Warter - John Oxtoby (1804)

Some situations are awfully characterised by crime and the inhabitants, like those of Sodom, appear to be ripe for destruction. Such was the spiritual condition of a place called Warter, when our brother, glowing with an ardent zeal and tender love made his way to the people and testified amongst them of the power and enjoyments of the religion of Jesus. But while John visited the people from house to house, to talk and to pray with their families, he met with much opposition and had to use many entreaties and to bear many unpleasant things. Nevertheless he went on his way, until he beheld the difficulties vanish before him on every hand; the blessing of God in connection with his zealous and persevering labours, fell on the people; the mighty change they saw in him powerfully affected them; a delightful change was wrought in the village; his way was made open to almost every family. There was not a house in the place but what he visited, and prayed with its inmates; and if he, by any circumstance, passed by any of their houses, they would cry out “what have we done that we must not have him to pray with our families”. His prayers returned into his own bosom, and he spoke of his growing in faith and in love to God and man; a Divine power attended his supplications, and the people expected the blessing as soon as he began to supplicate the throne of grace. His labours became of great service to the aforementioned village. It was to wear a different aspect; open profanity durst not show itself as it had been wont to do, and many began to pray who before desired not the knowledge of God.

“Praying Johnny” by Harvey Leigh, published in 1855, page 16.

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