplexed by histories of others, and their faults and failings; over these she drew the curtain, and fixed her eye only upon her own.  She introduced the subject of other people only to speak kindly and affectionately of them: she appeared “without partiality,” nor had she that selfishness which soon takes affront: I never knew her vexed with any one for supposed unkindness or neglect: she seemed always to think she received more than she deserved.  O may we all have grace to follow her in this, and in many other of her Christian virtues.

When thus suddenly seized, and with nothing but death before her, her soul was found perfectly staid.  No distressing fears or conflicts overwhelmed her; but she met the summons with perfect fortitude and resignation.  When Mr. S. said to her, ‘Dear Susan, do you not feel afraid?’  ‘O no, sir, I have no fear; I am leaning on the arm of Jesus, He is my support—He is holding me behind and before.  p. 23God has laid his hand upon me: His will be done; He will keep me, He will support me.’  The sting of death seemed entirely withdrawn, and the glorious hope of being for ever with the Lord, swallowed up all pain in quitting this valley of tears.  O the blessedness of living thus in preparation for death!  May the instructive lesson sink deeply into all our hearts, leading us to a watchful circumspect devotion to our God and Saviour; that, when he shall please to call us, we may say with her, ‘ready, Lord, ready.’

As it was my painful office to inform her dear sisters of the affecting event of Susan’s seizure and probable departure at that moment, I went in after the service on Sunday morning.  At the moment of my entry, Hannah was reading a paper she held in her hand.  I asked them if they had heard any thing of Susan.  ‘Not very lately; but we have just been reading a paper of her’s we found in her Bible.’  These were the words:—‘O my dear sisters, we have now began another year, O may we live it fit to die, should we be called away before it is past.  This day I have been to hear Mr. Salmon, and we had a most excellent sermon from Zechariah i. 5.  “Your fathers, where are they?” God bless you both.—Susan Jones.’

This seemed a merciful preparation for breaking to them the sorrowful tidings, which I did, as carefully p. 24as possible, endeavouring to arm them with Christian feeling of dependance upon God, and with sense of His presence and love in this event.  They were not at first so overwhelmed as I expected: they were deeply attached to each other, and nothing could exceed the careful and affectionate manner in which Susan had nursed Elizabeth in a long and painful illness.  Her watchful affection had bound them still more closely together.

Elizabeth Jones has since died, and has left ample testimony to her faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and her meetness to appear in the presence of God, through the merit of her Saviour.  We had most interesting and satisfactory testimonies of Susan Jones’s character from others.  Lady H. thus writes of her in a letter to Elizabeth.

‘You cannot doubt how great were my feelings of sorrow, when I heard of the decease of my faithful friend, your dear sister Susan; indeed I hardly think any such event, out of my own family, could have grieved us all so deeply.  Almost the last words I ever heard from her were, ‘if I am gone when you return to England, never sorrow for your poor old servant.’  But I do sorrow for her very deeply, and shall always think that I have lost a faithful friend, one who did me and my children good, and not evil, during all those days of her life which she spent with me, and I am very sure she has continued p. 25to do us good by the hearty prayers she addressed for us, to Him whose eyes are in every place.  Her unwearied kindness to my children, I never did, and never could, repay; I allude chiefly to the good principles she taught them, of love to God, love to their parents, to one another, and to all their brethren of mankind.  O happy mother shall I be, if my offspring depart not from the ways which their old nurse taught them.

‘When I was at the Lord’s table last Sunday, I thought of Susan, who had so often been there with her master and me.  I was prepared to remember her when we are directed to bless the Lord ‘for all his servants departed this life in His faith and fear,’ whose good example, whatever their station in this world may have been, we pray for grace to follow.’

But I will return to some portions of E. C’s. journal.  ‘March 12.  Attended the Prayer Meeting as usual in the morning.’  This meeting was held on the Sabbath morning at 9 o’clock, and is composed of a few persons who meet together to ask a blessing on the coming means of grace.

‘I felt my mind,’ she says, ‘much drawn out in prayer.  The meeting was lively, and I trust the Lord was with us, though some of the weakest of his creatures.  In the morning, Mr. C. preached from Hebrews ix. 13, 14, the first part considering what it was to purge the conscience from dead p. 26works.  He spoke not only of the dead works of the unconverted, but also of the dead works of the Christian.  How often is he found hard-hearted, and cold, and lukewarm, and too often bringing forth fruit to the dishonour of God.  What then but the blood of Christ can cleanse him from his dead works.  Lord, give me grace and faith to apply to that blood continually.’  So did she speak of her own deficiencies.  Next she speaks of her own labours on the same day.  ‘Attended the school in the afternoon.  O Lord, bless and own my poor labours.  Enable me to teach for Thee, that thy name may be glorified.’  Passing over a portion of her journal, she comes to ‘April 16.  Mr. Hoare preached from Hebrews ix. 14–16.  He beautifully described how Christ was the High Priest of his people; how He atoned for their sins by shedding his own blood; and how he entered into the Holiest of Holies, where he ever liveth to make intercession for them.  He also spoke of the tenderness of Christ; whereby he sympathized, and of his power, whereby He was able to save to the uttermost all that come to God by Him.  He most earnestly entreated the trembling believer to come boldly to One who was both able and willing to save him.’  Her own reflections on this sermon may be gathered from the expressions she has applied to it.

‘Mr. Swanison from Jer. xxxi. 18–20.  In the p. 27conduct of Ephraim teaching us the nature of true repentance.  The prayer of Ephraim shews the change in his mind.  He entreats God to turn him, feeling that he cannot turn himself.  He feels and owns he has been a rebel, but he relies on the Lord to turn him and to pardon all his sins.  Here we see the mercy and the love of God displayed.  He does not receive the repentant sinner as a servant, but he calls him his dear son.  Oh what encouragement to the poor returning sinner, to know that God, whom he feels that he has offended, earnestly remembers him still.’

I am glad to make extracts from the sermons of many of my dear fellow helpers in the gospel, who have been working with me in this field of labour, and who have each,—one planting, and another watering, but God giving the increase;—been so honoured as to give suitable culture to a plant of the Lord, whom they will one day meet in glory, in the heavenly paradise.  I also make these extracts, that we may be enabled to trace the means by which the mind of our departed friend, was furnished with food convenient for its growth in grace and holiness.

‘May 21.  Attended the morning Prayer Meeting.  Felt rather dead in prayer.  May the Lord quicken my affections and warm my cold heart.’  ‘Mr. C. from Amos viii. 8, 9.  Sermon on the Jews.  p. 28He spoke much on the fulfilment of prophecy; the Lord, in various places, threatening to disperse and destroy this people, but not make a full end, &c. &c.  O Blessed Lord, give me to live, that I neglect not this message, for if thou spared not the natural branches, neither wilt thou spare me if I neglect thy word.  Lord, give me thy Spirit, and guide me in all my ways, for thy dear Son’s sake.’

