by James Meikle, 1730-1799
How good is it to trust in God, and wait for kindness at
his hand! When hope is gone, and all endeavors rendered useless, his
watchful providence grants me my request, opens a door for me, and does all
that I desire—which is truly good for my soul. O how I admire the kindness
of his love, and the wise disposal of his providence! When disappointments
thronged thick on me, I knew not what to think, or what to do; but through
your grace, I waited for your counsel, and have not waited in vain.
Your time, your way, your method, are the best. You clearly see through dark
scenes, and know my frame, and best what suits it—than the deepest
penetration of my heart ever can.
Now, when I have for many years, as it were, tried the
dispensation of God's providence, what have I to say against it? Nothing!
For, what at first appeared dark, intricate and perplexing—in a little while
became clear and intelligible. Yes, sometimes that scene which seemed most
gloomy on the outer wheel, when the inner wheel revolved, shone most
glorious, even to my astonishment; so that, what has in the beginning
extorted desponding thoughts from me, has in the end excited me to songs of
In the part of my life which is already past, and in the
scenes of providence which are already cleared up, I cheerfully confess, and
sing—He has done all things well! This is confirmed to me by
the experience of many years; so that I blush when I see some of the
'mysteries of Providence' in part unriddled—that I have had such low
apprehensions of the love and goodness of God, measuring his wisdom by my
shallow comprehension, his power by my cramped weakness, his love by my
unbelief; his goodness by my evil eye, and his ways with me—by my ways with
him! Yes, I have been vile enough, in every new scene of providence, to fall
anew into the same sin, and subject myself anew into the same shame and
"Experience is the schoolmaster of fools," says the
proverb. But what a fool must I be, who will not be instructed by all I have
seen! Why should I have one hard thought of the painful circumstances with
which I am at present entangled? Though in many things I have yet the dark
side—and not the bright side of the cloud towards me; yet I should not have
the least hard conclusion on the conduct of God's unerring Providence—but
wait until it be accomplished, and cleared up to me.
But how shall I blush, (were it possible) and be
confounded at my base thoughts of God and his providence—when 'the wandering
labyrinth that composed my life' shall be unriddled in the noon-day
brightness of glory—to my unspeakable joy, and everlasting admiration!
As I cannot recall these doubts that now distract my
bosom, to convert them into acts of faith; nor these murmurings to hush them
into silent resignation; I should study now to glorify God in the deepest
valley of misery, and darkest night of adversity—by thinking highly and
honorably of him who governs all things—both heaven and earth.
Finally, how sweet must that day be to my soul, when my
experience shall confirm and confess the kind end of every providence; and
providence shall sweetly explain and accomplish the promise; and all shall
join in one voice forever. Not one good thing has failed of all that the
Lord has spoken!