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Title: Religious Poems
Author: Various
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Religious Poems" ***

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Transcriber's Note.

The compiler of this collection is not identified.

Apparent typographical errors have been corrected. "Zavier" has been
replaced by "Xavier". Inconsistencies in the use of hyphens and of
accents have been retained.

Italic font is indicated by _underscores_ and transliterated Greek by
=equal signs=. Small capitals have been replaced by full capitals, and "oe"
ligatures have been removed.

Where individual poems lack titles they are identified, in the Table of
Contents, by their first line or an appropriate phrase.


[Illustration: THE ANGEL'S INTERCESSION.]



RELIGIOUS POEMS

SELECTED.

 PHILADELPHIA:
 THE RODGERS COMPANY.



CONTENTS.


                                                                       PAGE

 Our King                                    _Frances R. Havergal._       9
 The Sleep                                   _E. B. Browning._           10
 God's Commands                              _Doddridge._                13
 Be Strong                                   _Adelaide Procter._         14
 The Sleep of the Beloved                    _Horatius Bonar._           15
 Self-Dependence                             _Matthew Arnold._           16
 What is Prayer?                             _James Montgomery._         18
 The Virgin Mary to the Child Jesus          _E. B. Browning._           19
 The Voice from Galilee                      _Horatius Bonar._           28
 Lead, Kindly Light                          _Cardinal Newman._          29
 Weary of Life                               _Unidentified._             30
 Come unto Me                                _Unidentified._             31
 Earth's Beauty                              _Horatius Bonar._           33
 Servant of God                              _James Montgomery._         34
 The Angel's Story                           _Adelaide Procter._         35
 Jesus                                       _Bernard._                  44
 Morality                                    _Matthew Arnold._           45
 Morning                                     _John Keble._               47
 Divine Order                                _Horatius Bonar._           50
 The Issues of Life and Death                _James Montgomery._         51
 Gracious Spirit                             _Stocker._                  52
 St. Agnes' Eve                              _Alfred Tennyson._          53
 Life and Death                              _Adelaide Procter._         54
 The Angel's Call                            _Mrs. Hemans._              56
 I would not Live alway                      _Muhlenberg._               57
 Jerusalem the Golden                        _Bernard._                  58
 When our Heads are Bowed                    _Heber._                    60
 O Soul, Soul                                _Henry C. Graves._          61
 The Look                                    _E. B. Browning._           62
 The Meaning of the Look                     _E. B. Browning._           62
 Comfort                                     _E. B. Browning._           63
 Substitution                                _E. B. Browning._           64
 Tears                                       _E. B. Browning._           65
 Cheerfulness taught by Reason               _E. B. Browning._           65
 The Prospect                                _E. B. Browning._           66
 Consolation                                 _E. B. Browning._           67
 A Thought over a Cradle                     _N. P. Willis._             68
 Everlasting Blessings                       _Frances R. Havergal._      69
 The Mother to her Child                     _N. P. Willis._             70
 Give me thy Heart                           _Adelaide Procter._         72
 One Sweetly Solemn Thought                  _Phoebe Carey._             75
 Left Behind                                 _Horatius Bonar._           76
 Lord, what a Change                         _Richard C. Trench._        78
 Our Father                                  _Frances R. Havergal._      78
 Thou art the Way                            _Doane._                    85
 The Night and the Morning                   _Horatius Bonar._           86
 In Affliction                               _James Montgomery._         87
 Give to the Winds                           _Gerhard._                  87
 Where wilt Thou                             _Mrs. Sigourney._           88
 One there is above                          _Newton._                   89
 God moves in a mysterious way               _Cowper._                   90
 Onward, Christian                           _Johnson._                  91
 Thankfulness                                _Adelaide Procter._         92
 Does the Gospel word proclaim               _Newton._                   94
 My God, my Father                           _C. Elliott._               95
 The Seen and the Unseen                     _Horatius Bonar._           96
 I am far frae my Hame                       _Unidentified._            101
 The Sinner's Friend                         _Charlotte Elliott._       103
 Evening Prayer at a Girls' School           _Mrs. Hemans._             105
 I Worship Thee                              _F. W. Faber._             107
 The Peace of God                            _Adelaide Procter._        110
 Listening in Darkness--Speaking in Light    _Frances R. Havergal._     112
 The Morning Star                            _Horatius Bonar._          113
 God of the World                            _S. S. Cutting._           114
 There is a God                              _Steele._                  115
 Lord, how Mysterious                        _Steele._                  116
 The Shadow of the Rock                      _F. W. Faber._             116
 Elegy                                       _Henry King._              120
 Rest Yonder                                 _Horatius Bonar._          122
 Soldiers of Christ                          _C. Wesley._               123
 Thy Will be done                            _J. Roscoe._               124
 It is not Dying                             _Malan._                   125
 Watchman! tell us of the Night              _Bowring._                 126
 The Spirit accompanying the Word of God     _James Montgomery._        127
 The Cloudless                               _Horatius Bonar._          128
 Comfort                                     _Adelaide Procter._        130
 "Master, Say On!"                           _Frances R. Havergal._     132
 The Leper                                   _N. P. Willis._            134
 Things hoped for                            _Horatius Bonar._          141
 The Sure Refuge                             _Unidentified._            144
 Unfruitfulness                              _F. W. Faber._             145
 Murmuring                                   _Richard C. Trench._       148
 If thou couldst Know                        _Adelaide Procter._        149
 Compensation                                _Frances R. Havergal._     150
 Valiant for the Truth                       _James Montgomery._        156
 Advent                                      _Horatius Bonar._          158
 A Bethlehem Hymn                            _Horatius Bonar._          160
 A Desire                                    _Adelaide Procter._        161
 That Glorious Song of Old                   _Sears._                   164
 Hail to the Lord's                          _Montgomery._              165
 The Old, Old Story                          _Jemima Luke._             167
 My Jesus                                    _Unidentified._            168
 How Beauteous were the marks divine         _A. C. Coxe._              169
 O Sacred Head                               _Bernard._                 171
 Heart of Stone                              _C. Wesley._               172
 "By Thy Cross and Passion"                  _Frances R. Havergal._     173
 Abide in Him                                _Horatius Bonar._          175
 Rejoice, all ye Believers                   _Laurenti._                176
 Joined to Christ                            _Frances R. Havergal._     177
 "Till He Come!"                             _E. W. Bickersteth._       178
 "Forever with the Lord!"                    _James Montgomery._        180
 The Meeting-Place                           _Horatius Bonar._          181
 A Little While                              _Horatius Bonar._          183
 Ascension Day                               _John Keble._              185
 The Sacrifice of Abraham                    _N. P. Willis._            188
 A Solitary Way                              _Unidentified._            192
 The Child's Welcome into Heaven             _Unidentified._            194
 "Now"                                       _Frances R. Havergal._     196
 Ocean Teachings                             _Horatius Bonar._          201
 Incompleteness                              _Adelaide Procter._        203
 Nothing to Do                               _Unidentified._            205
 Death                                       _From "Sintram."_          206
 It is not Death to Die                      _Bethune._                 207
 Rugby Chapel                                _Matthew Arnold._          208
 The Right must Win                          _F. W. Faber._             217
 The Substitute                              _Horatius Bonar._          221
 Jephthah's Daughter                         _N. P. Willis._            222
 Lord, many Times                            _Richard C. Trench._       228
 Cleansing Fires                             _Adelaide Procter._        228
 Gone Before                                 _Horatius Bonar._          229
 The Lent Jewels                             _Richard C. Trench._       231
 On the Death of a Missionary                _N. P. Willis._            233
 Set Apart                                   _Frances R. Havergal._     236
 The Useful Life                             _Horatius Bonar._          238
 Hymn                                        _Charlotte Elliott._       240
 "Behold, the Bridegroom Cometh!"            _Unidentified._            242
 It may be in the Evening                    _Unidentified._            246
 The Joy of Assurance                        _Frances R. Havergal._     251
 "How Wonderful!"                            _Frances R. Havergal._     252
 Thy Way, not Mine                           _Horatius Bonar._          253
 A Child's First Impression of a Star        _N. P. Willis._            255
 "Come unto Me!"                             _St. Stephen the Sabaite._ 256
 "Looking unto Jesus"                        _From the German._         257
 Evening Hymn                                _Adelaide Procter._        259
 Are all the Children in?                    _Unidentified._            261
 He Leads us On                              _Unidentified._            263
 Nothing but Leaves                          _Unidentified._            264
 Because He first Loved us                   _Francis Xavier._          265
 Sonnet                                      _Richard C. Trench._       266
 Rest at Evening                             _Adelaide Procter._        267
 Now the Day is over                         _Unidentified._            268
 The Land of Light                           _Horatius Bonar._          270
 Abide with Me                               _Lyte._                    271
 Farewell of the Soul to the Body            _Mrs. Sigourney._          272



RELIGIOUS POEMS.


OUR KING.

 "Worship thou Him." Ps. xlv. 11.

  O Saviour, precious Saviour,
    Whom yet unseen we love,
  O Name of might and favor,
    All other names above:
        We worship Thee, we bless Thee,
          To Thee alone we sing;
        We praise Thee, and confess Thee
          Our holy Lord and King!

  O Bringer of salvation,
    Who wondrously hast wrought,
  Thyself the revelation
    Of love beyond our thought:
        We worship Thee, we bless Thee,
          To Thee alone we sing;
        We praise Thee, and confess Thee
          Our gracious Lord and King!

  In Thee all fullness dwelleth,
    All grace and power divine;
  The glory that excelleth,
    O, Son of God, is Thine:
        We worship Thee, we bless Thee,
          To Thee alone we sing;
        We praise Thee, and confess Thee
          Our glorious Lord and King!

  Oh, grant the consummation
    Of this our song above,
  In endless adoration,
    And everlasting love:
        Then shall we praise and bless Thee,
          Where perfect praises ring,
        And evermore confess Thee
          Our Saviour and our King!

  --_Frances Ridley Havergal._


THE SLEEP.

