Elizabeth Saffery Diary: September-November 1797

[Wednesday] Sepr 20 1797

This Afternoon my dr Partner has improved the Solemn providence the death of our beloved friend & Brother Mr Dyer[1] in preaching fm Zachariah 1 & 5 Your fathers where are they? And ye Prophets do they live forever – Oh our God grant a divine Blessing – Let the death of thy faithful labouring servant be usefull to Saint & Sinner we shall no more be comforted & instead with his delightful voice Solemn thought the place that knew him shall now know him no more He that we so much loved is numbered with the dead but blessed be God tis to rise a Glorious body & a little while, after a few more conflicts we hope to join his immortal part wh is around the throne of God in singing the song of the Redeemed – May my hope be that wh shall stand in the trying hour.

[Sunday] Sepr 24 97

As Reflection on this day causes me as in mans past to lament before God of my little Zeal for him, Love to him, & devotedness to his Glory, O when shall I serve my God without so much Sin, its of the tender mercies of God I am not consumed.

In the morning heard my beloved partner from Deuteronomy 6 & 4 Hear O Israel the Lord our God is one Lord – he have been for some Sabbaths past proving the divinity of ye word of God & now he intends to take up the Doctrines of ye Gospel this morning was ye first by proving that there is but one God to be worshiped O that the Blessing of the Great Jehovah may attend his labours. I trust it have been useful to me Lord Grant the ignorance & darkness of my mind may be removed that I may know more of that Love wh passeth knowledge.

This Aftern have been stupid & lifeless my body much indisposed & mind wandering tho I trust I felt a hope that by & by I should be relieved from every thing that interrupts my enjoyment of God & know something of ye effects of that hope which is laid up on heaven that my dr partner been speaking from Colossians 1 & 5. But Ah what cause to complain I live no more by Faith on the Son of God how little do I enjoy of Spiritual things either publick or private Lord quicken me that I may not live at this poor dying rate – Very little enjoyment of God in ye Closet to day.

Wednesday Sepr 28 [1797][vi]

O what a mercy to know the dear people of God & much more to enjoy God himself – have been highly favourd today in the Sanctury Dr Mr Steadman[2] gave us a delightful sermon from [entry not completed by Saffery]

[Friday] Sepr 29 [1797]

This morning have parted from my dear & beloved Parent[3] – Blessed be God for the frame of mind I enjoy I trust I feel a Comfortable hope e’er long we shall meet in Yonder world of Glory never to part & what is infinitely better never never Sin O Glorious Change There shall we sit & sing & tell the wonders of his Grace without a Corrupt & sinful heart or a weak & infirm body.

We have been highly privileged the past day in the house of God O how amiable are thy tabernacles O Lord of host, surely a day in the Courts of our God is better than a thousand or ten thousand spent in Sin. I trust Zion is precious to my Soul I love to go up to her Gates & wait at the post of her doors O that Sinners yea that Saints would love to Assemble where God have promised to direct.

He loves the tents of Jacob well

But still in Zion loves to dwell.

Dear Father may I ever enjoy thee in thy house & among thy Children

For in such Society as this

My weary soul would rest,

The man that dwells where Jesus is

Must be forever Blessd.

Well may the Psalmist say the Saints are the excellent of the earth. May I ever adore the great Disposer of all things for casting my Lot among them Unworthy as I am I am honourd with their Company & Conversation on earth & if not deceived a Good hope through Grace of joining with them in Eternity there to sing Redeeming Grace & dying Love –

This Afternoon parted from all the dear Ministers that came to our little Associan I desire to praise the Lord that we can meet & part as under a divine protection. May the great head of the Church go with them & bless them – was much affected to day hearing the death of an aged servant I fear a stranger to God, O Sanctify this solemn provider to all concerned. This evening I trust I felt more pleasure in prayer then for some time past O could I always enjoy the presence of God when no eye behold me but his & with one view he sees the Abominations that’s there May this thought ever impress my mind.

