portance of religion, as being that inva. luable good which only could give happiness in life, or comfort and support in the hour of death. Peculiar circumtances, however, of a painful and mys. terious kind, appeared to render all but abortive his endeavours, wbile his prayers and tears seemed to be in vain.

It was the invariable practice of Miss Young's father, while accompanying her, together with her sisters, in rambles of recreation and health, to converse with them on the same important theme; and by the scenes which surrounded them, he strove to give a natural turn to his observations, and so lead their minds

“Through nature up to nature's God." Constantly at the family altar, and in the private closet, he wrestled with God on her behalf, and with strong feelings poured out his soul in petitions for her and them : but all, so far as the eye of sense could perceive, was like water spilt on the ground; the impressive statement here received its fulfilment and displayed its truth, “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the Lord.”

The evidences of depravity which Juliana displayed, were of a negative rather than a positive kind; that is, while an entire absence of every thing of an immoral nature marked her conduct and character, still no feeling of soul concerning the things of God and her eternal interests was displayed. In all her manners she was affectionate and amiable, although in her usual habits some what reserved, excepting in the company and towards those with whom she was intimate, and then all the wit and face. tiousness of riper years beamed in her eyes, and burst forth in frequent repar. tees from her lips.

Thus she continued, loved by those who knew her for many desirable qualities, yet far from God, and a stranger to peace, until about two years since, when it pleased the all-wise and gracious Disposer of all events to visit her with affliction, which terminated only with her life.

The character of her disorder was singular and flattering; so much so, that the most skilful medical attendants could not decidedly pronounce upon its nature, nor did they conceive, until a few months since, that it would have terminated fatally. Step by step, with

slow but sure progress, death strode towards her, breaking down her strength, weakening her spirits, and overwhelming her with racking pain. Still the patient sufferer-and her patience was wonderful — flattered herself that she should recover, and most ardently wished to live. “Oh,” she would say, while she looked fondly at her father and her sisters, “it is so hard to die, and leave you all; I love you so much." If she could only be removed into the country, she fancied she should certainly recover. Her wish was complied with, and after two or three weeks the same ardent wish was expressed to return to her father's house; and again she was brought home, to leave it no more alive.

"Skin for skin,” observes Job, “yea, all that a man hath will he give for his life.” The love of being is a principle graciously implanted in our nature, that we might not become indifferent concerning the most important things to which we can direct our thoughts in time. This love of life, however, proceeds from various causes. A renewed person wishes to live that he may glorify God; while those who are not changed by the grace of God, desire life from the fear of death. This latter cause, at this time, prompted the wish in Juliana. Even after she was entirely confined to her room, and nearly so to her bed, the same deceptive expectations and strong hopes possessed her.

On one occasion, while her father sat with her, by her bed side, he strove to impress her mind with the necessity, and pointed out the nature of conversion, to which she listened with attention : but when he spoke to her about dying, she turned upon him with an expression in her countenance such as mocks at all language to portray, and raising her tearful eyes in an agony of feeling, she exclaimed, “O that it would please God to make me well again, that I might go to chapel ; I would be a good girl; I would serve God; and we should be so happy !" There was a tone in the expressions which she uttered, indicative of the most ardent anxiety, as if she felt a wretchedness of mind too strong to endure. Her father reasoned with her on the impropriety of indulging hopes of recovery, and inquired if she feared to die. "0, yes,” she replied, “ I have been so wicked, and I cannot bear to leave you." He exhorted her to pray, assuring her that God was always ready


to hear and answer prayer. “ I strive About this period, her desire to be to do so," she answered, “but my heart prayed with increased greatly. Freis so hard ; and when I attempt to think quently she begged that her father might about religion, other things come into be called to her bedside when he was my mind, and prevent my doing what not in the room, that he might pray I would." Her father rejoined, that with her. Her sense of sin in its nature, God had promised to take away the heart and her hatred to it, became more and of stone, and to give a heart of flesh, more distinct and apparent; her views explaining as he went on the meaning of the way of salvation, of a sinner's jusof the terms stone and flesh, when, with tification before God, and her entire and considerable feeling, she cried out, “Oh, full dependence upon the merits of the that God would take my heart of stone Saviour for pardon and eternal life, were away !"