 He giveth His beloved sleep. Ps. cxxvii. 2.

  Of all the thoughts of God that are
  Borne inward unto souls afar,
    Along the Psalmist's music deep,
  Now tell me if that any is,
  For gift or grace, surpassing this--
    'He giveth His beloved, sleep?'

  What would we give to our beloved?
  The hero's heart, to be unmoved,
    The poet's star-tuned harp, to sweep,
  The patriot's voice, to teach and rouse,
  The monarch's crown, to light the brows?--
    'He giveth _His_ beloved, sleep.'

  What do we give to our beloved?
  A little faith all undisproved,
    A little dust to overweep,
  And bitter memories to make
  The whole earth blasted for our sake.
    'He giveth _His_ beloved, sleep.'

  'Sleep soft, beloved!' we sometimes say
  But have no tune to charm away
    Sad dreams that through the eyelids creep.
  But never doleful dream again
  Shall break the happy slumber when
    'He giveth _His_ beloved, sleep.'

  O earth, so full of dreary noises!
  O men, with wailing in your voices!
    O delvèd gold, the wailers heap!
  O strife, O curse, that o'er it fall!
  God strikes a silence through you all,
    And 'giveth His beloved, sleep.'

  His dews drop mutely on the hill,
  His cloud above it saileth still,
    Though on its slope men sow and reap,
  More softly than the dew is shed,
  Or clouds is floated overhead,
    'He giveth His beloved, sleep.'

  Aye, men may wonder while they scan
  A living, thinking, feeling man,
    Confirmed in such a rest to keep;
  But angels say, and through the word
  I think their happy smile is _heard_--
    'He giveth His beloved, sleep!'

  For me, my heart that erst did go
  Most like a tired child at a show,
    That sees through tears the mummers leap,
  Would now its wearied vision close,
  Would child-like on _His_ love repose,
    Who 'giveth His beloved, sleep!'

  And friends, dear friends,--when it shall be
  That this low breath is gone from me,
    And round my bier ye come to weep,
  Let one, most loving of you all,
  Say, 'Not a tear must o'er her fall--
    He giveth His beloved, sleep.'

  --_E. B. Browning._


  How gentle God's commands!
    How kind his precepts are!
  Come, cast your burdens on the Lord,
    And trust his constant care.

  Beneath his watchful eye
    His saints securely dwell;
  That hand which bears all nature up
    Shall guard his children well.

  Why should this anxious load
    Press down your weary mind?
  Haste to your heavenly Father's throne
    And sweet refreshment find.

  His goodness stands approved,
    Unchanged from day to day:
  I'll drop my burden at his feet,
    And bear a song away.

  --_Doddridge._


BE STRONG.

  Be strong to _hope_, O Heart!
    Though day is bright,
  The stars can only shine
    In the dark night.
  Be strong, O Heart of mine,
    Look towards the light!

  Be strong to _bear_, O Heart!
    Nothing is vain:
  Strive not, for life is care,
    And God sends pain;
  Heaven is above, and there
    Rest will remain!

  Be strong to _love_, O Heart!
    Love knows not wrong;
  Didst thou love--creatures even,
    Life were not long;
  Didst thou love God in heaven,
    Thou wouldst be strong!

  --_Adelaide Procter._


THE SLEEP OF THE BELOVED.

 "So He giveth his beloved sleep." Ps. cxxvii. 2.

  Sunlight has vanished, and the weary earth
    Lies resting from a long day's toil and pain,
  And, looking for a new dawn's early birth,
    Seeks strength in slumber for its toil again.

  We too would rest; but ere we close the eye
    Upon the consciousness of waking thought,
  Would calmly turn it to yon star-bright sky,
    And lift the soul to Him who slumbers not.

  Above us is thy hand with tender care,
    Distilling over us the dew of sleep:
  Darkness seems loaded with oblivious air,
    In deep forgetfulness each sense to steep.

  Thou hast provided midnight's hour of peace,
    Thou stretchest over us the wing of rest;
  With more than all a parent's tenderness,
    Foldest us sleeping to thy gentle breast.

  Grief flies away; care quits our easy couch,
    Till wakened by thy hand, when breaks the day--
  Like the lone prophet by the angel's touch,--
    We rise to tread again our pilgrim-way.

  God of our life! God of each day and night,
    Oh, keep us still till life's short race is run!
  Until there dawns the long, long day of light.
    That knows no night, yet needs no star nor sun.

  --_Horatius Bonar._


SELF-DEPENDENCE.

  Weary of myself, and sick of asking
  What I am, and what I ought to be,
  At this vessel's prow I stand, which bears me
  Forwards, forwards, o'er the starlit sea.

  And a look of passionate desire
  O'er the sea and to the stars I send:
  "Ye who from my childhood up have calmed me,
  Calm me, ah, compose me to the end!

  "Ah, once more," I cried, "ye stars, ye waters,
  On my heart your mighty charm renew;
  Still, still let me, as I gaze upon you,
  Feel my soul becoming vast like you!"

  From the intense, clear, star-sown vault of heaven,
  Over the lit sea's unquiet way,
  In the rustling night-air came the answer,--
  "Wouldst thou _be_ as these are? _Live_ as they.

  "Unaffrighted by the silence round them,
  Undistracted by the sights they see,
  These demand not that the things without them
  Yield them love, amusement, sympathy.

  "And with joy the stars perform their shining,
  And the sea its long moon-silvered roll;
  For self-poised they live, nor pine with noting
  All the fever of some differing soul.

  "Bounded by themselves, and unregardful
  In what state God's other works may be,
  In their own tasks all their powers pouring,
  These attain the mighty life you see."

  O air-born voice! long since severely clear,
  A cry like thine in mine own heart I hear,--
  "Resolve to be thyself; and know, that he
  Who finds himself loses his misery!"

  --_Matthew Arnold._


WHAT IS PRAYER?

  Prayer is the soul's sincere desire,
    Unuttered or expressed;
  The motion of a hidden fire
    That trembles in the breast.

  Prayer is the burden of a sigh,
    The falling of a tear,
  The upward glancing of an eye,
    When none but God is near.

  Prayer is the simplest form of speech
    That infant lips can try;
  Prayer the sublimest strains that reach
    The majesty on high.

  Prayer is the contrite sinner's voice,
    Returning from his ways;
  While angels in their songs rejoice,
    And cry--"Behold he prays!"

  Prayer is the Christian's vital breath,
    The Christian's native air:
  His watchword at the gates of death--
    He enters heaven with prayer.

  The saints in prayer appear as one
    In word, and deed, and mind,
  While with the Father and the Son
    Sweet fellowship they find.

  Nor prayer is made by man alone
    The Holy Spirit pleads
  And Jesus, on the eternal throne
    For sinners intercedes.

  O Thou, by whom we come to God--
    The Life, the Truth, the Way;
  The path of prayer Thyself hast trod;
    Lord! teach us how to pray.

  --_James Montgomery._


THE VIRGIN MARY TO THE CHILD JESUS.

 But see, the Virgin blest
 Hath laid her babe to rest.
 MILTON'S _Hymn on the Nativity_.

  Sleep, sleep, mine Holy One!
    My flesh, my Lord!--what name? I do not know
  A name that seemeth not too high or low,
    Too far from me or Heaven.
  My Jesus, _that_ is best! that word being given
  By the majestic angel whose command
  Was softly as a man's beseeching said,
  When I and all the earth appeared to stand
    In the great overflow
  Of light celestial from his wings and head.
    Sleep, sleep, my saving One!

  And art Thou come for saving, baby-browed
  And speechless Being--art Thou come for saving?
  The palm that grows beside our door is bowed
  By treadings of the low wind from the south,
  A restless shadow through the chamber waving:
  Upon its bough a bird sings in the sun;
  But Thou, with that close slumber on Thy mouth,
  Dost seem of wind and sun already weary.
  Art come for saving, O my weary One?

  Perchance this sleep that shutteth out the dreary
  Earth-sounds and motions, opens on Thy soul
  High dreams on fire with God;
  High songs that make the pathways where they roll
  More bright than stars do theirs; and visions new
  Of Thine eternal Nature's old abode.
    Suffer this mother's kiss,
    Best thing that earthly is,
  To guide the music and the glory through,
  Nor narrow in Thy dream the broad upliftings
    Of any seraph wing!
  Thus, noiseless, thus. Sleep, sleep, my dreaming One!

  The slumber of His lips meseems to run
  Through _my_ lips to mine heart; to all its shiftings
  Of sensual life, bringing contrariousness
  In a great calm. I feel, I could lie down
  As Moses did, and die,[1]--and then live most.
  I am 'ware of you, heavenly Presences,
  That stand with your peculiar light unlost,
  Each forehead with a high thought for a crown,
  Unsunned i' the sunshine! I am 'ware. Yet throw
  No shade against the wall! How motionless
  Ye round me with your living statuary,
  While through your whiteness, in and outwardly,
  Continual thoughts of God appear to go,
  Like light's soul in itself! I bear, I bear,
  To look upon the dropped lids of your eyes,
  Though their external shining testifies
  To that beatitude within, which were
  Enough to blast an eagle at his sun.
  I fall not on my sad clay face before ye;
    I look on His. I know
  My spirit which dilateth with the woe
    Of His mortality,
    May well contain your glory.
    Yea, drop your lids more low.
  Ye are but fellow-worshipers with me!
    Sleep, sleep, my worshiped One!

  We sat among the stalls at Bethlehem,
  The dumb kine from their fodder turning them,
    Softened their horned faces
    To almost human gazes
    Towards the newly Born.
  The simple shepherds from the star-lit brooks
    Brought visionary looks,
  As yet in their astonished hearing rung
    The strange, sweet angel-tongue.
  The magi of the East, in sandals worn,
    Knelt reverent, sweeping round,
  With long pale beards their gifts upon the ground,
    The incense, myrrh and gold,
  These baby hands were impotent to hold.
  So, let all earthlies and celestials wait
    Upon thy royal state!
    Sleep, sleep, my kingly One!

