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Let it be observed, however, that, if Martha, was Unchang'd, while the seasons return, among the bright exceptions to this evil, it was not
My objects of pleasure are few; without an effort. Earlier in her history, it will be But these, when familiar, I learn remembered, she saw her danger, and provided
With double enjoyment to view. against il; and, from that time, she had been waichfullest the diseases of the body should affect the The robin I constantly feed, temper of the mind. Her cheerfulness, therefore, And the plant I so carefully tend, remained, but its character was changed. It had To me they are lovely indeed, less of the animal and more of the spiritual nature
And I give them the cheer of a friend. in it. If it had been dependanı on the buoyancy of youthful spirits, and the ardor of inexperienced As the winter shut in, the family was brought hope, it would have passed away; but it rested on closer together; and Martha's presence was so alprinciple; it had been cultivated as a Christian tractive, that insensibly her chamber became, as grace; it was the child of genuine pervading piety; much as it conveniently could, the dwelling-room. and "rue piety is cheerful as the day;"' and piety, The evenings of this period were attended with no let it be added, is the only sure foundation of what striking incidents, but they were charged with a ever gives embellishment to life, or stability to great deal of quiet happiness, and the remembrance virtue.
of them is sweet. So soon as the social tea-tray Apart from what Martha found in the presence was removed, an evening hymn was sung, and the of some members of the family, her recreations children's voices were trained to the notes of heawere necessarily few and limited ; and it is scarcely venly praise. Then their little hands were formed in requisite to say, they were simple and innocení. prayer, and "Our Father” lisped on their tongues Her window cominanded a fair prospect; but as io Him who is the father of us all; and then the she lay, her eye was confined to the spreading kind wishes, and endearing kisses went round, and branches of a couple of beech-trees, which threw the children retired to soft and sure repose. out their cool and bright foliage almost to her Now, formed round a bright fire, and free from room. In these trees, however, a happy pair of doves all interruption, the enjoyments of the evening had built their nest, and were training iheir young; Aowed peacefully along. The needle was plied ; and many a wakeful night was made the shorter the profitable book was read; and conversation was and easier to her, by the amusement they supplied indulged to weigh its arguments, or pursue some to her mind, in watching their movements and lis prize which its train of thought had suggested. -tening to their loves, as the soft light of day glowed As often as my duties allowed, I esteemed it a on the garden. The robin, too, which she had been privilege to take my place in this little circle, accustomed to feed, still sought his breakfast at her knowing that its completion would be a source of hand, and repaid her through the day with many a auditional pleasure to all who composed it. To thankful song, at the very verge of her casement. Martha's social nature these interviews with her Within her chamber were a few young plants family were eminently pleasing. She always tuok which she still sought to cherish; and in her win a large share in the enjoyments of the evening, and dow grew and flourished a favorite geranium, which frequently was the principal spring of them. had already been the care of years.
It was on these occasions that I saw so much the These objects, tritling as they were, exercised and improvement of her conversational powers. There engaged her attachments. They excited her soli- was the same vivacity and playfulness, the same citude; they kept up her intercourse with nature piety and unction in her manner as I had ever witand the outward world; they often met her eye nessed; but there was more comprehension of when other objects were withdrawn; till, what from thought, more force of argument, more variety of familiarity, what from association, what from care allusion and remark, and a quicker taste for whatbestowed and pleasure received, they made them ever was just and beautiful in colloquial interselves a place in the kindest of hearts, and seemed course. Fond as she was of conversation, and the necessary companions of her confinement. Her greatly as that fondness was cherished by her conwindow would have appeared vacant without the finement, she never pressed it on others to excess. ornament of the plant which dwelt there, and her She did not prepare for it as for a laborious exerroom would have appeared dull without the pre- cise; she looked to it as a wholesome relaxation.sence of those birds which had so long enlivened it. She did not consider, that to talk and 10 be happy Those will best understand and sympathize with are the same thing. She was one of the most ready this sentiment, whose tastes are natural and unaffect- listeners; and was always more satisfied in inte. ed, and who have marked how readily, in some situ- resting others than in discoursing herself. Her ations, local attachments may grow and strengthen thoughts were at liberty to respect whatever was The following lines illustrate the disposition in said, and her heart caught by sympathy the import Martha's case; they were minuted with a careless of all that was expressed, and of all that was imhand, when the plant she alludes to required a more plied. In speaking herself, she had no pride to open situation.
