Saturday, September 21, 2019

Rutherford Revised (326)

326. To Mistress Gillespie, Widow of George Gillespie   From St. Andrews 14 Aug 1649

Dear Sister,I have heard how the Lord hath visited you, in removing the child Archibald. I hope you see that the setting down of the weight of your confidence and affection upon any created thing, whether husband or child, is a deceiving thing; and that the creature is not able to bear the weight, but sinks down to very nothing under your confidence. And, therefore, you are Christs debtor for all providences of this kind, even in that He builds a hedge of thorns in your way: for so you see that His gracious intention is, to save you (if I may say so) whether you will or not.
It is a rich mercy that the Lord Christ will be Master of your will and of your delights, and that His way is so faiing. No matter how little you are engaged to the world, since you have such experience of cross-dealing in it. Had you been a child of the house, the world would have dealt more warmly with its own. There is less of you out of heaven, in that the child is there and the husband is there; but much more that your Head, Kinsman, and Redeemer does fetch home such as are in danger to be lost. And from this time forward, do not fetch your comforts from such broken cisterns and dry wells. If the Lord pull at the rest, ye must not be the creature that will hold when He draws.
   Truly, to me your case is more comfortable than if the fireside were well furnished with ten children. The Lord saw that you were able, by His grace, to bear the loss of husband and child; and that you are that weak and tender as not to be able to stand under the mercy of a gracious husband, living and flourishing in favour with authority, and in reputation for godliness and learning. For He knows the weight of these mercies would crush you and break you. And as there is no searching out of His understanding, so He has skill to know what providence will make Christ dearest to you; and do not let your heart say, It is a badly chosen thing.Sure Christ, who has seven eyes, had before Him the good of a living husband and children for Margaret Murray, and the good of a removed husband and children translated to glory. Now that He has opened His decree to you, say, Christ hath made for me a wise and gracious choice, and I have not one word to say to the contrary.” Do no let your heart charge anything, nor unbelief libel injuries upon Christ because He will not leave you alone, nor give you leave to play the adulteress with such as have not that right to your love that Christ has. I should wish that, at the reading of this, you might fall down and make a surrender of those that are gone, and of those that are yet alive, to Him. And for you, let Him have all; and wait for Himself, for He will come, and will not delay. Live by faith, and the peace of God guard your heart. He cannot die whose you are.
   My wife suffered with you, and remembers her love to you. Your brother in Christ,  S. R.

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