Most Remarkable Passages
in the

Spiritual Experiences
Elizabeth Wast,
A Young Woman,
Sometime Mistress of the Trades Hospital
in Edinburgh,

Most particularly, her Spiritual Experiences
in attending Sacramental
Occasions, and Praying Societies.

Extracted from her Memoirs
By the Revd. Mr. John Brown,
Minister of the Gospel at Haddington.

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Psalm LXVI. 16. “Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare
what he hath done for my soul.”

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Where variety of Books and Pamphlets may be had
in Wholesale or Retail, on reasonable terms. 1785M.DCC.LXXXV.

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Spiritual Experiences
Elizabeth Wast.

I cannot tell the precise time when the Lord
began to deal with my soul, but it was when I
was very young. My mother and aunt being at
great pains to instruct me, I apprehended heaven to
be a place where I would get everything comely and
delightful, and therefore resolved to abstain from
swearing, lying, and other like abominations, in order
that I may obtain it. But the first temptation that
I met with made me break through all my resolutions.
When the fears of lying for ever in hell disturbed my
conscience, I lulled it asleep by saying my prayers,
which I had learned by rote, and studying to be less
wicked than others around me. Under the ministry
of Messers. W. Erskine and J. Kirkton in Edinburgh,
I had my affections often remarkably moved, so that
I durst not neglect secret prayer, and sometimes their
inward glowing made me weep in my devotions.
This made me think myself really converted. My
own conscience, made others gratify my pride with their applause.

Mr. G. Meldrum having now become our minister,
as he, in a sermon from INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Joshua xxiv. 15. “Choose
you this day whom ye will serve:”
earnestly called us to make a present choice of the Lord Jesus Christ
for our Saviour and Lord, my soul was powerfully melt- 3
melted and drawn by the word, and made willing to
accept of and serve him all the days of my life.—But
while he afterwards insisted, that none of our prayers
or duties could be accepted, unless they were first put
into Christ’s hand, and unless we had a saving uptaking
of Jesus Christ in his person and offices: this filled
me with fear and dread, that nothing that ever I had
done could be accepted before God. But while he at
considerable length discoursed concerning the nature,
offices, and exhibition of Christ in the gospel, from
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Gal. iv. 4, 5. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mat. i. 21. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Acts iii. 22. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Heb. vii. 26.
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Psal. ii. 6. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.John iii. 14, 15. my soul was silted with
admiration of him, and drawn out to embrace him as
myself, and take up my cross and follow him. In
consequence of this, before, and immediately after, I
first partook of the Lord’s supper in 16941694, I devoted
myself to him by a solemn covenant.

For some months after this, I enjoyed such delightful
views of Jesus Christ, in his loveliness and love,
and his being in every respect suited to answer all of my
needs and plagues, ignorance, guilt, rebellion, and the
like, and to be to me every thing necessary and profitable,
and comfortable, as filled my heart with wonder
and joy, and my lips with praise. But about the end
of the year, I fell under strong temptations to doubt
of the being of a God, which threw me into dreadful
consternation. It filled me with anguish to think, that
now I had no certain persuasion of the existence of
him, whom I lately looked on as the God of my salvation
—But while I was on my knees musing like one
distracted,—drowned in the depths of unbelief, the
Lord pitied me, and brought the observation to my
mind, the forgetting of which had occasioned the
temptation. He convinced me of my sin in entertaining
such a temptation, surprized me with his
comfortable presence, confirmed my interest, and enabled me to plead his promise, that he was my
God, my Redeemer, and my King.

Not- 4

Notwithstanding my remarkable sweet deliverance,
I soon found dreadful remains of atheism lurking in
my heart, and already to break forth whenever I met
with a new temptation.—Being sensibly deserted by
the Lord I fell under great deadness of spirit. I
could not tell my case to any, it was so extraordinary.
I could not find any of my Christian companions ever
to have been in such a case. On 1695-01-01January 1, 1695,
I being with them, they conversed concerning the
love of Jesus Christ. This kindling in my breast a
desire to know him. But I thought that I was nothing
but an hypocrite, and that since I had not walked
in the Lord’s way, none of his promises would be fulfilled
on me, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Num. xiv. 34. By a sermon from INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Col.
i. 21.
“And you, who were enemies in your minds
by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled.”—

I had my bands loosed, and that night had comfortable
fellowship with God. But Satan quickly tempted
me to think that all was delusion. My ignorance of
Jesus Christ under such a clear gospel ministry exceedingly
confounded and pained me. In anguish I mourned
that I was undone; that I have been born to be
a monument of his displeasure.—God hath forsaken
me!—O that I had never been born! I debated with
myself, that I was a stranger to Christ—I saw myself
undone, and yet was a little affected with my condition.
Nevertheless, it was refreshful to me, that on the
Lord’s day Mr. Meldrum in his sermons so exactly
hit the case of my soul, though I had told it to none.
That word INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.I Cor. i. 30. “Christ is of God made unto
us wisdom, righteousness, sanctification and redemption:”
especially the word “redemption” was made
sweet to my soul.