gratify, no humor to vent, no balile to win, no THE GERANIUM.
display; in attending to others, there
was no rude indifference, no selfish abstrac:ion, no 'Tis gone! my Geranium is fled,
vain impatience. In the social circle, she was only And left my gny window forlorn ;
an integral part of the whole, and she was united I watch'd its green leaves as they spread, to it by warm and living sympathies. She was the And water'd it many a morn.
most interesting of companions.
The penning of these few sentences brings the 'Twas there, when no other was by,
scenes to which they allude afresh over my recolTo comfort my sorrowful heart;
lections-recollections that cannot be retained or I mourn'd--and it seem'd in reply
relinquished without pain. I perceive her once A sweeter perfume to impari.
more reclining on her couch, drassed in white rai
ment, and overshadowed by the white festoons of Ah, once I had thought it absurd
i her curtains. The glowing and fitful lights of the To waste my regret on a flower;
fire are playing over the features of her raised But trifles like this have concurr'd
Her hand is gently To charm me with magical power. moved from its resting place; her lips are just
1 and animated countenance.
parted, hanging with affectionate attention on the “ Yes, Martha wished you not ic know it till it voice of others; hereyes are swimming with pleasure, was over !" while they are gazing on those she so deeply loves. "Did she suffer much ?"
It was happiness to us to witness her happiness. “Yes, extremely; the incisions were so deep and Then the winds might rock in the surrounding numerous.” trees, the tempest might howl about our humble “How did she sustain it ?" Jwelling, and night might encompass us with all “Like a lamb; not a word, not a tear ! Mr. H. her wintry terrors,—we bad only the stronger sense says he never witnessed such fortitude.” of our felicity ; we were urged the closer to each “Noble creature !" forced itself from my lips; other; our thoughts mixed together, and mixed but the emotions of the heart were such as words with heaven; with Heaven! whence we derived were never meant to utier. our present shelter and supplies in a bleak wilder- Although the light thrown on Martha's case by ness; with Heaven; where all things beautiful and this operation was not unfavorable to hope, vur fair endure as they are forever; with Heaven! where hopes had fallen very low lo what they had previthe sky never lowers-where the storm never ously been. Yet ready as we were to hope the best, arises—where no toe can ever enter-whence no they soon began to revive on perceiving any marks friend shall depart !
of amendment; and these arose to our observation earlier and stronger than any of us expected.
Martha's great composure of mind contributed 10 CHAPTER XXII.
hasten her recovery to her usual state ; and her re
1821. INCREASING AFFLICTION.
lease from an extra portion of pain, which she had
previously suffered, made ihat recovery sensible.How much misery are we spared by our igno- During the winter, we commonly alluded to the rance of the future! The winter was thus wearing ensuing May as the period for her relinquishing happily away, and our hopes of Martha's situation her bed; when the necessity of an operation was were rising with the advancing year. How differ- announced, these fair hopes were crushed; but pot!y would these months have found us, had we now her expectations began to revive, and she known that disease was directing its attack under fondly cherished them. Whenever they were exnew forms, and was preparing for the beloved suf- pressed to me, I showed myself somewhat increduferer a new and yet bitterer cup of affliction. lous, lest she should reckon too ardently on what
This, however, was the case. During the month might possibly not occur. of February Martha had experienced an increase of However, as the remnants of winter passed away, local uneasiness; but being accustomed to endure as the time of the singing of birds arrived, and as with patience a large measure of pain, she ascribed the voice of her turtle doves was again cooing in it to her continuance in one position, and bore it in the beech-trees, her hopes and desires continued to silence. It was still increasing, and was soon al- ascend. She begged to have the dresses, which had tended with tumor and fever. Painful as it was, so long rested in their wardrobe, brought out; and she could no longer hide the truth from herself; one of the number was selected and made ready for and she then unwillingly named it to her family. her use, wheu first she should be prepared to put it
Notwithstanding the light way in which this af- on. It was pleasing to see her thus amused, and fection was treated by Martha, I could not avoid painful to fear that it might end in disappointment. considering it of a very serious nature. I urged her May actually came. One morning, early in the to let us procure further advice; and at length she month, we were all busily employed in the garden. gave herself up to the wishes of her friends. Early The sun was shining brightly in the blue heavens; in March, therefore, I went down with an hospital the birds were pouring forth their mellow and surgeon; and he agreed, in consultation with the sprightly music. The air was glowing with a resident surgeon, that an operation was necessary; quickening warmth, and filled with delicious frathat to be effectual, it must be performed without grance. The trees, with their young, green foliage, delay; and that the case was one “of considerable were nodding in the breeze; and all things were doubt.''
