Our most recent family pic with only Andrew missing

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Home Visitation

Wed 30 Sept 1772: I began visiting the society from house to house, taking them from west to east. This will undoubtedly be a heavy cross, no way pleasing to flesh and blood. But I already saw how unspeakably useful it will be to many souls.

Field Preaching

Wed 30 Sept 1767: I preached to a large and very serious congregation on Redcliff Hill. This is the way to overturn Satan’s kingdom. In field-preaching, more than any other means, God is found of them that sought him not. By this, death, heaven, and hell, come to the ears, if not the hearts, of them that ‘care for none of these things’.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Singing in the Rain

Tue 29 Sept 1789: Being much importuned, I went to Churchill, about twelve miles west of Bristol. The rain was heavy; yet many of the poor people made their way through it; so that the church (they said) has scarce ever been so filled before. After the Service many stayed in the church, because of the rain: So I spent some time with them in singing and prayer; and our hearts were much comforted together.

Dying in Peace

Tue 29 Sept 1741: I was pressed to visit Nicholas Palmer, one who had separated from us and behaved with great bitterness, till God laid his hand upon him. He had sent for me several times, saying he could not die in peace till he had seen me. I found him in great weakness of body and heaviness of spirit. We wrestled with God on his behalf. And our labour was not in vain. His soul was comforted; and a few hours after he quietly fell asleep.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Be not Conformed to this World

Mon 28 Sept 1789: I strongly enforced the caution of St. Paul, "Be not conformed to this world;" but who can enforce it enough? For what destruction does this conformity bring upon the children of God!

From Suicidal to Born Again

Mon 28 Sept 1747: I talked with one who a little time before was so overwhelmed with affliction that she went out one night to put an end to it all, by throwing herself into the New River. As she went by the Foundery (it being a watch-night) she heard some people singing. She stopped and went in; she listened a while, and God spoke to her heart. She had no more desire to put an end to her life, but to die to sin and live to God.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Getting Tired

Sun 27 Sept 1789: I preached at the new Room morning and evening, and in the afternoon at Temple church; but it was full as much as I could do. I doubt I must not hereafter attempt to preach more than twice a day.

The Way of Recovering our First Love

Sun 27 Sept 1741: I expounded at Kingswood (morning and afternoon), at Bristol, and at Baptist Mills, the message of God to the church of Ephesus, particularly that way of recovering our first love which God hath prescribed and not man: ‘Remember from whence thou art fallen, and repent and do the first works.’

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Bristol to London to Bristol

Sat 26 Sept 1767: I was informed between twelve and one that Mrs. B[lackwell] was dying. Judging I had no time to lose, about one, I left Bristol and, about seven on Sunday morning, came to London. Learning there that she was better, I stayed to preach and administer the Sacrament at the chapel and then hastened on and spent a solemn and profitable hour at Lewisham. I preached again at West Street Chapel in the afternoon and made a collection for the poor, as I had done in the morning. Soon after, I took chaise again and on Monday, about noon, I came to Bristol.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Smallpox and Asthma

