LIFE AND LETTERS OF JOSEPH HARDY NEESIMA
NEED OF REST. 243 Mr. Neesima's personal activity in this matter was incessant, but the strain to which he had been subjected for nearly ten years had seriously impaired his health, which was now the cause of grave concern to his friends. Already in 1882 he had been urged to go to China for rest. This, however, he refused to do, writing to Mr. Hardy that "To go to China might possibly excite some jealous feeling among my home brethren, who have given up every earthly comfort for the Lord, and are suffering much pecuniarily. I must never be a stumbling-stone to my dear brethren in Christ. But I begin to feel that I cannot go on muc·h longer, and must stop work. My head does not allow me to read or write, yet something is always at hand. So I have made up my mind to take a trip to the north where I can see no Christian friends." This plan was carried out, and he spent part of the summer of 1882 in Wakamatsu, his wife's early home, following, mostly on foot, the great interior road known as the N akasendo, and visiting Annaka and Nikko. At W akamatsu he wrote by request the account of his early life quoted in the beginning of this volume, and, in forwarding it to America, said: -"I hope Mr. Hardy will pardon me for not doing it sooner. I am afraid he will call me a disobedient boy. Since I began my work here I found out more and more my unworthiness, and have trembled to write this sketch. I wish I could break down my too great sensitiveness on this point. Some time ago I thought I was something, but now I feel I am nothing."