5 February 1876 Questions Answered


Lady Ezra 1My dear friend,

Oh my friend, what a lovely letter you have sent to me! I was beginning to worry that perhaps I had offended you, as I had not heard from you in quite some time. I am so thankful to know it was nothing egregious on my part. I certainly do understand how “the cares of this world” can get in our way and suddenly, the days and weeks have flown by.

You asked me many questions in your missive about our life in these times, so I will do my best to respond. It pleases me greatly that you wish to know about me, and yet I am more pleased that it has taken us these many months before asking about such things. We have become friends first, and what a kindness it is!

It does strike me a wee bit unusual that both of us would say our lives are filled with activity and, at times, we are overwhelmed. We both have husbands, children, extended family, homes we care for, church responsibilities and friends who matter greatly to us. You have told me you work at an office. There are women here who, to help out their family circumstances must also manage their husband’s office in addition to their home tasks as well. Some ladies here take in students to tutor them in academics, or for music lessons, or they teach young girls to sew. I also have told you about Mrs. Baxter, who opened Adelaide’s Tea Room after her husband passed. You can see that many women in Finchingfield and the surrounding areas might consider themselves as more than “homemakers.” Women are certainly resourceful, are they not?

I suppose what strikes me in all of this is I had assumed by the 21st century (if such a day did indeed come!), was that women would have would have discovered a way to satisfactorily manage the many aspects of their lives. I think with progress and invention and new ideas and all of that, someone somewhere would have resolved these issues. It simply baffles me that this is not so.

You asked about HM Queen Victoria, and while you said that her current lineage is filled with people she would be proud of, you will not say any more on the topic. I think that is best. I will tell you that we are fond of our Queen. She has been in mourning since her beloved Prince Albert died. The Queen always wears black; it is quite sad. They have several children who are of course adults now. I am sure you know Prince Albert Edward, the Prince of Wales, is next in line for the throne, but of course we pray for HM to live a long and fruitful life.

You also asked for more details regarding our life with the Lord, Church and so on. I will save those questions for my next letter, as the children are waking from their naps and I must tend to them. I so enjoy our times writing back and forth to one another. Do always remember “it is the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance,” and that “every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” Our Lord is so kind and gentle with us. Let us rejoice always!


Your loving,

Lady Ezra

12 January 1876 Elixir for Life



Lady Ezra 1My dear friend,

Thank you my dearest friend, for writing to me so quickly. From your letter, it sounds as though your days in December were full of activity as well. I do not understand how it is we become so occupied with trivialities other than those which draw us nearer to the miracle of our Lord’s birth. Perhaps the upcoming season of Lent is one in which we can spend our times of prayer and sacrifice recollecting ourselves more fully to our Lord and King? It seems our days become easily filled with events that pull us away from Him.

For example, a young man came by our home yesterday, as he was selling an elixir. He called it “Thompson’s Elixir for Life.” He then went on to explain that this particular elixir was made from a mixture of the highest quality of fruit, water, a bit of honey from the best bees, and a few other “secret” ingredients all mixed together. He guaranteed me that if I just took a spoonful of Thompson’s every morning, and also gave some to my family members—even my little Emma—why, we all would be full of energy, health, happiness and joy each and every day.

Then he told me his aging mother had been feeling poorly due to rheumatism, but once she started taking a spoonful of Thompson’s, why, she was feeling so much better she was up and around and feeling 20 years younger. He also said several others in Finchingfield had been using it with tremendous results. Some ladies were even starting to look and act as if they were well, as if they were new brides all over again.

At first I was intrigued by this elixir, yet when he commented on these ladies and how they might be acting, I became suspicious. How would a man, going from house to house in the village, know whether a married lady of some years was acting like a new bride? I cannot imagine any woman making such a comment in mixed company, and certainly not to a stranger. That would be most unbecoming!