Passing over other subjects, we may take the effect produced on her mind, by one of the social meetings before alluded to.

‘Monday Evening, Sept. 1.  Attended Mrs. C.’s meeting.  Mrs. C. spoke much of the Omnipresence of God.  I felt the subject very much, and I was enabled to pour out my soul in prayer.  Surely the Lord’s presence was with us at that time.  O blessed Lord, keep me humble; empty me entirely of self, that my unworthy services may be acceptable in thy sight.’  It is plain by this passage, that she had felt the approach of temptation, but she met it in the spirit of watchfulness and prayer.

On another occasion, she says, ‘I attended the meeting.  I trust the Lord was with our little party, and that he will hear and answer prayer.  I feel my own weakness, and utter unworthiness in approaching thee, O Lord, but look thou in mercy upon me; pardon my sins, forgive my iniquities, p. 29and let not the imperfections of my prayers render them odious in thy sight.  Thou Lord, knowest my weakness; O strengthen me that I may be enabled to confess thee with more boldness; but O keep me humble.’

‘Oct. 15.  This Morning, the Rev. D. Hogarth preached from Malachi ii. 2, 3.  O Blessed Jesus, do thou purify and cleanse my soul from the dross of sin, which I feel still hinders me from enjoying the light of thy countenance.  O remove the veil from mine eyes, and sin from my heart, that I may see and understand what thy will is; do thou enlighten and guide me in thy way.’

An event now occurred in the family of Elizabeth Cullingham, of the deepest interest and importance.  This was the death of her Father.  On Monday, Jan. 8, 1838, about two o’clock in the afternoon, a foreign ship came in sight, and hoisted a flag for a Pilot.  She was about ten miles from the shore, but although the weather was threatening, and the evening approaching, it seemed practicable to reach the ship; and as it was suspected, that others might be in the offing, which would likewise require assistance, two Pilots put off, with thirteen men in one yawl, and one Pilot with twenty-one in another.  The dangers which might have terrified ordinary men, did not prevent these brave seamen from encountering p. 30the perils which threatened them in the way of duty.

It was a maxim of James Cullingham, that he ought, in his duty as a Pilot, to fear no danger, and that whenever others would take him, he should go.  The yawls carried their mainsails at first, and expected to reach their object.  But the vessel, instead of keeping its first course towards the boats, when they were five or six miles from the shore, stood out to sea.  The yawls therefore, in their effort to reach the ship, were carried far from land,—and daylight drew to a close before the men were aware of their situation.

The wind meantime arose, and the snow drifted heavily.  The greatest anxiety was soon felt by all on shore.  The scene which presents itself on these occasions, may be conceived, but not described.  Fathers, Mothers, Wives, Sisters, Brothers, and Children, are seen intently watching every change in the sky and waves, eagerly gazing upon the distance to catch a glimpse of the absent objects of their love: grasping every phantom of hope which may present itself; but at length—convinced by some undoubted sign, that they must hope no more.—Many are the vows which are then made; many are the prayers which are then offered.  The watching and suspense, however, were in this case, soon at an end.  At seven o’clock one of the yawls through p. 31great danger, reached the shore, and this left no doubt as to the loss of the other, in which was James Cullingham, and another Pilot.  It is supposed this yawl, the ‘Peace,’ in endeavouring to get into the gat-way, had missed the light, it being thick with snow, that she got into broken water, and had gone down.  But none were left to tell the tale of woe.  The boat itself, sometime afterwards, was washed on shore, a complete wreck.  Very few of the bodies were recovered: but amongst the number, that of James Cullingham was found, very remarkably, eight months afterwards.  Twelve widows and thirty two children, were in consequence of this disaster, left destitute.  This was, indeed, a night of agony, to numbers on shore.  Still the possibility of escape presented itself to their minds, but it was hoping against hope.  Yet was every one afraid of acknowledging to the chief mourners, what in their own minds was their fixed opinion, that no chance remained.  None would, at all events, be the first to declare the awful truth to those broken hearted sufferers.

But there must have been a scene even more affecting than the one now recorded.  In the boat were fifteen men, who were in the very jaws of destruction.  One other heave of the impetuous sea, and their state was fixed, fixed for ever.  Some of them, perhaps, had been drunkards, or Sabbath breakers, or p. 32neglecters of Religion; but now they were called at once to give account of what they had done, and what they had left undone, and nothing could be left, to which they might look forward, but the punishment which awaits the sinner.  It is impossible to conceive a scene more really appalling, although outwardly its awfulness might be concealed by the anxiety and efforts which it caused.  But to think of the never-dying soul, hitherto uncared for, unprepared with all its sins upon it, hurried in one moment into judgment, and to the wages of its transgressions, is awful indeed!  What may have been the case of these men, the day of Judgment will disclose.  “Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord.”  That it was the portion of James Cullingham so to die, we can have no doubt.  His faith, his converted heart, evidenced by his life, afford a warrant of good hope as to his condition.  He lived to Christ, and death was doubtless gain to him.  Whether at sea, or on his bed, he might sink in peace, for a joyful inheritance would await him.

But what was the lot of the mourners in his own bereaved family on that sad night?  James Cullingham had left his house in the morning, and that he was gone, was probably not more noticed than at other times.  It was expected that the yawl which took him out, would in due course return.

Soon however, alarm arose on the beach, and rapidly p. 33spread itself in the town.  In the evening, it was naturally expected that some news would come from the Pilots, for the boat which conveyed them to the vessels must of necessity return.  But no news arrived.  Elizabeth had been sent to bed by her Mother, who with her other daughter sat alone in the house in the deepest anxiety.  The wind became very tempestuous.  The snow drifted.  A solemn awe was spread over the cottage.  But there was nothing to be done, but to wait, and pray, and to support the mind in silence; still hoping that every moment would bring them tidings.

