Gibraltar, India, Malta
January 5th, 1890
My beloved Angee,
Your letter of December 12th with one from dear Arundel came to hand on the 1st just as I was leaving for Ferosepore and Mooltan which places I have visited and returned here again yesterday. You may judge of the way my heart and spirit have been with you all and in prayer and supplication too to our ever gracious God and Father, now known to us through grace in His dear Son Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour who has washed us from our sins in His own blood. I am so thankful that dear Harriett has been sustained in her soul's confidence in God as her dear body has been made to feel its extreme weakness and in this has learnt Christ's sympathies who once could say "I am poured out like water and all my bones are out of joint". But now all this is passed and passed for ever, so that He can now say to one who falls at His feet as dead "I am He that liveth and was dead and behold I am alive for evermore and have the keys of Hades and of death." I know He can even now touch that poor wasted body and yet make it to stand for a little while in the midst of the natural relationships. He has formed and smiled upon, or if His love and wisdom elect to give the better thing, His power can bring it back even from the grave and give it a fashion like unto His glorious body. With yourself my beloved Angee I have prayed that if it be according to His blessed will He would be pleased even yet to spare her for the sake of the loved ones around her, she has indeed found her joy in serving with such devotedness.
The Lord is the giver of wisdom as well as grace and I trust in Him for all the wisdom we need in the midst of all the changing circumstances of our pilgrimage here. I do hope that dear Harry has recovered from his sickness and that he will not miss the lesson God would teach in it. I was thankful to hear that the firm had written him a kind letter.
Through mercy God has greatly prospered the business through the past week at the two places I have visited and I know what a cheer it will be for them at the works when my next letter is received. I had succeeded in opening with the best merchant, a Parsi, on my first visit to Mooltan who has continued indenting our goods since – this of course has made them known in that neighbourhood so that four other merchants gave me good orders without any difficulty. Major Jacob gave me the name of a soldier in fellowship there to whom I sent a message asking him to come up [to] the Dak Bungalow where I was staying – he did not however come, so I sent Lazarus down to the barracks to see him and on his return was sorry to hear that the poor fellow had that afternoon gone to the hospital with fever – his name is John Days and the next morning I called upon him and he was very glad to have a visit from a brother – the dear fellow seemed very simple and bright and after a nice talk with him I knelt down and prayed for him. There were many in the room like himself, down with fever and there was also a company near playing cards, but this quickly ceased and for a few minutes all were listening to the one upon his knees in prayer. I could not but feel that God might in His mercy cause that the words uttered to Him may reach some of the souls of those soldiers lying upon their couches – Day was very thankful for it. In the evening I met a soldier belonging to the same regiment to whom I spoke of Christ and found that he knew Day and spoke very highly of him as a Christian. I was much interested too in having asked Day what part of England he had lived, to find that he came from Stratford Upon Avon and his parents are there in fellowship – he also knew Sarah and as a lad worked with our dear brother the late Tom Robins.
Jan. 6th Monday morning
The working part of the week has commenced again and I have a day's work before me in getting all my letters off by the evening when I purpose starting for the northern regions of Rawal Pindi and Peshawar and of the Lord will hope to return here again by the end of the week – we had a soul refreshing day yesterday. As I was leaving the hotel in the morning Lazarus asked if he might go to the meeting too, so he accompanied me to Major Jacobs house where they are held – there are several natives now in fellowship, so that the meeting is in two languages and Lazarus can understand the things of God when spoken in Hindustani better than in English. We had the room at the Y.M.C.A. well filled for the gospel in the evening and the Lord helped me to proclaim the glad tidings once more - a great many native Christians from the various sects came in. Dear Major Jacob and his children, except the very young, came too, and his hearty fellowship in the gospel was very encouraging. On Thursday next they all start for a camping tour for a month or two away in a now desolate region – they start with all they need for this pilgrimage and altogether it is quite a formidable troop – camels and elephants carry all the burden. He is engaged in cutting a canal through this desolate region and as soon as water can be brought upon the land the desert soon begins to blossom and to teem with human life. It appears the Government will not sell these irrigated districts to rich people who are eager enough to get it to let it out again but give small allotments to families from already overcrowded districts. How good of God thus to consider the poor and to preserve them from the oppression of the rich.
Through mercy I am keeping in good health and feeling happy with the work – Trust you are also preserved in body and soul. Give my love to Mr Shapland and all the dear brethren whose prayers I value – hope dear Mr Robertshaw is getting stronger again - my love to him and Eliza and Emmie and now my beloved wife with much love to your dear self once more believe me.
Being very affectionate Husband.
I have written Arundel and Harry