(The following in an excerpt from the diary of James Smith)
“Oh, what wretched man I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death!” Romans 7:24
My journey lies along a thorny road–and yet few see the thorns but myself! Ah, the sharpest thorns are unseen by mortal eyes!
God knows, that I do wish, and long, and pray, and strive–to be what His Word requires me to be. But I am continually baffled, frustrated in my designs, and beaten back! And if at any time, I seem to feel that I am progressing, and yield myself unto God–I am sure to be overtaken with some trial, and am made to feel my own weakness and vileness more than ever!
The carnal desires of the flesh work–and often very powerfully. Old sinful propensities, which appeared to be subdued, if not destroyed–revive and appear as lively as ever!
I revive–and then sink down into the same carnal state again! I turn forwards–and then backwards, without progress or improvement.
What a mercy that grace is free, and that salvation is wholly of grace! Upon this principle, I will arrive at Heaven, but on no other. May I be privileged to stand among God’s little ones before His throne, and eternally lift up my voice in honor of His precious name!