Bristol (1860)



There is certainly a most gracious influence resting upon, this city and Clifton. The spirit of hearing has been poured out in a wonderful manner. Never have we seen the Word listened to with greater eagerness, in the open air, by those who rarely attend a place of worship. On Sunday (15th) the Gospel was preached at Black Horse-lane, a very low neigh­bourhood, and though surrounded by the lowest of the low, never were people more attentive; and when asked if it were their desire to hear the Word again, many a hand was held up. Asking the name of the corner, a general shout went up, "Black Horse-lane!" so willing were they to hear the Word. Many a poor furrowed cheek was bedewed that morning; and feeble voices bade, us come again, and bring the.little boy.

Three other dear brothers preached in the evening, on the Quay at the Drawbridge, and had an immense congregation, who paid the strictest attention; and many withdrew them­selves from the crowd for conversation and prayer, a meeting for which was commenced a short distance from the spot. Thirty anxious persons were soon upon their knees on the Quay. On Monday night the preachers occupied the same spot, and a similar scene followed. On Tuesday night about 400 remained until half-past ten; and, as they still lingered, they were invited to come at seven o'clock the following morn­ing, for conversation, to a chapel two miles off. Notwith­standing the distance and the early hour, several came; and one young man, who had asked us the locality of the chapel with great earnestness, was among the first, and went out trusting. The crowd that pressed forward to shake hands was a gratifying proof of their willingness to hear the Word. Men of all classes: carters in white frocks, seamen, mechanics, labourers, and tradesmen, exhibited the same earnestness, and nothing like opposition or interruption was once evinced.

On Wednesday night we found the place occupied by two ballad singers, with a. large crowd of listeners. We expected opposition, but prayed God to shut the lions’ mouths. Soon as that sweet hymn ascended

"There is a fountain filled with blood,"

the crowd left the song unfinished, crowding to hear the glad tidings; and instead of opposition, one of the ballad singers became a listener. After an address, a meeting for the anxious was proposed further on, while another brother continued the preaching. Very many assembled together, and Christian brethren assisted in conversation and prayer. No one took offence at being spoken to; all were serious, and the voice of Mayer and singing went up to heaven as uninterruptedly as if we had been in a church or chapel. The other service was soon turned into an anxious meeting; and one poor woman raised her arm, as expressive of her desire to find Christ, and sank on the ground in deepest distress. One low woman was severely censured by her companion, for trifling, and told to let others pray, if she would riot herself. Another young woman, seeking Jesus, was asked why she would believe a, sinful man, and not believe the holy Jesus The Spirit opened her eyes—she cried, " I do believe:" and, in her joy, said she would go home to tell her mother, and on her knees beg of her to come to Jesus too. It was the most solemn time we ever felt in the open air. On Thursday night it rained incessantly; and, longing and lingering' round the spot, we were met by several anxious souls who besought us to speak again, offering to assist us in singing. Notwithstanding the rain, a refusal was impossible, and about fifty gathered together to hear us speak of Jesus, perhaps for the last time; after which, many a warm grasp and tearful eye spoke of the hearts already opened to receive the Word. We had not gone far, when we were overtaken by a young man, who, with tears and sobs, begged us to pray of God to "save him," and to accept of his portrait by way of reminder thereto: Surely God has made a breach here. May the dear Christians, who so kindly helped us by prayer and conversation with the anxious ones, have this spot laid on their consciences, and carry on the work begun there. A good work is progressing among the young: seventy lads met at the house of a brother on Thursday night. Another brother, who has worked as a missionary among the poor, tells of a great work there: in a very low neighbourhood, 120 persons have been induced to sign the pledge, and many a hardened sinner brought to Christ.

From the 'Revival Newspaper', Volume III, page 36.


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