I remembered that our Lord told us in the Gospel of Matthew, “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.” It seemed as though a wolf was right at my door, and I was not about to let him take any more of my time, and certainly not any of my husband’s money. So I responded to him that when the Lord created the earth, He gave “us every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed” for food. Therefore, all the fruits, vegetables, water and honey are from the earth and are ours already; I don’t need to buy them in a bottle labeled Thompson’s Elixir. Whatever other so-called secret ingredients might be mixed in cannot improve on what the Lord has already provided us free of charge. I told him he was a liar who preyed on weak people, and such a person was not welcome in Finchingfield. I asked him to not waste my time nor the time of my friends in the village, to take his fake potion and leave us alone. Then I closed my door.

I shared with my husband what had happened when he came home for dinner. He was pleased that I had wisdom to recognize the man’s foolishness, and hequoted from Proverbs, “He that walketh uprightly walketh surely: but he that perverteth his ways shall be known.” It is a blessing to know the Lord our King, who keeps us from stumbling in even the slightest of ways.

Your loving,

Lady Ezra

6 January 1876 Feast of Epiphany

Lady Ezra 1My dear friend,

I can hardly imagine but that Advent and Christmastide have come and gone! Here it is Twelfth Night, and I realized that I have not written to you in several weeks. Oh please, will you forgive me? So much has happened here in Finchingfield, I simply lost track of time.

When I last sent you a letter, Mrs. Antonia Ratcliffe and our Vicar, Rev. Samuel (he has told us we could call him that now when he was not in his robes), had recently become engaged to be married. As it certainly was not fitting for a Vicar to marry during the prepatory and fasting season of Advent, the Bishop came to town on the Eve of Christmas and married them that afternoon in the Rectory.

The wedding itself of course was rather small, due to it being Antonia’s second marriage and the Rev. Samuel not wanting any sort of unseemly show. However, the Ladies’ Guild wanted to welcome Antonia as the Vicar’s Wife, so we offered to host a Reception Tea for the newlyweds in the Guildhall immediately following their vows. As I am on the Guild, we spent weeks preparing for the event, making decorations, gathering china and tea services etc.

It turned out to be a lovely occasion. The Guildhall was decorated festively with evergreen and red bows, as well as candles and lanterns since it was nearing the Vesper hour. Naturally, many people attended, as they wanted to greet the couple, which meant we had guests from both the parish and also the village at large. We offered tea, wassail, and a variety of Christmas cookies and savories. It was a joyous time, as we welcomed not only the marriage, but began the celebration of the Birth of our Saviour. Our hard work was well worth it.

Afterwards, the Vicar assisted the Bishop with the Christmas Eve service. Antonia was radiant as she watched her new husband in his Christmas stole helping with the proceedings. The Sanctuary was aglow with even more candles and evergreen. The smell of pine, balsam and cedar filled the air as we sang carols to our Newborn King.

Rev. Samuel and Antonia have now returned from their honeymoon in London. Today we had a mid-day service for Epiphany so as not to interfere with the village bonfire tonight. We have taken down our evergreens and Mr. Shedd had the boys take them to the pile in the village Centre where everyone else has gathered their boughs. We shall have a fun time this evening lighting the fire and drinking one last cup of wassail, wishing one another a good and happy new year. I will bundle Emma up well so the cold air will not affect her lungs too much.

I do wish a happy and good new year for you and yours. Perhaps you will send me a letter with news of your family. I certainly hope you were not busy over Christmas, as I was. I don’t believe busyness ought to be the norm at Christmastide, but as we had a wedding I trust the Lord Jesus understood. He who was born in the quiet of a cattle stall bids us to be quiet with Him, do you not agree?

Your loving,

Lady Ezra


30 November 1875 Feast of St. Andrew

Lady Ezra 2My dear friend,

Once again, the year has come round to St. Andrew’s Day. There is a sure chill in the air, the children’s cheeks are bright pink when they come in from chores, and I cannot let the fire go out even at noontime. While Emma continues with her cough, Mrs. Baxter, who owns the Tea Room, has mixed up some herbs that have loosened Emma’s breathing. I am grateful to her. Perhaps this winter will be easier on my little one than in the past.

My sister sent word that not only has Edward’s walking and gait improved over the last month, but she had opportunity to share with a woman how our times of prayer for him had more impact than any of the medicines or poultices the good doctor had to offer. Amelia’s neighbor saw Edward walking alone near their home (albeit with difficulty), and she told my sister she was rather surprised, as she had heard Edward had become a cripple. My dear sister answered her stiffly, informing her the Lord had accomplished so many miracles in their family, she wasn’t able to keep the neighborhood apprised of all of them. The lady was taken aback for a moment, then recovered herself and understood that Edward is alive, walking and continuing to heal, all because of prayer. She apologized for her ill-mannered comment, blessed the Lord and went on about her day.

