(Letters of John Newton)
My dear Madam,
I understand something of your warfare. Paul describes his own case in few words, "Conflicts on the outside, fears on the inside." Does not this comprehend all you would say? And how are you to know experimentally, either your own weakness—or the power, wisdom and grace of God, seasonably and sufficiently afforded—but by frequent and various trials? How are the graces of patience, resignation, meekness and faith, to be discovered and increased—but by the exercise of trials?
The Lord has chosen, called, and armed us for the fight! Shall we wish to be excused from the battle? Shall we not rather rejoice that we have the honor to appear in such a cause, under such a Captain, such a banner and in such a company?
God has graciously provided:
a complete suit of armor,
precious balm to heal us—if we receive a wound, and
precious cordials to revive us—when we are in danger of fainting!
Further, we are assured of the victory beforehand! O what a crown of glory is prepared for every conqueror, which Jesus, the righteous Judge, the gracious Savior—shall place upon every faithful head with His own hand!
So let us not be weary and faint, for in due season we shall reap! The time is short! In a little while, the struggle of indwelling sin, and all the conflicts surrounding us, shall be known no more! "Be faithful, even to the point of death—and I will give you the crown of life!" Revelation 2:10