new, fresh, and lovely, in this resurrection of naThese were heavy tidings to our entire house- ture, as if they had just come from the hand of the hold. Martha received them with concern ; but great Creator. Martha's youihful heart answered after relieving herself by a few tears, her mind be to the impulses of spring. The life and joy of all came composed and braced to the resolution of sub- about her seemed to inspire her with life and vigor. mitting to her duty, however piercing to the flesh, May was come. It was the time she was to leave however contrary to her inclination. She had but her bed. It was a twelvemonth since she had seen one condition to propose, and that was not concern- the garden. She thought she really could get up; ing herself; it was that the operation might take and she should never do it if she did not try. In place in the absence of her broiher.
the midst of her hesitation, the children, as they of The time, therefore, was finally arranged unknown ten did, hailed her from beneath the window. It
The anticipated morning arrived ; it was was too much. She must see how happy they were, a morning of trembling and alarm to the little fa- and look on her beloved garden once more. The mily. One member was about to suffer and all the mind was decided; the effort was to be made; and members were prepared to suffer with it, They all the chosen dress was brought out. She arose from assembled round Martha's couch, and lifted up her position; would not credit the sense of weaktheir voice to Heaven for help in the hour of ad- ness that came over her; and persevered in her atversity. The hour came. The incisions were made. tempt, till she was surprised by a fainting fit, which The operation was completed; and the patient her fatigue had producou. çank, beneath bodily and mental exhaustion, insen- The disappointment was very great; but it was sibly on her pillow.
borne with eminent resignation, and her cheerfulL'arrived at the cottage about an hour after the ness of spirits was soon recovered. Her situation, departure of the surgeon. Mrs. R. was waiting to however, evidently assumed more of a hopeless chareceive me.
racter, from this failure. She frequently spoke, in" It is all over!" she said.
deed, of leaving her present position; but it was " What is over ?".
generally lo cheer her friends, and never with so "The operation."
much of personal conviction and eager desire as she had previously indulged.
