CAMBRAI, Atig. 22, 1708. .... I EARNESTLY desire that you may be at peace within. You know that peace can only be found in low- liness, and that lowliness is only real so long as we suffer ourselves to be abased under God's Hand, time after time, as He wills. The means which He most frequently uses are contradiction and blame from others, and our own inward weakness. We must learn to bear both the one and the other, from without and from within. We become really lowly when we are no longer surprised either at receiving censure from others, or at feeling in- corrigible within. Then everything overrules us like little children, and we are willing to be overruled ; we are conscious that others are right, but feel helpless in our- selves to amend. By this time we expect nothing of ourselves, and have no hope save in God ; and then the reproofs of others, however hard or harsh they be, seem less than we deserve ; and if we find them hard to bear, we are more inclined to blame our sensitiveness than to justify ourselves. So that even reproof can scarcely humble us, we are already so lowly. When we feel an inward rebellion against reproof, it shows how urgently we needed it, for indeed no reproof can benefit one unless it cuts to the quick ; so the more we feel it, the more necessary we may conclude it to be. Forgive me all my freedom, dear Duchess. God knows how much I love you, and how I feel for all your troubles. I beg your pardon if anything I have said seems harsh; do not doubt my affection, and do not think of me in the matter ; look only to God's Hand, which has used mine as the awkward instrument wherewith to deal you a painful blow. Your pain proves that I have touched the ailing spot Yield to God, submit unreservedly; this alone will give you rest and restore your tone. It is only what you know so well how to say to others. This is a weighty season, a very crisis. What grace will be poured out upon you, if you bear like a little child all that God is doing to humble you and strip you both of self-reliance and self-will ! I intreat you to make yourself so small that you may nowhere be found !