These small instances—Mrs. Baxter providing an herb mixture for Emma, Amelia explaining how prayer made a difference in Edward’s life—strike me by their similarity to that of St. Andrew’s with his brother in the Scripture reading for today: And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. And He saith unto them, Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men. And they straightway left their nets, and followed Him. And going on from thence, He saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and He called them. And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed Him. I do not imagine that these men, at the time of their calling, had any idea what the Lord Jesus meant when He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Surely, our Lord’s call was intriguing to them, else why would they leave everything to follow Him? Nevertheless, there is nothing in His words, nothing around Him, nothing in His manner according to Scripture, to indicate what was to come. It was simply a common invitation to follow Him. In John’s Gospel, we read that it was Andrew who first met Jesus, and then Andrew went and found his brother Peter and, as is common and proper, he introduced him to the Lord.

I find that we often mistake common, everyday moments for just that; common, everyday moments. We do not remember that the Lord is with us in all things, for He promised us, “I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” Therefore, nothing we do is common or ordinary. All that we do is infused with the Lord’s presence. Moments as small as a greeting, an invitation, a visit with a neighbor, or a suggestion for healing a sick child…all of these seemingly unremarkable occasions are also intersections with eternity and Christ. This is what St. Andrew teaches me, and I smile. 

Your loving,

Lady Ezra

24 November 1875 An Engagement

Lady Ezra 2My dear friend,

You will be happy to know that, after much deliberation and waiting, our Vicar announced at church that he and the widow Mrs. Ratcliffe are to be married next month! Oh, blessed be the Lord! We are all so very excited here in Finchingfield, to say the least.

Antonia came over yesterday and shared with me how this all came about. It seems a fortnight ago the couple was on a walkabout with young Nicholas. The lad has been quite taken with our Rev. March for a while now, which has pleased Antonia so much. As they all were walking on a Sunday afternoon near the pond, feeding the ducks and enjoying the late autumn warmth, the Reverend stopped walking and asked Antonia to sit on a nearby bench. Nicholas was a short distance away, so it was only the two of them. Samuel (I am not accustomed to using his Christian name, but Antonia said it was alright to do so privately), took her hand and told her he thought it was time to share his intentions.

Apparently, he had vowed to the Lord at the time of his holy orders that he would not marry unless the Lord Himself brought a woman to him. He intended to live his life for the Lord and His Church, and did not want to have a divided heart. At this point, Antonia was afraid Samuel was turning her away, but he continued with his thought. He went on and remarked that the Lord must have heard him, for no other single woman of marriageable age had come into any of his parishes …until he met Antonia over the summer. He said he was immediately taken with her, although he fought in prayer for quite some time, afraid this was not the Lord’s will for him. Finally, unsure of what to do, he went to the Bishop in great anguish. The Bishop smiled and said Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD.” The Bishop had no other words for him, but did give Samuel his blessing.

At that point, Samuel got down on one knee and asked her to marry him. He whispered he loved her with all his heart and would do all he could to make their home happy and joyful. He promised to be a kind, faithful and hard-working husband, promising to always provide for her, Nicholas and any other children the Lord would give them. She replied that she loved him and her heart’s desire was to be his wife! They then called Nicholas over and told him what was to come about. Antonia told me her son was so happy he jumped up and down for several minutes. “I have a daddy! I have daddy!” He exclaimed over and over.

The two of them then went to her grandparents. As she is a widow, Samuel said he didn’t feel obligated to “ask” for her hand in the way a gentleman would if Antonia had never been married before. He simply told Mr. and Mrs. Allen the union has been prayed over and also had the Bishop’s blessing. At that, they could only add their blessing as well.

They are planning on a wedding near Christmas day if it can be managed. Between all of us ladies of Finchingfield, I don’t think that will be a problem at all. What a Happy Christmas this will be!

