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the poor oppressed breast! Do not suffer them to disturb your joys; drown them in your songs of praise, and let all your grief be changed to gladness; for lo! the winter is past,” &c. ›
I know not whether I said this aloud whilst I stood under the portico of the church, or whether such were only my thoughts. In the mean time a storm had come up. Lightnings flashed around me; the thunder rolled above; the rain fell slowly, by fits, in big drops. All this while I had been standing in the portico thinking of to-morrow. When the rain had ceased, I intended to cross the church-yard to my home. In the grove I met old Andrew, who is always seated so devoutly opposite to me in the church, and who applies every thing so piously to the practice of his life. His is a Simeon's face, on which is written, 'Lord, thou wilt soon permit thy servant to depart in peace.' As every thing to-day was viewed by me in connection with spring, or as a symbol of its presence, so in this light appeared my meeting with this old man. On his aged and deeply wrinkled face a heavenly spring full of hope was beaming, and his whole soul was expecting a new heaven and a new
earth: "How do you find yourself," I asked; "I long for my home, reverend sir," he replied. "Now, in the spring-time?" I inquired. "O yes," was his "I have been in the church-yard; again my slumbering friends have called me; hardly can I stay longer from them. Each of the graves had at least one new flower, and this always looks like a new welcome from the departed. The earthly spring does not seem quite suited to my wintry, fleshly garment! I am no longer called for by my mother the earth, but by my Father in Heaven." Ere I departed, he continued speaking in this manner for a long time, on the longing he felt in the spring-time for his home in heaven.
I was now in the still shadowy grave-yard. I should not have thought my celebration of spring complete, if I had not been there. He who does not view the earthly spring as a type of the heavenly one, does not understand either of them. No where can the appearance of spring be more solemn than in our church-yard, where, through the thick poplar-bushes, you have so extensive a view over the country, the roads, and, I might say, upon life; for it is from the grave our most solemn retrospec
tions should be made. On the grave of my pious predecessor the white roses were already budding. A faithful and simple spirit, which even at the grave wished to evince its gratitude, had planted them. On this grave I remained longest. Here the shepherd sleeps in the midst of his faithful flock. The true heart, which purified their joys, which alleviated their distresses, that was so often moved in prayer and intercession, which knew no greater joy than when its children were walking in the truth; not even in death has he abandoned them, but sleeps in peace near his people. The heart is broken and decayed, but its love yet survives in the souls of the congregation he left behind. Thou faithful shepherd, who shinest above like unto the stars, here the recollection of thy existence yet warms many a faithful heart,—and among them the heart of thy successor.
The grass was growing over the graves, near which on former occasions I had myself stood, consecrating the remains of many a friend for the dust! Welcome, ye friendly sods! Be witnesses that life grows from death. Many of those over whose heads you spring, were dear to me, and now they
seem to send forth these emblems of hope from their graves as a token of their love and remembrance. I feel myself in a visible, in a sacred communion; I feel that I am approaching an eternal world, where an eternal spring shall bloom. The earthly spring passes by, the summer appears, the flowers ripen into seeds, and not one of them shall remain behind. Autumn appears in its turn, and soon winter and frost; then the forest loses its foliage; no child is to be seen in the meadows; the last leaves will fall to the ground, and soon a new spring shall appear. But in some future time, when all the springs of my life have ceased to bloom, when all its flowers have faded here, still I shall find again all the beauties of spring, every dear and youthful form, every hour of inspiration. We enjoy many anticipations, in this world, but we are there for ever blest with the realities of spring.
OR EIGHT SETS OF GOLDEN SENTENCES FROM THE RICHEST MINES OF SPIRITUAL WEALTH.
1. I HAVE taken much pains to know every thing that was esteemed worth knowing among men; but, with all my disquisitions and reading, nothing now remains with me to comfort me, at the close of life, but this passage of St. Paul: 'It is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.' To this I cleave, and herein I find rest.— Selden.
2. What wings are to a bird, oil to wheels, or a loadstone to the needle, such is Christ to the soul of the believer; he gives speed to his devotions,