[Thursday] Oct 12 97

Every day fresh mercies are bestowed on such a worthless worm as I what shall I render to the Lord for all the Blessings I enjoy. I trust I have today felt somewhat gratefull to God for them he has permited my beloved partner to return home after a few days absence & with unspeakable pleasure we can relate to each other the tender regard our heavenly father has discovered in protecting, preserving & presiding for us may we never forget to talk of these things. I would wish my heart to overflow with gratitude for what God has done for us & he has not only preservd my partner from Affliction & danger but has Blessd him with his presence in his house & at ye Ordinances. May those who were Baptized in the name of the ever blessed Trinity be careful to adorn the Doctrine of God our Saviour in all things. O Lord may the Labours of thy servant be crown’d with Abundant success that we may hear in future great good was done in the name of Jesus – Hope I have enjoyd something of communion with God this evening in prayer but have reason to lament before God that I feel so little of this unspeakable blessing – O for more real experimental religion then I should be more happy.

Lords day Oct 15 [1797]

I trust I felt a pleasure this morning at ye return of the Sabbath & can say with David I was glad when they sayd unto me Come let us go up [to] the house of the Lord &c[xiv] but have reason to mourn my little devotedness to God in privet or publick. Oh that I contemplated more on the Glory of Christ, my mind more spiritual, & holy, freed from earthly Affections, & encumbrances, raised above things below – then should I act more like an Alltogether Christian but Alas I fear I have more the appearance of these things then the substance.

In the morning heard my beloved partner on the Divinity of Christ from Romans 9 & 5 did not feel my mind so much engagd as on some of the morning discourses in the Afternoon fm Micah 7 & 18 a funeral sermon for Mr Stanford may the Lord Bless it to his Ungodly relatives in the Eveng from Acts 26 & 28.

[Thursday] Octr 19 97

What reason have I for deep humility before God for this days Experience. Awake this morning oppressed with weakness of Body depression of spirit a mind full of murmering at the dispensation of Providence toward me ready to think the Lord dealt hardly with me – O Lord forgive me in this my very great ingratitude.

Went to prayer & thought I felt some Lyberty but in the midst was ready to conclude God had forgotten to be gracious & that he had shut out my prayer. Oh how hard to say, The will of the Lord be done when contrary to our own but I trust I desire if Affliction & dissapointment is my Lot to cheerfully bear it. I know its best. Yet murmer at it still. Oh for more real experimental Religion, greater devotedness to God & sweetr Communion with him then would every bitter be made sweet as being swallowd up in God – When shall I feel intire Submission to the Divine will & say without reserve Let the Lord do with me as seemeth him Good. This is not the rest of Gods people they are seeking a better Country whose Builder & maker is God Lord if I am thine make me as a Stranger & Pilgrim here Give me thyself & I am happy Nothing short of this can satisfy my immortal Soul Oh for much enjoyment of this while contending with difficulty from within & with out.

Lords day Oct 21 [1797]

I have been affected for some days past but desire to bless God that spirit of murmering & discontent is removed & I trust tho in Affliction & a prospect of its being heavier I find my mind tranquil & if its for the Glory of God I should lay in the furnace as in winters past the will of the Lord be done –

Have been prevented going to the house of God today – hope if the Lord please its not a prelude of longer confinement have reason to mourn I felt no more Spirituality to day, much confusd in prayer in the morning in the Afternoon felt a want of warmth & zeal for God in reading & prayed Oh what a Clog is this body to the immortal part I was much pleased & affected with reading in the Nonconformist Memorial of a Mr Woodward who says of his father “The power of God bore him up for many years till at last indeed the raised soul grew too big for the body & by degrees rent it into pieces to make way for a happy dissolution.” Oh that this may be my happy case then Oh then shall I cheerfully leave this Lump of Clay that engages so much of my attention at present, to be food for worms for a season blessed be God its only to be refined, while my spirit shall fly beyond the Grave –

This Evening I hope I found it good to be alone to pour out my heart in secret feel a pleasure in the reflection it will be but a little while & I trust through the riches of free unmerited Love & Grace to be among the happy number who are forever shouting forth the praises of God & the Lamb.