Martha's peaceful submission to what now ap- 1 turn, from her perilous circumstances, to the active peared more than ever an indefinite confinement, duties of life; and, therefore, she was authorized in did not hide from us the impression it had made on directing her attention wholly towards futurity. her heart; nor were we the less disposed to sympa- She was not certain as to the event; but she felt she thize with it. Since the disappoiniment could not had sufficient conclusions to govern the course of be entirely overcome, the object was to mitigate its her thoughts, and that it would be unwise and criinfluence as much as possible; and thought was minal not to act upon them without delay. She soon busy among us to form any contrivance which turned from the world, and looked full on eternity. should have this tendency. It was, therefore, speed. The thoughts were gathered up into one purpose, ily determined, that a variation might be made in the heart was fixed to one object. “This one thing the situation of the couch, which would give her a she did, forgetting the things that were behind, she new and enlarged view of the adjoining scenery; pressed forward to the prize of her high calling o! and as the sight of the garden was an object to her, God in Christ Jesus.” we attached a mirror to the side of her bed, that it This change was wrought not so much by any might reflect, at her touch, the different parts of it. conceived resolution, as by the spontaneous incli
Martha's point of observation was now really in- nations of the mind; and it was revealed not so teresting. As she lay on her raised couch, her eye much by any direct expressions, as by a different fell on the outer parts of the garden ; and she could occupation of time. Martha now relinquished that control the nearer portions by the means we had class of reading which was designed to illustrate provided. The trees on either side of this little worldly science and adorn and felicitate civil inenclosure formed, by their clustering branches, a tercourse. It was good and valuable in its kind, but mandsome avenue to the meadow-land beyond it, not appropriate to her then situation. If literature in which the cattle were finding pasture. Those was associated with piety, and the unassuming fields were bounded by the village path and stile, handmaid of devotion, it was still welcome; otherover which the humble peasant was, every now wise, though it might, in a possible change of cirand then, seen to pursue his quiet way; and this cumstances, be resumed, it was for the present path, again, was succeeded by an extensive growth wholly avoided. Particularly those writers were of corn, which was springing rapidly from the her companions who were must likely to shed light earth, and taking a prominent place in the picture. and comfort on her way, even though that way Then came, sweetly shaded and canopied by trees should lead her quickly into the valley of death. which once owned ihe Wolseys and Cromwells for It need scarcely be said that the Scriptures were their proprietors, the little hamlet where Martha the book of her counsel-the book of books in her had so long dwelt, and dwelt so happily. And estimation. They had long been so, and now they finally arose, swelling in the distance, the verdant were pre-eminently endeared; she spoke of their hills, with modest coitages creeping up their sides, wisdom, grace, and purity with peculiar admiraand alive-colored woods adorning their heads, while tion; and derived the refreshment, and exercised around them all the lights, and shadows, and colors the confidence, which they only could authorize or of heaven were playing, and will for ever play, in impart, this sacred volume was always by her side; endless diversity of beauty.
and her French Testament, with the Prayer-book, These liule attentions wrought much more pow- and Watts's Hymns, were usually lying on her bed, erfully on Martha than we had anticipated, or per- if not actually in her hand. haps than we could anticipate, without being placed Familiarized as Martha's thoughts and affections in her circumstances. The scenery which was now had been to devotional engagements, now that they before her, though so familiar and so often admired, were concentrated and disencumbered, they rose had been shut up from her sight for upwards of a rapidly towards their divine object. Her anxieties, year; and now that she looked again on the child- her hopes, her fears, free from all worldly conren dancing over the garden, the cattle grazing in cerns, were no longer checks to her career; they the fields, the villagers passing on their way, and were wings to her progress. The perceptions she the place of her former residence, surrounded by had always had of the divine presence became all its beautiful accompaniments, tears of admiration stronger, and this was now the element by which and joy gushed into her eyes, while they were fixed she was surrounded, and in which she dweli. God to the objects which had so_unexpectedly come was in all her thoughts and all her ways. She across and enchanted them. The change seemed saw him, felt him, adored him, trusted him in every to break the sense of continued confinement. One thing; and this gave a sacredness to all things which period appeared to be terminated, and another to concerned her. Her meals were sacraments; her be begun; and begun under such a freshness of days were sabbaths; her desires were prayers; her feeling as made it the ligher and shorter to endure. person, body, soul, and spirit, was a living and will
The summer months of this year passed away ing sacrifice to Him who gave and redeemed it. most pleasantly. Martha enjoyed great relief in Anticipating the possibility of a speedy summons to her corporeal sensations, if not decided amendment the heavenly world, she sought to be prepared for in her state of health; and this qualified her to it; she desired that, as much as was practicable, it relish this delightful season with all her former should call her only to a change of place not of emassociations, and left her at liberty to hold a happy ployment. She was "looking for and hastening communion with her friends and family. The unto the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.” The sale of her mind also discovered some beneficial Being she was humbly expecting to come and revariations, which it well becomes the biographer ceive her to himself, she wished yet more intimately to mark, while yet he despairs of giving ihe full to know, yet more deeply to love. With fixed alimpre sion of the living reality.