Fri. 25 Sept 1767. I was desired to preach at Freshford, but the people durst not come to the house because of the smallpox, of which Joseph Allen, ‘an Israelite indeed’, had died the day before. So they placed a table near the churchyard. But I had no sooner begun to speak than the bells began to ring, by the procurement of a neighbouring gentleman. However, it was labour lost, for my voice prevailed, and the people heard me distinctly. Nay, a person extremely deaf, who had not been able to hear a sermon for several years, told his neighbours with great joy that he had ‘heard and understood all, from the beginning to the end’.
I preached at Bristol in the evening on 2 Cor. 4:17, a text which had been chosen by William New a little before God called him hence. He laboured under a deep asthma for several years and for seven or eight months was confined to his bed, where he was from time to time visited by a friend, who wrote the following account:
He was one of the first Methodists in Bristol and always walked as became the gospel. By the sweat of his brow he maintained a large family, leaving six children behind him. When he was no longer able to walk, he did not discontinue his labour; and after he kept his room, he used to cut out glass (being a glazier) to enable his eldest son, a child about fourteen, to do something toward the support of his family. Yea, when he kept his bed, he was not idle but still gave him what assistance he could.
He was formerly fond of company and diversions, but as soon as God called him, left them all—having a nobler diversion, visiting the sick and afflicted, in which he spent all his leisure hours. He was diligent in the use of all the means of grace, very rarely, during his health, missing the morning preaching at five, though he lived above a mile from the room.
About a year ago, he took his leave of the society, telling them that it was with great pleasure he had joined and continued with them; that it was in this despised place the Lord first manifested himself to his soul; that no tongue could tell what he had since enjoyed under that roof; that the same Jesus had enabled him to hold on thus far, and he hoped to be with him soon, adding, ‘I do not expect to see you any more here but have no doubt of meeting you in glory.’
During the last twenty days of his life, he took no other sustenance than now and then a teaspoonful of wine or of balm-tea. About fourteen days before his death, his tongue turned black, with large chops in it, through the heat of his stomach, and his lips were drawn two or three inches apart, so that it was difficult for him to speak. In this condition, he lay waiting for his discharge, saying sometimes, ‘I am, as it were, two persons. The body is in torturing pain; the soul is in sweet peace.’ He frequently said, ‘I long to be gone. Come, Lord Jesus! Come quickly.’ When I asked, ‘Do you desire to see such a person?’ he said, ‘I desire to see none but Jesus. To him I leave my dear wife and children. I have no care about them.’
The next day, Satan violently assaulted his faith. But instantly our Lord appeared in all his glory, and he was filled with love and joy unspeakable, and said, ‘Call my friend and let him see a dying Christian. Oh what do I feel? I see my Lord has overcome for me. I am his. Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!’ He desired them that were present to sing, and began, ‘Jesu, lover of my soul.’ He then desired the text for his funeral sermon might be 1 Cor. 4:17.
The next time I saw him, having desired him to make signs rather than speak, which was painful to him, he said, ‘Here is a sign’ (pushing out his feet and holding up his hands), ‘a dying Christian, full of love and joy! A crown, a never-fading crown awaits me. I am going to everlasting habitations.’ He then desired us to sing, and quickly added, ‘He is come! He is come! I want to be gone; farewell to you all.’ When he could no longer speak, he continued smiling, clapping his hands, and discovering an ecstasy of joy in every motion.
After a while his speech returned, and he said: ‘Today is Friday; tomorrow I expect to go.’ One said, ‘Poor Mr. New!’ He said, ‘It is rich New: though poor in myself, I am rich in Christ.’
I saw him on Saturday in the same spirit, praising God with every breath. He appeared quite transported, pointing upwards and turning his fingers round his head, alluding to the crown prepared for him. I said, ‘Your Lord has kept the best wine unto the last.’ ‘Yes, yes,’ said he, ‘it is in my soul.’ When I took my leave he pressed my hand, pointed upward, and again clapped his hands. Afterward, he spoke little, till he cried out, ‘The chariot, the chariot of Israel,’ and died.

Taken to Bring his Father to God

Fri 25 Sept 1789: I spent an hour at Clare-Hill with Mr. Henderson; I believe the best Physician for lunatics in England: But he could not save the life of his only son, who was probably taken to bring his father to God.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Prayer and Praise All Night Long

Thur 24 Sept 1741: In the evening we went to Kingswood. The house was filled from end to end. And we continued in ministering the word of God, and in prayer and praise, till the morning.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Unlawful Distilling

Wed 23 Sept 1778: On meeting the classes, I carefully examined whether there was any truth in the assertion that above a hundred in our society were concerned in unlawful distilling. The result was that I found two persons, and no more, that were concerned therein.

God Calls Frome

Wed 23 Sept 1767: About noon, I preached at Buckland, and in the evening at Frome. But the house was too small, so that many were constrained to go away. So the next evening, I preached in a meadow, where a multitude of all denominations attended. It seems that God is at length giving a more general call to this town also, the people whereof seemed before, in every sense, to be ‘rich, and increased in goods, and needing nothing’.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Not Yet the Season for Fruit

Tue 22 Sept 1747: I rode to Shoreham, where I preached every morning in the house and every evening in the church. But the season for fruit is not yet.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Convinced of the Truth

Mon 21 Sept 1741: I set out, and the next evening met my brother at Bristol, with Mr. Jones of Fonmon Castle in Wales; now convinced of the truth as it is in Jesus and labouring with his might to ‘redeem the time’ he had lost, to ‘make his calling sure’, and to ‘lay hold on eternal life’.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Be Born Again

Sun 20 Sept 1789: I know not that ever I had so large a number of communicants before; after I had applied strongly, "Neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature." In the afternoon I applied full as strongly, "God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ;" and in the evening returned to Bristol.