gradually and pleasingly developed. All . She now became so weak as to be in fear of death receded from her mind, capable of helping herself, or even turn- and all desire to live ceased to exist : ing in her bed ; but her mind was evi the language of the aged apostle Paul dently directed towards the things of became literally her own, “Having a God. Her father was seated with his desire to depart and be with Christ, daughters in the parlour at this time, which is far better." when they were surprised at hearing Again and again her father inquired some sweet tones, as of music; and on of her respecting the state of her mind, listening, they heard poor Juliana, with and for the last two weeks of her life a strength and sweetness of voice which she invariably replied, “Happy.” To astonished them, singing,

his inquiry respecting the foundation “ When I can read my title clear

of her hopes of heaven, which she so To mansions in the skies ;

constantly and unhesitatingly expressed, I'n bid farewell to every fear,

she replied, she trusted and believed God And wipe my weeping eyes."

would take her to heaven, for Christ's Some few weeks before her death, two sake. She felt she had no righteousness or three pious friends kindly visited and of her own, and rested alone upon his. prayed with her: these exercises ap- She now prayed, if it were the will of peared especially to be blessed by God to God, for her departure, and wished all the production of an increased concern her friends would do so too. respecting her soul. The prayers of the On the afternoon of the day which church, too, ascended to God on her be closed her earthly course, her father enhalf; and the merciful and gracious An- tered her room about four o'clock, before swerer of prayer regarded them, and which time she had been lying as if in a fulfilled the desires of those who sought stupifying drowsy state, without taking him.

notice of any one, or of any thing ; but On one occasion, being pillowed up the moment she heard his step, she in her bed, she requested she might be opened her eyes, and turning her face, allowed to read the Scriptures at the which was lighted up by a smile, towards family worship : the wish was cheerfully him, she faintly, but firmly observed, complied with, and the Bible was placed “I am going to heaven." A little after before her, when with singular discrimi. this, as she perceived he was greatly afnation, she selected the twenty-second fected by witnessing her sufferings, which Psalm ; many of the verses of which so were great, she begged he would leave strikingly applied to her own case, and the room. He did so, and in about two were read by her with such distinct and hours and a half afterwards, without a solemn emphasis, as to affect even to tears struggle or a sigh, her ransomed spirit all who were present. She then affec. entered the rest prepared for it, after tionately exhorted her sisters, and calmly sojourning in this vale of tears fifteen took her leave of each member of the years and nine months, Her death was family, disposing of her little possessions affectingly improved in her father's chato each by name, and desiring that her pel to a large and weeping congregation, clothes even, after her death, might be by the Rev. J. Belcher, from the approdivided as she had appointed; so fully priate passage in Jeremiah xv. 9, “Her was she now persuaded in her own mind sun is gone down while it was yet day." that the time of her departure was at The writer of this sketch regrets that hand, and so happily was she delivered his limits forbid his giving an outline at from bondage to the fear of death. least of this excellent discourse. It is


[merged small][merged small][graphic][merged small]


Oh! art thou going? never to return But one short hour more, and gone for

everLet me that improve to reckon with thee. I owe thee much, too much, alas ! to

pay. Yet on the scroll thou bear'st (dread

register Of all that thou hast seen) inscribe this


TIME AND DEATH. lampa Oh Time ! portentous Time ! with ever

lasting fiats Clench'd in thy hoary hands; how

swiftly dost thou fly, To crown with bliss, or with thy reckless

curse defy ! Nor wilt thou tarry for one moment in

thy course, To heed the joyful thanks of happy souls

set free, Or bitter plaints of those who never

heeded thee. Onward thou speed'st thy way; while

Death, commissioned, 2017! Porta Swift follows in thy train-to drag un

willing men Before their final Judge! No question,

if prepared ! The day of men is past ! and now, the

day of God! Oh happy son! whose pleasure is to do

thy father's will, To stand prepared for life or death, and

every earthly ill! He shall be crown'd with endless bliss,

nor fear the deadly dart; Since heav'n from early youth was his,

on giving God his heart !


