[To the Rev. B. G., Mr. M., &c.] London, 14 February 1843.
My dear Friends,
I have one more account to give you all, which is to acknowledge the goodness of God during my stay in Shropshire, as well as in bringing me home in safety.
I was at times greatly encouraged and comforted in my heart with the divine power of the word, though I began generally in much trembling and weakness. For the most part I was made to feel the word first spoken to myself, and then sounded out to such among the people as had an appetite for it.
Since I came home I have had some sweet tokens of the approbation of God, but these have been sorely tried. I have also sunk very low in fear, and have been ready to give up my hope because of the unwelcomeness of a faithful report. The enemy tells me I shall not have one friend left, and my heart fears the same; I am allowed to encourage, as it is called; but beyond this I am not wanted. He also takes advantage of my castings down, and tells me that these are the tokens I ought to judge by; that I should not speak, for I was never sent to distress his kingdom; and that I ought first to judge myself, and if I will presume to instruct, I ought to be better equipped; and I believe this to he true.
O how I feel I must judge myself very narrowly, and take heed I say nothing but what the Lord enables me to put in practice How often did I watch this point in Shropshire, and how anxious I was to proceed as the Spirit of God had led me in my own experience; and one especial thing I was made deeply to feel, namely, my great ignorance in all things, and particularly in the spiritual state of others. I cannot express the fear I have lest I should give a wrong judgment, especially where there is any regard paid to what I say. These things abide in my mind, and are attended with continual searchings of heart, because the eye of God is upon me, and he knows my ways and thoughts afar off; and if we are found walking contrary to his word, his judgments are a great deep, and overtake us long before we are in the least aware. O how I desire to be found in the exercise of that grace of humility! I know it is safe. I dread independence of God, or to be in any way presuming. I know the next step must be a downfall. I am surrounded on all hands with terrible things, and if it please God to keep me watchful and sober and unceasingly crying to him, I know there may be some revival in this bondage, and that the Lord will appear and make me to see that nothing is too hard for him.
On Sunday morning I was much in earnest in prayer, and very anxious to find the Lord in hearing the word, and the Lord came with sweet power into my heart while Mr. Burrell was commenting on Matt. xvii.; but in the evening at the sacrament, while he handed the cup I felt the marvellous dying love of the Saviour to me. In this I found that sweet liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, and all my bonds were broken, and the Lord drew very near. It was to my soul a full proof of the Lord's approbation on my proceedings at Pulverbach, and gave me power to leave all my fears and misgivings in his hands.
Yours &c. J. B.