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The War Cry, No. 18.-APRIL 21, 1880.

THE EXPERIENCE

OF

MRS. AMANDA SMITH.

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MRS. AMANDA SMITH, a negress, with whose name our readers are acquainted, told her thrilling story with the strange weird pathos which long years of oppression have wrought into the negro's voice, yet with the dignity of a king's daughter, and with the simplicity of a little child :

I was very definitely converted to God in 1856. I was very ignorant, but I had been taught that God would save me the moment I believed. I lived in the country in a family of “Friends,” and went to town only once a fortnight. When I was convicted of sin I prayed, fasted, wept, read my Bible, but the more I read the more confused I got. I used to think my one trouble was disobedience, and it seemed to me I needed some one who had not sinned to intercede with Jesus for me. Therefore I cried to the wind, the sun, the moon and stars to carry my sorrow to the Lord : “O wind ! you never sinned like me? tell Jesus I'm a poor sinner.” When the sun got up and lighted the world I said: “O sun! you never sinned like me ? tell Jesus I'm a poor sinner.” At night, when the moon and stars were shining, I cried in my distress, “O moon and stars ! you've never sinned like me, but kept your place as God has made you ; tell Jesus I'm a poor sinner.” Thus I pleaded secondhandedly with Jesus through the Heavenly bodies ; but, oh! the wonderful forbearance of God! I can't understand it.

I sat down one day almost in despair. The suggestion came—“You've been sincere; you've fasted, wept, prayed, read your Bible. You've been three months like this. God does His work quick : if He'd meant to convert you He'd have done it long ago. Give it up!” But it seemed as if the Holy Spirit said, “Pray once more."

. “Yes,” I said, " and I'll be converted this afternoon, if there's any such thing as conversion." It was March 17, a bright and beautiful day. I got all my work as forward as I could, and then went down into the cellar and began to pray, “O Lord, convert my soul.” The suggestion followed, “That's just what you've said many times before. It's no use." I began again, “O Lord, please convert my soul. If you'll only do it, I'll love and obey you all my life: O Lord, if not, I've come down here to die. Salvation or death! I'll never leave this cellar alive unless I have that which I've been praying for so long." Well, I did die; but I came to life again very quick. I said, “O Lord, I WILL BELIEVE." The darkness that had filled my heart so long all passed as before the noon-day sun.

When I got a glimpse of Christ, my Saviour, my bonds were loosed, and I cried, “Why, Lord, I do believe ; this is just what I have been asking for. O Lord, I do believe!” and down it came like a wave all through me again and again.

Why didn't they tell me it was like this? Why didn't they tell me it was only by believing God? I was a new creature. I was all new-my flesh, my head, my whole being. I rubbed my hands together and said, “Oh! I'm new!” You know what colour they are ; but there seemed a halo over them. I made but two springs out of the cellar. The glory of God filled my heart. I wanted to tell someone, and I thought, Must I wait a fortnight before I can tell out my joy! How many times I had prayed for hours in that kitchen after they had all gone to bed ? Now I struck the table at which I had so often knelt, and cried, “I'M SAVED!" and the table seemed to bound with delight. I wanted to see if I was the same. I might have been as green as grass or as black as the ace of spades, but I felt new. There was a large mirror in the parlour, and I went in there to see if I was the same, or if some wonderful change had come upon me.

When I told about it, some of my people said, “There'll be a vaccillation. Wait till the Devil fires a few bomb-shells, and you won't be as happy as you are now.” Not being taught that God would sanctify and keep me, I was sometimes on the mountain, sometimes in the valley; but in reading my Bible and praying very much, I began to see that God had more of the same kind to follow, and being so much more it really was better than the beginning.

I had now begun to seek entire sanctification. I asked an elder what was meant by being “pure in heart.” “O child," he said, “that means you

” must come as near to it as you can.” I went home, but oh, this hunger and thirst after righteousness was not satisfied. When I was convicted for holiness I was in a clearly justified state. I had no doubt about my acceptance with God. When I was converted it was conviction of guilt; now it was conviction of want. As the hart panteth after the water-brooks, so my soul panted after God, the living God. “That comes to me what I want,” I said, “it's God!” The elder said, “You must come to it as near as you can.

What is the use of fretting yourself. Do all you can. Visit the sick, sing, pray!” But the hunger went on, and when I read, “ Rejoice when men persecute you," I felt that was not my experience: there was a feeling of retaliation. And when they spoke about me and blamed me, I wanted to justify myself instead of leaving it all with God.

Then I read, “This is the will of God, even your sanctification.” I went to the old deacon and asked, “What's the meaning of this?” “Oh,” he said, “that's the blessing people get just before they die.” Well, I didn't want to die; I wanted to live and work for God; and when they told me, “ You'll never live this life till you die,” I wanted to live and not to die.

In 1868 it pleased God to let me hear a sermon from Rev. J. S. Inskip, from the words, “ Put on the new man, which after God is created in: righteousness and true holiness”. (Eph. iv. 23, 24). I had never read a book, or tract, or definite testimony, but now as the preacher went on, I followed like a child with its hand in its father's, and as he made point after point, I said, “ Yes, that's plain.”. But I thought, if I got it, how shall I keep it? I didn't remember it was Christ keeping me. Mr.. Inskip said, “When you are tired and go to bed, you don't think of asking how you're to breathe? and so if you get God dwelling in you, He'll live Himself in you.”, “Yes,” I said, “I see it.” Just then a mighty baptism-I don't know what else to call it-came down on me. Every nerve in body, soul and spirit seemed to feel it. A joy and power swelled up in my heart to overflowing.

The next point was that this blessing was instantaneously received, but the development would be continuous. “How long is a dark room dark after you take a light into it?" "Yes, Lord, I see it,” I said, and down came this wonderful inexpressible something, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. The preacher went on: “If Jesus is able, in the twinkling of an eye, to change this vile body and make it like unto His own glorious body, how long does it take Him to sanctify a soul?" Quicker than the sparks fly from the steel I touched God, God touched me. Hallelujah!

The first result was the establishment of my faith in all God said. I believed all the Bible. At Keswick, last year, I looked out on that great mountain Skiddaw; a few weeks ago I saw it

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