The eldest daughter at length went up stairs, leaving her Mother alone.  The three brothers had been on the beach; and soon apprehending the real state of the case; they had scattered themselves on the coast, several miles to the southward, hoping that the boat might be driven on shore in that direction.  Meanwhile a universal apprehension was spread abroad, and every one who knew how deeply the news would affect the family of James Cullingham forbore to come to the house, lest they might be the involuntary means of conveying the sad intelligence.  The Mother sat alone till the morning, at this time a stranger unwittingly revealed the extent of the calamity.  She was heard passing the road, when the anxious wife went to the door to ask whether she had heard any thing of the yawl.  She p. 34replied, unconscious to whom she was speaking.  “NothingIt will never come back again!”  The awful fact now broke in upon the mind of Mrs. Cullingham.  At once she understood that all was lost; she received the news however, without any outcry or lamentation.  But it sunk deeply within.  Her expression to her daughter was, ‘your Father is gone, he is safely arrived, I shall join him in Heaven.’  She never once was heard to murmur.  But the blow was intensely severe, and the weight of sorrow seemed to be borne alike, by the daughters and the Mother.  It may be said to have been the death signal at a more remote period of Elizabeth, as well as of her Mother.  Neither of them ever recovered their health.  To the Widow the loss was in all respects very great.  It might truly be said of her and her husband, “they were pleasant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided.”  In a very few months, she was called to follow him.  A large subscription which was raised, chiefly at a distance from home, together with the property of her husband, and the assistance of her Children, left the Mother of Elizabeth in no want as to her worldly circumstances.  But the suddenness, and the manner of her husband’s death, and the haunting reflection that his body was yet unburied, left a sort of wretchedness in her mind, which nothing but her faith and hope could subdue.  Her mode of life was now some p. 35what altered.  She had more time to read the Scriptures, which she did every afternoon, as well as morning and evening.  But in the month of March, she was attacked with a paralytic stroke.  This was not violent, and it affected her body more than her mind.  It was a time of deep heart searching to her, and of preparation for her end.  Her mind might be said to dwell in heavenly hope.  She was deeply earnest in her devotions.  I have entered her room, and finding her intent in prayer, have retired unobserved.  Her mind was not easily distracted when employed in communing with God.  But her state was not happy; she was oppressed with the sensation of her disorder, and she continued to feel intensely the circumstances of her husband’s death, and to mourn over his undiscovered and unburied body.  At length however, it pleased God to relieve her from one of these causes of grief, by a remarkable interposition of his favor.  By a very singular accident, her husband’s body was washed on shore in the month of October, many miles from the place where he was lost.  It had been lying nearly nine months in the sea, and, on reaching the shore, had been found, and buried.  Information having been given that a body had been so found, it was disinterred, and identified by his children.  It was then brought home to Lowestoft, where it now lies in our churchyard, among the remains of different members p. 36of his family.  This was an occasion which peculiarly called out the gratitude of his widow.  After this event, she recovered the full powers of her mind.  During the remaining few weeks of her life, she seemed to have gained clearer assurance of her own safety, and a more joyful hope and anticipation of future blessedness.  Her state of conflict was now changed to one of full assurance of hope.  One remarkable scene of her last days, of which I was a witness, I will relate in Elizabeth’s words, copied from her journal.  On the day of her mother’s death she writes, ‘The Lord has been pleased to take my dear mother out of this state of trial and suffering.  How calm, how patient she was through her long and painful illness.  No murmuring, no repining ever escaped her lips.  Her end was peace.  Mr. C. called to see her on the Sunday evening: she was then able to speak only at intervals.  He spoke to her of the joys of heaven.  She appeared to take no notice for some moments, when suddenly reaching forth her hand to heaven, she exclaimed, Christ there!  Then bringing it back, and laying it on her heart, she said, Christ here!’  How expressive were these simple words of her state of mind, and of her hope in her Redeemer.  On this day she spoke to me of ‘going home,’ which was the view she entertained of her departure.  On the last morning of her life she made sign p. 37to her daughter to read to her: she read part of John xiv.  The mother then clasped her hands in prayer.  This was nearly the last act of her life.  She seemed now to be peculiarly alive to the reality of the presence of her Lord and Saviour as the Way, the Truth, and the Life, and that by Him a heavenly mansion had been prepared for her.  Her room had been a kind of shelter from the bustle and confusion of the world around, and her daughters, who in turn remained at home on the Sabbath day, and read the service of the Church to her, testified of the comfort which those seasons of retirement ministered to them.  These were, indeed, times of refreshment from the Lord.  A friend of her’s thus describes an interview which she had with her a short time before her death.  ‘I had delightful communication with her just before I left home: I sat by her bed-side, and we talked much on the eternal state.  She was entirely sensible, could look at the approaching dissolution of her body with perfect peace.  We spoke of the heavenly Jerusalem, and of the joyful prospect before her of entering into rest: her faith was strong and clear.  She renounced every thing in herself, and through the unmerited mercy of her dear Redeemer, she felt assured that her sins were pardoned, and that an abundant entrance would be ministered to her into the everlasting kingdom of her God and Saviour.  p. 38Her life of faith, and of active duty, and her death, so cheered by confidence in the Good Shepherd, afforded the fullest warrant of this blessed end of all her labours and her trials.’

I must now carry back this memoir to the beginning of the year.  A funeral sermon was preached on the occasion of the death of James Cullingham.  He was a communicant, and his character called for this public notice.  Advantage was taken of the same occasion to speak of the death of another individual, a friend of Elizabeth and her mother, and I believe of most of the servants of God, who came within her reach in our little flock.  This was Mary Smith.  Her husband’s shop in which she served, made her well known in the parish, and enabled her to do much for others, and thus brought into view most of the infirmities which belonged to her nature.  She was a woman of very marked and zealous character, well known to those about her, both in her natural and her renewed state.  In both she was industrious and kind-hearted, a good wife, mother, and neighbour; but in her former state very clearly without that feeling of religion which marked her latter years.  Indeed it may be said that she had gone so far as to ‘persecute that way which she afterwards followed.’  She was a very marked instance of an entire change of heart, by the power of the Holy Spirit.  The natural ardour of her p. 39mind was sanctified in her converted state; it worked with the same power, but in another direction, and under another influence: she traced the change in her mind to a sermon which she heard on Phil. ii. 12.  She then set conscientiously about working out her salvation, and she found her heavenly Father, ever ready to work in her, both to will and to do of his good pleasure.  Her sense of this marked interference of the divine power on her behalf was never lost sight of; for the anniversary of the day when she first gave heed to the message of salvation, she remembered with much feeling.  Of her domestic character, those who have lived with her have spoken to me, and have borne high testimony to her as a wife and a mother, and during her employment in the business of her shop.  Her will became remarkably subjected to the will of God in all things.  It may be truly said, that she did her duties as “to the Lord.”  She had a very praiseworthy habit of praying with her children, whenever she found them in fault.  Her religious character was marked by a strict conformity to the doctrines of the Church, of which she was a consistent, faithful, zealous member.  In attendance on its services she had been brought to the knowledge of salvation, and she continued to walk in the truest submission, and the most lively attachment to its ministry.  In another p. 40point she has left us an example.  She was ever particularly alive to watch for the souls of others, to lead them forward, and to draw them to seek God.  There are many now living who could bear witness to the earnestness, with which she sought to warn the unconverted, to reclaim the wanderer, to recover the backslider.