 Your loving,

Lady Ezra

18 November 1875 A Time to be Brave

Lady Ezra 2My dear friend,

I thought you might like to hear about Rev. March’s message on Sunday. As you may recall, I told you about Mr. and Mrs. Kingston who have been praying about going to the mission field. A great deal of the funding has already been raised on their behalf, so, after some correspondence with Mr. Mueller, they have agreed to take a post for one year in Bristol working with the orphans there. After that, they will set sail for India assuming they discern this is still God’s will for them at that time.

Consequently, Rev. March determined Sunday to be a Service of Consecration for the Kingstons, to set them apart as servants of God in this new work. After praying over them, he gave an extraordinary sermon which gave us all pause.

He said that all of us are called to follow Christ. Therefore, we will at times be called to go to places and into situations that are frightening. However, just because something is frightening or dangerous does not mean we are not to go. The Lord Himself was called to the Cross. The namesake of our Church, St. John the Baptist, was called to a dungeon and then to death. St. Paul was called to all sorts of difficulties before being beheaded. Other saints were called to the Arena and mauled by wild animals. Some were burnt at the stake for Christ. Every one of these men and women were called by Christ and called to danger. None of them were called to safety.

Our Vicar said he could not promise that the Kingstons would arrive safely in India, live long or prosperous lives on the mission field. That their hearts were right before the Lord was not a guarantee of anything. The ship could sink, one or both could become ill etc. Once they arrive in India, a host of problems could occur that could alter their work, send them home, or cause them to die. A desire to honor the Lord, loving Him, seeking His face… none of these deep longings of the heart guaranteed immediate fruit on this earth.

He then read from Psalm 46: God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.

Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof.  There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High. God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her, and that right early… The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge… He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; he breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder; he burneth the chariot in the fire. Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth. The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.

Rev. March concluded with this: we must, at all times trust in the Lord, no matter what befalls us. This is where courage and grace and faith come from. Our Lord is a Mighty God, and He holds all things in the palms of His hands. So if indeed the mountains be carried into the sea, or the earth be removed, or the waters roar and be troubled…we will not fear. The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge.

 Your loving,

Lady Ezra

9 November 1875

Lady Ezra 1My dear friend,

I appreciate so much your correspondence with me. It helps me to understand how life continues on in the 21st century. You seem quite busy to me, and your presence is required at many events. You have told me about the things you do at your work, the people you talk with, the multiple projects you must complete, clients and co-workers you contend with on a daily basis, as well as the many meetings you attend. You have tried to explain other parts of your life which I simply do not understand: the many types of communication and transportation, for example. I truly have learned so much from you.

Still, as I read your letters it concerns me about how fast you and your people seem to move through your days. You mentioned you went shopping and then to your son’s soccer tournament on Sunday and weren’t able to be at church. You said you knew that was very different from how we live, but that’s just how things are now. Can you not choose differently?

Let me tell you about our Sunday. It was an overcast day, as is becoming the norm now that it is November. The wind was coming from the north, so there was a bite to it. The clouds were thick and there would be rain before too long. We of course went to church and afterwards, Mr. Shedd suggested to the boys that they go ahead and get the animals cared for before the rain came in full force. He, Henry, Charles and Robert all went to the barn to milk the cows, tend the horses and pigs while the girls and I made our dinner. By the time the men came in, the downpour had started. They were chilled to the bone. I had the fire stirred up, so the house was warm and they were happy to be inside, away from the wet cold.

We had the rabbit stew piping hot, filled with vegetables and thick gravy ready for everyone to eat, along with warm bread with butter. Everyone gathered at the table and Mr. Shedd gave the blessing. Everyone had enough to fill their stomachs and their souls. Afterwards, we gathered at the fire. Emma had been croupy most of the day, so as soon as I was in my chair by the hearth, she climbed up in my lap and was asleep. Lenora and Mary sat nearby with their blankets as did the boys. As is his custom on Sundays, my husband read from the Scriptures, and then would ask the children to comment on each portion: “O give thanks unto the LORD; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people. Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him: talk ye of all his wondrous works. Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the LORD. Seek the LORD, and his strength: seek his face evermore. Remember his marvelous works that he hath done; his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth.” After this portion of Psalm 105, he asked them, “How can we seek the Lord and His strength? What marvelous works has He done?”

