Sivut kuvina



The days of the years of our pilgrimage are “evil and few.” None but the children of God ever enjoy a moment of peace, and although the pious rejoice sometimes with “joy unspeakable,” yet this world is to them generally, but a vale of tears. To look forward to the end of the dismal journey, to that "point of time” which will seal their eternal destiny, is an awful business-even to some good people it is appalling.

I was thinking a little while since about the “ Act and Testimony,” about the Convention of disorganizers at Pittsburgh, about the war in the Presbyterian church, about Presbyterians who would unchurch me, and about other denominations who believe that beyond their own party-wall, there is little religion, and the thought crossed my mind, “what importance will those brethren attach to those peculiarities at the hour of death ?" Suppose you that one of them will die rejoicing in the “ Act and Testimony," or in the “ Book of Common Prayer," or in the Wesleyan “ Discipline"? I thought of the

happy death-beds of some of my friends of different religious persuasions, and I could not remember that they said a single word about a party name.

I knew a lady, the widowed mother of several children. She had been affluent, but poverty and blindness visited her about the same time. She had a mind unusually strong and discriminating, had read much, and was warmly attached to the Episcopal church, to its government, its rites, its liturgy, and to its doctrines according to their literal meaning. In early life she had devoted herself to God. I believe for years she was distressed with no doubts as to her interest in the Saviour's blood; indeed she was satisfied as to the moment in which she was justified by faith. She was not at all superstitious, but the couplet

The Spirit answers to the blood
And tells me I am born of God,

was carried home to her with great power. Children and husband and fortune were taken from her -she submitted : disease preyed upon her body,she was resigned, knowing that her light affliction would work out for her a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; day and night became alike to her-she was light in the Lord. After years of mental and corporeal suffering, (but rejoicing all the while in hope) she met the king of terrors without a single fear, as to the result of the conflict; and having committed her two surviving daughters to God in prayers, not only fervent, but more pertinent than

any that can be found in the “ Book of Common Prayer,” she fell asleep. She could repeat a large portion of the Psalter, and perhaps the whole of the morning and evening services of the Episcopal church. I love to think of her daughters. They were left very young, and almost friendless, but they will never be forsaken, nor beg their bread; the truth is, their mother invested their inheritance in the safest stock in the universe of God!

I knew another widowed mother of several children, whom she endeavoured to rear “ in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.” She was from principle a Presbyterian, although baptized and educated in a different branch of the church of Christ. I have seen her reading the scriptures to her children weeping as she read—I have seen her examining her household on Sabbath evenings as to their acquaintance with Bible truth, and especially of that summary of its doctrines which is contained in the Assembly's Shorter Catechism. She was more anxious to depart and be with Christ, than any child of the kingdom I have ever known. I saw her on one occasion, when a son who had visited her was about to leave her, remove her cap, clip a lock of hair, which with some gold she handed to him, saying in substance, “ My child! I am about to die—make of these something in memory of your mother.” She was then in health apparently as good as usual, and although that son saw her again very soon, she was on her death-bed. She walked in the garden on an evening shortly after the former interview, was over

« EdellinenJatka »