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8.—Mr. Wil. Ross took journey to St. Andrews; and I did commit that cace to the Lord's wisdom, and desird that ani one I met with might not straiten me to him. This day I did count with Knockoudi, and saw the strait of poor people for the new burden of excyse, and desird euer to speak or think soberli, euen of common burthens. I went al night to Lancot, of purpos to communicat with him anent the estat of his soul; and the next day the Lord gav som occasion to speak a word to him of exhortation and warning. He acquainted me with the temptations that he had been in. I desird to bear his burden. 9.—I met at Alves: and read a letter from the E. of Murray, desyring me to wryt to the Protector. Oh! what a delusion, what a snar might thes things be unto me, if Thou, Lord, prevent not Duffus told me the ill cariag of the E. of Cathnes; of the report of the King's being in Wales. We spok off common burthens. I desir neither to be too sensibl, nor yet without feeling of them, and the cace of the land. This day my poor Mother did fal, and endangerd herself. Oh Lord! sanctifi thes providences to her and us. 10–My Mother recoverd a litle. . . . . . . I was taken up in wryting to the Counsel. I feard—1. That my spirit might be imbitterd through passion or anguish. 2. That by this my judgment may be blinded. 3. That I studi mor to hastie, rash expressions then to truth and words of sobernes: therfor I besoght the Lord to guid my spirit in this, and the rather, 1. Becaus mani eys ar on me. 2. Others may lyk my errour. 3. It may draw me in inconvenienc. 11-I was disquieted with the thoght of the Saboth, and that I found so smal edification from Mr. Wil. Falconar. I desird to be guided under this exercys; and if the Lord thoght meet I would goe to Mr. Wil, the morn, and speak a word to him. But I commit this to God. 12–I wryt the letter and information to the Councel, by which I perceaud my own bitter, tart, impatient natur; and desird the Lord to correct it, and to guard against this infirmiti, and to guid me in this veri particular, that passion, enterest, self lov, or yet favour, blind not or mislead. . . . 13.- . . . This day I spok with Dauid, and heard his report concerning the Lord Protector —” 1. Litle good, tendernes, or justice, about Court, but men seeking themselus. 2. Men expected nothing but ouerturnings; al seemd unsettld. 3. Mor arbitrarines than euer in ani tym, and depend[ence] of Judicatours upon him. 3. Unaccessablnes. 4. Yet men desird not a chaung; for they feard it would be to the worst. 5. The godli wer denuding themselus of al confidenc, wisdom, or spirit (?) as being beyond ther capacitie, and as a weather-beaten vessel that could not keep ani straight cours: did commit themselus to God, and let the ship land quher he pleasd. We adord the Lord in his judgments in shaking and ouerturning nations, kingdoms, kings, judicatours, as he is doing among us, and throgh the earth, in Polland, Germany, Sweden, and other places beyond sea, and especiali heer among ourselus. Oh for a quiet and a beleeving hart to hold out this storm; and to be kept free of the snares of the tym, and our garments clean. I heard the Protesters wer purposing to mak more use of the English power. 2. That ther was not a Presbytery, nor setld way of ordaining and admitting ministers in England: great confusion ther. Mr. Cradock said, he was content they should challenge him for a leer in the day of judgment, if England er long should not see a famin of the Word: men should run to an fro and not find it. 14.—I did meet betwix Innes and Altyr. The Lord was pleasd to giv ther differences a peacabl clos, 15.-We had a meeting of the shyr at Elgin. . . . 16.-I was in Kined sward] all night. This day I did goe in and visit Ch. Rusell in Elgin; saw her doubtings, and commended to her to speak and think weil of God. . . . We closd that buisines of Aikinways. . . 17.-I was al night in Forres. 18.-Die Dom. Mr. Hugh [Anderson] and Mr. Jho. M'Gulican preachd both weil. 20.-I did meet at Forres with Granghil and Kinkorth. . . . I was al night in Forres. 21.-I went to Innes wher the Lord blest our endevours for setling the Laird of Innes and Craigstoun; wherin I found my oun heat growing. Oh micle caushau I to be humbld for it! I saw ther distress in ther effairs, and desird to obseru the Lord. I saw and heard the old Lard pray; and found that ther was a gift and grac of prayer, which neither was attaind by wisdom nor by natural eloquence. Oh it is the grac of prayer, not the gift that I seek 25.-Die Dom. I purposd to afflict and humbl my soul befor the Lord on the behalf of Wil. Innes, Christian Russel, and Cathrin Hendrie, as being under extraordinar assaults of Sathan. . . . In the morning I cald for Mr. Jhon M*Gulican and Joseph, and recommended it to them to seek the Lord for the boy that was among us. 28.—I heard this day of the death of John Campbell, provost of Boot in Ila, and of the coldnes of that people to a good minister. My hart desird to consider of this and to be troubld. I heard after Mr. Gilbert Anderson's death, and worshiped the Lord, and besoght Him to fill that place to the advantadge of His church and kingdom of His Son. Mr. Thomas Hog cam heer. Mr. Jhon prayt me for advis. I refusd to give him, but quietlie resolvd to look to God, and to ador him, goe as it seemd good to him. The Lord I hop should keep me from passion, reveng, malic, or hatred against him. I shall wish the gospell to have good success in his hand, and shall joy in it. I refusd to say mor. Oh Lord! I am in strait anent the wrath that I apprehend yet against that plac of Ila, and against us. Oh clear our minds, and turn away from Thy anger. 29.—I kept at Forres [a meeting] betwix Granghil and Kinkorth. I desird to be instructed by the difficulties which I saw in that buisiness. We had a meeting off our friends at Forres. Som clearnes and counsel we met with from the Lord, but scarc a word among us for God. 30.-I cam hom efter lectur from Forres. But Oh! so litl as I was edefied by the lectur. Oh for som opportuniti to speak to him and Mr. William | But, alace! rather for a blessing on ther ministrie: for the fault of my, nor others, not profyting is not in them, but in our selvs. 8 December—Mr. Hari Forbes and his wyf cam to Aldearn yesterday. I found much ignoranc, even invincibl ignoranc in the familie. I desird to groan under it, and ther incapaciti to God. 10.-This day was a great storm of snow, and wind, and tempestuous blowing. I desird to behold and look upon the Lord's greatness, terriblnes, power, soueranitie, and rejoicd. I praisd him. .
