The Letters of Ruth Bryan, 1805-1860

Divine guidance

The Lord says, "I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you. Psalms 32:8

To Mrs. H., November 29, 1855.
My ever dear Amelia,
How truly have we both proved that when "the Lord shuts none can open; and when he opens none can shut." I trust the present opening in your case will eventually prove of real benefit to your bodily health, and also that you may have as manifestly the Lord's presence and instructions as (to His glory I am constrained to confess) I have had, in going from my own home, quite as unexpectedly as you. He leads us about to instruct us, as it is written, "He led him about, he instructed him, he kept him as the apple of his eye."

Truly, "the way of the Lord is strength to the upright;" "his voice is full of majesty;" it overcomes the soul, and gives to its timid questions an answer of assurance which none can gainsay or resist. "Where the word of a king is there is power;" and when I was wondering "why accept this and refuse the other?" He said, "My people shall be willing in the day of my power."

I have felt the power of Satan striving against me. Whom resist steadfast in the faith; and truly in the conflict the Spirit did strengthen my soul with that invaluable word "ENDURE," and enduring (by His power) to the end, there was salvation. "Yes, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us." Thus in my bodily weakness I have been called out when I had thought to retire, and spend my few remaining days in a quiet pavilion with my Beloved; but, however, to his honor I must say, "He has done all things well," and "His paths drop fatness; they drop upon the pastures of the wilderness," and then we, His "little hills, rejoice on every side."

I am now very poorly, and also much bowed under a deep relative trial, in which I am anxiously watching for the guiding cloud, and listening for the directing voice. I seldom sail long on a smooth sea—but often do I see the Lord's wonders in the deep, and bring up many a pearl from thence. I am a poor weak creature, and often fear when I enter into the cloud, and cry in the storm, "Save me, O God, for the waters are come in unto my soul." Then He does deliver the poor and the needy when he cries. He has delivered, He does deliver, and we trust that He will yet deliver. I am weak and tried—but one of those feeble folk whose dwelling is in the rock. (Prov. 30:26)

Dear love, from your warmly-affectionate,