Best gift of heaven, I have neglected

theeThy infant hand presented a fair blank For me to fill, with thoughts of purity, With words sincere, and works of piety To Him who gave thee-charity to man, And give thee back to register in beav'n, When thou wert ripen'd for departing

hence. But, oh! what now will be recorded

there? A frightful list of broken covenants, That lie in darksome ruin on thy page, And tell me of my wretched fallen state. What, tho' the day spring twinkles in

the gloom, And a few scatter'd spots of light ap

pear, Like stars that glimmer in a cloudy sky ? What, tho' at times the grateful incense

rose Of praise and adoration, from the heart, Fill’d with a sense of God's redeeming

love ? What, though attentive to the warning

word, I watch'd with fear, and turn'd aside

from ill, With the commandments' awful breadth

in view ?-'Twas feebly done--and leaves me

. nought to plead. O righteous Saviour ! blot the darkness

out, And o'er the light thy spotless mantle throw.

: C.




BY R. HOYT, PURE Yet is it so ! It is the time high heaven Hath hallow'd to itself, that man should cease

som The world's solicitudes, and fix his

thought On things that import of eternity ! higil There comes a mandate-rest l 'tis God's

own hour. A mig overslaai Keep silence, earth, in all your busy throngs I

would sui Ye that unwearyingly do kiss the dust, In true devotion at the shrine of gold, la Exalt your souls to be His worshippers

Xbugl 15

Who made the gorgeous ore, whose hand

Sprinkled Golconda's gems, and o'er

Scatter'd the countless treasures ye

To His, subservient, the favouring breeze
Wafts safe their argosies from farthest

But, for his foes, the furious tempest

And hides their forfeit wealth adown the

deep! Then worship God ! and let this holy

hour Bear up meet sacrifice of praise and

prayer. And ye of sterner toil, whose rugged

brows Bend to the penalty, and sweat for bread, Unchain the spirit from earth's drudgery, And lose awhile the memory of care. 'Mid the half furrowed field bestay the

Bid the twin toilers of the yoke go free,
And aught that doth thee patient

From closing Sabbath to its blest return,
Within the stall, or at some cooling
• stream,
Or by the upland, court a day's repose;
While ye, in nobler rest, by faith reclined
On the far top of glorious Calvary,
Sball soothe away the bitterness of life,
In hope through Him that hath redeem'd

the world.
Or, peradventure, the poor artisan,

Whose sinewy arm is doom'd to be

In constant turmoil for a scanty fare,
Let him forbear the anvil and look up.
Eternal Sabbath ! none are weary there.
And he that fearless mounts th' impetu-

ous surge,
And rushes o'er th' illimitable main,
To earn a pittance for his needy home,
Let him remember now to honour God;
And, as he needful climbs the dizzy

Heaves at the cordage, or adjusts the

sails, Still let his thought in holy orisons, And praise and thankfulness, ascend to

heaven. Though destined o'er the dreary deep to

roam, Th’ adoring one shall know no timid

fears; He hears sweet music in the wild waves'

foam, And calmly looks aloft when death

appears. For there's a port above where perils

ceaseThe bark that anchors there shall

ne'er unmoor;
The weary sailor takes his last release,

And treads in ecstacy a golden shore.
It is the Sabbath ! let the nations hush
In lowly rev'rence-while th' eternal

Voiced with an earthquake, roar-

Amen! amen!


joyment a spur. Time is the most “ We take no note of Time,

subtle, yet the most insatiable of depreBut by its loss.”—Young.