Wednesday [25 October 1797]

These two days past have been engaged in domestick affairs Company of friends &c have had but little time alone found some pleasure in writing to a dear friend Oh how sweet will the Company & Converse of friends be in heaven. This morning found much wandering in prayer have reason to lament how little of real devotion I experance in the Closet – My dear partner has again left me & is gone to preach to ye youth this evening at B— [Broughton] may the Good will of him that dwelt in the bush be with him I trust I feel happy this morning in the reflection in what God has done in preserving from danger & in some measure enabled to rely on him now that his presence will go with his dear servant & make him usefull to Saint & Sinner.

Thursday eve [26 October 1797]

My Beloved companion is returnd safe tho unwell with wearyness & a cold but blessed be God its no worse hope I feel thankful we have every Comfort we can wish to render us happy Oh how good is the Lord he maketh our cup to run over his providential mercies are great may my soul be filld with gratitude – find on reflection on this day there is much need for humility & self abasement that I have thought no more, lived nor acted no more for God trust I felt a pleasure in ye close of the day that I could commend my self & all my concerns in the hand of a Covenant keeping God with a hope that he was mine & I forever his.

Friday [27 October 1797]

This morning my mind anxious on ye account of my dear partners indisposition may the Lord in tender mercy restore that his health may not interrupt his enjoyment in ye house of God. Have been this evening to ye house of God & the Lord have assisted his dear servant in administering the Glorious ordinance of Baptism. Blessed God grant his body & soul may both be refreshed thereby desire to be thankful we hope we did enjoy something of thy presence there Oh for more of it that we may die dayly unto sin & live unto Righteousness.

Felt grieved I was oblidged to return home & not stay the prayer meeting on the account of my health but its ye Lords will & I desire to submit Oh favour me with thy presence tho deprived of the public means of Grace.

Saturday [28 October 1797]

Felt my body very poorly wn I arose but my mind comfortable if not deceived enjoyd some pleasure in the night in reflecting on 23 Hymn of ye 2 Book descend from heaven immortal Dove &c Oh that I could enjoy God often in the night seasons, that at midnight I should give thanks unto ye Lord because of his righteous judgments hope I found it good to read the word of God & draw near to him in prayer today, & in the evening constraind to praise the Lord for his Goodness to my dear partner in blessing the means used for the removal of his complaint in some measure & giving us a hope he would be able to attend on the dutys of ye Sabbath.

Lords day [29 October 1797]

Oh how good is our God surely he is a prayer hearing & answering God he have asisted my dear partner in preaching his word in the morning on the Divinity of ye Spirit from Acts 5 & 3 – In ye Aftern 141 Psalm & 5 Let ye righteous smite me &c I have been permited to go up to hear hope not alltogether in vain but have still reason to complain of my own wretchedness & unworthyness.

Was affected this evening at being confind at home but I desire to be thankful I love Zion & tho not able to go up [to] her Courts so often as I wish yet I feel a Spirit of prayer for her increase. Lord favour me with thy presence at home & then I cant forget to pray for thy kingdom to be greatly enlarged every where, hope I feel a longing for more of God in my own soul & in ye souls of others have been paind to day to see so many professing that love to ye ways of God afraid of the weather Oh Lord revive thy work in their hearts –

My Experances this week past have not been very comfortable – every day too much like Martha cumbered about many things yet I hope not alltogether without some desires going out for God much reason for deep humility on ye account of Sin May my poor poluted Soul be washed in the fountain of a dear Redeemers Blood.