Meanwhile Satan injected most blasphemous and
atheistical thoughts into my mind. I apprehended that
there was no such sinner as I in the world. I thought
never one of God’s people had been tempted as I was.
I found myself always ready to yield to his temptations,ons, 5
I thought that there was no hope for me: that
it was in vain for me to read or pray, as God would
not have mercy on such a hypocrite. When I attempted
to pray, it was strongly injected into my mind
that there was no God, no Christ, no Holy Ghost:
that the Bible was but an imposture contrived by men,
that ministers were but villanous seducers of their people;
that all my religious duties were but lost labour;
that the heathens were wiser than I, in worshipping a
God which they knew.—I durst tell my distress to
none. I thought everybody, even the most profligate
swearer, happier than I, as they believed that there is
a God.
The reading of Francis Spira did much hurt
to my soul, and was like to have led me to murder
myself. But Bunyan’s Grace abounding to the Chief of
, especially his account of the Lord’s way with
him, under his atheistical distress, was very useful.
But I would not believe unless a feasible miracle
was wrought.

When I continued in this dreadful wickedness and
trouble, Jesus Christ, by his Spirit, shewed me that I
had notwithstanding as free access to his throne of
grace as ever. The very thoughts of this transported
me; and, as soon as I could, I retired to secret prayer.
The Lord kindly shewed me the absurdity and wickedness
of my yielding to the temptation, and promised
that “He would never leave me, nor forsake me”, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Heb. xiii. 5.
tho’ I had so much forsaken him. He gave me a new
discovery of his own nature and perfections, and gave
me such a firm persuasion of his truth, as I could have
sealed it with my blood. With great freedom I poured
out my heart before him. I was filled with joy
and rejoicing. Our minister’s sermon from INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Rev. iii. 20.
and that word INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Ezek. xvi. 6, 8 “And when I passed by
thee, and saw thee polluted in thy blood, then thy
time was a time of love; and I said unto thee Live.
And I entered into the covenant with thee, and thou be- 6
becomest mine:”
filled me with wonder and astonishment.
And I, in the most solemn manner, took all
things around me to witness, that I heartily embraced
Jesus Christ, in his person, natures, and offices, to be
mine. The nine appropriating myes in INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Psalm xviii.
1, 2, 3
were also exceedingly sweet to my soul. O
the pleasant life that I for some days enjoyed, wondering
at, and thanking my God for his love to me
thro’ Christ Jesus.

But Alas! I had scarcely sung that “my mountain stood
, when Satan and my inward corruptions gradually
carried me off my feet, and made me slacken my
pace in duty. In consequence of this, I fell asleep,
and contracted such a spiritual deadness, that I could
do nothing at all. I was sadly overcome by sleep,
when I was at secret prayer, which made me look oon
myself as an hypocrite. My corruptions dreadfully
raged and prevailed. I lost my joy and comfort; and
soon forgot the Lord’s late mighty work on my behalf.
For a time I laboured to oppose my corruptions and
temptations: but my belovest lust, dressed up in religious
like appearance, gradually enticed, entangled,
and polluted my heart.

I no sooner purposed to attend a communion at
Laswade, than Satan laboured to persuade me, that
such an unfaithful covenant-breaking wretch could not
without great presumption, go thither, or be accepted
at the Lord’s table. When I went off, my unbelief
and atheism, my want of love to Jesus Christ, my
pride, both natural and spiritual, my hypocrisy, my
backsliding, and my predominant sin were all presented
to my conscience in order to discourage me. When
I insisted, that no cure could be had for these sins, but
in Christ: Satan urged, that I had not on the “wedding
. I replied, that I would go to Jesus Christ
in my filthy rags, that he might clothe me with change
of raiment. I resolved, like Esther, to cast myself at
the feet of his mercy; and if I should perish, I would but 7
but get what I deserved. Notwithstanding many difficulties.,
both spiritual and temporal, I came to the
place on Saturday. The sermons, that day, were
mostly discouraging to me, except a note in the end of
the second. After several alterations of my inward
frame, sometimes to the better, and sometimes to the
worse, I came home, with some hope but little comfort.
I soon perceived from INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Acts xvii. 23. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.1 Cor. xv. 34.
that I had procured my destress to myself by my ignorance
of God.—My darkness so increased, that neither
promises nor threatenings affected me. This made
me conclude, that Christ had no special love to me.Notwithstanding
my dreadful despair and its wicked
attendants, I, almost every Sabbath, either in public
or secret, got some cordial to support me, and keep
me from utter fainting. But even on these very days
the prevalency of my peculiar corruptions made me
often roar to the Lord Jesus, that he would exercise
his kingly power in subduing them.