Her kindness to her poor neighbours was remarkable.  Her medical man informed me, that he scarcely ever went into her house, without her first asking him about some one who wanted relief, which relief she was always eager to give according to her means, and many were the portions which her provision-shop supplied.  Few ministers have had a more valuable ‘helper,’ in all respects.  I must add a short account of her, given to me in writing by one in her own house, who, at the time when she, Mrs. S. was opposed to spiritual religion, had chosen another fold than the Church of England in which to seek the way of salvation.  This testimony is therefore not given in ignorance of her real character, or in undue partiality to her principles.

After speaking of the striking circumstances of her conversion, the paper goes on to say, ‘The words of the Apostle were fulfilled in her.  “If any man be in Christ he is a new creature.  Old things are passed away, behold, all things are become new.”  Yes, I know the truth of this, for I have seen it p. 41in her who is departed.  Indeed she has proved to all around her, that she was a faithful follower of the Lord Jesus Christ; not one who said, “Lord, Lord,” but in works denied him.

‘She showed her love to God by keeping His commandments.  I have known her, many and many a time, sacrifice her own comforts to relieve her poor neighbours.  I have known her take her clothes from her back, and her shoes from her feet.  It was her delight to do her heavenly Father’s will in all things.  She was determined, as far as she was able, to do good to all, especially to those of the household of faith.  She was one who visited the sick and afflicted, the fatherless and widow, and strove to keep herself unspotted from the world.  Her views of herself were truly humble: she took the word of God for her guide.  She did not shun to reprove sin, but knowing the terror of the Lord, she sought to persuade her fellow-sinners to be reconciled to God.  She sought after backsliders with great care and perseverance, and aimed to encourage those that stood fast in the Lord.  Her love of the means of grace, both public and private, was very great, and witnessed by her regular attendance on them.  Her patience in her affliction, and resignation to the will of God, was indeed striking.  Her sufferings and trials had been many in life, “but not too many,” as she said on her dying bed.  The p. 42cup had been wisely mixed by her heavenly Father.’

January 2.  She began to complain of her head, and the next day she was wholly confined to her bed.  Two days after, she became so weak as to be unable to help herself.  On Sunday the 7th she took but little notice.  She was then asked, whether she was happy.  She replied, ‘Oh, yes, very happy, very happy: Christ very precious to me.’  At another time she was asked, whether she could say, with the Apostle, that she was “ready to be offered up?”  ‘Oh yes,’ she said.  On Monday, speaking of death as the gate of life, she said, ‘O blessed gate—it is the gate of heaven to me:’ and at another time, ‘Christ is all in all to me.’  On the following morning she had the power of attention, and answered to the prayer of others in a fervent Amen.  So she departed in peace and blessedness.


I must now return to the history of Elizabeth Cullingham.  Deep and constant was her grief at her father’s death.  She sympathized with her family; but she had then the pleasing task of waiting on her mother through her long affliction, and never was nursing more tenderly ministered, or more kindly received than by these two sisters, and their sinking parent.  If there was some variety in p. 43their form of worship, their feelings were the same.  To gratify their mother’s wishes was next to the love of God, the main object with her daughters.  With her

‘That constant flow of love, that knew no fall,
Ne’er roughened by those cataracts and breaks,
That humour interposed too often makes.’

Whilst they

‘The tender office now engage,
To rock the cradle of reposing age,
With lenient arts extend a mother’s breath,
Make languor smile, and smooth the bed of death;
Explore the thought, explain the asking eye,
And keep awhile one parent from the sky!

But I must suffer Elizabeth again to speak for herself.

What follows was written at the close of the year of sorrow, through which she had just past.  ‘Thou, O Lord, hast seen fit to take both my parents from me, but thy word of promise is, “When father and mother forsake thee, the Lord will take thee up.”  Enable me, O Lord, to follow my dear parents, as they followed Christ; that when time with me shall be no more, I may have a joyful entrance into thy kingdom, where parting shall be no more known, and every tear shall be wiped from p. 44my now weeping eyes.  I would desire, blessed Lord, to submit to thy will in these most affecting bereavements.  O comfort me with the consolations of thy Spirit, and bring me and my dear brothers and sisters near to thyself.  Amidst our many trials may we remember our many mercies.  May we be enabled to thank Thee for all.  What a comfort not to sorrow as those without hope: but to be assured that through the merits of Christ our dear parents are translated from a body of sin and corruption, to a glorious immortality.’

So Elizabeth wound up the history of the past eventful year.  Her patience, meekness, and resignation, her thankfulness for the mercies she received, and her joyous hope are alike an instructive lesson to us all.

I find another interesting record at the beginning of the year 1839.

‘I have now entered upon another year.  Oh how different do all things now appear, to what they did at the commencement of the last.  I was then blessed with my dear parents, and I looked forward for some years of comfort and of guidance from them; but thy ways, O Lord, are not my ways, neither are Thy thoughts my thoughts; Thou hast taken them from me that I may look to thee alone for help and comfort.  O give me grace to seek all I want from Thee.  Wean me, blessed Lord, from p. 45the world, and all its treatments, and enable me to live entirely to Thee.  Thou knowest, Lord, my weakness and proneness to start aside from my best Friend, but pardon all Thou hast seen amiss in me, through the past year, and enable me now to live more devotedly to Thy service.’

The method which she chose of quietly taking a review of the past, and forecasting the circumstances of the new year, appeared to be peculiarly profitable, and may afford a direction as to the mode of spending this interesting season.

Elizabeth and her sister were now thrown on their own resources.  Their father’s house was sold for the benefit of his family.  After their removal, they kept a school.  This flourished, and it was a great benefit, as far as it went, in the parish, being conducted with so much good order and Christian feeling.  But after a time, the noise of the children became unbearable to Elizabeth, and obliged her sister to give it up, and to turn to other means of support.  Elizabeth’s mind, as appears from her Journal, was all this time gradually growing in grace.  The habits of their little family were very regular.  The two sisters read three or four verses, and prayed together every morning, in addition to the usual family prayer with their brother, who lived with them.  Elizabeth’s chief infirmity was a proneness to be hurt by unkindness p. 46or neglect; this she tried to conquer, and through Divine Grace, succeeded to a great degree.  She had always been careful of her money, feeling how needful it might be to her in her weakly state of health.  At the time of her death she had a small sum in the savings bank; but she was alive to the snare of covetousness.  She used to say, what shall we give?  She subscribed to the Missionary and the Jewish Society, and originated a little Bible Society collection: but she also felt the duty of denying herself, that she might save something more for these works of charity.  She was constantly diligent, and during the last winter of her life she read the Scriptures a great deal, and grew proportionally in grace.  She was regular in her attendance at the different meetings, being generally accompanied by a friend in somewhat similar circumstances of life, who was attached to our communion.  But nothing more marked her character than a holy, humble, simple, unpretending walk, carrying about with her, I may truly say, the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit.  She repeatedly wrote in her Journal during the last year of her life.  Her observations were chiefly founded on sermons which she had heard, and which she applied to herself.  There was not one observation in them of a carping critical character.  But what she received she sought to turn to the best profit, and to obtain from it growth in grace.  Speaking p. 47of the sermon of a young Minister among us, she was struck with his appeal for decision in religion, on the ground of the uncertainty of life.  ‘O,’ she adds, ‘how he warned and exhorted the young to decide for God, that they might obtain pardon and peace here, and happiness in the world to come.’  She concludes her account of another sermon.  ‘Help me, O Lord, to watch always, that I sin not against Thee, and help me so to pray, that the enemy may flee before me:’ and again, ‘Help me, blessed Lord, to be daily growing in holiness, humility, and love, that I may feel in every trial, and temptation, thou art my Rock and Defence.’  As the summary of one week, she says, ‘I have felt my soul decay in the last week.  The enemy has been permitted to buffet and assault me very much, tempting me to unbelief.  But O thou compassionate Saviour, who prayed for thy disciple of old, that his faith might not fail, look upon me, and deliver me from my strong foe.  O strengthen my faith, for it is weak.  Show me wherein I have sinned; lift up the light of thy countenance upon me.’  Again, after a sermon of Mr. Allen’s.  ‘What encouragement to the believer to know that Jesus, his Saviour and Redeemer, has before trodden every painful path, and endured every conflict, and has promised that as he overcame, so shall we, through his merit.’

