[To Mr. Nunn.] Fittleworth, 11 August 1840.
My dear Friend,
I was truly glad to receive your letter, and have been exceedingly surprised how the Lord has led me in respect of it, as well as the whole of my late exercises.
I was much impressed with these words - "The ways of a man are before the eyes of the Lord, and he pondereth all his goings." This led me to very earnest prayer and searching of the word of God; and I was much encouraged by these words - "Say not thou, I will recompense evil; but wait on the Lord, and he shall save thee." This followed me night and day with unceasing prayer, and I found an inconceivable drawing nigh in hope, and my spirit kept in the sweetest composure, and a peculiar sense of godly fear. The word of God and prayer were my chief employ. I felt greatly encouraged to hope the Lord would help me, and I found a spirit of prayer for you. I was never suffered for one moment to feel anything but that true spiritual union which the Lord alone can work in such a rebellious heart as mine. I then found a sweet confidence arise with these words - "Surely his salvation is nigh them that fear him, that glory may dwell in our land." This kept by me with some continuance, and showed me Christ as God's salvation; and he came into my heart with all his saving benefits in such a way that I can scarcely remember the time when I had so sweet a sense of his love to me, and of my eternal safety in him.
The word of God was still my refuge, and 2 Cor. ii. again came with such divine power to my heart as I cannot describe. The weakness and trembling and fear there spoken of encouraged me greatly; and I found that the Lord had graciously revealed his hidden wisdom to me, and that I should still comprehend in some measure, by faith, what the eye hath not seen, nor the ear heard, nor hath entered into the heart of man to conceive; even what God hath prepared for them that love him.
My heart went up sensibly in prayer to the Lord for you in all your afflictions, and I am persuaded the Lord heard me by his helping my infirmities; for I had been very much cast down, but he has been marvellously kind in keeping me sober and watchful. I hope he will also give you his comforting presence, and be with you in all your troubles.
Yours affectionately, J. B.