In 1695-10October 1695, I, at another sacramental occasion,
was helped to give myself anew to the Lord.
But the apprehensions which I had of sins dwelling
in me, and mingling themselves with all my duties,
made my life a burden to me, and produced in me
strong desires of death. Being blamed by my fellow
Christians, and rebuked by the Spirit of God for deserting
the minister of our own parish, in order to
hear Mr. Meldrum. I attended our own pastor, and
was exceedingly comforted, and never after left my
parish kirk.—The way of the Lord was then very
sweet and pleasant to me: and in telllingtelling my Christian
intimates whaswhat the Lord was doing for my soul. But
the state of my father’s family lay very heavy on me,
as we had not the daily worship of God in it; and my
father appeared not to have any concern about spiritual
and eternal things. The afflictions which they
endured, and my dealing with my father, wrought no re- 8
reformation among them. I therefore could do no
more, then earnestly pray for his conversion, in which
I met with great enlargement.

After I had got another inexpressible refreshment
by Mr. John Moncrief, our minister’s discourses on
the conversation of Zaccheus, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Luke xix. I fell under the
fearful prevalency of my inward lusts, I lost sight
of my interest in Christ, and looked on myself as nothing
but a painted hypocrite without, and a nest of
devils within.—I concluded, that the fate of the “house
built upon the sand”
, in the parable, would be my own.
My fearful loads of corruption made me often beseech
the Lord either to take me out of this world, or keep
me from the evil.—I earnestly longed, that Jesus
, as my King made over to me in the gospel,
would subdue my unmortified corruptions. In this
manner I toiled on, till, at a sacramental occasion,
16961696, where by means of Mr. W. Moncrief’s sermon
on Saturday from INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.John xi. 40. and by J. Moncrief’s
action sermon from INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Ezek. xvi. 6, 8. my soul was remarkably
enlightened and melted, and made to accept
of Jesus Christ in all his offices and relations, even his
cross. These words, “I have loved thee with an
everlasting love,”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Jer. xxxi. 3. “I will betroth thee
unto me forever,”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Hos. ii. 19. were darted into
my soul with great power and life. I was led to an
earnest wrestling with God in behalf of the church,
my relations, and myself, that the Lord would make
me sincere in every duty,—steadfast in my vows, and a
cordial sympathizer with his people:—a useful branch
in his vineyard, bringing forth fruit to his glory; and
humble under mercies received. Let carnalists say
what they will, I, tho’ naturally of a merry disposition
never knew what it was to be really joyful, till I
received Jesus Christ.

A terrible fire, that happened in the Canongate,
which put the whole city into confusion,—led me to
observe the following hints relative to worldly things, That 9
That though they may assist such as have them with
more time and opportunity to serve God, in relieving
the poor members of Christ; yet men must sunder a
great trouble before they get them: they are apt to
decoy our love from Christ; many lose their souls in
seeking them: they afford no real comfort on a death
bed, they can be no ransom for our sins, or avail us
before God’s tribunal: they hinder from receiving of
Christ, they are no tokens of God’s love: they render
many like devils in pride; the loss of them may soon
fill us with anguish and vexation; they are seldom
gained with a good conscience; we must quickly die
from them, and leave them to such as will scarcely
thank us for them, or that will improve them to their
own ruin, both in time and in eternity; and to account
for them at the judgement seat of Christ with joy and
not with grief, will be very difficult.

Self-conceit and self-seeking began to prevail in a
manner which I had not formerly experienced. I
found it hard work to be denied to my duties, prayers
and tears. But I found, That “if any man will be Christ’s
disciple, he must deny himself.”
—I saw I had fearfully
robbed God of the glory due to him, and carried about
my selfishness wherever I went, or whatever I did.
On examination I found that I was like the hypocrites
described in scripture, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Isa. lviii. 2. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mark x. 20 &c.
Our minster’s discourse from INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mark x. 21 “Take up
thy cross, and follow me:”
were very trying to my
conscience. But, by some notes in them, I was led
out to embrace Jesus Christ as offered to me in the
gospel. I resolved, that no cross should separate me
from him; and submitted to every cross, except the
absence of God in times of trouble, and being given
up by him to a selfish disposition of heart.

Being convinced of the treachery of my heart, I fell
under great fears, that all my resolutions would be
broken; therefore often besought the Lord to keep
them for me.—I also found indwelling corruptions, sepe- 10
especially my predominant lust, raging within me.—
After performance or religious duties, they harrass’d
me in a peculiar manner, which made me see that
nothing could cure me but the power of Christ.—It
was some comfort to me, that having, contrary to
custom, revealed my case to a Christian, I
found that my condition was not singular. I set apart
a day for fasting and supplication relative to my predominant
idol, and earnestly cried for conformity to
the Lord Jesus Christ, and for as much sanctification
as could be attained in this life. I got my heart poured
out before the Lord, and his powerful impression
of INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Phil. ii, 13. “God worketh in you to will and to
do of his good pleasure,”
made me believe, that my
requests were accepted, and would be granted.

Having, on the Thursday before the communion,
gone to Laswade, with much pleasant contemplation
by the way, I found that the fast had been observed
the day before. This threw me into terrible agony,
and made me return weeping and mourning that I
had lost such an opportunity. I tried to find out the
cause of the Lord’s controversy with me in this point,
and to cry to him, that he would search me, and shew
me all the secret abominations that lurked in my heart.
Notwithstanding my earnest longings for his presence,
I was much deserted on Saturday and Sabbath; but I
met with some pleasant enlargements on Monday.
That word, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Isa. xliiiv 22-25. was powerfully applied
to my heart: I was so helped, that almost every
thing I cast my eyes on, led me out to some spiritual
meditation. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.John xiv. 27. “My peace I give unto
& was also very sweet to my soul.