Lords day Novr 6 [1797][xx]

Have been led to see this morning by some circumstances the need of watchfulness over our own & others tempers & the need of forbearance with each other gracious God grant me wisdom & prudence at all times to act as becometh Godliness have been highly favoured to go up to ye Lords house 3 times today & to the table of ye Lord. Oh that I may in future feed on ye word heard my beloved partner on ye mediation of Christ from I Timothy 2 & 5 For there is one God & one Mediator between God & man the Man Christ Jesus. Hope it was good to be under the sound of the Gospel it was particularly sweet to me as it agreed with what I had been reading in ye week wh I hope was useful to me viz. Owen on ye Glory of Christ.

In ye Afternoon Roman 6 & part of ye 15 verse “Shall we Sin” was stupid & dull under ye sermon but at ye Ordinance I trust felt longings of soul after greater enjoyments of our dear Redeemer & was not without hope. By & by unworthy as I am I should surround the throne of God above never more to go out singing after the ordinance was very delightful to me thought I should be glad to sing myself away to everlasting Bliss. For the evening Romans 9 & 9 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God was not very comfortable my body & spirit much wearyd Oh what a poor Creature I am thanks be to God I shall not be burdend with this Clog of Clay nor a sinful heart in heaven.

Monday [6 November 1797]

Have reason to complain of my self but rejoice that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday today & forever. I find I need the influences of the Holy Spirit dayly to keep me near to God Prone to wander Lord I feel it prone to leave ye God I Love.

This Evening much affected with ye conversation of a young woman wm I trust the Lord have pluckd as a brand from ye fire through ye instrumentality of my dearest partner she was given to ye vilest sins but God calls Publicans & Harlots by his Grace to discover to us what his Allmighty power can perform. Let thy power blessed God be displayd yet more & more in this way – trust my soul was melted before God in private on this account Oh could I love him more for the Riches of free unmerited Love & Grace.

Tuesday [7 November 1797]

Hope I had some pleasure in conversn with a friend but want more of God.

Thursday night [9 November 1797]

This 2 days past have had but little time & less inclination for privit excersise Oh what a poor sinful Creature I am this evening Affected on ye reflection of my very great ignorance of the things of [God] After professing his name so many years & trust felt my heart drawn towards God that he would teach me & guide me by his Councel.

Friday [10 November 1797]

This day my beloved partner with myself & servant have devoted the greatest part of it to fasting & prayer I hope & believe God has been with us & we are constraind to say its Good to draw near to God – yes let the worldling persue his pleasure & the miser his riches I trust we have felt today that pleasure (in part at least) which is unspeakable & full of Glory & enjoyd something of those Riches in Christ Jesus wh is durable – Oh for more of real spiritual communion with God Oh thou Blessed God answer the many requests we have offerd up unto thee for our selves our dear Relatives for thy Zion at Large thy Churches in perticular with every Case we mentiond before thee, thou knowest all our wants & as far as it shall be for thy Glory & our Good give us ye desires of our hearts.

A consideration of the many mercies I enjoy I trust have melted my soul with gratitude today surely the Lord is loading me with his tender mercies, forbid it O thou blessd God that I should ever murmer at thy dealings with me thou hast given me a weak afflicted body but blessed be thy name thou hast not witholden the comforts of Life for my support & what is infinitely better I trust now & then thou givest me tho so very unworthy a glimps of yonder Glory thou hast prepared for me. Oh for much of heaven while on earth then I shall tread ye world beneath my feet with all that earth calls good or great.

Saturday [11 November 1797]

I still find I am a poor Creature & need fresh supplys of Grace dayly to keep my soul alive & felt but little of God in privet today. O for a closer walk with God.