dators, and by appearing to take nothing,

is permitted to take all; nor can it be Time is the most undefinable yet para satisfied until it has stolen the world doxical of all things. The past is gone from us, and us from the world. Time, the future is not come, and the present the cradle of hope, but the grave of ambecomes the past even while we attempt bition, is the stern corrector of fools, to define it, and, like the flash of the but the salutary counsellor of the wise, lightning, exists and expires at once. bringing all they dread to the one, and Time is the measure of all things, but is all they desire to the other. Wisdom itself immeasurable ; the grand discloser walks before it, Opportunity with it, and of all things, but is itself undisclosed: Repentance behind it. He that has made like space, it is incomprehensible, be- it his friend will have little to fear from cause it has no limit, and it would be his enemies ; but he that has made it still more so if it had. It gives wings of his enemy, will have little to hope from lightning to pleasure, but feet of lead to his friends. pain ; lends expectation a curb, but en

[ocr errors]

he came not there for distarbance-he moved not-smiled not; but preserved the utmost decorum until the service was concluded, when he deliberately shouldered his block, and to the same slow step, bore it off, and replaced it where he found it. That congregation is now the most attentive and polite to strangers of any in America.

NEATNESS AND ORDER.-Neatness and order are enjoined not only by eco. nomy, but by comfort. Every negligent mother resigns one of the choicest plea. sures within her reach, that of seeing her house and home surrounded by the marks of neatness, industry, and taste. She brings up her family amidst confusion, and presents to her children an ex. ample of negligence the most unpardonable. Can she wonder if they follow her example? They will go further. In their partialities, they will have a vicious preference for what good sense and sound econony would condemn. They will regard with less respect the decencies of sife, and be more likely to abandon the paths of virtue and morality. There is much meaning in the old adage, “Have a place for every thing, and keep every thing in its place.”

SCHOLASTIC COMPETITION.-The de gree of talent and industry displayed by boys is an erroneous index to their future character as men. The fortunate competitors for school and university honours are not always—perhaps it may be said not often-eminent in after life ; whilst the men who have failed in attaining these distinctions, not unfrequently exhibit a degree of ability of which their early years afforded no indication.Thornton's India.

ThoughTS SICKNESS.-In contemplating death the things that are most repulsive are the very ones which can. not possibly affect us—the coffin, the grave, &c. . Men talk like children of the cold grave, the dark grave, &c.

Life is a habit to which we become attached in spite of all the attractions of eternity. A bird is at first afraid to venture out of its cage, though it be to fly in a garden.

In reducing our lives to days and hours, who has courage to calculate how many he has devoted to God?

A Christian invalid may always say he is better. If not so literally, he is better as being nearer to the state where there is no sickness.

How few Christians confess they would prefer to die! The highest ordinary attainment is neutrality and mere resignation. Paul attained to something better. In his strait his desire was to depart. The reverse is the more common feeling.

One who has any deep view of his heart will feel that whatever may be the case with others, eternal punishment would not seem unjust or excessive in his own.

ANECDOTE.-We capy the following fact from a Baltimore paper, with a kind hint that it may be of use in places that we know in England :-A young man was seen to enter a church in time of service-he paused at the entrance—the congregation stared : he advanced a few steps, and, deliberately surveying the whole assembly, commenced a slow march up the broad isle. Not a pew was opened--the andience were too busy for civility. He wheeled, and in the same manner performed a march, stepping, as if to Roslin Castle, or the Dead March in Saul, and disappeared. A few moments after, he re-entered with as huge a block upon his shoulders as he could well stagger under ; his countenance was im. moveable-again the good people stared, and half rose from their seats, with their books in their hands. At length he placed the block in the very centre of the principal passage, and seated him self upon it. Then, for the first time, the reproach was felt! Every pew door in the house was instantly flung open ! But no-the stranger was a gentleman

FAMILY WORSHIP.--Mr. Howard, the philanthropist, never neglected the duty of family prayer, even though there was but one, and that one his domestic, to join him in it; always declaring, that where he had a tent, God should have an altar. This was the case, not only in England, but in every part of Europe which they visited together; it being his invariable practice, wherever, and with whomsoever he might be, to tell Thomasson to come to him at a certain hour, at whicha, well knowing what the direction meant, he would be sure to find him in his room, the doors of which he would order him to fasten ; when, let who would come, nobody was admitted till this devotional exercise was over. “ Very few," says the humble narrator, "knew the goodness of this man's heart."

« VorigeDoorgaan »