p. 48She heard a Sermon from a minister before alluded to, on growth in religion, in which that subject was illustrated by a tree in the growth of its roots, in its branches, and in its fruitfulness.  The subject appears very much to have struck her.  She concludes it by saying, ‘Help me, blessed Lord, to be daily growing in holiness, humility and love; and may I feel in every trial and temptation, that thou art my Rock, and my Defence.’  ‘Nov. 24.  I have felt much depressed to day by fretfulness and coldness: O Lord, quicken me.’  ‘Heard Mr. R. this evening, from Luke v. 31, 32.  Felt my mind much impressed by the Sermon.  Blessed Lord, impress it on my heart, by thy Spirit.  Strip me of all self-righteousness, make me feel more and more, my need of thee.’

The above extracts from her Journal, will shew the quiet working of the Spirit of God in her heart, chiefly by means of the word of God.  Other means are not so commonly and particularly alluded to by her, but she always in life expressed her profit in all; in the Lord’s Supper, in the social prayer meetings on Monday Evening, and Sunday Morning, and the bible class, all of which she continued constantly to attend.  I add two testimonials concerning her.  One of them was communicated to a friend at a distance, who had been staying some time in Lowestoft, and who had been made acquainted with Elizabeth.  p. 49It is written by a person who was in the constant habit of seeing her, and who knew her well.  The other is written by a very intimate friend.

Lowestoft, July 6. 1840.

My dear Friend,

‘I must indulge myself by writing a few lines to you, for my heart is full to-night.  We have lost our sweet young friend Elizabeth Cullingham, in whom you were so much interested.  Do not you remember her spiritual and interesting prayer, the first morning I went with you to the Sunday prayer meeting?  I recollect introducing her to you.  She was indeed a true christian.  I never recollect to have heard any one find the slightest fault with her, nor had I myself ever occasion to do so in all the intercourse I have had with her, during the last nine years.  Her’s was indeed a chaste conversation, coupled with fear.  It was not the outward adorning of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel, but the ornament of a meek and quiet Spirit, which shone most conspicuously in her.  Chastity, meekness, and modesty were her striking characteristics.  I am glad I introduced you so particularly to her, and I think you will not forget the sweet impression of those visits.  Her lovely subdued countenance, her neat appearance, the perfect consistency of her dress, p. 50for she was always beautifully neat.  I think—I may say I never knew her expend money on ribbon or other unnecessary article in dress.  I mention this as it is a rare quality, even amongst the sober and serious young people.  The love of dressing beyond their means and situation in life is so common a habit, and so great a temptation to young people in general, that her correct conduct in this respect, was one lovely fruit of having her affections set on things above.  O that our dear young people might see and feel the beauty of this line of conduct.  By her circumspect and careful conduct, she silenced every tongue that could rise up against her.  The wandering and unsettled desire after pleasure, was quite subdued in her.  She was content to lead a quiet, sober, religious life.  She found it better to avoid the general society of young persons, and was sweetly content in the situation in which God had placed her; setting an example to other young women of the beauty of a retired and modest demeanour, avoiding from taste, as well as principle, all society that was not religious.  She felt that light and trifling intercourse with those whose hearts followed after vanity and pleasure, was unprofitable and hurtful.  O how blessed it is to see young persons turn away from following vanity!  To see as a fruit of religion, a separation from the world, from the manners, the appearance, p. 51and the spirit of it.  I saw all this in Elizabeth.  She had for many years been a member of our women’s meeting, and though one of the youngest, her ardent love of the ministry under which she lived, her Christian experience, and occasionally her prayers, were a help and comfort to our society, and she was most persevering, though often very ill.

‘I must also notice her example in the house of God.  There was no lightness, or carelessness in her demeanour, but her mind seemed to be filled with the sense of the divine presence, and to be thirsting after the knowledge of his truth; she gave the deepest attention to the preacher’s word.  No religious mind can shew lightness in the house of God.  How often have I enjoyed sweet sympathy with her, when sitting near her in her usual seat at St. Peter’s Chapel.  Have we not endeavoured to “pray with the Spirit, and to sing with the understanding also?”  I could weep from my heart to find her seat empty.  She met patiently her many trials, and meekly bowed her head to the will of God.  The awful death of her father in the yawl, had deeply afflicted her; indeed she never recovered the shock: but I may say, under every trial and bodily suffering, of which she had much, I never heard her complain, but with calm serenity she yielded herself unto the Lord.

‘I had the privilege of visiting her the day before p. 52her death, and found her sweetly serene and happy, full of confidence in her Saviour; delighting in prayer, and evidently finding it “sweet to lie passive in her Saviour’s hands,” and to know no will but his.  And the next day, a few hours before her end, can I ever forget the solemn impressive scene of our partaking of the body and blood of Christ together in the Holy Sacrament; her deep attention—her response to the words of the service—her fervent manner in taking the bread, as a sign or seal of her living upon Christ, who was to her soul the bread of life, and her drinking the wine as an emblem of that blood, that she had felt to be so precious?’

‘After this solemn communion together, we united in earnest prayer and thanksgiving on her account, that the works in her might be finished in righteousness, and that she might soon find herself in the glorious mansions prepared for her, by the beloved of her soul.  She appeared perfectly sensible, and able to taste this spiritual and interesting communication with us.  I then arose and took my leave of her.’