  I am not proud--meek angels, ye invest
  New meeknesses to hear such utterance rest
  On mortal lips,--'I am not proud'--_not proud_!
  Albeit in my flesh God sent His Son,
  Albeit over Him my head is bowed
  As others bow before Him, still mine heart
  Bows lower than their knees. O centuries
  That roll, in vision, your futurities
    My future grave athwart,--
  Whose murmurs seem to reach me while I keep
    Watch o'er this sleep,--
  Say of me as the Heavenly said,--'Thou art
  The blessedest of women!'--blessedest,
  Not holiest, not noblest--no high name,
  Whose height misplaced may pierce me like a shame,
  When I sit meek in heaven!

                      For me--for me--
  God knows that I am feeble like the rest!--
  I often wandered forth, more child than maiden,
  Among the midnight hills of Galilee,
    Whose summits looked heaven-laden;
  Listening to silence as it seemed to be
  God's voice, so soft yet strong--so fain to press
  Upon my heart as Heaven did on the height,
  And waken up its shadows by a light,
  And show its vileness by a holiness.
  Then I knelt down most silent like the night,
    Too self-renounced for fears,
  Raising my small face to the countless blue
  Whose stars did mix and tremble in my tears.
  God heard _them_ falling after--with His dew.

  So, seeing my corruption, can I see
  This Incorruptible now born of me--
  This fair new Innocence no sun did chance
  To shine on (for even Adam was no child),
  Created from my nature, all defiled,
  This mystery from out mine ignorance--
  Nor feel the blindness, stain, corruption, more
  Than others do, or _I_ did heretofore?--
  Can hands wherein such burden pure has been,
  Not open with the cry 'unclean, unclean!'
  More oft than any else beneath the skies?
    Ah King, ah Christ, ah Son!
  The kine, the shepherds, the abased wise,
    Must all less lowly wait
    Than I, upon thy state!--
    Sleep, sleep, my kingly One!

  Art Thou a King, then? Come, His universe,
    Come, crown me Him a king!
  Pluck rays from all such stars as never fling
    Their light where fell a curse.
  And make a crowning for this kingly brow!--
  What is my word?--Each empyreal star
    Sits in a sphere afar
    In shining ambuscade:
    The child-brow, crowned by none,
    Keeps its unchildlike shade.
    Sleep, sleep, my crownless One!

  Unchildlike shade!--no other babe doth wear
  An aspect very sorrowful, as Thou.--
  No small babe-smiles, my watching heart has seen,
  To float like speech the speechless lips between;
  No dovelike cooing in the golden air,
  No quick short joys of leaping babyhood.
    Alas, our earthly good
  In heaven thought evil, seems too good for Thee:
    Yet, sleep, my weary One!

  And then the drear sharp tongue of prophecy,
  With the dread sense of things which shall be done,
  Doth smite me inly, like a sword--a sword?
  (_That_ 'smites the Shepherd!') then, I think aloud
  The words 'despised,'--'rejected,'--every word
  Recoiling into darkness as I view
    The DARLING on my knee.
  Bright angels,--move not!--lest ye stir the cloud
  Betwixt my soul and his futurity!
  I must not die, with mother's work to do,
    And could not live--and see.

    It is enough to bear
    This image still and fair--
    This holier in sleep,
    Than a saint at prayer:
    This aspect of a child
    Who never sinned or smiled--
    This presence in an infant's face:
    This sadness most like love
    This love than love more deep,
    This weakness like omnipotence,
    It is so strong to move!
    Awful is this watching place,
    Awful what I see from hence--
    A king, without regalia,
    A God, without the thunder,
    A child, without the heart for play;
    Aye, a Creator rent asunder
    From His first glory and cast away
    On His own world, for me alone
  To hold in hands created, crying--SON!

    That tear fell not on THEE,
  Beloved, yet Thou stirrest in thy slumber!
  THOU, stirring not for glad sounds out of number
  Which through the vibratory palm trees run
    From summer wind and bird,
    So quickly hast Thou heard
    A tear fall silently?--
    Wak'st Thou, O loving One?--

  --_E. B. Browning._

[1] It is a Jewish tradition that Moses died of the kisses of God's lips.


THE VOICE FROM GALILEE.

  I heard the voice of Jesus say,
    "Come unto me and rest;
  Lay down, thou weary one, lay down
    Thy head upon my breast."
  I came to Jesus as I was--
    Weary, and worn, and sad;
  I found in Him a resting-place,
    And He has made me glad.

  I heard the voice of Jesus say,
    "Behold I freely give
  The living water--thirsty one,
    Stoop down, and drink, and live."
  I came to Jesus, and I drank
    Of that life-giving stream.
  My thirst was quench'd, my soul revived,
    And now I live in Him.

  I heard the voice of Jesus say,
    "I am this dark world's light;
  Look unto me, thy morn shall rise,
    And all thy day be bright."
  I looked to Jesus, and I found
    In Him my Star, my Sun;
  And in that Light of Life I'll walk
    Till trav'ling days are done.

  --_Horatius Bonar._


LEAD, KINDLY LIGHT.

  Lead, kindly Light, amid the encircling gloom,
        Lead Thou me on;
  The night is dark, and I am far from home,
        Lead Thou me on;
  Keep Thou my feet; I do not ask to see
  The distant scene; one step enough for me.

  I was not ever thus, nor prayed that Thou
        Shouldst lead me on;
  I loved to choose and see my path; but now
        Lead Thou me on.
  I loved the garish day, and spite of fears,
  Pride ruled my will; remember not past years.

  So long Thy power hath blest me, sure it still
        Will lead me on
  O'er moor and fen, o'er crag and torrent, till
        The night is gone,
  And with the morn those angel faces smile,
  Which I have loved long since, and lost awhile.

  --_Cardinal Newman._


  Weary of earth and laden with my sin,
  I look at heaven and long to enter in;
  But there no evil thing may find a home,
  And yet I hear a voice that bids me, "Come."

  So vile I am, how dare I hope to stand
  In the pure glory of that holy land?
  Before the whiteness of that Throne appear?
  Yet there are Hands stretched out to draw me near.

  The while I fain would tread the heavenly way,
  Evil is ever with me day by day;
  Yet on mine ears the gracious tidings fall,
  "Repent, confess, thou shalt be loosed from all."

  It is the voice of JESUS that I hear,
  His are the Hands stretched out to draw me near,
  And His the Blood that can for all atone,
  And set me faultless there before the Throne.

  'Twas He who found me on the deathly wild,
  And made me heir of heaven, the FATHER'S child,
  And day by day, whereby my soul may live,
  Gives me His Grace of pardon, and will give.

  O great Absolver, grant my soul may wear
  The lowliest garb of penitence and prayer,
  That in the FATHER'S courts my glorious dress
  May be the garment of Thy righteousness.

  Yea, Thou wilt answer for me, Righteous LORD;
  Thine all the merits, mine the great reward;
  Thine the sharp thorns, and mine the golden crown;
  Mine the life won, and Thine the life laid down.

  Nought can I bring, dear LORD, for all I owe,
  Yet let my full heart what it can bestow;
  Like Mary's gift let my devotion prove,
  Forgiven greatly, how I greatly love.

  --_Unidentified._


    "Come unto Me, ye weary,
    And I will give you rest."
  O blessed voice of JESUS,
    Which comes to hearts oppressed;
  It tells of benediction,
    Of pardon, grace, and peace,
  Of joy that hath no ending,
    Of love which cannot cease.

    "Come unto Me, ye wanderers,
    And I will give you light."
  O loving voice of JESUS,
    Which comes to cheer the night;
  Our hearts were filled with sadness,
    And we had lost our way;
  But He has brought us gladness
    And songs at break of day.

    "Come unto Me, ye fainting,
    And I will give you life;
  O cheering voice of JESUS,
    Which comes to aid our strife;
  The foe is stern and eager,
    The fight is fierce and long;
  But He has made us mighty,
    And stronger than the strong.

    "And whosoever cometh,
    I will not cast him out."
  O welcome voice of JESUS,
    Which drives away our doubt;
  Which calls us very sinners,
    Unworthy though we be,
  Of love so free and boundless,
    To come, dear LORD, to Thee.

  --_Unidentified._


EARTH'S BEAUTY.

  Where the wave murmurs not,
  Where the gust eddies not,
  Where the stream rushes not,
  Where the cliff shadows not,
  Where the wood darkens not,
          I would not be!

  Bright tho' the heavens were,
  Rich tho' the flowers there,
  Sweet tho' the fragrant air,
  And all as Eden fair,
  Yet as a dweller there,
          I would not be!

  O wave, and breeze, and rill, and rock, and wood,
  Was it not God Himself that called you GOOD?

  --_Horatius Bonar._


  "Servant of God, well done,
    Rest from thy loved employ;
  The battle fought, the vict'ry won,
    Enter thy Master's joy."

  The voice at midnight came,
    He started up to hear;
  A mortal arrow pierced his frame,
    He fell--but felt no fear.

  Tranquil amidst alarms,
    It found him on the field,
  A veteran slumbering on his arms,
    Beneath his red-cross shield.

  The pains of death are past,
    Labor and sorrow cease;
  And, life's long warfare closed at last,
    His soul is found in peace.

  Soldier of Christ, well done!
    Praise be thy new employ;
  And while eternal ages run,
    Rest in thy Saviour's joy.

  --_James Montgomery._


THE ANGEL'S STORY.

  Through the blue and frosty heavens
    Christmas stars were shining bright;
  Glistening lamps throughout the City
    Almost matched their gleaming light;
  While the winter snow was lying,
  And the winter winds were sighing,
    Long ago, one Christmas night.

  While, from every tower and steeple,
    Pealing bells were sounding clear,
  (Never with such tones of gladness,
    Save when Christmas time is near,)
  Many a one that night was merry
    Who had toiled through all the year.

  That night saw old wrongs forgiven,
    Friends, long parted, reconciled;
  Voices all unused to laughter,
    Mournful eyes that rarely smiled,
  Trembling hearts that feared the morrow,
    From their anxious thoughts beguiled.

