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[Letter from Young John Allen to Mollie Houston, March 31, 1857]

[Note: N. B.

I will have to send this contrary to your request.-- So you must pardon it and write back on Saturday or just as soon as you can.-- I'll be patient.--Young

]

E. C. Oxford Geo. March 31st 1857
My Dearest Mollie--

I would gladly avail myself of any opportunity that presents itself of writing to you even though it be but a few lines at a time-- therefore as I have a few leisure moments now, I trust that to spend them in sweet communion with my Dearest Mollie, will not be altogether unacceptable to thee.-- I have not time to enter into a full and comprehensive answer to your letter so full of affection and confidence in him who hopes at no very distant day to share with thee the/burdens and crosses of life of which you spoke
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in such simple and pathetic language.-- Mollie, I have read your letter over and over again; it is sad, yet that sadness is sweet when I see it united with such tenderness of spirit such abasement of self-- it is a strain of sadness such as is calculated to work profitableness to the soul; it is a sadness such as the wise man contemplates when he said it is better to go to the house of mourning than to the place of mirth.-- Yes, Mollie, it did, though, unanticipated by you, give me more pleasure than pain. And how can that be, does not My Dear One ask? Well, Mollie, I'll tell you how it is.-- I have had the same experiences myself, I had to suffer mortification, disappointment and anguish from the very same causes. I had to be abased, humbled and taught my own weakness, and
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depravity, my utter helplessness and insufficiency of myself to accomplish any good, just as you have stated in reference to yourself, your own heart; now Dearest, in all these things our experience does not diverge at all, but mutually coincide throughout.--

You have now arrived at a most important crisis, where [deleted] in the history of your religious experience where you can just begin to see the glory of being a thorough devoted, entirely converted Christian, you are now my precious Mollie occupying a high stand point from which God permits you to look below [deleted] down [added] upon the world as it is--upon your heart as it is, now Dearest that is a precious privilege and one which you should value very highly because now that you have seen the deceitfulness, the corrupt blindness
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of your heart, you can turn away more successfully from its suggestions and dictates and flee to the Closet for Communion with God, with him who knoweth the secret intents and purposes of your heart.-- I might say a great deal on this interesting and fruitful subject but it is all needless, but suffice it to say- My Dearest, that you are now [deleted] almostright, if not quite right, and I believe Dearest from your experience that you have shared some of the fulness of the promised blessings of God-- that you have had great encouragement to be vigilant and vigorous still in the struggle; the fiercest of the conflict perhaps is over now, for the powers of darkness are beginning to yield and fall back when the horrid deceit and crimes of the soul
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when the its [added] secret faults and weaknesses are beginning to show themselves you have overcome the greatest and strongest of his [added] powers- that is-the [deleted] to see yourself as you are, that is what Satan would have us blind to always, and as long as he can have that he knows the case is a sure one, but thanks to God, My Mollie, that the secret path, like that around Thermopylae of old has been found out by you, and that you have been enabled to defeat the purposes of your great arch-enemy by getting a proper [deleted] so to speak,intoyourself and beholding for yourself the hidden works which he was carrying on there.-- Raise the shout now, My Dearest for the Victory is surely yours, you will Triumph, though the devil with
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all his legions oppose you, you may expect a desperate encounter- you perhaps have had one, for [deleted] Leonidas and his brave companions did not give back when they stood in that narrow pass, you recollect, but met the enemy and fell on the field-- so these daring presumptuous sins these legions from [deleted] commissioned from below to torment and worry your soul will bravely contest it with you till the very last moment, but just as sure as the [deleted] as the Spartans fell at Thermopylae will they fall before the armed power of God; trust in God then my dearest, My Beloved;-- I can rejoice over the account you gave me of your experience because I think all will soonbe right, God grant it may be.

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Sad account! why Mollie you could have told me nothing (that seems) so auspicious as that; that is the sure sign of your progress.-- Oh! be encouraged; I am almostled to say that you have obtained that for which you seek.-- Another one of my friends has been enabled to obtain and rejoice in the [deleted] perfect assurance of acceptance,- of perfect Love, and we have frequently talked it over; (it occured since I wrote you last,) and I find that our experiences very much resemble and both greatly, particularly as to doubts and fears, coincide with yours.