But the plagues of my heart soon so fearfully beset
me, that I went near calling all my former experiences
delusion. After many tossings, as I was one night
extraordinarily concerned in prayer about an unparalleled
measure of sinful corruption which dwelt in me,
I enjoyed the most delightful fellowship with God thro’ Christ, 11
Christ, and was made to see that Jesus was exceedingly
grieved, that notwithstanding all that he had done
to and for his people, they should so readily doubt of
his love—I was made to accept of the cross in whatever
form he pleased.
But my indwelling lusts soon
appeared stronger than ever.—I became altogether
indisposed for religious duties, public or secret, till at
a private sermon by Mr. John Hepburn on INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Isa. lxiii. 3.
I got all of my bands loosed by a free gospel offer of
Christ and his salvation, and was enabld, in a very
solemn manner, to accept of him for my all in all,
on his own terms. I panted for the most complete
conformity to him, and the most intimate communion
with him. I was enabled to claim Him as my Lord
and my God; and he promised, that I should call him
“My Father, and not turn away from him.”

Having soon after an opportunity of a sacramental
occasion at Prestonpans, I thought the Lord called me
to attend thereat, by these two scriptures, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mat. vii. 7
“See, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened
unto you.”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Rev. xiv. 4. “Follow the Lamb whithersoever
he goeth.”
Notwithstanding that bodily
trouble and bad weather threatened to hinder me, I
got thither, and was much refreshed by our minister’s
sermon on Saturday from INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Exod. xx. 24. in which he
shewed, That Christ was coming “as a merchant”, to see
what his people needed;—“as a physician” to heal the
sick;—“as a suitor” to a bride;—and “as a king”: and by
Mr. Andrew’s action sermon from INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Matth. xxii. 4. in
which he made a free and fuller offer of Jesus Christ,
and his fulness, as all ready for us. Having begun
to serve the first table with that word, “What is thy
request, queen Esther? and it shall be granted thee,”

my heart cried out, that Christ the bridegroom’s image
might be presently stamped on my soul; and that be
enlighten my mind to understand his word; that he
would pity my parents and acquaintances: and that
he would purge his church.

But 12

But the inconceivable ocean of iniquity that lay hid
in my heart quickly prevailed against me. My predominant
lust raged with such force, as made me think
I would turn out a scandal to religion. The Lord’s
supper was dispensed at Edinburgh, but I durst not
communicate, tho’ it was a remarkable day of power
to many: one of the sermons by Mr. Riddel, from
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.1 Kings viii. 39. on the difficulty of attaining to the
knowledge of the true God, was most suitable to my
case. In my distress it peculiarly perplexed me, that
my case was singular, and that my Christian friends
not knowing it, but thinking that it went well with
my soul, did not sympathize with me. But I was
made to observe, that Christ trod the wine press alone,
and could only sympathize with lonely cases. It was
also extremely heavy to me, that the promises of my
father’s conversion, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Ps. lxxxviii. 10. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.1 Cor. xv. 58
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Is. liii. 10. and of my own growth in grace, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.1 Thes.
iv. 3.
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Rom. vi. 14. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mat. viii. 3. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Jer. xxxi. 33. and
xxxii. 40
appeared contracted by providence. But
these scriptures, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.1 Pet. i. 7. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Luke. i. 45. encouraged
me to wait, and not despair. I observed, that in
scripture, a storm of providence seemed ordinary to
clash with the promises made to the saints immediately
after they had received them.—I saw from INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Psalm
xxxvii. 4, 7 and xxv. 15 and xl. 1, 2.
that it was
my duty to wait patiently, and the Lord would, in his
own time, let me see the full accomplishment of his
promises, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Heb. x. 23.

His other temptations being in some measure unsuccessful,
Satan laboured to puff me up with self-
conceit. I saw selfishness so mingled with my religious
services, that I feared I had made self, in some
form or other, my principal end in them all, not the
glory of God: but I was directed to apply to Christ
as my Physician, who hath power over all plagues;
and to consider what dreadful temptations he endured
and conquered. I afterward fell under an extraordinarynary 13
deadness of soul, so that I could scarcely apply
myself to any religious duty.—It added to my trouble
that my Christian friends did not pity me, but chided
me for complaining, and asked, What better I was of
that? But I found Christ a friend, when no eye would
pity me. He powerfully impressed that word INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Isa.
xlix. 15.
“Can a woman forget: yet will I not forget thee,”
on my heart, as I was going to our weekly meeting for
, which made me to hope and rejoice in him.
On account of my backsliding, I prayed to the Lord,
that he would turn me, and I should be turned. A
sermon of our minister on INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Jer. iv. 8. “Draw nigh
to God, and he will draw near to you,”
was very
refreshing to me.

