I cannot be trusted for one moment!

The following in an excerpt from the diary of James Smith:

March, 1843.
This day my convictions of sin are deep — and my discovery of my follies is painful. It is in reference to prayer and watchfulness, that I principally fail.

How much I require to humble me, empty me, and keep me in my proper place! How often do I perceive that but for the Lord's keeping — I would be undone! I cannot be trusted for one moment! I see it, I feel it, I confess it before God; and yet if others were to say so of me, or to me — how would my pride be hurt!

What a mercy have I found the throne of grace, yesterday and today! I know not when I visited it so often. O that I was as powerfully drawn to it by love — as I am driven to it by trouble!

I feel more like a child — as to wisdom, prudence, strength, and courage — than I ever did, for I seem to have none! O that I felt as much like a child — in reference to confidence, dependence, and love to my Heavenly Father!

O that I was thoroughly holy, truly wise, really prudent — then I think I would be happy, and make others happy!

It grieves me, that I not only procure trouble to myself — but that I trouble others; and if God were to withhold His grace — I would do but little else! However, God has promised grace — and grace will pardon what it does not prevent. But the pardon is often preceded by bitter experience, arising from conviction, self-reproach, fear, darkness, bondage, and distance from God. O for preventing grace — as well as pardoning grace!