Sunday [12 November 1797]

Trust I felt a pleasure when I awoke this morning it was the Lords day, a day in wh the tribes go up to worship. Bless morning whose young dawning day beheld our rising God &c. What a mercy I am enabled to rise & unite with ye dear saints this is a blessing I am sometimes deprived of & many of Gods dear Children are perhaps to day confined to their habitations[8] that would be glad to unite may we improve this privelage to the glory of God –

Heard my Beloved partner this morning on the Office of Christ as a Prophet from John 6 & part of ye 14 verse This is of a truth that Prophet that should come into ye world.

Hope it was not alltogether a barren season to me, tho have reason to complain of my many wanderings I feel so much ignorance that I know I stand in need of a divine teacher if its an evidence of being taught by Christ when we see more & more of our dreadful ignorance as to a Glory there is in Christ & in his precious word I think I do feel it I am ready to shrink into nothing when I reflect on the darkness & confusion that vails my mind. Blessed Jesus may I experance thee My Prophet to instruct & guide me into all truth –

Afternoon Matthew 26 & first part of ye 41 verse Watch & pray that ye enter not into temptation, May my soul & the souls of others be benefited by this use full exhortation.

This evening prevented going to the Sanctuary but know God is not confined & trust have found it good to reflect on some of my experance years back hither to the Lord have helped me O could I prease him more if I am not deceived felt my soul drawn forth to God in prayer this evening that I may know no will but his. This is one of my greatest trials a want of Submission to the will of God in all things, it makes me often grown being burdend & long to be freed from this murmering sinful heart, Blessed be God in heaven I shall never want any thing contrary to his will.

But there shall I see & hear & know all I desire or wishd below And every power find sweet employ in that eternal world of joy.

Wednesday [15 November 1797]

Fresh mercies have hitherto attended me & I may say with ye Psalmist Goodness & mercy doth follow me all the days of my Life. Oh for more gratitude to ye donor of all my blessings – the past night felt much pain in my head arose in ye morng very ill & found it trying to say Let ye will of the Lord be done yet I trust it was my desire not to have one murmering thought went to prayer was earnest God would remove Affliction or give faith & patience to bear them that when he has tried me I may come forth as Gold – have been engaged in Company this Afternoon & have to Lament tho professed Christians & I trust real ones yet our Conversation have not been very profitable. Oh what a mercy when we get beyond this world of sin & sorrow,

No vain discourse shall fill our tongues

Nor trifles vex our ear

Infinite grace shall be our song

And God rejoice to hear.

This evening felt alone while our dear friends are gone to worship. Hope I have found it good to be alone, the presence of God is better far better than the Company of ye dearest friend on earth Oh grant me much of it that I may know by sweet experance that in sacred silence of the Mind, My heaven & thou my God I find – desire to Bless God I am freed from pain this eveng Oh that Life health & [strength] where more devoted to God how vain & foolish of men to think of leavg thoughts of Eternity till times of Affliction & death Oh that men were wise that yy understood their latter end.

Thursday [16 November 1797]

Have been led to admire the providential mercies of our heavenly father to day in providing for us before our wants return the young Lions do lack & suffer hunger but they that wait on ye Lord shall want no good thing. O may I ever trust him when I cant see him have reason to lament my deadness in family worship & in privet today.

Friday [17 November 1797]

This day have been permited to go up to ye house of ye Lord with his people who have set it apart from ye busy concerns of ye world for Prayer & fasting hope it has not been in vain we meet O that God may hear the many requests that were then offerd up – how good is it to meet to pour out our souls to God & if God is with us with his delightful presence its a young dawn of heaven below.

In such society as this, My weary soul would rest – was much paind at ye Absence of some who I fear through ye Love of ye world was prevented spending a few hours in ye service of God what a snare is ye gain of this world Blessed God Let thy Children be more earnest to get godliness which is great gain.