  Rich and poor felt love and blessing
    From the gracious season fall;
  Joy and plenty in the cottage,
    Peace and feasting in the hall;
  And the voices of the children
    Ringing clear above it all!

  Yet one house was dim and darkened;
    Gloom, and sickness, and despair,
  Dwelling in the gilded chambers,
    Creeping up the marble stair,
  Even stilled the voice of mourning,--
    For a child lay dying there.

  Silken curtains fell around him,
    Velvet carpets hushed the tread,
  Many costly toys were lying,
    All unheeded, by his bed;
  And his tangled golden ringlets
    Were on downy pillows spread.

  The skill of that mighty City
    To save one little life was vain,--
  One little thread from being broken,
  One fatal word from being spoken;
    Nay, his very mother's pain,
  And the mighty love within her,
    Could not give him health again.

  So she knelt there still beside him,
    She alone with strength to smile,
  Promising that he should suffer
    No more in a little while,
  Murmuring tender song and story
    Weary hours to beguile.

  Suddenly an unseen Presence
    Checked those constant moaning cries,
  Stilled the little heart's quick fluttering,
    Raised those blue and wondering eyes,
  Fixed on some mysterious vision,
    With a startled sweet surprise.

  For a radiant angel hovered,
    Smiling, o'er the little bed;
  White his raiment, from his shoulders
    Snowy dove-like pinions spread,
  And a starlike light was shining,
    In a Glory round his head.

  While, with tender love, the angel,
    Leaning o'er the little nest,
  In his arms the sick child folding,
    Laid him gently on his breast,
  Sobs and wailings told the mother
    That her darling was at rest.

  So the angel, slowly rising,
    Spread his wings, and through the air
  Bore the child, and, while he held him
    To his heart with loving care,
  Placed a branch of crimson roses
    Tenderly beside him there.

  While the child, thus clinging, floated
    Towards the mansions of the Blest,
  Gazing from his shining guardian
    To the flowers upon his breast,
  Thus the angel spake, still smiling
    On the little heavenly guest:

  "Know, dear little one, that Heaven
    Does no earthly thing disdain,
  Man's poor joys find there an echo
    Just as surely as his pain;
  Love, on earth so feebly striving,
    Lives divine in Heaven again!

  "Once in that great town below us,
    In a poor and narrow street,
  Dwelt a little sickly orphan;
    Gentle aid, or pity sweet,
  Never in life's rugged pathway
    Guided his poor tottering feet.

  "All the striving anxious fore-thought
    That should only come with age
  Weighed upon his baby spirit,
    Showed him soon life's sternest page;
  Grim Want was his nurse, and Sorrow
    Was his only heritage.

  "All too weak for childish pastimes,
    Drearily the hours sped;
  On his hand so small and trembling
    Leaning his poor aching head,
  Or, through dark and painful hours,
    Lying sleepless on his bed.

  "Dreaming strange and longing fancies
    Of cool forests far away;
  And of rosy, happy children,
    Laughing merrily at play,
  Coming home through green lanes, bearing
    Trailing boughs of blooming May.

  "Scarce a glimpse of azure heaven
    Gleamed above that narrow street,
  And the sultry air of summer
    (That you call so warm and sweet)
  Fevered the poor orphan, dwelling
    In the crowded alley's heat.

  "One bright day, with feeble footsteps
    Slowly forth he tried to crawl,
  Through the crowded city's pathways,
    Till he reached a garden-wall,
  Where 'mid princely halls and mansions
    Stood the lordliest of all.

  "There were trees with giant branches,
    Velvet glades where shadows hide;
  There were sparkling fountains glancing
    Flowers, which in luxuriant pride
  Even wafted breaths of perfume
    To the child who stood outside.

  "He against the gate of iron
    Pressed his wan and wistful face,
  Gazing with an awe struck pleasure
    At the glories of the place;
  Never had his brightest day-dream
    Shone with half such wondrous grace.

  "You were playing in that garden,
    Throwing blossoms in the air,
  Laughing when the petals floated
    Downwards on your golden hair;
  And the fond eyes watching o'er you,
  And the splendor spread before you,
    Told a House's Hope was there.

  "When your servants, tired of seeing
    Such a face of want and woe,
  Turning to the ragged orphan,
    Gave him coin, and bade him go,
  Down his cheeks so thin and wasted
    Bitter tears began to flow.

  "But that look of childish sorrow
    On your tender child-heart fell,
  And you plucked the reddest roses
    From the tree you loved so well,
  Passed them through the stern cold grating,
    Gently bidding him 'Farewell!'

  "Dazzled by the fragrant treasure
    And the gentle voice he heard,
  In the poor forlorn boy's spirit,
    Joy, the sleeping Seraph, stirred;
  In his hand he took the flowers,
    In his heart the loving word.

  "So he crept to his poor garret;
    Poor no more, but rich and bright,
  For the holy dreams of childhood--
    Love, and Rest, and Hope, and Light--
  Floated round the orphan's pillow
    Through the starry summer night.

  "Day dawned, yet the visions lasted;
    All too weak to rise he lay;
  Did he dream that none spake harshly,
    All were strangely kind that day?
  Surely then his treasured roses
    Must have charmed all ills away.

  "And he smiled, though they were fading;
    One by one their leaves were shed;
  'Such bright things could never perish,
    They would bloom again,' he said.
  When the next day's sun had risen
    Child and flowers both were dead.

  "Know, dear little one! our Father
    Will no gentle deed disdain;
  Love on the cold earth beginning
    Lives divine in Heaven again,
  While the angel hearts that beat there
    Still all tender thoughts retain."

  So the angel ceased, and gently
    O'er his little burden leant;
  While the child gazing from the shining,
    Loving eyes that o'er him bent,
  To the blooming roses by him,
    Wondering what that mystery meant.

  Thus the radiant angel answered,
    And with tender meaning smiled:
  "Ere your childlike, loving spirit,
    Sin and the hard world defiled,
  God has given me leave to seek you,--
    I was once that little child!"

       *       *       *       *       *

  In the churchyard of that city
    Rose a tomb of marble rare
  Decked, as soon as Spring awakened,
    With her buds and blossoms fair,--
  And a humble grave beside it,--
    No one knew who rested there.

  --_Adelaide Procter._


  Jesus, the very thought of thee
    With sweetness fills my breast:
  But sweeter far thy face to see,
    And in thy presence rest.

  Nor voice can sing, nor heart can frame,
    Nor can the memory find
  A sweeter sound than thy blest name,
    O Saviour of mankind!

  O Hope of every contrite heart!
    O Joy of all the meek!
  To those who fall, how kind thou art!
    How good to those who seek!

  But what to those who find? Ah! this,
    Nor tongue nor pen can show;
  The love of Jesus, what it is,
    None but his loved ones know.

  Jesus, our only joy be thou,
    As thou our prize wilt be;
  Jesus, be thou our glory now,
    And through eternity.

  --_Bernard._


MORALITY.

  We cannot kindle when we will
    The fire which in the heart resides;
  The spirit bloweth and is still,
    In mystery our soul abides.
      But tasks in hours of insight willed
      Can be through hours of gloom fulfilled.

  With aching hands and bleeding feet
    We dig and heap, lay stone on stone;
  We bear the burden and the heat
    Of the long day, and wish 'twere done.
      Not till the hours of light return,
      All we have built do we discern.

  Then, when the clouds are off the soul,
    When thou dost bask in nature's eye,
  Ask how _she_ viewed thy self-control,
    Thy struggling, tasked morality.--
      Nature, whose free, light, cheerful air,
      Oft made thee, in thy gloom, despair.

  And she, whose censure thou dost dread,
    Whose eye thou wast afraid to seek,
  See, on her face a glow is spread,
      A strong emotion on her cheek!
    "Ah, child!" she cries, "that strife divine,
    Whence was it, for it is not mine?"

  There is no effort on _my_ brow;
    I do not strive, I do not weep:
  I rush with the swift spheres, and glow
    In joy, and when I will, I sleep.
      Yet that severe, that earnest air,
      I saw, I felt it once--but where?

  I knew not yet the gauge of time,
    No more the manacles of space;
  I felt it in some other clime,
    I saw it in some other place.
      'Twas when the heavenly house I trod,
      And lay upon the breast of God.

  --_Matthew Arnold._


MORNING.

  Hues of the rich unfolding morn,
  That, ere the glorious sun be born,
  By some soft touch invisible,
  Around his path are taught to swell;--

  Thou rustling breeze, so fresh and gay,
  That dancest forth at opening day,
  And brushing by with joyous wing,
  Wakenest each little leaf to sing;--

  Ye fragrant clouds of dewy steam,
  By which deep grove and tangled stream
  Pay, for soft rains in season given,
  Their tribute to the genial heaven;--

  Why waste your treasures of delight
  Upon our thankless, joyless sight,
  Who, day by day, to sin awake,
  Seldom of heaven and you partake?

  Oh! timely happy, timely wise,
  Hearts that with rising morn arise!
  Eyes that the beam celestial view,
  Which evermore makes all things new!

  New every morning is the love
  Our wakening and uprising prove:
  Through sleep and darkness safely brought,
  Restored to life, and power, and thought.

  New mercies, each returning day,
  Hover around us while we pray;
  New perils past, new sins forgiven,
  New thoughts of God, new hopes of heaven.

  If on our daily course our mind
  Be set, to hallow all we find,
  New treasures still, of countless price,
  God will provide for sacrifice.

  Old friends, old scenes, will lovelier be,
  As more of heaven in each we see:
  Some softening gleam of love and prayer
  Shall dawn on every cross and care.

  As for some dear familiar strain
  Untired we ask, and ask again.
  Ever, in its melodious store,
  Finding a spell unheard before.

  Such is the bliss of souls serene,
  When they have sworn and steadfast mean,
  Counting the cost, in all to espy
  Their God, in all themselves deny.

