The Journal


Sunderland P. Gardner, Part Eleven

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My Dear Wife: - I am now at Jonathan Hart's, Battle Creek, in good health, but it is very sickly in this country with fevers - sick in almost every house.

I got through visiting the meetings in Canada very much to my satisfaction; we had excellent meetings in every place, and largely attended. I have had but one yet in Michigan, and that was wholly amongst the ranters. After taking a seat death and darkness were for a time all that could be felt, and submission appeared to be my lot; but after awhile sufficient light and strength were given to lift me above the confusion of tongues which prevailed there, and I was enabled to bear a very close, plain, faithful testimony among them. The young people and the non-professors were much tendered, and the ranters' castle of self-sufficiency was wonderfully exposed and taken down, and I left them, satisfied and glad that I had had a meeting with them. I feel very desirous to hear from home, that little spot which embraces nearly all my world. Oh how I want to surprise you by stepping into your midst! How does that sweet little daughter behave? Does she improve in her deportment? Tell her it would please me above all earthly considerations to hear of her improving in the best things. I feel that I am in the line of my duty, and this is all that keeps me from home any longer than it would take the present expeditious mode of traveling to carry me there.

My mind is under almost continuous exercise, but thou knows that is nothing strange with me, though to me it appears always to be new. If I am permitted to get through my present visit to satisfaction and return again to the bosom of my family, I shall be filled with thanksgiving and gratitude to Him who has thus far wonderfully preserved me. I presume that some changes have taken place since I left home. Sometimes one is suddenly summoned away, and some family is afflicted with the loss of one of its members, and feels hardly able to bear up under the trial. The source to which I recommend the bereaved mourners for consolation is never-failing; it is consolation itself, even our Heavenly Father, of whom it is declared, "A Father to the fatherless and a Judge to the widow is God in his holy habitation." I trust I am understood.

If this letter arrive soon, thou may send me one immediately, directed to Adrian, Lanawee County, Mich.

I have arranged almost one meeting a day since I left home. Remember me affectionately to all, especially my aged father. I dreamed that one of my neighbors had died, but it was only a dream.

With all love, I bid you farewell.

S. P. Gardner

[N. B. - The dream above mentioned proved true, as he found on reaching home.]

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