After I came home from church, I examined for
what end the Lord had permitted me to go so far out
of his way; and perceived, that it was to make me see
clearly the difference between the way of sin and that
of godliness; and tho’ I could wander out of his way,
I could not return again of myself; and that is more
difficult to walk with God in his way, than to find him.
This produced in me a vehement desire for the Spirit
of God to lead and keep me in his way, and direct and
enable me to perform every duty. These scriptures
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.John xix. 26. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mat. vii. 11. made me believe that my
desire should be granted.—This encouraged me to
renew my covenant engagements to the Lord at his
table, 1698-04April 1698, and there to beg of him, that he
would make me live in the Spirit;—be clothed in the
Spirit with sincerity, humility, self-denial, zeal for the
interest of Christ, and love to all his way;—to walk
in the Spirit after Christ’s example, in holiness, faith
and patience,—and that, as a member of his mystical
body, I might have a real feeling of the cases of all
his fellow children.

At 14

At the sacramental occasion of Dalkeith, I was so
remarkably deserted, that I durst not approach to the
Lord’s table. But, at another at Largs, I had most
remarkable fellowship with Jesus Christ, both in public
and private.—I saw the soul of a believer could be
filled with nothing but Jesus Christ.—I had not long
returned home, when the prevalency of inward corruptions
turned all my joys into mourning. I, with
terror, thought of the dreadful discovery which the
Lord would make of my hypocrisy at the last day;
and how men and devils would justify his final condemnation
of me. Nevertheless, I ventured to go to
the communion at Prestonpans, and there I got some
refreshment to my soul, and was enabled to pour out
my heart before the Lord. But, on the general fast
on account of the dearth and threatened war, I got
my bands loosened in a remarkable manner, and was
enabled to lament my own sins and those of the land.

About this time, my intimate companion deserted
the established ministry, which occasioned me no small
concern to know my own duty. She nevertheless
continued in a praying society with me, and in our
intimacy in revealing the case of our soul to each
other.—In secret prayer, I had often a very heaven
upon earth, and particularly on the 1699-01-01first of Jan. 1699.
which I set apart for solemn fasting, supplication and
covenanting with God.—The first part of this year I
lived as in the suburbs of heaven,—in the second part
as in the confines of hell: in the end of it, I met with
some remarkable providence. I saw light and glory
in the scriptures, and tasted sweetness in them, which
I never did before. I looked on all things as loss and
dung in comparison of Jesus Christ.—My heart was
opened to receive him in all his offices.—Beholding
myself an unparalleled sinner, I was filled with astonishment
at his love in saving me. At the communion
of Prestonpans, I was altogether ravished with his
glory and love, and begged a share of it for my fellow
Christians at home and abroad.


About the --04-01first of April, I fell under a more dreadful
degree of soul-trouble than ever I had experienced.
Satan first decoyed me from a careful reading of the
scriptures, in which at that time I found great delight.
In consequence of this, great deadness seized on my
spirit, that I could perform no religious service with
any vigour or life. Satan violently tempted me, that
all the promises were contradicted by providence; and
that therefore all my pretence of believing them was
but mere delusion.—I retired, and on my knees uttered
many sinful and desperate expressions to the
Lord. I almost resolved to live in the neglect of all
religious duties, as I thought it impossible to reconcile
God’s promises and providences. I made shipwreck
of the promises, and was in danger of losing my reason,
by means of my inward anguish. But these
scriptures sounded in my ears, “Is any thing too hard
for the Lord,”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Gen. xviii. 14. “Heaven and earth
shall pass away; but not one jot or tittle of the law
shall fail,”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Luke xvi. 17. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mat. v. 18. “Of all that
the Lord hath spoken, not one word hath failed,”

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Josh. xxiii. 14. “Be not afraid: only believe”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mark v. 36. But such was the unbelief and atheism
of my heart, that I could believe nothing. I questioned
the reality of religion in general. I was tempted
to burn all the records of the former experiences, as
in hell it would fill me with torment to hear of them.
I fell into deep melancholy, which hurt my body.
My former experiences afforded me no comfort.
When I went to sacramental occasions, I found nothing
but an absent God. But some dark views which
I obtained at two of them, pierced me to the heart
with grief, that I should have, at Satan’s desire, laid
aside these duties, in which God had so often met with
my soul, and so resisted the motions of his Spirit.

Hearing a sermon in November with much weariness
and wandering, I sat very impatiently while a
child was baptized. A dog bit my leg most desperately.rately. 16
A physician who came accidentally to our
house, applied some medicines, which healed the most
dangerous wound. In this I saw mercy rejoicing
against judgement. Soon after, my brother fell into
a fever. While I was concerned for him, these words
occured, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.John xi. 4. “This sickness is not unto
death, but for the glory of God,”
—and afterward,
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mat. viii. 26. “Why are ye so fearful, O ye of little
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Isa. xxxviii 5. “I have heard thy prayers.
I have seen thy tears. I have added to his days.”