  O could we learn that sacrifice,
  What lights would all around us rise!
  How would our hearts with wisdom talk
  Along life's dullest, dreariest walk!

  We need not bid, for cloister'd cell,
  Our neighbor and our work farewell,
  Nor strive to wind ourselves too high
  For sinful man beneath the sky:

  The trivial round, the common task,
  Would furnish all we ought to ask;
  Room to deny ourselves; a road
  To bring us, daily, nearer God.

  Seek we no more; content with these,
  Let present rapture, comfort, ease,
  As heaven shall bid them, come and go:--
  The secret this of rest below.

  Only, O Lord, in Thy dear love
  Fit us for perfect rest above;
  And help us, this and every day,
  To live more nearly as we pray.

  --_John Keble._


DIVINE ORDER.

  'Tis first the true and then the beautiful,--
    Not first the beautiful and then the true;
  First the wild moor, with rock and reed and pool,
    Then the gay garden, rich in scent and hue.

  'Tis first the good and then the beautiful,--
    Not first the beautiful and then the good;
  First the rough seed, sown in the rougher soil,
    Then the flower-blossom, or the branching wood.

  Not first the glad and then the sorrowful,--
    But first the sorrowful, and then the glad;
  Tears for a day,--for earth of tears is full,
    Then we forget that we were ever sad.

  Not first the bright, and after that the dark,--
    But first the dark, and after that the bright;
  First the thick cloud, and then the rainbow's arc,
    First the dark grave, then resurrection-light.

  'Tis first the night,--stern night of storm and war,--
    Long nights of heavy clouds and veiled skies;
  Then the far sparkle of the Morning-star,
    That bids the saints awake and dawn arise.

  --_Horatius Bonar._


THE ISSUES OF LIFE AND DEATH.

  Oh, where shall rest be found--
    Rest for the weary soul?
  'Twere vain the ocean depths to sound,
    Or pierce to either pole.
  The world can never give
    The bliss for which we sigh:
  'Tis not the whole of life to live,
    Nor all of death to die.

  Beyond this vale of tears
    There is a life above,
  Unmeasured by the flight of years;
    And all that life is love.
  There is a death whose pang
    Outlasts the fleeting breath:
  Oh, what eternal horrors hang
    Around the second death!

  Lord God of truth and grace,
    Teach us that death to shun,
  Lest we be banished from Thy face,
    And evermore undone.
  Here would we end our quest;
    Alone are found in Thee,
  The life of perfect love,--the rest
    Of immortality.

  --_James Montgomery._


  Gracious Spirit, Love divine!
  Let Thy light within me shine;
  All my guilty fears remove,
  Fill me full of heaven and love.

  Speak Thy pardoning grace to me,
  Set the burdened sinner free;
  Lead me to the Lamb of God,
  Wash me in His precious blood.

  Life and peace to me impart,
  Seal salvation on my heart;
  Breathe Thyself into my breast,--
  Earnest of immortal rest.

  Let me never from Thee stray,
  Keep me in the narrow way;
  Fill my soul with love divine,
  Keep me, Lord, forever Thine.

  --_Stocker._


ST. AGNES' EVE.

  Deep on the convent roof the snows
    Are sparkling to the moon:
  My breath to heaven like vapor goes:
    May my soul follow soon!
  The shadows of the convent-towers
    Slant down the snowy sward,
  Still creeping with the creeping hours
    That lead me to my Lord:
  Make Thou my spirit pure and clear
    As are the frosty skies,
  Or this first snowdrop of the year
    That in my bosom lies.

  As these white robes are soil'd and dark,
    To yonder shining ground;
  As this pale taper's earthly spark,
    To yonder argent round;
  So shows my soul before the Lamb,
    My spirit before Thee;
  So in mine earthly house I am,
    To that I hope to be.
  Break up the heavens, O Lord! and far,
    Thro' all yon starlight keen,
  Draw me, Thy bride, a glittering star,
    In raiment white and clean.

  He lifts me to the golden doors;
    The flashes come and go;
  All heaven bursts her starry floors,
    And strews her lights below,
  And deepens on and up! the gates
    Roll back, and far within
  For me the Heavenly Bridegroom waits,
    To make me pure of sin.
  The sabbaths of Eternity,
    One sabbath deep and wide--
  A light upon the shining sea--
    The Bridegroom with His bride!

  --_Alfred Tennyson._


LIFE AND DEATH.

  "What is life, father?"
              "A Battle, my child,
    Where the strongest lance may fail,
  Where the wariest eyes may be beguiled,
    And the stoutest heart may quail.
  Where the foes are gathered on every hand,
    And rest not day or night,
  And the feeble little ones must stand
    In the thickest of the fight."

  "What is Death, father?"
              "The rest, my child,
    When the strife and toil are o'er;
  The angel of God, who, calm and mild,
    Says we need fight no more;
  Who, driving away the demon band,
    Bids the din of the battle cease;
  Takes banner and spear from our failing hand,
    And proclaims an eternal peace."

  "Let me die, father! I tremble, and fear
    To yield in that terrible strife!"
  "The crown must be won for Heaven, dear,
    In the battle-field of life;
  My child, though thy foes are strong and tried,
    He loveth the weak and small;
  The angels of heaven are on thy side,
    And God is over all!"

  --_Adelaide Procter._


THE ANGEL'S CALL.

    Come to the land of peace!
  Come where the tempest hath no longer sway,
  The shadow passes from the soul away,
    The sounds of weeping cease.

    Fear hath no dwelling there!
  Come to the mingling of repose and love,
  Breathed by the silent spirit of the dove
    Through the celestial air!

    Come to the bright and blest
  And crown'd for ever!--'midst that shining band,
  Gather'd to heaven's own wreath from every land,
    Thy spirit shall find rest!

    Thou hast been long alone:
  Come to thy mother!--on the sabbath shore,
  The heart that rock'd thy childhood, back once more
    Shall take its wearied one.

    In silence wert thou left!
  Come to thy sisters!--joyously again
  All the home voices, blest in one sweet strain,
    Shall greet their long-bereft.

    Over thine orphan head
  The storm hath swept as o'er a willow's bough:
  Come to thy father!--it is finish'd now;
    _Thy tears have all been shed_.

    In thy divine abode
  Change finds no pathway, mem'ry no dark trace,
  And, oh! bright victory--death by love no place!
    Come, Spirit! to thy God!

  --_Mrs. Hemans._


  I would not live alway: I ask not to stay,
  Where storm after storm rises dark o'er the way;
  The few lurid mornings that dawn on us here
  Are enough for life's woes, full enough for its cheer.

  I would not live alway, thus fettered by sin,
  Temptation without and corruption within:
  E'en the rapture of pardon is mingled with fears,
  And the cup of thanksgiving with penitent tears.

  I would not live alway; no, welcome the tomb;
  Since Jesus hath lain there, I dread not its gloom;
  There sweet be my rest, till He bid me arise
  To hail Him in triumph descending the skies.

  Who, who would live alway, away from his God!
  Away from yon heaven, that blissful abode,
  Where the rivers of pleasure flow o'er the bright plains,
  And the noontide of glory eternally reigns.

  Where the saints of all ages in harmony meet,
  Their Saviour and brethren transported to greet,
  While the anthems of rapture unceasingly roll,
  And the smile of the Lord is the feast of the soul.

  --_Muhlenberg._


  Jerusalem the golden,
    With milk and honey blest,
  Beneath thy contemplation
    Sink heart and voice oppressed.
  I know not, oh, I know not
    What joys await us there,
  What radiancy of glory,
    What bliss beyond compare.

  They stand, those halls of Sion,
    All jubilant with song,
  And bright with many an Angel,
    And all the Martyr throng;
  The Prince is ever in them,
    The daylight is serene;
  The pastures of the blessed
    Are decked in glorious sheen.

  There is the throne of David;
    And there, from care released,
  The shout of them that triumph,
    The song of them that feast;
  And they, who with their Leader
    Have conquered in the fight,
  For ever and for ever
    Are clad in robes of white.

  O sweet and blessed country,
    The home of GOD'S elect;
  O sweet and blessed country
    That eager hearts expect;
  JESU, in mercy bring us
    To that dear land of rest;
  Who art, with GOD the FATHER
    And SPIRIT, ever Blest.

  --_Bernard._


  When our heads are bowed with woe,
  When our bitter tears o'erflow,
  When we mourn the lost, the dear,
  Gracious Son of Mary, hear!
  Thou our throbbing flesh hast worn,
  Thou our mortal griefs hast borne,
  Thou hast shed the human tear:
  Gracious Son of Mary, hear!

  When the solemn death-bell tolls
  For our own departing souls,
  When our final doom is near,
  Gracious Son of Mary, hear!
  Thou hast bowed the dying head,
  Thou the blood of life hast shed,
  Thou hast filled a mortal bier:
  Gracious Son of Mary, hear!

  When the heart is sad within
  With the thought of all its sin,
  When the spirit shrinks with fear,
  Gracious Son of Mary, hear!
  Thou, the same, the grief hast known;
  Though the sins were not Thine own,
  Thou hast deigned their load to bear:
  Gracious Son of Mary, hear!

  --_Heber._


  O soul, soul, thou art passing,
    Just now, the border lands:
  Soul, soul, thy God is calling
    Thee, from the border lands.
  Soul, soul, what wilt thou answer,
    When thou shalt stand alone,
  Before thy God and Saviour,
    'Midst th' glories of the throne?

  How hast thou passed the border?
    What course pursued below?
  Of all I gave thee, warder,
    Hast conquered every foe?
  Soul, soul, hear Jesus calling!
    He waits for thee above,
  Oh! answer now, responding
    In faith, and hope, and love.

  --_Henry C. Graves._


THE LOOK.

  The Saviour looked on Peter. Aye, no word--
  No gesture of reproach! The heavens serene
  Though heavy with armed justice, did not lean
  Their thunders that way. The forsaken Lord
  _Looked_ only, on the traitor. None record
  What that look was; none guess: for those who have seen
  Wronged lovers loving through a death-pang keen,
  Or pale-cheeked martyrs smiling to a sword,
  Have missed Jehovah at the judgment call,
  And Peter, from the height of blasphemy--
  'I never knew this man' did quail and fall,
  As knowing straight THAT GOD,--and turned free
  And went out speechless from the face of all,
  And filled the silence, weeping bitterly.

