The GOSPEL TRUTH
CHARLES G. FINNEY
To Edwin and Mary Lamson
26 September 1862
[MS in Finney Papers 2/2/2]
Oberlin, Ohio. 26 Sep. 1862
My Dear Br. & Sister Lamson.
Br. L's precious letter of the 19th inst
came duly, & most welcome was it
to my heart. Mrs. F. is in Oshkosh
& I therefore enjoyed it alone
except Julia who shared it
with me. I expect Mrs. F. early next
week. She has been troubled with a cough
this summer but writes that she is better.
Julia is well. My own health improved
& improving. I am now able to preach
once on sab. & attend my class during
the week. My flesh & strength are returning.
I am thankful that your health is retur
ning My Dear Sister Mary. You are
so unsparing & almost violent in
your use of health that we have al
most dispaired of your keeping it.
Bless the Lord for so far sustaining your
impetuosity & restoring, so far, your health.
Mary the world, the church, your family,
your friends have high claims upon
you. We cant afford to spare you
even to have you hasten to heaven.
Pray abide with us as long as you
can. I know that to consent to this
requires more self denial than we
can be called on to exercise in any
thing else. To remain in this world, in
the best possible circumstances, with
heaven open before us, is a trial & but
for our want of clear apprehensions of
what heaven is, it would the most
sense of earthly trials. Since I have been
sick, laid aside form usual labor &
have been given to consider the subject,
what is called death does not appear
a thing to be dreaded, but on the contrary
to be the most glorious change conceivable
& one most devoutly to be desired. 'Tis unspe
akable. But for our blindness we could
hardly be reconciled to remain on earth.
But God will keep us here while we can
be more useful here than in heaven.
I know that neither of you will think
it flattering when I express the belief
that not many wives & mothers can be
so useful on earth as you can.
You Mary, can be a wife, mother
& fill many other stations besides. Wife
can testify that you make an excellent
sexton in Ladies meetings. But to be most
serious, I feared from Mary's last letter
that she was not going to take care of her
self & so abide with us. When I had enjo
ined it on her to rest, rest, she replied
in substance that she & I would be the
last to follow such advice That sank
into my heart. I thought now Mary is not
determined to rest at all events, & if she
does not she must die. But bless the
Lord she has rested some. Br. Lamson
you have held on well & compel[l]ed her
to rest in part. Now my Br. persevere
in this. Keep her back with all your might.
God bless the dear soul & give her
back to you, & to us all in good
health & heart to take hold of his
work again. God bless also the dear
Children. I return all their sweet
kisses through you. You may kiss
them all for me as much as you
can afford. They are often spoken
of here. God bless you my Dear Br.
Lamson. God has made you a good
man. That is much very much.
Bless the Lord for pressing matters in
our national affairs. The slaves must
be free. If Br. Stone is not disappointed
in his hope of doing great good in the army
I shall be glad. Give my kindest love
to him & to his dear wife. If I were
able I should love to spend an other
winter in Boston. We are having some
conversions of late. Mrs. F. will speak for
herself when she returns. Norton is at
present in Wisconsin locating a R. R. for
the N. W. R. R. C. His home is in Toledo. He
is city engineer but they consented to
spare him for 3 months. At the close
of this time he expects to be married to
an estimable young lady of this Town.
Give special regards to all our dear friends
Your Br. in haste, C. G. Finney
He was married on 22 December 1862, to Williana Wallace Clarke (1842-1916, daughter of John and Eliza Jamieson Clarke of Oberlin.