tention she contemplated "the glory of the Lord,” Notwithstanding Martha's apparent bodily im- as the young eagle gazes on the sun before he makes provement, she did not allow it to become a de his ascent to it, that she might be changed into the pendance to her hopes; she had been many times same glory by the Lord the Spirit. disappointed. During the preceding year her mind The yearnings and aspirations of the heart tohad been held in suspense between the claims of wards a heavenly world were graciously acknowthis life and another; but from the moment she ledged. Her prayers were answered; her happifound it necessary to resign herself to the lancet of ness was advanced, perhaps as near perfection as the surgeon, that suspense was destroyed. She is compatible with our present state of being. Inconceived it would be rash for her to think of a re- / visible objects were yet more realized to the eye of
faith as it dwelt upon them; heaven became more of adversity gathere: round her way, and concealcharming as it became more familiar; and eternity ed its glory. The keen winds of temptation had was rendered more solemn, but less awful to her vexed her, and the stormy waters of passion had ihoughts. Her progress improved with her joy. threatened to overwheim her. But He who apNothing on earth, nothing in heaven, was compa- pointed the storm, managed it. The winds had rable with the enjoyment of the divine favor. She ceased; the waters had rocked themselves to sleep; drew nearer to her Saviour, and he drew nearer to the sun had beamed with fresh splendor through her. The sun of righteousness arose on her spirit, the troubled and broken clouds, and now shone out, ascending from a life of darkness and tears, with in the close of his career, from the golden heavens, healing in his wings; and beneath the light and in mild tranquillity. Peace, the blessing she had glory of his rays, her faith was ripening into confi- so greatly prized and diligently pursued, was now dence, her hope into spiritual enjoyment. “It was more than ever hers; it inhabiied her bosom ; it sat a time of refreshing from the presence of the Lord” on her countenance; it fell from her tongue; it surshe had so long loved and served; and mercifully rounded her as an unction from heaven. It was the designed to prepare her for the remaining trials of peace of God which passeth all understanding;" the wilderness.
it arose from the mind being staid on its Redeemer. The best evidence that these refreshments from a It gathered strength from the arm on which it lean. better world were as beneficial as they were merci- ed, and serenity from the foundation on which it fully designed, is, that they promoted the growth of reposed. It was the rest of the soul; and the soul, genuine humility. This highest proof of a real ad- like the seaman's needle, is never at rest, till, free vancement in a divine life, which had uniformly from all earthly attractions, it points directly to attended Martha's progress, now shown forth, so as God! to become the grace and ornament of her whole The religion which sheds its own peace on the conversation. Her joys led to no high-flown ex- heart, brings also, and proportionally “good-will pressions, no intlated assurance, to no bold asser- towards men.” Martha, in other circumstances, tions, to no unseemly lightness in treating of reli- had discovered, in an eminent degree, this divine gion, or her interesi in its blessings. Northese benevolence; and now, in relinquishing her share are the attendants of presumption, not of faith. She in this world's concerns, she did not renounce her had such an abiding consciousness of her own un- regard to its best interests. Through her recent worthiness, as kept her thoughts and expressions sufferings she had strenuously persevered in all her habitually low; and now that she was rising in her schemes of usefulness; and, as the violence of pain views of the uncreated glory, she saw more of her subsided, she gave herself to them with renewed ignorance, her deficiencies, her demerit, her no- ardor and joy. Her energy was more calm and thingness. God was every thing to her, she herself placid, but ii' was more condensed and powerful. was vanity. These deeply-fixed convictions were She had fewer anxieties and wishes to do what was operative on her conduci. They spread a modesty evidently beyond her present power, but a stronger over all her words and a gentleness over all her desire that others might be stimulated to work diliopinions. She did not indulge in converse on her gently while it is called to-day. She felt herself personal assurance and abounding hope; she sought more at liberiy, as her incapacity grew upon her, to rather to speak of the object in which she confided, exhort and influerce those about her to instant de than of her confidence in it; and if ever she gave a votedness. The casual visiter who came in her way reason of the hope that was happily enjoyed, it was was not allowed to depart without some attempts to eminently with meekness and with fear. Penetrat- fix the best impressions on the heart; her young ed by her own ignorance, she could not boast of its friends were advised and entreated with all sisterly best conclusions; impressed by the majesty of her affection; and if the student or the minister was Saviour, she humbly revered and adored him; and present, she was the more eager to improve the touched by his ineffable condescension, the 'very I period, knowing that if she could possibly say any acts of his grace, while they encouraged, awed her. ihing to animate him to more activity, it would be Blessed, like the patriarch at Bethel, with freer and moving a host in the good canse. larger communion with Heaven, she did not wax This intercourse was sustained with such sweetvain and assuming in her privileges; her spirit ness of temper, and clothed with so much humility sunk within itself, and in lower prostration of heart of spirit, as gave it great effect. It was apparent at the divine footstool, she was ready to exclaim, that she discoursed of the things which laid closest How dreadful is this place—surely it is the gate of to her heart, and under an nnuiterable sense of their heaven."