  --_Elizabeth Barrett Browning._


THE MEANING OF THE LOOK.

  I think that look of Christ might seem to say--
  'Thou Peter! art thou then a common stone
  Which I at last must break my heart upon,
  For all God's charge to His high angels may
  Guard my foot better? Did I yesterday
  Wash _thy_ feet, my beloved, that they should run
  Quick to deny me 'neath the morning sun,
  And do thy kisses, like the rest, betray?
  The cock crows coldly.--Go and manifest
  A late contrition, but no bootless fear!
  For when thy final need is dreariest,
  Thou shalt not be denied, as I am here,
  My voice, to God and angels shall attest,
  '_Because I_ KNOW _this man, let him be clear_.'

  --_Elizabeth Barrett Browning._


COMFORT.

  Speak low to me, my Saviour, low and sweet
  From out the hallelujahs, sweet and low.
  Lest I should fear and fall, and miss Thee so
  Who art not missed by any that entreat.
  Speak to me as to Mary at Thy feet--
  And if no precious gums my hands bestow,
  Let my tears drop like amber, while I go
  In reach of Thy divinest voice complete
  In humanest affection--thus in sooth,
  To lose the sense of losing! As a child
  Whose song-bird seeks the wood for evermore,
  Is sung to in its stead by mother's mouth;
  Till, sinking on her breast, love reconciled,
  He sleeps the faster that he wept before.

  --_Elizabeth Barrett Browning._


SUBSTITUTION.

  When some beloved voice that was to you
  Both sound and sweetness, faileth suddenly,
  And silence against which you dare not cry,
  Aches round you like a strong disease and new--
  What hope? what help? what music will undo
  That silence to your sense? Not friendship's sigh--
  Nor reason's subtle count! Not melody
  Of viols, nor of pipes that Faunus blew--
  Not songs of poets, nor of nightingales,
  Whose hearts leap upward through the cypress trees
  To the clear moon: nor yet the spheric laws
  Self-chanted,--nor the angels' sweet All hails,
  Met in the smile of God. Nay, none of these.
  Speak THOU, availing Christ! and fill this pause.

  --_Elizabeth Barrett Browning._


TEARS.

  Thank God, bless God, all ye who suffer not
  More grief than ye can weep for. That is well--
  That is light grieving! lighter, none befell,
  Since Adam forfeited the primal lot.
  Tears! what are tears? The babe weeps in its cot,
  The mother singing; at her marriage-bell
  The bride weeps; and before the oracle
  Of high-famed hills, the poet has forgot
  Such moisture on his cheeks. Thank God for grace,
  Ye who weep only! If, as some have done,
  Ye grope tear-blinded in a desert place,
  And touch but tombs,--look up! Those tears will run
  Soon in long rivers down the lifted face,
  And leave the vision clear for stars and sun.

  --_Elizabeth Barrett Browning._


CHEERFULNESS TAUGHT BY REASON.

  I think we are too ready with complaint
  In this fair world of God's. Had we no hope
  Indeed beyond the zenith and the slope
  Of yon gray bank of sky, we might be faint
  To muse upon eternity's constraint
  Round our aspirant souls. But since the scope
  Must widen early, is it well to droop
  For a few days consumed in loss and taint?
  O pusillanimous Heart, be comforted,--
  And, like a cheerful traveler, take the road,
  Singing beside the hedge. What if the bread
  Be bitter in thy inn, and thou unshod
  To meet the flints?--At least it may be said,
  Because the way is _short_, I thank Thee, God!

  --_Elizabeth Barrett Browning._


THE PROSPECT.

  Methinks we do as fretful children do,
  Leaning their faces on the window pane
  To sigh the glass dim with their own breath's stain,
  And shut the sky and landscape from their view,
  And thus, alas! since God the maker drew
  A mystic separation 'twixt those twain,
  The life beyond us, and our souls in pain,
  We miss the prospect which we're called unto.
  By grief we're fools to use. Be still and strong,
  O man, my brother! hold thy sobbing breath,
  And keep thy soul's large window pure from wrong,--
  That so, as life's appointment issueth,
  Thy vision may be clear to watch along
  The sunset consummation-lights of death.

  --_Elizabeth Barrett Browning._


CONSOLATION.

  All are not taken! there are left behind
  Living Beloveds, tender looks to bring,
  And make the daylight still a happy thing,
  And tender voices to make soft the wind.
  But if it were not so--if I could find
  No love in all the world for comforting,
  Nor any path but hollowly did ring,
  Where 'dust to dust' the love from life disjoined--
  And if before these sepulchres unmoving
  I stood alone, (as some forsaken lamb
  Goes bleating up the moors in weary dearth)
  Crying 'Where are ye, O my loved and loving?'
  I know a voice would sound, 'Daughter, I AM.
  Can I suffice for HEAVEN, and not for earth?'

  --_Elizabeth Barrett Browning._


A THOUGHT OVER A CRADLE.

  I sadden when thou smilest to my smile,
  Child of my love! I tremble to believe
  That o'er the mirror of that eye of blue
  The shadow of my heart will always pass;--
  A heart that, from its struggle with the world,
  Comes nightly to thy guarded cradle home,
  And, careless of the staining dust it brings,
  Asks for its idol! Strange, that flowers of earth
  Are visited by every air that stirs,
  And drink its sweetness only, while the child
  That shuts within its breast a bloom for heaven,
  May take a blemish from the breath of love,
  And bear the blight forever.

                                I have wept
  With gladness at the gift of this fair child!
  My life is bound up in her. But, oh God!
  Thou know'st how heavily my heart at times
  Bears its sweet burthen; and if Thou hast given
  To nurture such as mine this spotless flower,
  To bring it unpolluted unto Thee,
  _Take Thou its love_, I pray thee! Give it light--
  Though, following the sun, it turn from me!--
  But, by the chord thus wrung, and by the light
  Shining about her, draw me to my child!
  And link us close, oh God, when near to heaven!

  --_N. P. Willis._


EVERLASTING BLESSINGS.

 "I know that whatsoever God doeth it shall be forever."
 --ECCLES. iii. 14.

  O what everlasting blessings God outpoureth on His own!
  Ours by promise true and faithful, spoken from eternal throne;
  Ours by His eternal purpose ere the universe had place;
  Ours by everlasting covenant, ours by free and royal grace.

  With salvation everlasting He shall save us, He shall bless
  With the largess of Messiah, everlasting righteousness;
  Ours the everlasting mercy all His wondrous dealings prove;
  Ours His everlasting kindness, fruit of everlasting love.

  In the Lord Jehovah trusting, everlasting strength have we;
  He Himself, our Sun, our Glory, everlasting Light shall be;
  Everlasting life is ours, purchased by The Life laid down;
  And our heads, oft bowed and weary, everlasting joy shall crown.

  We shall dwell with Christ forever, when the shadows flee away,
  In the everlasting glory of the everlasting day.
  Unto Thee, belovèd Saviour, everlasting thanks belong,
  Everlasting adoration, everlasting land and song.

  --_Frances Ridley Havergal._


THE MOTHER TO HER CHILD.

  They tell me thou art come from a far world,
  Babe of my bosom! that these little arms,
  Whose restlessness is like the spread of wings,
  Move with the memory of flights scarce o'er--
  That through these fringed lids we see the soul
  Steep'd in the blue of its remember'd home;
  And while thou sleep'st come messengers, they say,
  Whispering to thee--and 'tis then I see
  Upon thy baby lips that smile of heaven!
  And what is thy far errand, my fair child?
  Why away, wandering from a home of bliss,
  To find thy way through darkness home again?
  Wert thou an untried dweller in the sky?
  Is there, betwixt the cherub that thou wert,
  The cherub and the angel thou may'st be,
  A life's probation in this sadder world?
  Art thou with memory of two things only,
  Music and light, left upon earth astray,
  And, by the watchers at the gate of heaven,
  Look'd for with fear and trembling?
                              God! who gavest
  Into my guiding hand this wanderer,
  To lead her through a world whose darkling paths
  I tread with steps so faltering--leave not me
  To bring her to the gates of heaven, alone!
  I feel my feebleness. Let _these_ stay on--
  The angels who now visit her in dreams!
  Bid them be near her pillow till in death
  The closed eyes look upon Thy face once more!
  And let the light and music, which the world
  Borrows of heaven, and which her infant sense
  Hails with sweet recognition, be to her
  A voice to call her upward, and a lamp
  To lead her steps unto Thee!

  --_N. P. Willis._


GIVE ME THY HEART.

  With echoing steps the worshipers
    Departed one by one;
  The organ's pealing voice was stilled,
    The vesper hymn was done;
  The shadows fell from roof and arch,
    Dim was the incensed air,
  One lamp alone, with trembling ray,
    Told of the Presence there!

  In the dark church she knelt alone;
    Her tears were falling fast;
  "Help, Lord," she cried, "the shades of death
    Upon my soul are cast!
  Have I not shunned the path of sin,
    And chosen the better part?"--
  What voice came through the sacred air?--
    "_My child, give me thy Heart!_"

  "Have I not laid before Thy shrine
    My wealth, O Lord?" she cried;
  "Have I kept aught of gems or gold,
    To minister to pride?
  Have I not bade youth's joys retire,
    And vain delights depart?"--
  But sad and tender was the voice,--
    "_My child, give me thy Heart!_"

  "Have I not, Lord, gone day by day
    Where Thy poor children dwell;
  And carried help, and gold, and food?
    O Lord, Thou knowest it well?
  From many a house, from many a soul,
    My hand bids care depart:"--
  More sad, more tender was the voice,--
    "_My child, give me thy Heart!_"

  "Have I not worn my strength away
    With fast and penance sore?
  Have I not watched and wept?" she cried;
    "Did Thy dear saints do more?
  Have I not gained Thy grace, O Lord,
    And won in heaven my part?"--
  It echoed louder in her soul,--
    "_My child, give me thy Heart!_"

  "For I have loved thee with a love
    No mortal heart can show;
  A love so deep, my saints in heaven
    Its depths can never know;
  When pierced and wounded on the cross,
    Man's sin and doom were mine,
  I loved Thee with undying love,
    Immortal and divine!