He still grew worse and worse. And after he began
to recover, he relapsed into a second fever, much
more dangerous than the first. This filled me with
dreadful perplexity, as I thought, if he died, all the
promises would also fail of accomplishment to me.I
was also affrighted from prayer, But while I was
meditating before Lessayed it, the Lord by his word
taught my soul, that “he was my salvation;” that “thro’
manifold tribulations we must enter into the kingdom of
of God;”
and that “I ought not to despise the chastening of
the Lord, nore be weary of his correction,”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Psal. xxv. 3.
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Acts xvi. 22 INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Prov. iii 11.—Encouraged by these,
I applied to prayer, in which my unbelief durst not
appear before the Lord. By that word, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Psal. cxviii.
17, 18
“I shall not die, but live, and declare the
works of the Lord. He hath chastened me sore,
but not given over to death,”
he assured me of my
brother’s recovery, which soon after happened. But
that word, “Be not weary of his correction”, running still
in my mind, made me lay my account with some further
trouble, or even the loss of some relation.

During my brother’s second fever, I had many
hours of sweet fellowship with God. But the fright
I had got, flowing into my breast, produced a most
troublesome boil in it. Tho’ I would not permit any
physician to lay his hand on it, the Lord blessed some
simple medicines for my recovery, and filled my mouth
with songs of praise.—While the spiritual condition of 17
of my aged father lay very heavy on my heart, I was
informed, that he had been taken with a purging and
vomiting of blood. On seeing him, I represented to
him, that he was dying, and begging him to lay to
heart the eternal concerns of his salvation. He gave
me little answer but by grievous looks. My soul was
overwhelmed with fear, left all the requests which I
had presented to God for him, should come to nothing;
and that he would be a castaway. I, by myself,
and with a companion, wrestled with the Lord for his
conversation. We, as well as others that pled for him
at the throne of grace, had great liberty in so doing.
On the day of his death, these words, “The devil is
gone out of thy daughter,”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mark vii 29. “—Ye
are compleat in him, who is the head of all principalities
and power,”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Col. ii. 10 “He shall be mine
in that day that I make up my jewels; and I will
spare him has a man doth his son that serveth him,”

INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Mal iii 16. impressed on my mind, produced in me
a sweet inward composure. And, after his death, I,
with thankfulness, observed the mercies mingled with
his trouble and death.

Still that word, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Prov iii II. haunted my mind,
and made me expect some further trials. Soon after
I received a very unseasonable, imprudent, and unchristian
information of the loss of a considerable part
of my worldly property, by means of a near and dear
relation. But that word, “Thou art my sure portion,
O Lord,
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Ps cxix 57. produced me more comfort
and joy, than if I had been told, that I was made heir
to the most powerful and wealthy monarch.—I was
led into many useful meditations on the vanity and
uncertainty of all temporal enjoyments.

On the 1700-02-033d of February, 1700, a most dreadful fire
brake out in the meal-market, which, being enraged
by a strong wind, burnt so furiously, that none durst
come near to quench it. The spark flew over a great
part of the city, and put me in mind of Sodom and of 18
of hell. The parliament close in a flame that ascended
into the midst of heaven. Before this happened,
I had for some time a dreadful impression of fire on
my spirit.—A smell of fire had been perceived about
that place several days before, without any discoverable
cause. It began at his house who delivered the
covenant to the hangman to be burnt, and who never
after that, had the wonted use of his hand, with which
he delivered it, tho’ he lamented his deed while he
lived. It stopt just where the covenant was burnt;
which made many cry out, “This is come upon us for
burning the covenant”
. In respect of the uselessness of
all human help in stopping it;—in its rendering many
families destitute;—in its regardlessness to all ranks;
and in its destroying only outward enjoyments, it not
a little resembled the preceding Prelatic persecution.
It made me plainly perceive the extreme folly of
those who trust in worldly riches.

About seven weeks after, the Lord’s supper was
dispensed in the city. But though it was a time of
power and comfort to many, my own peevishness
made it a very dark and uncomfortable communion
to me.—Soon after, I met with a very heavy trial
from an airth which I did not expect, and which
seemed to contradict the promise of God to me—But
I was enabled to be dumb, because the Lord did it:
and I was by it instructed in the impropriety of trusting
to friends or relations.—Meeting with a companion,
whose fellowship had often been refreshful
to me, we prayed together before we parted, with
great enlargement of heart.

It was thought proper, that I should return to a
family, which I thought I had left, at the call of God,
on account of the want of the worship of God in it, and
the contention and mocking at religion and ministers
which prevailing in it. In compliance with my mother’s
urgency, I went back, contrary to my own light
and inclination, and found them rather worse than better. 19
better. In consequence thereof, the Lord sensibly departed
from me
in religious duties. In secret prayer, I was
plagued with sleepiness or wandering of mind. A
terrible discontentment commenced in my mind, that
nothing could be pleasant to me. Spiritual plagues
of all sorts seized on me, so that, for two years, I did
not enjoy one full day of inward case and quiet.—
Sometimes, however, the Lord enabled me to pour
my complaints into his bosom; and on Sabbath he
gave me some tokens of his love, in enabling me to
plead with him, or in promising me deliverance, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Psal.
lxvi. 19, 20
—But thro’ the week, I was like a beast
before him. There was such a difference between
the condition of my soul on Sabbath and other days,
that I often wished for two Sabbaths in the week.