The testimony of her friend is as follows:

‘During the ten years of my intercourse with her, I have found her conversation as becometh the gospel of Christ.  She has treated me at all times with a sisterly affection and respect; I have proved her a tried friend, one that would not forsake in p. 53time of trouble.  Though separated for three years, I always found her the same dear friend as ever.  I have often been cheered with her kind exhortation to me, to seek with earnestness the Lord, and attend at all times the means of grace, telling me they were indeed channels, through which the Lord bestowed his blessings to his faithful followers.  Though we were separated in body, we were not separated in our union with Christ.  When I have needed reproof, she has given it to me, but in the meekest manner possible.  She was also very tender over the faults of others.  I never heard her speak unkindly of any one—“considering herself, lest she also should be tempted.”  She was most earnest for a revival in religion, both in our own Church, and for the spread of the gospel in distant lands.  This was evident, both in her prayers and her zeal in subscribing to different societies.  How sorry are we to lose her name from the number of those young people who are interested in the Jews, for we always found her most willing to aid in this delightful cause, and what she gave, seemed to be in the spirit of prayer.  How often I have heard her pour forth her heart in prayer, that the Jews might be brought into the fold of Christ; and truly we may say, concerning our Bible Association, which was formed amongst a few of us, that indeed our head is gone.  She was so p. 54deeply interested in it, and did so long for the Anniversary Meeting, that our subscription might be carried in, not to gain the praise of men, but with a desire to do something for the glory of God.  But she is gone, and her works do follow her.  May I always remember her christian walk and conversation, for in her I saw the fruits of the Spirit shine forth, for she was not desirous of vain glory, but in all points, she esteemed others better than herself.  Humbly do I hope, that the grace which made her to differ, may constrain me to walk in her steps.’

The commencement of the year 1840, the last year of Elizabeth’s life, is noticed by her in her Journal, with her usual seriousness.

‘Through the mercy of God, I have been permitted to enter upon another year; and O how much have I to thank him for the mercies of the year that is passed.  I have had many little illnesses, but the Lord has in mercy spared me, while many that I know, have been summoned to give up their account.  O Lord what am I, that thou hast spared me a worthless worm of the earth?  O fill my heart with love and gratitude for all thy mercies to me, and if my life be spared, may it be entirely devoted to thy service.  Great God, enable me to live to thee.  O let me enjoy all that I have, as coming from thee, and whatever thou art pleased to take p. 55from me, take not away thy Holy Spirit.  O blessed Spirit, who art One with the Father, and the Son, enter into my poor sinful heart, and root out all my sinful and corrupt affections and reveal Jesus to me as all in all.’

As her time drew to a close, her conflicts do not seem to have been lessened.

On March 24.  She says, ‘Being off my guard this morning, the enemy gained an advantage over me in my temper.  Immediately I felt my sin, and was led to cry out, “Against thee, thee only have I sinned.”  I was almost driven to despair, but these precious promises were applied, “If any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteousness,” and “the blood of Christ cleanseth from all sin.”  O my God whom I have offended, let this be a warning to me to watch and pray, that I enter not into temptation.’

On her birth-day she says, ‘I have passed another year of my life; but O my God, how little to thy glory.  I have been very much tried in my soul of late.  The enemy has been permitted to tempt me very much with unbelief.  Sometimes I question whether I am a Christian at all, yet my desire is to love and serve my God.  The conflict is sharp, yet do I believe Jesus will deliver me.  I do feel willing to part with any thing, if Jesus smile upon me.’

p. 56‘On Sunday, heard a sermon from Mr. R. on these words, “There shall not a hair of your head perish.”  The sermon was delightfully encouraging.  I have felt the comfort of it during the last week, having had some little perplexing things to meet.  O how sweet to feel in the time of trial and temptation, that nothing is unnoticed by our Heavenly Father.

‘Sunday, April 12.  I feel my health very poorly.  I know not what the Lord is about to do with me.  Whether life or death, Lord make me thine.  I desire to glorify thy name upon earth, and find my way to heaven.’

Her usual industry and care in recording the sermons she heard, appears this year as it did the last.  But I pass over all these records, and now I come to the last entry of her Journal.  It is dated April 17.  Good Friday.

‘I was informed divine service began half an hour later than it did.  I was therefore very late at Chapel, which vexed me very much.  I could not enjoy the service.  My head is in a very bad state.  The enemy takes advantage of my bodily infirmities and sorely distresses me.  I was led this afternoon, earnestly to entreat the Lord to direct my mind to some portion of his word for comfort.  I prayed with the Bible before me, and opened on 2 Cor. xii. 9.  Satan then seemed to say, this is not for you; p. 57but my God tells me, “His grace is sufficient for me.”  Lord, enable me to trust in thee.’

It was a strong act of faith, performed with suitable solemnity, which made this young woman believe that she should find in the Bible an answer to her prayer.  But she did so in a remarkable manner, and having received the direction to depend on the grace of God as sufficient for her, how strikingly her faith led her to hold it fast, so that angel, principality, or power could not separate her from it.  But how instructive is her example in dealing with temptation.  She felt its danger; she sought, as the weapon of defence, “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”  The Lord was pleased to direct her to a suitable text.  She received it in faith and obtained the victory.  Most gladly, therefore, might she with the Apostle, “glory in her infirmities, that the power of Christ might rest upon her,” and say with him, “When I am weak then am I strong.”’

The last months of Elizabeth’s life afforded her the means of quietly pursuing her course in preparation for her end.  She was unable to do more than work at her needle.  This however afforded her the opportunity of calm and continual meditation.  Her circumstances were entirely favourable for her state of mind.  Her kind brother who resided with her and her sister made every effort to afford her relief.  In the last ten days of her life her symptoms became p. 58more decided: she laid aside her work, and ceased to think of the things of the world.  She herself was not at that time able to read, but she could still listen to others.  On the Sunday evening the subject of heaven and reunion with those already there, chiefly occupied her attention.  Her state was calm and suffering, but neither she, nor any one, thought her end was so near; but I will give the account of this from her sister and constant companion.

‘The health of my dear sister had been some time declining; her last illness was short and severe: she suffered much pain, but bore it with Christian patience and resignation.  Her weakness was extreme; she could speak but little, but when able to converse, she would freely tell me the state of her mind.  She was indeed building on the Rock of Ages, on the sure foundation; but she had humbling views of herself, although sweet and exalted views of the Saviour.  We did not think death so near; but the last morning of her life a sudden change took place, which was better perceived by those around her, than felt by herself.  As usual, in the morning we read and prayed together.  She joined with peculiar earnestness: but when I had risen from my knees I could not refrain from weeping.  I saw her hands darkened in colour, which marked the alteration in her bodily state.  She asked me why I cried.  I said, I am sorry to p. 59see you so ill.  She answered, ‘I thought I was better this morning.’  With great anxiety I waited the arrival of her medical attendant, and soon found my fears respecting the near approach of death were not groundless.  Upon my again entering the room, she anxiously enquired the opinion of the doctor.  I told her as gently as the excited state of my feelings would permit.  I asked if she could rest her soul on Christ.  She said, “Yes, I feel peace; but O for a fuller assurance.”  I told her we had sent for Mr. C. and her brothers, at which she expressed great satisfaction, and said, “I feel drowsy, but do not let me sleep; I have no time for sleeping; I want to speak while I can.”’

