THE ORIGINAL IS IN THE “HOCKEN” COLLECTION
THE ORIGINAL IS IN THE “HOCKEN” COLLECTION.
A sense of duty and love excite my desire to write to you, in return for your kind letter by Mr. Shepherd, which I thankfully received, but not without blushing at the charitable hope you entertain of my views in coming to New Zealand. I desire your prayers to the God of all grace that I may increase in the knowledge and love of His most holy will, and be preserved through the dark vale of tears to mansions eternal in the heavens where Jesus the forerunner has gone before. The Christian, like a little bark that sails upon the ocean, often meets an adverse blast, but if the tempest roar, it cannot prevail; the Lord is nigh. His word—His eternal word—will never err. If we make shipwreck of faith, the folly is chargeable on ourselves alone. Life is a time of trial where many vices are to be eradicated, and many virtues implanted.
In the fond hour of earthly tranquillity, we are prone to fix our aims too low in copying our great Lord and Master, but when the earthly tabernacle begins to loose its hold, or when it is mouldering about its possession, no hope but that which entereth within the vail can give the spirit rest. Happy he who can, at the close of life, look back upon his well-spent day of life, whose soul is fixed upon eternal basis of unerring truth, and meets the tyrant death, disarmed of his sting. O, may you and I, dear Sir, and all who call upon our common Lord, enjoy this happy experience, that our life may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour, and that we may be made instruments in the hands of Jehovah of imparting the words of eternal life to the perishing sinners around us.
Poor Mr. Leigh has laboured for some time under severe indisposition, but all besides are well. I might mention other things to you, but as it will be told you by some of us, concerning the conduct of the natives, I thought it needless.
With my warmest desire for your present and eternal welfare, and also Mrs. Butler and family, and Mr. and Mrs. Kemp, I conclude,
Yours in the Lord,