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p358 [G Alexander] BELOVED BROTHER, - I was glad to get a few lines from you, and to hear something of brethren too. I have never had a cloud on my mind as to my path, since I fixed to come, the Lord helping me, to New Zealand. As to my strength, I found it after ninety-six hours constantly in the train that dreary wilderness, nothing the worse: the voyage rather a rest, having as a whole very fine weather, and the ship unusually easy; and were I health-hunting, I might stay in this beautiful country with pleasure. The climate is admirable here, and the locality charming. Of course I have been, through mercy, working as elsewhere.

Having been put off before, and dear W. having been here, I had doubts about coming; but as they still looked for me, I thought I should come, and all has been ordered. I do not know when I have had such earnest and attentive congregations. The word is enjoyed, so that I trust there may be blessing for all outside as well as inside … and the Lord has been graciously with me. Of course the exercises of soul in others, and in oneself, are found, and practically the same as everywhere; still it remains joyfully and thankfully true that God has wrought us for the selfsame thing, and has given us the earnest of the Spirit. On the whole, all hitherto has been encouraging, and I trust will be so yet.

I feel sometimes a little envious of those called to be evangelists - still happy that they have it - but it is good for me and keeps me low; and I know and feel that I should be willing to serve where He sets me, and rejoice to do it, because it is His will - only pray I may serve thoroughly, happy to be allowed to do it. As to all the translations, though very thankful to give the word of God to others, I feel I am only a "hewer of wood and drawer of water" - always have. It is a joy to me to have been permitted to do it, but it is the word in the soul which is the power of life. I only hope in the midst of all that is going on, the brethren may be devoted, and continue to evangelise, and increase in it, but earnestly, soberly and devotedly. I am not (though I am sure the Lord does all things well) entirely at ease as to the way Moody sets all to work. I have seen the insecure lowering of Christianity it occasions in America, and the mischief it does to souls, and partly in England; though earnest working, when called of God, and confessing Christ with all, is a great privilege. But work is made the means of getting peace, openly so, and systematically too, in the States: besides that, many in whom there is no deep work - yea, because there is not - set out to work. Yet I do not deny that where it is deep and simple, one in the freshness of grace and forgiveness can deal better with sinners than one more advanced: I do not speak of positive gifts. But the setting to work in a superficial state of soul I dread for the person. I do not doubt that M.'s setting forth the love of God more freely and fully has done good. He has got on in truth unquestionably. … As to sects and the church, this question remains just where it was.

My thoughts, though I have to finish here, turn towards England, if the Lord will. Still, day by day we have to follow His will, and Christ is the same and all everywhere; and we have to work while it is day, and then be with Him in the fulness of God's rest, when He comes - when He shall be satisfied, seeing the fruit of the travail of His soul.

Affectionately yours in Him.

Nelson, New Zealand, October 25th, 1875.