We would then talk about that for a while. Then he read more Scripture, about St. Paul’s journeys and asked the children to find those places on our globe. We talked about why the Lord had St. Paul go to those places and so on. We spoke of St. Paul’s work in establishing churches, and his labor and suffering, and how there are many who carry on such work today. After that, my husband called us to prayer. So on Sunday afternoon there before the firelight, as the rain beat down on our roof, our little family gathered as one to pray for those who are working to establish the Kingdom of God on earth.

Your loving,

Lady Ezra

3 November 1875

Lady Ezra 1My dear friend,

I was so delighted to see your letter this morning. I am still without words when I consider our unusual friendship. My husband is still the only person who knows about you. I have not been able to find words to explain our ability to communicate through the centuries with one another. Have you been able to speak with anyone about this? What have you said? Please tell me!

I wanted to let you know I did something either very brave or very foolish yesterday. Please let me know if you think I overstepped myself?

As I mentioned to you in September, I was troubled to see how Mrs. Sadie Allen was speaking so poorly to her granddaughter Mrs. Antonia Ratcliffe. Antonia is fine young woman and mother to Nicholas. She is bright, charming and desires the ways of Christ. She has adapted to Finchingfield and is managing for being such a young widow. And certainly, Rev. March has continued to show much interest in her. Yet her grandmother seems to find nothing polite or kind to say to her.

When we visited for tea a few months ago, I thought perhaps Sadie was simply not feeling well. Unfortunately, that has not turned out to be the case. I have seen grandmother and granddaughter together on a number of occasions since then, and Sadie’s speech is a constant drip, drip, drip of discouragement.

As a sister in Christ to both of them, I decided to speak up. Yesterday, after the All Souls’ service, I noticed that Sadie had, once again, said something unkind to Antonia. So I asked Sadie if we might speak together privately and she agreed. We moved to a pew in the Nave and sat down. I told her I felt she and I were sisters in Christ as well as personal friends and she agreed. With that, I felt I had the obligation to tell her that I had seen and heard some things that I felt were not right and I wanted to ask her about it. I went on and told her of the various instances where I had heard her say discouraging, nagging or outright negative things to Antonia. I also reminded her that our Lord tells us if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.” I knew she hadn’t sinned against me personally, but God’s Word also tells us “if someone be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such a one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” I said that I was considering myself, as I knew we all were prone to being discouraged and speaking poorly.

Sadie asked me if I had prayed about speaking to her, and I said I had. Her response was curt; “I see.” She left immediately after that and said nothing else.

I told Mr. Shedd on our walk back home what I had done. I asked him if he thought I should have remained quiet. He patted my hand and said I did not do any wrong. However, not everyone is ready or willing to face her sins and shortcomings. If I forced the issue with Sadie, she will blame me, or perhaps Antonia, but she will not seek the Lord for help. He said I ought to keep praying for Sadie to receive the wisdom that only the Lord can give her.

Your loving,

Lady Ezra

30 October 1875 Hallowtide

Lady Ezra 1My dear friend,

Thank you so much for your recent missive. I found it intriguing that you honor All Hallows’ Eve as “Halloween” and do so with many candy treats, large parties and even such things as extremely scary costumes for children. It seems what is done regularly in America (and perhaps even Britain?) in the 21st century is, on the whole, a rather contorted form of how we observe the season in my day.

All Hallows’ Eve is actually the beginning of a three-day interval known as Hallowtide. It is that time during the year when we remember the saints and souls of the departed. It is truly an important time in the life of the Church and parish. We take time to remember those who have gone before us and on whose shoulders we as a Body of believers stand.

All Hallows’ Eve is the beginning of the season. There is a service at St. John the Baptist (our church, as I have mentioned in previous letters), and then of course one on November 1, which is All Saints’ Day and then again on All Souls’ Day. Not everyone attends, but I do so enjoy them. I enjoy the readings and the prayers for this particular time of year: “Almighty God, which hast knit together thy elect in one communion and fellowship, in the mystical body of thy Son Christ our Lord; grant us grace so to follow thy holy saints in all virtues and godly living, that we may come to those unspeakable joys, which thou hast prepared for them that unfeignedly love thee; through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.” And this one: “We give you thanks Oh Lord, for it is you who, in the multitude of thy saints, hast compassed us about with so great a cloud of witnesses, that we, rejoicing in their fellowship, may run with patience the race that is set before us; and together with them, may receive the crown of glory that fadeth not away. Amen.