Hope I have found it good to draw near to God in privet that my heart have been Affected with my own wants & ye wants of Others Lord thou hast ever been a prayer hearing & answering God. Answer our request as far as we askd for thy Glory. Grant submission to thy will if thou see fit to deny what we think we want, this evening enjoyd I trust more of the spirits of Prayer then in ye day & found the best wine kept till last. Oh what must it be to draw near to God without Sin –

Had fresh instance of ye Lord providing for us to day & I hope felt my heart thankful for the very great mercies my dear partner & myself enjoy – found some pleasure in writing to my Sister[5] encouraging her to trust in God.

Saterday [18 November 1797]

Hope the Reflection of the past day has been some Comfort to me but I still need fresh supplys in ye evening wrote to a friend on the necessity of being more Zealous & active for God. May the Lord make it useful.

Lords day Novr 19 [1797]

Spent much of ye night in pain in my bowels & sickness had reason to fear should not be able to rise & go to the house of the Lord today but Blessed be God was enabled to do it heard my dear Partner in ye morning on the atonement or ye Priestly office of Christ from Hebrews 9 & 3 For every high Priest is ordained to offer Gifts & Sacrifices wherefore it is of necessity that this man have somewhat to offer. Had but little enjoyment my body ill & Mind confused tho I hope not alltogether in vain. I attended the means of Grace, I Love the gates of Zion, There my best friends my kindred dwells There God my Savour reigns.

Aftern Proverbs 3 & 6 In all thy ways acknowledge God & he shall direct thy path.

Hope I found it good to be there tho reproved from my acknowledging God in all my ways alas how little very little do I leave all my Affairs with him Lord enable thus to do – This evening prevented going out have not been so comfortable at home as at sometimes I want more of the Life & power of Religion I feel I am a poor dead stupid Creature not wholly resined to the will of God but still a murmering sinfull God dishonouring wretch when shall I be more like what I ought to be

“Give me a calm a thankfull heart

From every murmer free

The blessing of thy Grace impart

And make me live to thee.”

Tuesday [21 November 1797]

These 2 past days been very ill in body but blessed be God not uncomfortable in my soul, it is the Lord & I know he does all things well. I need these trials to wean from ye world & live more on a Covenant keeping God – was much affected today in reading a letter from our dear & beloved friend Mr Steadman informing us of his removal soon from these parts.[6] May the Lord abundantly bless him & make him very useful to Saints & Sinners. Am ready to say what is God about to do with us he has taken one of our most lively Ministers away by death within this few months & we yet have to mourn a want of one to fill up his place & now we are about to lose another yea the only one that was lively in our little association – well the Governance of ye Church is not on their Shoulders but on him who sent them & he is able to raise more faithful servants in his Vineyard – the Churches around us look very Gloomy yet I trust God will appear for Zion – O may a Spirit of prayer be given to all the Lovers thereof to pray for her & may my Soul be fervant with God dayly.

Wedy [22 November 1797]

Through the tender mercies of my heavenly father I arose this morng rather better in body & I hope with my mind in some measure stayd on him those lines were sweet to me before I arose & trust the desire of my soul to experance them

Content my father with thy will

And quiet as a Child.

This evening felt much pleasure in Conversation with a friend what an encouragement to talk of the way & the glorious end wh is prepared for the saints while we are passing on our friend read a letter he received from an afflicted friend wh expresses great faith & confidence in God under very severe trials. May I go & do likewise am prevented going to ye Sanctury but its all well, I find my God is not confined he can hear a poor sinfull worm pray while his dear Children is worshiping him in his house & condecend to bless with his delightful presence hope I have in a small degree found it so, Oh for more & greater enlargment at the throne of Grace. I want to live more with God & experance his word precious to me at all time but alas I am a poor sinfull creature.