Life Eternal

Sun 20 Sept 1741: I preached in Charles Square, Hoxton, on these solemn words, ‘This is life eternal, to know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent.’ I trust God blessed his word. The scoffers stood abashed and opened not their mouth.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Dead as a Stone to all the Things of God

Sat 19 Sept 1747: Mrs. Baddiley desired me to go up to her son, who had been out of order for some days. For one or two years he was a pattern to all the family, till he began to converse more with ‘good sort of men’. He then grew cooler and cooler in the ways of God, and in a few months quitted the society, resolving, he said, to keep to his church, ‘and live a sober life, and that was enough’. That was too much in a little time. He grew tired of his church too, and dropped that and sobriety together. He was now, his mother informed me, dead as a stone to all the things of God. I spake a few words and went to prayer. And God broke his heart. He continued weeping and praying all the day and all the night, and at six in the morning fell asleep.

Friday, September 18, 2009

JW's Old Persecutors

Fri 18 Sept 1772: I preached very quietly at the Devizes. Scarce one of the old persecutors is alive. Very few of them lived out half their days: Many were snatched away in an hour when they looked not for it

Death of a Child

Fri 18 Sept 1741: I buried the only child of a tender parent, who, having soon finished her course, after a short sickness went to him her soul loved, in the fifteenth year of her age.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Preaching with the Presence of God

Thurs 17 Sept 1789: I preached at Frome, to a much larger audience[than yesterday at Midsummer-Norton], and with much of the presence of God.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Wed 16 Sept 1789: I went on to Midsummer-Norton. I never saw the church so full before. I preached on that verse in one of the Psalms for the day, "Open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it." Many, I believe, found the promise true. In the evening I preached to our honest, earnest colliers, at Coleford; most of whom attended again at five in the morning.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Tuesday 15 Sept 1789: In the evening I preached at Pensford, to an uncommon congregation, and with an uncommon blessing.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Very Busy

Monday, 14 Sept 1789: I spent an agreeable hour with Mr. Ireland and Mr. Romaine, at Brislington. I could willingly spend some time here; but I have none to spare.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

"Bigot to the Church"

Sun 13 Sept 1741: I met about two hundred persons, with whom severally I had talked the week before at the French chapel in Hermitage Street, Wapping, where they gladly joined in the service of the Church, and particularly in the Lord’s Supper, at which Mr. Hall assisted. It was more than two years after this that he began so vehemently to declaim against my brother and me, as ‘bigots to the church, and those “carnal ordinances”’, as he then loved to term them.

Preaching Here and There

Saturday 12 Sept 1767: Setting out early, I reached Chepstow before noon and preached at a friend’s door to a civil, unconcerned congregation. We came to the Old Passage (being told we had time to spare) a few minutes after the boat was gone off. Finding they would not pass again that day, I left my horses behind and, crossing over in a small boat, got to Bristol soon enough to preach in the evening.
The following week, I visited most of the Somersetshire societies.

Thursday, September 10, 2009


Fri 11 Sept 1747: We rode to Reading. Mr. Richards, a tradesman in the town, came to our inn and entreated me to preach at a room which he had built for that purpose. I did so at six in the morning, and then rode on. It rained all the way till we came to London.
Fri 11 Sept 1767: I rode to Llanbradach, a single house delightfully situated near the top of an high mountain, and in the evening preached to a serious company of plain Welshmen with uncommon enlargement of heart.

Hang in There

Thursday 10 Sept 1789: I went over to Thornbury, where we preached near fifty years, and hardly saw any fruit; but whom can we despair of? Now at length it seems that God's time is come. A few men of substance in the town have built a neat and commodious preaching-house. It was filled within and without with serious hearers; and they did not hear in vain.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

God may build up the waste places

Wed 9 Sept 1767: About twelve, I preached to a large and serious congregation in the Assembly-Room at Cowbridge, and in the evening in the court-house at Cardiff, where, both this and the following evening, we had most of the gentry in the town. And both the mornings, the hearers were more than for many years. Who knows but, even in this desolate town, God may build up the waste places!