Thank God, any how My Dearest, yes I do right now, that you have been brought this far in his knowledge and
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and [sic] in the light of his countenance.--

You lack nothing at all My Dearest now, according to your experience, that I know, that keeps you from that perfect Love. I believe you have obtained it. I will venture to say so any how- for how is it that you were not so blessed before when you asked? You said then that you could not believe God would give it to you right then.-- Well now, how was it when you said you would believe, did not the blessing come, did you not feel happy, did you not rejoice? Oh! My Dearest, that was the obstacle all the while, and that surely was the blessing which you received as soon as it was removed- wasn't [sic] Dearest? Yes, Glory be to God-- don't you say so too from your very heart-- Mollie?

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But you feared, and indeed you said, that you could not believe you had received such a blessing, judging from your life the next day-- now Mollie I don't think there was anything in that which could authorize you to disbelieve it; I don't doubt but that you felt some bitter regrets and that your conscience smote you some for having neglected what you purposed doing-- but my Dearest, I cannot see that that was a particular violation of any (very impervious) duty or that the neglect of once or twice reading the Scriptures under such circumstances should cause you to doubt your acceptance, to doubt what the Lord had done for you-- no My Beloved I don't think that can be any evidence at all
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that you were not blessed with a full salvation.--

Your resolutions were firm and your intentions were bright towards God, then let not your heart be discouraged for says Thomas A. Kempis, "it is no illusion that thou art sometimes wrapt in an ecstacy but presently returnest to the accustomed weaknesses of thy heart", by no means, but it was not even weakness in thy heart nor the absence of a better purpose that caused you to neglect that which you so much regretted, no but rather the pressure of circumstances.-- Oh! My Beloved, arise and rejoice in the Lord, burst the fetters of darkness and give glory to the Lord, God of our Salvation.-- My Beloved I cannot write
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any more now on these very interesting themes, nor have I time to notice all your letter, but I do believe-- and I must say press on-- that you are almosthome, My Dearest Mollie. I never fail to remember you, and the Lord will answer your petitions, and I can't help but believe, it is his work that's now being accomplished in your experience-- don't then get discouraged but when you sin go to God and confess it and he will pardon and accept you for Christ's sake.-- You know how I done [sic] had to do [added] , what expedient I had to resort to when I was convicted and awaken'd to a sense of my duty in reference to this blessing. I tried my rellious, wicked, deceitful heart till I could not trust it in
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a single instance so I took my little (vade mecum) [illegible word] [unclear] [deleted] commonplace book and set down every sin, every thing which I thought or felt to be in my way, and that is all the way I would overcome myself.-- I would always forget neglect [added] and excuse myself, because I had forgotten exactly what I promised I would do.-- Perhaps some such expedient as that might aid you a great deal in carrying out your purposes-- a minute enumerations of your principle [sic] obstacles and difficulties set down in a book where you could refer to them every day would keep your memory alive and retention of all these things which otherwise you might forget and neglect.

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Apr. 1stI have a very few minutes this morning, My Dearest, of leisure but the short timeI will spend with you.-- I had another conversation yesterday evening with my friend who has so lately professed and does now enjoy the blessing of Perfect Love, of Entire Sanctification.-- Oh! Mollie he is a noble fellow, such as this world presents but seldom and there are but few such in this College I assure you if any at all. He is one of the Senior Class, is already licensed to exhort and intend preaching and joining the Conference next winter.-- I love to be with him. I enjoy myself so much now in his company-- he and myself are all that have made any professions as
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as to this last attainment, and I assure you, My Dearest, that a tie has in that been matured which binds and attaches us much more strongly than ever before-- if then it is so with him, Mollie, how (will) [added] it (be) with us, how dearly [deleted] do you suppose thou art to me now?