infinite imporiance and glory. She stood in the The happiness Martha now possessed was de- light of which she spoke; she felt the charms of cidedly of a more peaceful character. It flowed on that love she commended; and she was unconin a deeper and smoother channel, and therefore, to sciously a living and shining example of those pure, a careless eye, perhaps, was less apparent, because and potent, and blessed influences, which were less resisted. The principles of religion now work- urged as the only abiding sources of happiness here ed with the force of habit and the freedom of na- or hereafter. A marked spirituality of mind spread ture; and the passions, from long discipline, were itself over every thing which engaged her atiention, brought into a state of comparative harmony and and gave to her chamber, which had always been submission.
The heart was less exposed to the cheerful and was still so, an air of sacredness. The alarms of fear and inexperience, less affected by thoughts and words might not always be dwelling spiritual anxieties, less raised by feverish excita- on religion, but every thing led to it; and led to it, tion. There was less excitement, but more vigor; not by forced, but most spontaneous acts of the less of an approach to occasional ecstasy, more of mind. Her spirit was in such close fellowship with an abiding tranquillity. The features of the mind its Maker, that all things, the usual variations in were more finished, more mellowed, and sunk more nature, the simplest wants of life, the most trivial imperceptibly into each other; "they were stablish- incidents of the day, the passing observation of a ed, strengthened, settled.” She had passed through friend, would connect itself, reverently, but most the furnace of manifold affliction; and had come readily, with Deity. Thought might visit earth, out of it assoiled of earthly grossness, and possess- but it dwelt in heaven. ed of more purity, solidity, and excellence of cha- Many will long remember, some will never forracter. The sun had shone brightly on the morn- get, their interviews with Martha at this period. ing of her day of life; but soon the heavy clouds The smile, the voice, the manner; the heavenly
mindedness, the peace, the joy, will all be present himself must humbly as also gratefully exclaim, io them; and to them any description will fall "By the grace of God, I am what I am!" greatly beneath the reality. How often have those In the autumn of this year, I was separated from who came to console, larried to rejoice! How fre- my sister for a month; and the separation was made quently have we heard the exclamations on quitting much the lighter by the apparent amendment in her presence, " Well, this is religion !"-"This is health which she now enjoyed. However, it was a sick room, indeed, to be coveted !"_“I have ne- not without considerable feeling on both sides; but ver seen any thing like this!"-" This should make Martha, true to herself, insisted upon it, as she conus ashamed of ourselves!" Happy were our ears ceived it to be for the benefit of her brother. I put to hear so many voices glorifying God, on behalf the following simple verses in her hand on parting, of one who was our treasure and our joy!