  "I loved Thee ere the skies were spread;
    My soul bears all thy pains;
  To gain thy love my sacred heart
    In earthly shrines remains:
  Vain are thy offerings, vain thy sighs,
    Without one gift divine;
  Give it my child, thy heart to me,
    And it shall rest in mine!"

  In awe she listened, and the shade
    Passed from her soul away;
  In low and trembling voice she cried,--
    "Lord, help me to obey!
  Break Thou the chains of earth, O Lord,
    That bind and hold my heart;
  Let it be Thine, and Thine alone,
    Let none with Thee have part.

  "Send down, O Lord, Thy sacred fire!
    Consume and cleanse the sin
  That lingers still within its depths;
    Let heavenly love begin.
  That sacred flame Thy saints have known,
    Kindle, O Lord, in me,
  Thou above all the rest forever,
    And all the rest in Thee."

  The blessing fell upon her soul;
    Her angel by her side
  Knew that the hour of peace was come;
    Her soul was purified:
  The shadows fell from roof and arch,
    Dim was the incensed air,--
  But Peace went with her as she left
    The sacred Presence there!

  --_Adelaide Procter._


  One sweetly solemn thought
    Comes to me o'er and o'er:
  I'm nearer home to-day
    Than I have been before;
  Nearer my Father's house,
    Where many mansions be,
  Nearer the great white throne,
    Nearer the crystal sea.

  Nearer the bound of life,
    Where burdens are laid down,
  Nearer to leave the cross,
    And nearer to the crown;
  But lying dark between,
    And winding through the night,
  The deep and unknown stream
    Crossed ere we reach the light.

  Jesus, confirm my trust;
    Strengthen the hand of faith
  To feel Thee, when I stand
    Upon the shore of death.
  Be near me when my feet
    Are slipping o'er the brink;
  For I am nearer home,
    Perhaps, than now I think.

  --_Phoebe Cary._


LEFT BEHIND.

  Look at this starbeam! From its place of birth,
    It has come down to greet us here below;
  Now it alights unwearied on this earth,
    Nor storm nor night have quenched its heavenly glow.

  Unbent before the winter's rugged blast,
    Unsoiled by this sad planet's tainted air,
  It sparkles out from yon unmeasured vast,
    Bright 'mid the brightest, 'mid the fairest fair.

  Undimmed it reaches me; but yet alone:
    The thousand gay companions that took wing
  Along with it have perished one by one,
    Scattered o'er space like blossoms of the spring.

  Some to yon nearer orbs have sped their course,
    Yon city's smoke has quenched a thousand more;
  Myriads in yon dark cloud have spent their force;
    A few stray gleams are all that reach our shore.

  And with us! How many, who began
    Life's race with us, are dropping by the way;
  Losing themselves in darkness one by one,
    From the glad goal departing wide astray;

  When we shall reach the kingdom of the blest,
    How few who started with us shall we find
  Arriving or arrived, for glorious rest!
    How many shall we mourn as left behind!

  --_Horatius Bonar._


  Lord, what a change within us one short hour
  Spent in Thy presence will prevail to make--
  What heavy burdens from our bosoms take,
  What parched grounds refresh, as with a shower!
  We kneel, and all around us seems to lower;
  We rise, and all, the distant and the near,
  Stands forth in sunny outline, brave and clear;
  We kneel how weak, we rise how full of power!
  Why, therefore, should we do ourselves this wrong,
  Or others--that we are not always strong;
  That we are ever overborne with care;
  That we should ever weak or heartless be,
  Anxious or troubled, when with us is prayer,
  And joy, and strength, and courage, are with Thee?

  --_Richard Chenevix Trench._


OUR FATHER.

  Oh that I loved the Father
    With depth of conscious love,
  As steadfast, bright, and burning
    As seraphim above!
  But how can I be deeming
    Myself a loving child,
  When here, and there, and everywhere,
    My thoughts are wandering wild?

  It is my chief desire
    To know Him more and more,
  To follow Him more fully
    Than I have done before:
  My eyes are dim with longing
    To see the Lord above;
  But oh! I fear from year to year,
    I do not truly love.

  'For when I try to follow
    The mazes of my soul,
  I find no settled fire of love
    Illumining the whole;
  'Tis all uncertain twilight,
    No clear and vivid glow;
  Would I could bring to God my King
    The perfect love I owe!'

  The gift is great and holy,
    'Twill not be sought in vain;
  But look up for a moment
    From present doubt and pain,
  And calmly tell me _how_ you love
    The dearest ones below?
  "This love," say you, "is deep and true!"
    But tell me how you know?

  How do you love your father?
    "Oh in a thousand ways!
  I think there's no one like him,
    So worthy of my praise,
  I tell him all my troubles,
    And ask him what to do;
  I know that he will give to me
    His counsel kind and true.

  "Then every little service
    Of hand, or pen, or voice,
  Becomes, if he has asked it,
    The service of my choice.
  And from my own desires
    'Tis not so hard to part,
  If once I know I follow so
    His wiser will and heart."

  'I know the flush of pleasure
    That o'er my spirit came,
  When far from home with strangers,
    They caught my father's name;
  And for his sake the greeting
    Was mutual and sweet,
  For if they knew my father too,
    How glad we were to meet!

  'And when I heard them praising
    His music and his skill,
  His words of holy teaching,
    Life-preaching, holier still,
  How eagerly I listened
    To every word that fell!
  'Twas joy to hear that name so dear
    Both known and loved so well.

  'Once I was ill and suffering,
    Upon a foreign shore,
  And longed to see my father,
    As I never longed before.
  He came: his arm around me;
    I leaned upon his breast;
  I did not long to feel more strong,
    So sweet that childlike rest.

  'The thought of home is pleasant,
    Yet I should hardly care
  To leave my present fair abode,
    Unless I knew him there.
  All other love and pleasure
    Can never crown the place,
  A home to me it cannot be
    Without my fathers face.'

  This is no fancy drawing,
    But every line is true,
  And you have traced as strong a love
    As ever daughter knew.
  But though its fond expression
    Is rather lived than told,
  You do not say from day to day,
    'I fear my love is cold!'

  You do not think about it;
    'Tis never in your thought--
  'I wonder if I love him
    As deeply as I ought?
  I know his approbation
    Outweighs all other meed,
  That his employ is always joy,
    But do I love indeed?'

  Now let your own words teach you
    The higher, holier claim
  Of Him, who condescends to bear
    A Father's gracious name.
  No mystic inspiration,
    No throbbings forced and wild
  He asks, but just the loving trust
    Of a glad and grateful child.

  The rare and precious moments
    Of realizing thrill,
  Are but love's blissful blossom,
    To brighten, not to fill
  The storehouse and the garner
    With ripe and pleasant fruit;
  And not alone by these is shown
    The true and holy root.

  What if your own dear father
    Were summoned to his rest!
  One lives, by whom that bitterest grief
    Could well be soothed and blessed.
  Like balm upon your sharpest woe
    His still, small voice would fall;
  His touch would heal, you could not feel
    That you had lost your all.

  But what if He, the Lord of life,
    Could ever pass away!
  What if _His_ name were blotted out,
    And you could know to-day
  There was _no_ heavenly Father,
    No Saviour dear and true,
  No throne of grace, no resting-place,
    No living God for you!

  We need not dwell in horror
    On what can never be,
  Such endless desolation,
    Such undreamt misery.
  Our reason could not bear it,
    And all the love of earth,
  In fullest bliss, compared with this,
    Were nothing, _nothing_ worth.

  Then bring your poor affection,
    And try it by this test;
  The hidden depth is fathomed,
    You see you love Him _best_!
  'Tis but a feeble echo
    Of His great love to you,
  Yet in His ear each note is dear,
    Its harmony is true.

  It is an uncut jewel,
    All earth-incrusted now,
  But He will make it glorious,
    And set it on His brow:
  'Tis but a tiny glimmer,
    Lit from the light above,
  But it shall blaze through endless days,
    A star of perfect love.

  --_Frances Ridley Havergal._


  Thou art the Way: to thee alone
    From sin and death we flee;
  And he who would the Father seek,
    Must seek Him, Lord, by Thee.

  Thou art the Truth; Thy word alone
    True wisdom can impart;
  Thou only canst instruct the mind,
    And purify the heart.

  Thou art the Life: the rending tomb
    Proclaims Thy conquering arm;
  And those who put their trust in Thee
    Nor death nor hell shall harm.

  Thou art the Way, the Truth, the Life:
    Grant us to know that Way;
  That Truth to keep, that Life to win,
    Which leads to endless day.

  --_Doane._


THE NIGHT AND THE MORNING.

  To dream a troubled dream, and then awaken
    To the soft gladness of a summer sky;
  To dream ourselves alone, unloved, forsaken,
    And then to wake 'mid smiles, and love, and joy;

  To look at evening on the storm's rude motion,
    The cloudy tumult of the fretted deep;
  And then at day-burst upon that same ocean,
    Soothed to the stillness of its stillest sleep--

  So runs our course--so tells the church her story,
    So to the end shall it be ever told;
  Brief shame on earth, but after shame the glory,
    That wanes not, dims not, never waxes old.

  Lord Jesus, come, and end this troubled dreaming.
    Dark shadows vanish, rosy twilight break!
  Morn of the true and real, burst forth, calm-beaming.
    Day of the beautiful, arise, awake!

  --_Horatius Bonar._


IN AFFLICTION.

  Father! Thy will, not mine, be done!
  So prayed on earth Thy suffering Son,
    So, in His name I pray:
  The spirit fails, the flesh is weak;
  Thy help in agony I seek;
    O! take this cup away.