Saterday Novr 25 [1797]

This day I wish to rase a fresh Ebenezer to God for his wonderfull Loving kindness to me unworthy of the least of his mercies & say whether the Lord hath helped how many have been the Blessings bestowd on me both as to temperal & spiritual things for these 5 & thirty years[7] – hope the past evening in receiving a letter from my dear father in wh he spakes of the wonderful lovingkindness of God to us & the reflection of it today have in some measure melted my soul with Gratitude Love & prease – Many have been my Afflictions & trial but many more have been my mercies Oh may my soul be humbled before God that I don’t live more amidst all to his Glory – Blessed God permit a worm to plead with it thou shouldst spare my Life another year also let it be more then ever devoted to thee –

Its of thy infinite Love & mercy thou hast borne with me so long let my future days be spent in thy fear & when the last shall come may I enter into & dwell with God forever.

Lordsday Novr 26 [1797]

Every year & day is begun with the Goodness of God surely I have reason to say Bless the Lord Oh my soul &c I am enterd on another year may I if spared through it live much to the Glory of God walk in all things as becometh the Gospel – should I be called into Eternity Oh may it be to dwell with God trust I have this day enjoyd much the sweets of worship in ye Sanctury Oh how amiable are thy tabernacles O Lord of hosts desire to be thankful for feeling a pleasure at ye return of ye Sabbath & being enabled to go up the house of ye Lord & what is best feeling my Love to ye Glorious truths of ye Gospel Oh for more of it.

Heard my Beloved partner in ye morning on ye priestly office of Christ as Intercesser from Hebrews 9 & 24. For Christ is not entered into ye holy place made with hands wh are ye figures of ye true but into heaven itself now to appear in ye presence of God for us trust if I am not awfully deceivd it was sweet to my soul. Oh how delightful amidst all our Sin & unworthyness Christ is ever before his father as our Intercesser – Give him my Soul thy Cause to plead – Nor doubt the fathers Grace.

The Afternoon I hope was not less profitable fm Hebrews 4 & 2 For unto us was ye Gospel preached &c have reason to lament how little the word preachd profits ye soul not being mixed with faith & if it was possible to weep in heaven it seems as if (should I ever arrive then I should shed tears for my neglect of word of God & ye little profet I have received in hearing it preachd) Lord forgive this sin also amidst all, this aftern could but humbley hope I had found some of the evidences of ye word doing me Good Lord increase it, that I may not remain a barren shrub in thy Garden but grow & flourish bringing forth fruit to thy honour & Glory here in this work.

This eveng felt my heart I hope ingaged with God in prayer & found it good to meditate on what I heard in ye day.

[Wednesday] Novr 29 [1797]

A Reflection on the goodness of God to me in preserving from Open Backsliding & bringing a reproach on his ways since I made a Public profession which have been 19 years this day. I trust have affected my mind & led me to admire the amazing Love of God – for its by the Grace of God I am what I am. Oh what reason for deep humility before God that I know no more of him that I have lived no more to his Glory come holy spirit Quicken my poor stupid soul & make me grow & flourish in ye Garden of God.


[1] John Saffery was a tireless fundraiser among the Particular Baptist churches of the West Country for the work of the Baptist Missionary Society.

[2] James Dyer (1743-97), Baptist minister at Devizes.

[3] William Steadman (1764-1837), at that time still the pastor of the Baptist congregation at Broughton. He would soon move to Plymouth Dock, and later to Bradford, Yorkshire. In the summer of 1797 he itinerated with Saffery throughout Cornwall and other parts of the West Country.

[4] Rev. Joseph Horsey, Baptist minister in Portsmouth and Elizabeth's father.

[5] Susanna Horsey Shoveller (1759-1816), at that time living in Portsmouth; her husband, John Shoveller (1760-1851) would soon become, like John Saffery, a Baptist minister.

[6] Reference is to William Steadman’s departure from Broughton for Plymouth Dock in 1798, and the recent death of James Dyer of Devizes.

[7] As with Frances Ryland, Elizabeth Saffery provides a birthdate (1762) in her diary; Anne Cator Steele, Anne Andrews Whitaker, and Jane Attwater Blatch all do the same. Further in the diary Saffery will note that she gave her experience before the Portsmouth church on 29 November 1778, at the age of sixteen.