Why Mollie, God bless you, I feel the more and more I love God and the nearer and nearer I get to his throne, the better I love you, the better I can appreciate the gift which God has chosen for me-- yes the better I can appreciate and the more I feel the inestimable value of her whom I feel the Lord has chosen for my companion and partner through life.-- Isn't it so with you Dearest? Isn't it true Mollie?--Yes--

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Well, Dearest, you spoke sometime since [added] of Miss Nellie Dozier being such a sweet girl, will you now please give me a particularaccount of her; I want to know how she stands in College-- what her reputation and name among the faculty and students-- what her temper and disposition-- whether she is cheerful in spirit and happy or given to melancholy and seclusion-- what are he [sic] religious feelings and standing-- what does she anticipate as to a future life-- does she speak of a desire to live and labor in the vineyard of her Lord or what? Please now Dearest answer me all these questions for I am particularly interested and I know you are the very one to apply to for such information. I will tell you
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sometime why I ask you all these things-- but I can't wait, I'll tell you now.-- This good friend of mine has somewhat of an interest [sic] and he was speaking to me of his--, in Macon and that she [added] is the one, so I want you to tell me sure, Dearest; I love her too Mollie because yourecommend her as such a sweet girl, and because her lover, if I can be allowed so to speak, is such a good fellow himself and such a particular friend of mine.

You must not, Dearest, hint anything of this to her at all but be perfectly private about it.-- Write me just such an account of her as you would be willing. Sheshould see if you'll let me show it to him.

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I have not time to write you the news, in fact, I have none to write.-- I wrote to Mellie again the other day. I spent last Saturday in Atlanta, first up at the Trout home where we staid, and Oh! so many pleasant recollections as came to me there. I loved to look at the stairways and passages along which we passed together. I felt like I was getting most to My Mollie again but ah she was far away-- I've got a prettyfor you Mollie, do you want it? Or don't you like "pretties?

Well I am out now don't you think-- if I've got down to such insignificance as that.-- So I'll quit off.--
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But I must say again press on, press on My Beloved One.

Yes "press forward, the prize is in view. And a crownofbright glory is waiting for you".--

Mollie, I do have some very happy times indeed, but I have to deplore my exceeding sinfulness, my proneness to go astray and it keeps me very low very humble in God's presence, though not half as much as it ought.--

Pray for me, My Sweet One, that the Lord may uphold me and strengthen me for all the conflicts of life.-- I thought I was about to close, but here comes another thought which I do not desire to keep back from the only one who can share my heart, its affections, its
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thoughts and hopes.

I have been exercised a great deal here of late and solicited by several in reference to beginning the work of the Ministry now. I want to do just what God would have me do. I have given myself entirely into his hands and in reference to this important matter & calling. I have submitted it to him as to whether I should be liciensed [sic] and begin nowor wait till some other time after or about the close of my College course.-- What do you think about it, My Dearest Mary? I confide all my heart to thee and you shall be my counselor, in everything, I don't intend to keep anything back from such a Dear One, and I never expect to begin anything of any very great or serious importance without
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first consulting with thee and getting thy advice.-- Now please write your thoughts in referencence to this and send me your opinion.-- Be sure to pray for me My Dearest, much and often and particularly in reference to this duty.--

The Lord's will and not mine be done.-- Amen.

Mollie I feel like praising God and serving him too this morning.--

Read the Riches of Grace, Mollie in connection with your present experience and struggles for entire sanctification and holiness. My friend is reading it now in connection with his as I suggested and he has already been greatly blessed and confirmed in his experience-- try to think of nothing else nor talk of little else until you feel entirely free and have
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that deep abiding peace which always follows that great change, which introduces the soul into the ocean of God's love.-- Let not your mind be distracted and confused by too many things at a time, but let it be exercised much on that subject.-- And if I were you Mollie and could get a convenient opportunity I would talk with some good old Christian who professes such a state-- but if you will read the Riches of Grace which is nothing else but a number of experiences-- and pray much you will be sure to get all the counsel you need. I think, it would be best to read it as private as you can, so that your soul and mind can be
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fully exercised, so that when you feel like praying you can just drop down before God and plead for what you need.-- Do that Mollie, please don't neglect it and I think it will make all right sure enough.--

May God bless you every day and give you soon the blessed assurance that your consecration is accepted and that your name is registered with the sanctified and pure of earth and the Redeemed and happy in heaven, is the humble and fervent prayer of your Devoted and Loving Young J. Allen
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March 31st '57

Miss Mollie Houston
W. F. College

Macon

Georgia

Care of
Prest. Smith


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