We extract the following from the Methodist Magazine for July, 1827, being an account of a conversion that occurred in a revival of religion, at Lanjeth, in Cornwall, England. The account is given by Rev. W. Lawry, preacher on the St. Austell circuit.
"The first extraordinary conversion which I remarked, was that of old William Morkum, of Lanjeth, who had lived just seventy years without God in the world. In the month of February, 1826, as he was at work as usual on the high roads, and reflecting on his long life spent in the neglect of religion, his mind became greatly alarmed at the prospect of eternity. Night came on; he sought to be refreshed on his bed by sleep, but in vain. His alarm and terror increased so much that his family, consisting of his wife and daughter, were kept up all night.
On the next day he proceeded to his labor, but remarked to his companion, with great apparent emotion ‘I believe I am a lost soul.’ The next night came on, when, such was the horror of his mind that his family, at his request, sent for some of their pious neighbors to come and pray with him. They spent the whole night in prayer; but he remained without hope, under the most fearful apprehensions.
The third day was spent as the former; but the third night was still more terrible to him than the second. The religious friends were again called in, and great was the agony of his mind. Hitherto he could not be persuaded that prayers would avail; but at this crisis his friends prevailed upon him to join them in prayer to God, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. He now poured forth the cry of the publican: "God be merciful to me, a sinner."
During the third night his fears subsided, and he had power to cast his soul on the atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ, through whom he obtained peace with God. For many years he had through infirmity been bowed almost double, and had not been able to lift his hand to his head. His employment had been to break stones on the roads. The moment, however, of his deliverance from his load of guilt and fear, he exclaimed in ecstasy, "I am made whole both in body and soul!"’
He accordingly stood perfectly erect, and clasped his hands together behind his head. "Now," said he, "I will request the parish to buy me a pair of spectacles, that I may learn to read the Bible; and I will myself procure a lantern to light me on the winter evenings to the Methodist chapel."
He joined himself to the society at Lanjeth, and met twice in class. About a month after his conversion he became unwell, and said to his family: "The time is come that I must die." He lay down for a few days upon his peaceful bed, without pain or mental conflict, expressing his trust in the adorable Redeemer, and peacefully fell asleep in the Lord.
Touching Incidents and Remarkable Answers to Prayer - 1893