When I arrived in her chamber, she said at once, ‘I think that I am dying.’  I did not contradict her.  She then expressed herself as not feeling all that joy in her departure which she had hoped might have been her portion.  But the fact was, that a profound humility gave a tone to all her feelings of herself.  She put me in mind of the expression of Mr. Simeon on his dying bed.  ‘I think that if you should see me die, you will not see me die triumphantly.  No! triumph will not suit me till I get to heaven.  If I am admitted, as I hope to be there, then, if there be one that will sing louder than the rest, I think I shall be that one; but while here, I am a sinner, a redeemed sinner, and as such I would lie here to the last, at the foot of the cross, p. 60looking unto Jesus, and go as such into the presence of God.’  Elizabeth’s Journal shews this to have been her feeling.  She then, however, declared her sense of the possession of a true peace, founded on the atonement of her Saviour.  She expressed a very earnest desire for the spiritual welfare of all about her, especially of the young with whom she met in the Bible Class.  She was dying.  She asked to receive the Sacrament.  I engaged to come in the afternoon, and administer it.  In all this there was nothing of hurry, or fearfulness, or mistrust, but the image of a soul fearing no evil, and walking though the Valley of the Shadow of Death, with the comfort of her Saviour’s rod and staff.  It left no doubt in my mind as to her state of blessedness.  But I will now return to her sister’s narrative.  ‘On Mr. C.’s arrival, he conversed and prayed with her; she then requested to receive the Sacrament: he took his leave, promising soon to return.  She now took an affectionate leave of her brothers and other relatives, speaking to each with great kindness, respecting the salvation of their never dying souls.  After settling some little affairs (this was the distribution of her little property, and the gift of some money to the societies to which she had subscribed) she looked at me, and said, I think that is all.  ‘How long will Mr. C. be, I wish him to come now.’  I said, ‘Dear, I will send for and p. 61hasten him.’  She said, ‘Do so, I wish once more to commemorate the dying love of the Saviour on earth, then I will lay me down and die in Jesus.’’

Jesus can make a dying bed,
Feel soft as downy pillows are.

The scene of this celebration of the Lord’s Supper I shall not readily forget.  Herself, her sisters, the valued friends of her life, were before me.  Her own countenance was so beautifully calm and heavenly.  She sat up, but she was sinking very fast, and I feared that she might die during the service; but all the while she made the greatest effort to give all her strength to this holy ordinance.  She followed me in the responses, and at the conclusion I read over to her the blessing of the ‘Visitation of the Sick,’ ‘Unto God’s gracious mercy and protection we commit thee.  The Lord bless thee, and keep thee; the Lord make his face to shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee.  The Lord lift up the light of his countenance on thee, and give thee peace both now and evermore.’  I do not expect again to see a face upon which the radiant light of God’s countenance may shine more brightly and happily than upon this dying saint.  The scene was most touching in every way.  After I had done, a dear friend, one whom I have mentioned before, commended her soul to God, in a solemn strain of spiritual blessing.  p. 62After a pause, at her own request, I read her a hymn.  I then took my leave, desiring to give up her dying moments to her own disposal, and feeling that there were others in the house to whom she might wish to speak some last words of admonition or of comfort.

‘After partaking of the Sacrament,’ her sister continues, ‘she appeared sweetly composed, while Mr. C. commended her parting soul to God.  She then looked round, as if looking for some one, and as I approached the bed, she fixed her dying eyes upon me, and said, “Happy translation.”  I said, “Dear, do you feel very happy now?”  She answered, “O yes, happy.” [62]  Soon after this, her medical man, Mr. B., came in, and she conversed with him on her approaching end.  She said she was sure he had done all he could in a medical point of view.  She thanked him for his attention during her illness, and then added, “Now, sir, pray with me.”  After prayer, she repeated the following lines:—

‘What is there here to court my stay,
Or hold me back from home;
While angels beckon me away,
And Jesus bids me come.’

Some time after, she said, ‘now I must pray for p. 63patience to wait the Lord’s time.  Come Lord Jesus!’  Soon after she said, ‘I would not come back again, now I have got a glimpse of the heavenly kingdom.’  She made use of similar expressions, till she gradually sunk in death, and her Spirit took its flight to the paradise of God.

The funeral of Elizabeth Cullingham took place in the usual course.  It was attended, as well by her own family, as by many of her christian friends.  There was nothing in it to call for attention.  It was consistent with her own simple unostentatious life.  A large party of the attendants met at a neighbouring cottage, where the voice of thanksgiving was raised for the mercies which had been granted to our departed friend, and prayer was offered up for all who had been connected with her.  On the ensuing Sunday Evening, a funeral Sermon was preached on her account.  The text was taken from Rev. iii. 12.  “Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.”

The subjects dwelt upon in the Sermon were—The course of a christian’s life; and the eternal reward which follows his death.  The victory over the world, the flesh, and the devil was through divine grace, p. 64obtained by our departed friend, and now she has her reward.  She is become a pillar in the temple of her God, to shew forth his praises through eternity amidst the redeemed in heaven; where “they hunger no more, neither thirst any more: neither shall the sun light on them nor any heat.  For the lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.”

Her tomb stone in the church yard, bears a memorial to the truth of which all who attended upon her in her last hours can bear witness.  They are lines somewhat transposed from a beautiful little poem of Mr. Dale’s.

‘Triumphant in thy closing eye,
The hope of glory shone;
Joy breath’d in thy expiring sigh,
To think the fight was won.

‘And thus shall faith’s consoling power,
The tears of love restrain,
O! who that saw thy parting hour,
Could wish thee back again?’

She was aged 28 years.

In drawing this memorial to a conclusion, I wish to add a few words in the way of encouragement to any young persons, who may read the account which has been given.

In the first place I wish to repeat, what I have p. 65before stated, that the subject of this history had nothing in her natural character or her situation in life, which distinguished her case from that of thousands.  She was not particularly clever, or naturally very amiable, or very much instructed, or a person of great leisure, or brought up under very extraordinary circumstances.  She had a moderate portion of talents committed to her—but she used what she had well.  I know how prone we all are, to think that others around us have advantages which we have not, and to take this for an excuse for not giving ourselves to God as others do.

