Anne Dutton's Letters on Spiritual Subjects
My very Dear Sister in our precious Jesus,
I thank you for your last letter, it has been blessed to me. I have read it again and again, with tears of joyful wonder at the infinite grace of God to vile, unworthy me, in making my poor books of such blessed use to you, to bring you to Jesus and to build you up in Him.
Truly, according to the exceeding riches of infinite grace our God abounds towards us in all wisdom and prudence. "He is wise in counsel and excellent in working." And we shall adore Him forever, both in counsel and work, when we see, with the veil cast off, those infinite depths of wisdom and grace in which the whole and every part of our salvation was laid in contrivance of old, before the world began, according to which He all along wrought through time, to the praise of His glory, by men and angels, to a vast and endless eternity.
O how ravishing is the least beam of this glory when it breaks out upon us now! But oh, what tongue can tell, or heart conceive, a thousandth part of that joy which shall enter into us, or rather into which we shall enter, when as vessels of mercy, all-enlarged, we shall be cast into God for a full and everlasting enjoyment of Him, that ocean of bliss and glory—when we shall live forever under all the bright, the burning, he enkindling beams of His infinite glory, or rather, dwell in the Sun, in the Lord our everlasting light, in our God, as our glory?
As you encourage me to go on in the Lord's work, and tell me "my reward will be great," my heart said beforehand what you add, even before I read it, "No, it is reward enough if it was but that great use which your books have been of to me in times past, and are still." Oh, my dear sister, this I acknowledge from the very bottom of my heart, from my inmost soul. Well in this regard has my royal princely Master, in the infinity of His grace, rewarded the poor feeble attempts of His vile worm to serve Him. According to His own heart, and not according to my worthiness, has He done this great thing to make His worm know it. I bless Him for your salvation, for your faith and joy, wrought by His own hand through the means of my poor books. I bless Him for the knowledge thereof which He has given me. He might have wrought this wonder and yet have hid it from me until the day of His appearing. But oh, infinite grace! to cheer me in this service, and draw me further on in His delightful work, He has blessed me with the knowledge of it now, as a part of my present reward, and the first-fruit of that glory which awaits me at His coming. Let you and I praise Him, let men and angels praise Him, for this wondrous grace, both now and evermore. Oh, why me, the chief of sinners, why has the Lord, chosen vile me for this service? I resolve it into the bottomless, boundless ocean of His rich, free, sovereign love and grace, and let Him have the glory of it unto endless ages! And let it in the present time be hung up in Zion as a trophy of victorious grace, of the grace of Zion's King to the least and last, and worst and vilest, of all His subjects. And as an ensign, a banner of His love, let it be lifted up upon His land, to His endless praise, by all that love Him! Amen. Hallelujah!
I am glad, my dear sister, that you love the slain Lamb, and long to see the crown flourish upon His royal head. In this my soul closely joins with yours. Let us mourn for the dishonor done to our Savior-King, and His glorious gospel, the rod, the scepter of His strength, by many that profess to be His subjects and servants. Let us rejoice in that the Father has advanced Him high, has bid Him sit at His right hand until He makes His enemies His footstool. In a little while, we shall see the Lord alone exalted, and all idols abolished, the King of Zion seated upon His royal throne in His personal and relative glory, as Lord of all, and head of His body the Church, in the glory of His universal reign; and Zion made glorious, the perfection of beauty, by the brightness of His rays cast upon her, to the praise of the Savior-God by saints and angels forever and ever. "He who testifies these things says, I come quickly. Even so come, Lord Jesus! And let the whole earth be filled with His glory!" Amen, and Amen.
The grace of Christ be with your spirit. Pray for the same blessing upon me.