England's 'Gentlemen'

Tue 8 Sept 1778: In the evening, I stood on one side of the market-place of Frome and declared to a very numerous congregation, ‘His commandments are not grievous.’ They stood as quiet as those at Bristol, a very few excepted, most of whom were, by the courtesy of England, called gentlemen. How much inferior to the keelmen and colliers!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Hospital Visitation

Mon 7 Sept 1741: I visited a young man in St. Thomas’s Hospital, who, in strong pain, was praising God continually. At the desire of many of the patients I spent a short time with them in exhortation and prayer. O what a harvest might there be, if any lover of souls who has time upon his hands would constantly attend these places of distress, and with tenderness and meekness of wisdom instruct and exhort those on whom God has laid his hands, to know and improve the day of their visitation!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Field-Preaching a Cross

Sun 6 Sept 1772: I preached on the quay, at Kingswood, and near King's Square. To this day field-preaching is a cross to me. But I know my commission, and see no other way of "preaching the Gospel to every creature." '

Good Advice

Sunday September 6 1741. Observing some who were beginning to ‘use their liberty as a cloak for’ licentiousness, I enforced in the morning those words of St. Paul (worthy to be written in the heart of every believer), ‘All things are lawful for me; but all things are not expedient’; and in the evening that necessary advice of our Lord, ‘That men ought always to pray, and not to faint.’

Saturday, September 5, 2009

A Hot Place in Hell

Sat 5 Sept 1747: In my road to Bristol I read over Q. Curtius, a fine writer, both as to thought and language. But what a hero does he describe! Whose murder of his old friend and companion Clitus (though not done of a sudden, as is commonly supposed, but deliberately, after some hours’ consideration) was a virtuous act in comparison of his butchering poor Philotas and his good old father, Parmenio. Yet even this was a little thing compared to the thousands and ten thousands he slaughtered, both in battle and in and after taking cities, for no other crime than defending their wives and children. I doubt whether Judas claims so hot a place in hell as Alexander the Great.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Importance of Private Prayer

Fri 4 Sept 1772 : I went over to Kingswood, and spake largely to the children, as also on Saturday and Sunday. I found there had been a fresh revival of the work of God among them some months ago: But it was soon at an end, which I impute chiefly to their total neglect of private prayer. Without this, all the other means which they enjoyed could profit them nothing.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Good Advice for Preachers

Wednesday 2 Sept 1767 Upon inquiry, I found the work of God in Pembrokeshire had been exceedingly hindered, chiefly by Mr. Davies’s preachers who had continually inveighed against ours and thereby frighted abundance of people from hearing or coming near them. This had sometimes provoked them to retort, which always made a bad matter worse. The advice therefore which I gave them was: (1) Let all the people sacredly abstain from backbiting, talebearing, evil-speaking. (2) Let all our preachers abstain from returning railing for railing, either in public or in private, as well as from disputing. (3) Let them never preach controversy, but plain, practical, and experimental religion.

Julian to Gregorian Calendar

Thursday 14 Sept 1752: So we must call it now, seeing the New Style now takes place [Please note that in 1752, Wednesday 2 Sept was followed by Thursday 14 Sept as England changed from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar] I rode to the Bog of Boira, where a great and effectual door is opened.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Vain Janglings

Wed 2 Sept 1747: I spent some time with T. Prosser who had filled the society with vain janglings. I found the fault lay in his head rather than his heart; he is an honest, well-meaning man, but no more qualified either by nature or grace to expound Scripture than to read lectures in logic or algebra.
Yet even men of sense have taken this dull, mystical man to be far deeper than he is. And it is very natural so to do. If we look into a dark pit it seems deep. But the darkness only makes it seem so. Bring the light and we shall see it is very shallow.
In the evening I preached at Fonmon. But the congregation being larger than the chapel would contain, I was obliged to preach in the court. I was myself much comforted in comforting the weary and heavy laden.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Don't Follow the Methodists

Tuesday, Sept. 1 1752. I preached at Waterford. Only one poor man behaved amiss. His case is really to be pitied. Some time since he had strong desires to serve God and had broke off his outward sins, when Mr. ——, one of the prebendaries, told him he ‘did very wrong to go after those fellows’, and made him promise to hear them no more. He kept his word and turned back, as a dog to his vomit, wallowing in sin as he did before. But he does not go to the Methodists, so all is well. He may go to the devil and welcome.