I had great pleasure in hearing Mr. W Mitchel’s
discourses on INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Rom. vi. 12 relative to the power of
indwelling sin. I earnestly longed for the destruction
of my own. By Sermons of Mr. J. Moncrief, on
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Rev. xxii 17. I was led out to a solemn acceptance
of Jesus Christ, as offered in the gospel—On the fast
day before the sacrament, I got an extensive of the
sins of the land, and tokens of the Lord’s wrath against
it, and my own sinfulness of heart and life: and was
enabled, with brokenness of heart, to bewail them
before the Lord; and to wrestle with him, that he
would pardon and purge from them. Not finding
relief for my soul, in hearing the sermons on Saturday,
I resolved to spend the night in prayer. After I had
wrestled 3 or 4 hours for others, I got remarkable
liberty in laying my own case before the Lord, and
supplicating mercy, and devoting myself to him. I
had scarcely entered the place of public worship on
Sabbath, when Satan began to buffet me. I was
much distressed, that I could not see my name among
those invited to the Lord’s table, till our minister invited
such as had a nameless case, to come, that Christ
might make language of it. At the table, I was enabledabled 20
to make a solemn surrender of myself to Jesus
, that he might dislodge all my idols, destroy all
my sinful corruptions, supply my wants, and enable
me to cleave to himself, and perform what he required
of me, chiefly aiming at his glory.

Finding that I could not stay in the family, with a
good conscience, I, in prayer, besought the Lord to
relieve me. It was an inexpressible ease to my mind
when the day appointed for my departure drew nigh.
But, the very night before, I was seized with a fever,
and thus detained a while longer. I knew not what
to think of his providence. My body recovered, but
I perceived no amendment in the frame and disposition
of my spirit. It added to my grief, that some of
of my godly friends urged me to stay in the family, as
I might be useful to it. But I more clearly saw it
my duty to leave it.—The death of K. William lay
very heavy on me, as it did on all the gody, while
the profane Jacobites exceedingly rejoiced.—After I
had attended two sacramental occasions, at which my
soul was not generally in a good frame, tho’ I experienced
some touches of the Lord’s power and grace,
and met with some seasonable encouragement to sing
of the judgement of remaining corruptions, as well as of
divine desertions,—I, with great satisfaction of mind,
left the family in which I was.

As, a little before, I had enjoyed great refreshment
in my own soul in wrestling with the Lord in behalf
of a dying professor whose life had been untender,
and in prayer and spiritual converse a whole night,
at one of the communions I had lately been at; so my
attendance on some others, was now crowned with
much useful instruction, or delightful enlargement to
my soul; and I was enabled to take hold of Jesus
, as offered to me in gospel, for wisdom,
righteousness, sanctification, and redemption, and to
devote myself wholly to him in life and in death.

After 21

After I had been some short time in Dalkeith, and
Innerkeithing, where I had enjoyed satisfaction in the
ordinances of God, I returned to Edinburgh at 1702-11-11Martinmas
. I met with a sharp trial from the hand
of a near relation; but was made to see that it was
God’s correction of me on account of my grieving his
Spirit; that my kind Father had mixed my cup; and
that many of the Lord’s people had such trials.

The beginning of 17031703, we were apprehensive of
the toleration, if not re-establishment of Prelacy: but
God, by throwing the Parliament into confusion on
that point, prevented it, in his gracious answer to our
prayers. Retiring to East Lothian, I, at sacramental
occasions, found God remarkably present. Leaving
this place I came to the Inch, where I found favour
with those with whom I lived, and where the Lord
gave me remarkable, but short-lived victories over
my corruptions, which did easily beset me.

In 17041704. the Lord, at first, led me out to sweet
meditations on what I had been seeking, gotten from
and given to Jesus Christ. But, by my neglecting to
watch and fight against my predominant lusts, my inward
plagues increased. I was terrified, lest I should
prove an hypocrite. My fears, that the Lord had left
me where like to sink me—But, in hearing a sermon
on INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.John xii. 26. my soul was powerfully melted with
the love of Christ; and my heart burnt with desire
to follow and serve him. But my prosperous state
was soon turned to misery. About a fortnight after
a servant fell into a fever; as I was much impressed
with her death, I wrestled with the Lord to prepare
her for the eternal state. Being much fatigued, I cast
myself on a bed in the next room: in a moment the
candle which I had with me, kindled the hangings.
But, providentially, one came to the door; I got up
like one half distracted, and put out the flame at the
expence of burning my own hands. I was in terror
lest the fright might hasten the death of the sick person,son 22
and be chargable on me. This shut me up to
solemn prayer to God for both her and myself. And
tho’ my body was an extremity of pain, it was a pleasant
night to my soul. I beheld the “Sun of righteousness
arise with healing under his wings.”
I saw that, in
this dispensation of the burning, God had an holy
hand, reproving me for a flame of passion, in which
I had been a few days before. I saw that Satan had
a malicious, and I had a careless hand in it.