Many of us take time during this season to reflect and pray for the strength to be like these saints. There are some who dearly look to the saints, and I do not disagree at all with their practice. However, I am not one to do that, I suppose. Rather, I find strength in reflecting on their lives and asking our Lord for wisdom to live like them. St. Paul says much the same thing: Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample.” We are to look for those who live godly and righteous lives, then model our own after them.

I will tell you there is another delightful aspect to Hallowtide that you may find rather fun, and curiously, similar to your own festivities. We all bake Soul Cakes, which are rather small but delicious cakes with currants in them, and a small cross-shape baked into the top of each one. During Hallowtide, children in the village and especially those from poorer families go door-to-door, sing a song or two in honor of the season, and are given Soul Cakes in return. I can see how this tradition might seem similar to your children’s tradition, although no one wears any costumes of course, and we share only the cakes.

I do hope you take a few moments during this Hallowtide to reflect and remember the mighty saints who have served our Lord and King so faithfully. How I long for us to live in righteousness day by day before our Heavenly Father. May He be pleased with our efforts!

Your loving,

Lady Ezra

27 October 1875

Lady Ezra 1My dear friend,

Something very sweet and tender happened this morning and I would like to share it with you. I know you will appreciate it!

We have a small Tea Room here in Finchingfield, and it is my custom to frequent it whenever possible. The proprietress is a lovely woman who opened it up some years ago after her husband passed away. Adelaide’s Tea Room is a delightful place for ladies to meet, which is pleasant as most places are not suitable for us. I stopped in at Adelaide’s this morning for a cup of tea after my other errands. I was served a pot of steaming tea along with some delicious shortbread. It was the perfect refreshment after a busy morning.

In my bag, I have a small booklet which contains the Psalms as well as some other verses of Scripture. I pulled it out and began reading. It is most helpful to have this with me, as my Bible is large and not easy to carry with me. As I was perusing the Scriptures, another lady with whom I had not made an acquaintance came up to me and asked if she might talk with me for a moment. I said yes and suggested she have a seat. She said she noticed me reading and surmised I might be reading the Word of the Lord. I confirmed I was and she said that she too kept a small booklet like I had for similar reasons and suspected that she and I were kindred spirits. What a delightful and serendipitous meeting!

Her name is Mrs. Martin Kingston (Helene). She and Mr. Kingston live in Thaxted, which is only a few miles from Finchingfield. Apparently, they have relations here in Finchingfield and come to town regularly. Mr. Kingston was doing some business in town while we spoke. She is quite a delightful woman; as happy and charming a woman as I have ever met. She told me that she and her husband have been married for several years, but are without children. She said they were deeply grieved initially when they realized a family was not to be part of their lives, and they sought God in prayer for several months about it. Then one day, she was walking along and a passage from the Gospel according to John came to her thoughts. It was so strong, so forceful she told me it took the breath out of her: “Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him. I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” She said she immediately realized that the Lord did not look unfavorably towards her or her husband. In fact, He looked upon them with great favor, because He wants to do His works in them, and throughout their lives. Their lack of children was not a reason to grieve, but rather to rejoice, because the Lord has and will do magnificent things in them.

She said ever since that day, they have never looked back, never asked “why” again, never felt jealousy like they used to. Occasionally, there is a bit of hurt, but she told me it does not break her heart as it once did. In addition, she and Mr. Kingston have been approached by a Mission Society and are considering going to India to serve the Lord there. The Society approached them a few months ago, and they are discussing this with their kin, praying about it and so forth. Already, funds have been set aside for them, although they have yet to ask anyone to support them.

Oh, what a lovely morning this has been! I asked Mrs. Kingston if we might remain in contact, and we agreed. Such a wondrous beginning to a friendship ought to be continued; don’t you agree?

Your loving,

Lady Ezra