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PATIENCE IN TRIBULATION:
3 Memorial Sketch
A RECOMMENDATORY NOTE
THE REV. FRANCIS GILLIES, A.M.
MINISTER OF FREE ST STEPHEN'S CHURCH, EDINBURGH,
“ Increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened
COLOSSIANS i. 10, 11.
JAMES NISBET AND CO., 21 BERNERS STREET.
THE REV. FRANCIS GILLIES, A.M.
MINISTER OF FREE ST STEPHEN'S, EDINBURGH.
It really seems to be a superfluity for any one to make many remarks, by way either of introduction or of recommendation, to the interesting narrative which follows. The artless simplicity, and the transparent truthfulness, of the record are so palpable, that they require no corroboration. The touching pathos of the story is so impressive as to admit of no deepening.
Had the case been otherwise, all who witnessed the incidents and the experience which are depicted in these pages, could vouch for the almost excessive sensitiveness shewn by the compiler, lest anything should be stated too favourably, or coloured too brightly, by the affection of a fond and bereaved parent. I know
how she has felt it to be a matter of conscience, in handling such a solemn matter as the dealings of Jehovah the Holy Ghost with the soul of her beloved child, to understate rather than to exaggerate.
I I may be allowed, upon solicitation, to say that I enjoyed long and familiar converse with the subject of this sketch, both as a friend, as her religious instructor, and as her pastor. I had the greatest satisfaction in our whole intercourse, and delighted to watch the growth of her Christian character.
When at last it pleased God, in His sovereign and mysterious, but wise and good providence, to smite her heavily in the very opening of her days and budding of her prospects, and to confine her to a bed of severe distress and protracted languishing, it was at once pleasing and profitable to stand still and behold the salvation which the Lord wrought out within her deeply exercised soul.
Well may it strengthen and encourage us all, and more especially the tender, the timid, and the shrinking of her own sex and age, to see that even where affliction so greatly abounded the consolations of God in Christ and by the Spirit did much more abound. It was, indeed, most cheering to see how “the God of Patience” made her “to possess her soul in patience,” and at length made “patience to have its perfect work”
under her peculiarly trying circumstances. Perhaps, “Patience in Tribulation” was her great characteristic. It was encouraging also to behold “the God of Hope” filling her soul with peace and joy in believing upon Christ; and in precise proportion as she was brought to rest and rejoice on His bosom, she found and testified again and again that the “consolations of God” are neither “few nor small,” and far more than enough to sustain and cheer the soul in her conflict with the “King of Terrors.” Her faith at last made her more than a conqueror through Him who loved and upheld her, and who filled her with “everlasting consolation and good hope through grace."
It is but right, however, to say that I am persuaded, that if she were once more allowed to speak, it would be to testify to us all, as she often admitted to myself, that if her reliance upon Jesus and His “finished work” and His free grace for salvation had been, from the first, and all along, more simple, more constant, and more confiding, her peace of conscience - yes, and her purity of soul and her hope of glory-would all have been correspondingly greater. Blessed be God, she died in the peace and joy of assured faith! But it would have been well for her soul, and more honouring to her Saviour, had she all along felt and expressed