Monday, June 19

On June 18.

I was taken exceeding ill, and brought to the gates of death, by the breaking of small ulcers in my lungs, as my physician supposed. In this extreme weak state I continued for several weeks, and was frequently reduced so low, as to be utterly speechless, and not able so much as to whisper a word; and even after I had so far revived, as to walk about the house, and to step out of doors, I was exercised every day with a faint turn, which continued usually four or five hours; as which times, though I was not so utterly speechless, but that I could say Yes or No, yet I could not converse at all, nor speak one sentence, without making stops for breath; and divers times in this season, my friends gathered round my bed, to see me breathe my last, which they looked for every moment, as I myself also did.

I'll continue periodically posting paragraphs from this long explanation of his month long illness until Brainerd's regular journalling returns in July.

Thursday, June 15

Wednesday, June 17.

This, and the two preceding days, I spent mainly in visiting the minsters of the town, and was treated with great respect by them.

Friday, June 12.

I arrived in Boston this day, somewhat fatigued with my journey. Observed that there is no rest, but in God; fatigues of body, and anxieties of mind, attend us, both in town and country; no place is exempted.

Tuesday, June 9.

I set out on a journey from Northampton to Boston. Travelled slowly, and got some acquaintance with divers ministers on the road.

Having now continued to ride for some considerable time together, I felt myself much better than I had formerly done; and found, that in proportion to the prospect I had of being restored to a state of usefulness, so I desired the continuance of life; but death appeared inconceivable more desirable to me than a useless life; yet blessed be God, I found my heart, at time, fully resigned and reconciled to this greatest of afflictions, if God saw fit thus to deal with me.

Monday, June 12

Lord's day, June 7.

My attention was greatly engaged, and my soul do drawn forth, this day, by what I heard of the 'exceeding preciousness of the saving grace of God's Spirit,' that it almost overcame my body, in my weak state. I saw, that true grace is exceeding precious indeed; that is is very rare; and that ther is but a very small degree of it, even where the reality of it is to be found; at least, I saw this to be my case.

In the preceding week I enjoyed some comfortable seasons of meditiation. One morning the cause of God appeared exceeding precious to me; the Redeemer's kindom is all that is valuable in the earth, and I could not but long for the promotion of it in the world. I saw also, that his cause is God's, that he has an infinitely greater regard and concern for it than I could possibly have; that if I have any true love to this blessed interest, it is only a drop derived from that ocean; hence, I was ready to 'lift up my head with joy;' and conclude, 'Well, if God's cause be so dear and precious to him, he will promote it.'

And thus I did as it were rest on God, that surely he would promote that which was so agreeable to his own will; though the time when must still be left to his sovereign pleasure.

Saturday, June 3

Lord's day, May 31.

I had little inward sweetness in religion most of the week past; not realizing and beholding spiritually the glory of God, and the blessed Redeemer; from whence always arise my comforts and joys in religion, if I have any at all: and if I cannot so behold the excellencies and perfections of God, as to cause me to rejoice in him for what he is in himself, I have no solid foundation for joy. To rejoice, and only because I apprehend I have an interest in Christ, and shall be finally saved, is a poor mean business indeed.