I wish to make the same remark about all the persons whose history has been introduced into this memoir.  They were occupied in business, or engaged in the common duties of life; they had no greater advantages than belong to many of their neighbours, they were persons of like passions with others.  There is nothing therefore in their case to make an excuse for those who have not followed in their steps.  It must however be admitted that some individuals are often situated in a more favourable position than others for the cultivation of religious duties, and I am willing to allow that Elizabeth Cullingham had every advantage of this kind.  At the same time I say without hesitation, that I believe the great mass of our young people possess the means, by which she gained her highest advantages.  The preached word p. 66seems to have been her chief outward help, and the ordinary instruction in the scriptures, and the little meetings for prayer, were the means of grace which she followed.  Within her own mind, however, she at the same time laboured diligently, she watched and prayed, she came out from worldly temptation, and she sought to set her affections on things above.  But these efforts are within the reach of all who will enter upon them.  Such is the liberty given to young persons in this present day, that it seems to me, that in almost any case, the excuse of not having the fullest opportunity of obtaining religious instruction is groundless.  There may indeed be cases where young persons are deprived of a liberty which they should always have of attending at the House of God at stated times.  But these instances are very few.  No! the fault is not with the husbandman.  ‘What could I have done more,’ the divine master says, ‘that I have not done.’  It is with ourselves.  Our heavenly Father would gather us to himself, but we will not.

But, I will shortly point out the chief rules of christian doctrine, by which I think that Elizabeth advanced to that state, in which she became so meet for her heavenly rest.

A chief failing which is constantly dwelt upon in her writings is that of her own sinfulness.  I will not refer to any more passages of her Journal, but p. 67we may gather this from those already cited.  This sense of sinfulness, distinct from a mere regret at the inconvenience and disgrace of sin, must form the foundation of a sound religious state; ‘against thee, thee only have I sinned,’ was David’s feeling.  Thus it was with Elizabeth Cullingham also.  Notwithstanding her meek and holy walk, and the conscientious feeling which she had of the uprightness of her motives, she felt the deceitfulness of her heart, and the sinfulness of her state in the sight of God; and that she had within her a root of bitterness, which continually brought condemnation, and which required the constant renewal of the Holy Ghost to overcome.

But in this, ‘her fervent spirit laboured.  Here she fought, and here obtained fresh triumphs o’er herself.’  Still the sinfulness of her nature was a subject continually present in her mind.  She mourned over it; she strove against it; and it was a constant burden, which only the cross of Christ could enable her to bear.

But a second feeling which dwelt in her mind, and which produced the most important practical consequences was, that God is reconciled to sinners through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, and received in the heart by Faith.  The doctrine conveyed by this view of religion was the foundation stone on which her peace, and liberty in prayer, and holiness rested.  p. 68“Ye,” says the Apostle, “who were far off, are made nigh by the blood of Christ, for he is our peace,” and “being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Although constantly cast down by the sense of her sinfulness, Elizabeth was enabled, as constantly to look by faith to the Atonement; and if her sense of sin, by reason of the assaults of Satan, became greater as she advanced in years, yet with it, her hope of pardon increased, so that in the end, she felt an assurance that an ‘entrance would be ministered unto her abundantly, into the everlasting kingdom of her Lord and Saviour.’  On the doctrine of the Atonement moreover was founded her comfort in prayer, for it was only as she felt that God was willing to accept her as a returning child, that she was enabled to ask with confidence.  But in this belief, she was enabled to go to God, with the simplicity of a child.  She felt that he, who as a Father had redeemed her, was now willing freely to give her all things.  Moreover, this doctrine was the foundation of her holiness, as she believed that she was not pardoned by any work of her own, so she was not tempted to measure her goodness towards God by a rule, or standard which she judged might constitute his requirements; but her aim was rather to serve Him in the measure in which she loved Him, with all her heart, and mind, and soul, and strength.  If she had felt that p. 69she had been justified by works, she would have sought only to have done those works which might have secured her pardon; but now, being justified by faith, its constant attendant, constraining love, was begotten in the mind, and she felt that there was nothing she did not long to devote to the service of her God and Saviour.

One other doctrine was a source of the greatest comfort and benefit to her, it was a belief in the converting, consoling power of the Holy Ghost.  Her dependence for growth in Christian graces, was alone on the power of the Holy Spirit; the love of the Spirit seemed to dwell in her heart, and she was most anxious not to lose this holy influence by sin, or by doubts, or unwillingness to receive his Holy influences.

Her whole creed and course of conduct, may be said to have been very simple.  It was that directed by the Church, to which she was greatly attached, and which she followed with a holy, humble, obedient mind.  Her aim was constantly to lead a serious, practical, quiet life, she meddled very little with the world, she aimed to live above it.  Her chief desire was to be a follower of Christ, according to the station in which she had been placed.

But I now wish to add a word on the choice which she so deliberately made of a life dedicated to religion, and the advantages which resulted to her from it.

p. 70How many refuse to take the course of religious duty, thinking its pursuits irksome, its reward in no wise tending to present, whatever they may do to future, comfort.  But I may venture to assert, from the constant demeanour of our departed friend, that although her course was one of conflict and of trial, it was still one of substantial peace and comfort; and if she had not the joys which the world esteems, she had others which never left her, till she exchanged them for higher and purer delights.  She early learned that young people, who fancy that substantial enjoyment is only to be found in the ordinary pleasures of life, make a great mistake.  There may be much of indulgence or of excitement in worldly gratifications, and those who seek them may reap a present pleasure from them, but substantial happiness is alone to be found in religion.  For this is a happiness which does not depend on external circumstances, it is the same in all states of life, and usually it rises higher when the hour of trial and of sickness comes on, which deadens the present enjoyments of life, and overwhelms the senses.  It makes the cup run over even in the deepest desolations which the Christian is called to pass through.

But O how incomparably more blessed is her state now, and will be in all eternity, than if she had followed another course in life!  She now regrets nothing she suffered, by which the work of p. 71God in her own soul was carried on; she rejoices to have borne the cross, inasmuch as it hath worked for her a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.  All the seed of good which for years she was permitted to sow, she now reaps, and the fruit of it shall all be gathered into the garner of God.

If then she found the way of religion to be a way of pleasantness, and a path of peace, and if now she is reaping a good reward for the confession of Christ, we have the same way opened by which to return to the Father, and the Holy Spirit is at hand to teach us, to enlighten, to strengthen, to comfort, to direct us in prayer.  Let no one refuse the offer which the Gospel makes of its blessings.  Let all, without delay, hasten to give themselves up to the service of Christ, not doubting but ‘if they are stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, their labour will not be in vain in the Lord.’






[62]  I have subsequently to this event, found the same signal of faith in a dying person recorded in one of Mr. Richmond’s tracts.—Vide Churchman’s Monthly Review.  April 1841.