Notwithstanding some blinks of the Lord’s countenance
at the communions of Dalkeith, Libberton,
Laswade, and Leith, I was generally oppressed with
sore distress of mind. I thought all the Lord’s promises
of my sanctification were manifestly contradicted
by providence. My atheism and unbelief haunted
me like a ghost. I lost inclination to religious duties,
and had no strength to oppose spiritual enemies. My
fellow Christians being ignorant of my case, none of
them could sympathize with me. I urged scripture-
promises upon myself, to encourage my hopes of an
outgate; but unbelief swallowed up all comforts.The
Lord supported me by these scriptures, INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Jer.
xxx. 7.
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Num xxiii 19. INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Hos xiv. 3.—By a sermon of
a stranger minister on INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Ps. xxxi. 23 “O love the Lord
all ye his saints,”
especially after I came home, to
consider what the Lord had done for my soul, even
more than he had done for many of his children; how
ungratefully I bestowed the love due to him upon his
rivals; and that he was yet willing to give new proofs
of his love, after all I had done. The whole INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.xvi. of
was presented to me as a just picture of myself.
—Under this discovery, I longed to be with him,
where there could be no parting or sinning.—I was
led to admire, that, tho’ the Lord to come against me in
some dreadful judgement, yet when he comes, it is
wholly in love.—O how I wished for “wings like a
dove, that I might fly away, and be at rest”

In 23

In the end of 17041704, I was oppressed by trouble of
mind, but in the beginning of 17051705, had my spirits
imposed and was enabled to attend to religious
duties with calmness.—I had different trials of reproach
in the families that I lived in: but the Lord
supported me under them, and kept me, or religion
from suffering by them.—My spirits were oppressed
with the Uniting our nation with England on terms
contrary to our solemn covenant engagements to
God, and the sad consequences which I apprehended
would and did issue from it. I cried mightily to
the Lord to preserve and revive his covenanted
work of reformation among us.—Returning to
Gilmerton in East Lothian, I, hearing Mr. Finlay
of Prestonhall, at sacramental occasions, and on
ordinary Sabbaths, had my soul much refreshed.Nevertheless,
I had no small distress of mind thro’
apprehensions that God’s providences to me, were
contradicting his promises.—I thought myself like
a traveling woman, having many violent pangs,
every one of them as if she would just be delivered
and yet bringing forth nothing but wind,—or like
a ship tossed by storms, sometimes near land, and
yet by a contrary wind, driven without sight of it:
and like a bird pursued from place to place by the
hawk.—One time, when in agony of soul, I was
belching forth before the Lord my internal complaints
of the irreconcileableness of his providences
with his promises, he darted into my mind, “Dost thou
well to be angry?”
INTERNAL ERROR. Please report to that regMe is unmatched.Jonah iv. 4, 9.—My soul was struck
with wonder and astonishment at his unparalleled
forbearance and kindness.—I desired to mourn over
these things in my conduct, which had offended my
so gracious a Lord: but, alas! my corrupt heart!

I nevertheless quickly relapsed into my doubts of
the reality of my grace, and the reconcileableness
of God’s providences in his promises.—I cried bitterly
for deliverance:—but the more I used means
to remove my plagues, they stuck the closer to me. Being 24
Being unskilful and unfit for my business, I begged
the Lord would direct me to manage things to my
master and mistress’s satisfaction. He granted my
request in a degree that astonished me.—Sir David
family going to London, I could not think
of going along with them.—Providence, in a few days
after, fixed my mistress of the Trade’s Hospital.—The
Lord directed me to execute this office far beyond my
expectation. In prayer with, and instruction of the
children, I often felt sensible assistance, with power
and life to my own soul.—But, alas! when I was at
secret duty, I had no life, nor sap; and thought I had
been all my days a painted hypocrite.—Such strange
contradictions were in my case.—At once, I was overwhelmed
with several kinds of outward trouble;
violent temptations from Satan to atheism, unbelief,
and quarreling with God;—dreadfully raging inward
corruptions;—and, which was heaviest of all, an absent
and angry Lord. These things so disheartened
and disquieted me, that I had neither heart nor hand
for religious duties, but was altogether dead, senseless
and secure. An erruption of passion occasioned by my
overhearing one sadly reproach me, helped on the
bad frame of my soul.—But in secret and public exercises
at our sacramental occasion, I had my soul searched,
and my bands remarkably loosed. All my former
experiences were cleared up as truly gracious. The
promises of God’s covenant were set before me in
their fulness, freedom, and infallible firmness; and I
was enabled to lay hold on, and claim them as the
ground of my sure hope, and to devote my whole self
to Jesus Christ, as made of God to me, wisdom, righteousness,
sanctification and redemption, that he might
instruct, justify, sanctify, and save me.

N.B. Her experiences after her marriage, if recorded,
were never published.