as a little love token. Simple as they are, they afAll this, however, was plainly observable to the forded her pleasure; and as they were the last gift visiter and the guest; to those who had fuller op- it was permitted me to make to her, they derive poriunities of noticing her more closely and at from this circunstance an accidental interest, and seisure, and comparing the present with the past, I have a melancholy satisfaction in giving them a the change was more striking and admirable. Her place in these recollections. They are partly a general excellence of character arose not so much translation from a French hymn. from the predominance of certain graces, as from
HYMN. their being accompanied with other Christian graces, which, because they are not often found in
O my God, my Saviour! manifest union, have been thought to be in opposi
In thy celestial favor tion. A noble and diligent course of self-discipline
Is my supreme delight; and denial had enabled Martha to prune what was
The more my woes oppress me, excessive and to invigorate what was feeble in her
The more do Thou possess me, character; till all the parts and members of the di
With thy heavenly might. vine nature were proportioned and united, and thus grew up together in common loveliness. There was
Whene'er iny heart is broken, benevolence checked by discretion, humility sus
Before my grief is spoken, tained by dignity, sensibility regulated by principle;
God pities my complaint; independence without pride, confidence without
And when he might reject me, presumption, joy without extravagance, piety with
He kindly does protect me, out mysticism, charity without guile and without
Lest all my courage faint. bounds. Her decision was free from bigotry, her firmness blended with resignation, and her libera
By night his arm attends me. lity estranged from indifference. She had energy
And graciously defends me, 10 do whatever was to be done, fortitude and pa
And soft is my repose; tience to bear whatever was to be endured. With
The eyes that watch my keeping a superiority to all petty differences, there was a
Are never, never sleepingfixed adherence to the vital principles of godliness;
I cannot fear my foes ! with the utmost gentleness of spirit that would not crush a worm, there was a magnanimity that could
By day his hand shall lead me, not meanly crouch to a prince; with the most com
And heavenly manna feed me, plete renunciation of all human power and merit
Through all my desert way; in our salvation, there was the most voluntary and
His beam my path enlightens, untiring devotedness to the Saviour's honor; with a
And more and more it brightens, crucifixion to the world--its wealth, its fame, its
Into eternal day! power—there was an inextinguishable, irrepressible concern for its restoration to virtue, honor, and im
O my God, iny Saviour! mortality; with a lofty and virgin attachment to all
Soon thy celestial favor that is holy in religion and great in eternity, there
Shall be my sole delight; was the most careful respect to the minutest points
With seraphs I 'll adore Thee, of duty and proprieties of conduct;—but nc, it can
With seraphs chant thy glory, not be told.
Around thy throne of light! It was this combination of parts, this consistency of character, that now became eminently interesting. This it was that gave strength to the whole,
CHAPTER XXIII. that shed a grace on the whole, and that contributed
1821. so much to produce the softened composure and happy tranquillity which were now experienced.
"To die like a lanıb,” is expressive of genera. These too, let it be observed, were the fruits of self-desire, when death must be thought of as a matter denial and of self-conquest—that noblest of all con- of necessity. That the mind should be composed, quests. It is self-denial-steady, resolved self-de- and the body's pains inade short and few in the Dial---that subdues our natural frailties, and che- mortal hour, is what we lawfully crave for ourselves rishes the graces most opposite to our natural dis-, and our friends. But too much stress has been laid positions. It is self-denial that tears up the weed, on an easy death, and too little on a safe one. Yet The brier, and the bramble; and prunes and nou- the reflective mind will at once perceive, that they rishes the better plants, till the whole sou) becomes do not even admit of a comparison. What can it as the garden of Paradise.
materially signify in the article of death, how the And this self-denial, let it be remembered, in its corporeal or mental powers are tried and distressed, turn, springs from the divine grace. The cause if the sonl is safe, the blest reversion of immortacannot act against itself. Self cannot conquer self lity secure ? any more than Beelzebub can cast out Beelzebub. " A happy death,” as it is too often conceived of A man may contend against his ambition, or his by the world, has, it is to be feared, a regard to the avarice, or his sensuality; but no man of himself present rather than the future ; and it may arise can resist himself; it is a contradiction in terms. from causes very far apart from a reasonable hope, Dispose as we may of other conquests philosophy and a state of Christian salvation. It may spring and religion teach us, that the man who conquers from the complexion of bodily disease, or from spi