Hans Neilson Houghe
Friends' Miscellany, Vol. 8, pages 7-9.
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Oh! how glad I am, when I think of you,and of other dear friends whom God
hath called, and on whom his love is poured out and received! Let us
affectionately love one another, and be zealous in every good work, as stewards
of God; and, by his help, labour that we may get a little to do good with, and
mediate how that good may best be shed abroad, that our lights may shine in the
world. But although our love and desire may be to do good to our fellow
believers, and this is one great duty, yet Christ has taught us to do good to,
and to love our enemies. - If we do this, we shall experience that we shall be
happy when we return good for evil. Think of the best means to arouse their from
their indifference and lukewarmness; let us serve them in every thing we can;
and thus let our love be perfect towards them. This may, perhaps, operate
towards their improvement; then will our enemies become our friends, and we
shall be happy. Let us, by all means, show the excellence of truth and virtue. -
Once more I repeat, how glad I am, in considering that we are called to this
great and important work! Ah! how dreadful, that by trouble and despair, any
should fell from this great and happy object. O brethren and sisters! called in
Christ to be heavenly joint heirs with him, we have read that many have given
way, and have turned from him, and left their first love. Oh! it seems thus to
have happened, that many turned their minds to the world again; to self
interest, covetousness, and vanity. O brethren and sisters! let us who through
indifference may have given way to any of these things, beware of extinguishing
the fire which has been kindled; let us more and more long after it, that our
hearts may be the more inflamed by it; and let us entreat the Lord, that he
would pour out his Spirit upon us.
We often commune together, particularly every first-day night; and I have
thereby often been moved to tears, and strengthened to believe that my hopes
would yet be accomplished - that grace may, through the Lord, be renewed by me
and others who may be called to advocate his cause. Oh! pray to the Lord with
me, that this may be the case, and that the wicked may be hindered of their
design of my destruction, and of continuing me in prison, which yet holds me.
But let us, above all, pray that neither the snares of this world, nor the ease
of the flesh, should in this work make us more indifferent or worldly-minded.
I have been a little moved about my earthly father's sudden death. O
remember, in my youth, he was earnestly desirous to give me instruction about
God, and that I might be faithful to him.
I give my love to you all, my friends, and earnestly desire that the grace
and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ, who suffered death for our salvation, may be
ingrafted in us all, that, by receiving his saving grace, and keeping it in our
hearts, we may live a blessed life here and for ever. Amen.
Hans Neilson Houghe.