* Short hand in MS,
13–The storm continud and encreasd. . . . Mr. Hari Forbes wryt to me anent Jhon Ros, and recd. [recommended] him to me. Lord guide me in it! 20.—I joyd to hear that in other families anie thing of the knowledg of God was set up, as in Both and Pa. Campbel's, and other places, and besoght the Lord to prosper his work among them, and mak his word effectual. 21.—I went and saw Mr. H. Forbes, and desirs the Lord to mak his ministri among them welcom and profitable. He kept a common form of catechizing, and this I thoght not edefying to myself, and therfor did forbear it. 22.—I heard of the effects of the great tempest on the 10 of Dec., being Monday: in several places the flouds did so overflow, and the sea did break in so, that it took away several houses; several people perished, and ships, and boats. I heard that the Spanish intended to send armies into Irland. The warrs and troubls begining in Switzerland for religion. The glorying and plotting, and contriuing of Papists. Thes seem to be signes of much darkmes and trouble over our head. . . . 23.—Die Dom. . . . Mr. Wil, Falconar on 19 Math. 20, gave me an excellent note, That Christians that have least knowledg of Christ ar aptest to hav highest conceit of themselvs. Nothing so dangerous, as may be seen heer in the yong man. Leathen and his Ladie cam to me. Mr. Jhon refusing, I spok in the familie, and was straitnd. 25.-People had no wil to work this day. I desird to enquir, and trie the sin and superstition.
January 3, 1656.-I went to Aldearn. I communicated with Mr. Jos, and Mr. Harie anent Cathrin Hendrie and her goodman, how it was that they both should be so afflicted and terrified: they thoght becaus she had been charmed, she oght to disclaim solemnlie that confederacie. 2. Want of courage and faith in God: Sathan took advantage in ther fearfulnes and timourousnes.
I heard that the King was turnd Papist, and mentiond this to God, and desird to be exercysd with it. . . .
I heard of Glencarn's being taken and put in the Castell: the encreas of burthens on the poor land, without ane mitigation or relief. I desird in secret to consider thes things, and be instructed. . . . 5. —I supposd it would be a sore trial if the King should bring in an armi of . . . * and turn papists. I exprest much zeal against such a cours. 8.—This day the Lord Duffus din'd with us. I was exercisd with the sinful, groundles opinions of men concerning me; and al ther vain opinions perchanc wil be confounded soon, when the Lord shal, befor them and al the world, humble me, and mak me nothing in ther eys. 15.- . . . I heard off the Jewish Synagog at London, and mentioned that to the Lord: we ar sur to hear that blest nam that we beleeu on blasphemd: a fals worship sett up, and shall this be don without grief? May the Lord bring forth good out of it! For I know not what to say in it. I heard of Kenmoor's death, and desird to remark the Lord's judgments upon that man. . . . 16.— . . . We spok to Leathin apart for his old vowes, which he had laid by, being mor fervent to put off other debts then to pay them, as if it wer easier to retain that which was the Lord's then that which we oght to men; nay, albeit he had gotten money for the stones of Kinlos, yet had neither payd that money, nor yet what he had engadged for, at the blocking up of Leathin in the year 1646. Oh that this be not laid to his charge 17.—I was al night in Lancot; and throgh sleepines and indisposition omitted secret fellowship with God. I went into Elgin the next day, and mett anent that publick buisiness of regulating the burdens of the Shyr and Cess; wherin I desir'd to obserue the calamities of the poor land, but ador'd Him, that we had anie opportunities of knowing and meeting with him, albeit our burthens wer as it is this day. I heard the Ministers had supplicated to be free of Cess: now I desir'd to haue my hart and understanding guided in the right construction of al thes things. 20–Die Dom. Yesternight I wryt south with yong Lethin, and desird Waristoun and Ladi Torwodlie to prais the Lord for ani effect which the Word had heer. I beleeved that, quhen I was dead, the noon day should be seen, thogh I saw but the day break.
* A word illegible, perhaps for Spanish or Spaniards. See above, 22d December, 1655.