Glasgow, 25th December, 1781
As I supposed you would soon hear of my having communicated to Mr T_____ my acceptance of his offer, I have been the less anxious at the delay of my writing you, occasioned by various circumstances.
I ought to be ashamed that so much regard hath already been shown in your place to one such as I am. And when I compare the greatness of the work which I have undertaken to attempt, with my spiritual poverty and insufficiency, I have the sentence of death in myself; nor can I be relieved otherwise than by trusting in God who quickeneth the dead.
The motives which have determined my acceptance, I hope, have been, in some measure, pleasing in the sight of God. And it is comfortable to me to think that it is the way of God in his grace to choose the weak, foolish, and base things of the world, to be instrumental in the advancement of his kingdom, and to make his wisdom, power and glory to shine through these.
I greatly need and earnestly desire the prayers of the pious people in your place. And the things which I would wish to be prayed for on my behalf are chiefly these:
1. A more pure, fervent, and heavenly zeal for the glory of God and for the souls of all sorts of people among you, old and young, godly and profane, rich and poor.
2. Wisdom to insinuate the truth of God into the hearts and consciences of every sort of persons – the truth of God in his law and in his gospel.
3. Indefatigable strength of spirit to continue unweariedly in private and public labours for the salvation of every one among you, according to my measure and opportunity.
4. A great measure of the spirit of supplication to produce a character corresponding to Isaiah 62:6-7: ‘I have set watchmen upon thy walls, O Jerusalem, which shall never hold their peace day nor night: ye that make mention of the Lord, keep not silence; and give him no rest till he establish, and till he make Jerusalem a praise in the earth.’
5. The revelation of the arm of God gloriously to attend and to succeed whatever poor endeavours, in public or in private, I may be enabled to make.
Our moments are flying away, and our eternal Judge is at the door: whatever is to be done for ourselves or others, must be done quickly and with our might.
May the salvation of God eminently come to your house! In this I shall greatly rejoice. J.L.