  If such be not Thy sovereign will,
  Thy wiser purpose then fulfil;
    My wishes I resign,
  Into Thine hands my soul commend,
  On Thee for life or death depend;
    Thy will be done, not mine.

  --_James Montgomery._


  Give to the winds thy fears;
    Hope, and be undismay'd;
  God hears thy sighs, and counts thy tears.
    God shall lift up thy head.

  Through waves, through clouds and storms,
    He gently clears thy way;
  Wait thou His time; so shall this night
    Soon end in joyous day.

  Still heavy is thy heart?
    Still sink thy spirits down?
  Cast off the weight, let fear depart,
    Bid every care be gone.

  What though thou rulest not!
    Yet heaven, and earth, and hell
  Proclaim, God sitteth on the throne,
    And ruleth all things well.

  --_Gerhard._


  Where wilt thou put thy trust?
    In a frail form of clay,
  That to its element of dust
    Must soon resolve away?

  Where will thou cast thy care?
    Upon an erring heart,
  Which hath its own sore ills to bear,
    And shrinks from sorrow's dart?

  No! place thy trust above
    This shadowy realm of night,
  In Him, whose boundless power and love
    Thy confidence invite.

  His mercies still endure
    When skies and stars grow dim,
  His changeless promise standeth sure,
    Go,--cast thy care on Him.

  --_Mrs. Sigourney._


  One there is above all others,
    Well deserves the name of Friend;
  His is love beyond a brother's,
    Costly, free and knows no end.

  Which of all our friends, to save us,
    Could or would have shed his blood?
  But our Jesus died to have us
    Reconciled in Him to God.

  When He lived on earth abasèd,
    Friend of sinners was His name;
  Now, above all glory raisèd,
    He rejoices in the same.

  Could we bear from one another
    What He daily bears from us?
  Yet this glorious Friend and Brother
    Loves us though we treat Him thus.

  Oh for grace our hearts to soften!
    Teach us, Lord, at length to love!
  We, alas! forget too often
    What a Friend we have above.

  --_Newton._


  God moves in a mysterious way
    His wonders to perform;
  He plants His footsteps in the sea,
    And rides upon the storm.

  Deep in unfathomable mines
    Of never-failing skill,
  He treasures up His vast designs,
    And works His sovereign will.

  Ye fearful saints, fresh courage take;
    The clouds ye so much dread
  Are big with mercy, and will break
    In blessings on your head.

  Judge not the Lord by feeble sense,
    But trust Him for His grace;
  Behind a frowning providence
    He hides a smiling face.

  His purposes will ripen fast,
    Unfolding every hour,
  The bud may have a bitter taste,
    But sweet will be the flower.

  Blind unbelief is sure to err,
    And scan His work in vain;
  God is His own interpreter,
    And he will make it plain.

  --_Cowper._


  Onward, Christian, though the region
    Where thou art be drear and lone;
  God has set a guardian legion
    Very near thee; press thou on.

  Listen, Christian; their hosanna
    Rolleth o'er thee: "God is love,"
  Write upon thy red-cross banner,
    "Upward ever; heaven's above."

  By the thorn-road, and none other,
    Is the mount of vision won;
  Tread it without shrinking, brother;
    Jesus trod it; press thou on.

  Be this world the wiser, stronger,
    For thy life of pain and peace,
  While it needs thee; oh! no longer
    Pray thou for thy quick release.

  Pray thou, Christian, daily rather,
    That thou be a faithful son;
  By the prayer of Jesus, "Father,
    Not my will, but thine, be done."

  --_Johnson._


THANKFULNESS.

  My God, I thank Thee who hast made
      The Earth so bright;
  So full of splendor and of joy,
      Beauty and light;
  So many glorious things are here,
      Noble and right!

  I thank Thee, too, that Thou hast made
      Joy to abound:
  So many gentle thoughts and deeds
      Circling us round,
  That in the darkest spot of Earth
      Some love is found.

  I thank Thee _more_ than all our joy
      Is touched with pain;
  That shadows fall on brightest hours;
      That thorns remain;
  So that Earth's bliss may be our guide,
      And not our chain.

  For Thou who knowest, Lord, how soon
      Our weak heart clings,
  Hast given us joys, tender and true,
      Yet all with wings,
  So that we see, gleaming on high,
      Diviner things!

  I thank Thee, Lord, that Thou hast kept
      The best in store;
  We have enough, yet, not too much
      To long for more:
  A yearning for a deeper peace,
      Not known before.

  I thank Thee, Lord, that here our souls,
      Though amply blest,
  Can never find, although they seek,
      A perfect rest,--
  Nor ever shall, until they lean
      On Jesus' breast!

  --_Adelaide Procter._


  Does the Gospel word proclaim
    Rest for those that weary be?
  Then, my soul put in thy claim--
    Sure that promise speaks to thee!

  Marks of grace I cannot show,
    All polluted is my best;
  But I weary am, I know,
    And the weary long for rest.

  Burdened with a load of sin,
    Harassed with tormenting doubt,
  Hourly conflicts from within,
    Hourly crosses from without;--

  All my little strength is gone,
    Sink I must without supply;
  Sure upon the earth is none
    Can more weary be than I.

  In the ark the weary dove
    Found a welcome resting-place;
  Thus my spirit longs to prove
    Rest in Christ, the Ark of grace.

  Tempest-tossed I long have been,
    And the flood increases fast;
  Open, Lord, and take me in,
    Till the storm be overpast!

  --_Newton._

  My God, my Father, while I stray
  Far from my home on life's rough way,
  Oh, teach me from my heart to say,
  "Thy will be done, Thy will be done!"

  What though in love or grief I sigh
  For friends beloved no longer nigh;
  Submissive still would I reply,
  "Thy will be done, Thy will be done!"

  If thou shouldst call me to resign
  What most I prize,--it ne'er was mine;
  I only yield thee what was Thine:
  "Thy will be done, Thy will be done!"

  If but my fainting heart be blest
  With Thy sweet Spirit for its guest,
  My God, to Thee I leave the rest;
  "Thy will be done, Thy will be done!"

  --_C. Elliott._


THE SEEN AND THE UNSEEN.

 ON THE GREAT EXHIBITION, 1851.

  Ha! yon burst of crystal splendor,
    Sunlight, starlight, blent in one;
  Starlight set in arctic azure,
    Sunlight from the burning zone!
  Gold and silver, gems and marble,
    All creation's jewelry;
  Earth's uncovered waste of riches,
    Treasures of the ancient sea.
            Heir of glory,
    What is that to thee and me?

  Iris and Aurora braided--
    How the woven colors shine!
  Snow-gleams from an Alpine summit.
    Torch-light from a spar-roofed mine.
  Like Arabia's matchless palace,
    Child of magic's strong decree,
  One vast globe of living sapphire,
    Floor, walls, columns, canopy.
            Heir of glory,
    What is that to thee and me?

  Forms of beauty, shapes of wonder,
    Trophies of triumphant toil;
  Never Athens, Rome, Palmyra,
    Gazed on such a costly spoil.
  Dazzling the bewildered vision,
    More than princely pomp we see:
  What the blaze of the Alhambra,
    Dome of emerald, to thee?
            Heir of glory,
    What is that to thee and me?

  Farthest cities pour their riches,
    Farthest empires muster here,
  Art her jubilee proclaiming
    To the nations far and near.
  From the crowd in wonder gazing,
    Science claims the prostrate knee;
  This her temple, diamond-blazing,
    Shrine of her idolatry.
            Heir of glory,
    What is that to thee and me?

  Listen to her tale of wonder,
    Of her plastic, potent spell;
  'Tis a big and braggart story,
    Yet she tells it fair and well.
  She the gifted, gay magician,
    Mistress of earth, air, and sea;
  This majestic apparition,
    Offspring of her sorcery.
            Heir of glory,
    What is that to thee and me?

  What to that for which we're waiting
    Is this glittering earthly toy?
  Heavenly glory, holy splendor,
    Sum of grandeur, sum of joy.
  Not the gems that time can tarnish,
    Not the hues that dim and die,
  Not the glow that cheats the lover,
    Shaded with mortality.
            Heir of glory,
    That shall be for thee and me!

  Not the light that leaves us darker,
    Nor the gleams that come and go,
  Not the mirth whose end is madness,
    Not the joy whose fruit is woe;
  Not the notes that die at sunset,
    Not the fashion of a day;
  But the everlasting beauty,
    And the endless melody.
            Heir of glory,
    That shall be for thee and me!

  City of the pearl-bright portal;
    City of the jasper wall;
  City of the golden pavement;
    Seat of endless festival.
  City of Jehovah, Salem,
    City of eternity,
  To thy bridal-hall of gladness,
    From this prison would I flee.
            Heir of glory,
    That shall be for thee and me!

  Ah! with such strange spells around me,
    Fairest of what earth calls fair,
  How I need thy fairer image,
    To undo the syren snare?
  Lest the subtle serpent-tempter
    Lure me with his radiant lie;
  As if sin were sin no longer,
    Life were no more vanity.
            Heir of glory,
    What is that to thee and me?

  Yes, I need _thee_, heavenly city,
    My low spirit to upbear;
  Yes, I need thee--earth's enchantments
    So beguile me with their glare.
  Let me see thee, then these fetters
    Break asunder; I am free;
  Then this pomp no longer chains me;
    Faith has won the victory.
            Heir of glory,
    That shall be for thee and me?

  Soon where earthly beauty blinds not,
    No excess of brilliance palls,
  Salem, city of the holy,
    We shall be within thy walls!
  There, beside you crystal river,
    There, beneath life's wondrous tree,
  There, with naught to cloud or sever--
    Ever with the Lamb to be!
            Heir of glory,
    That shall be for thee and me!

  --_Horatius Bonar._


  I am far frae my hame, an' I'm weary aftenwhiles,
  For the langed-far hame-bringin', an' my Father's welcome smiles,
  An' I'll ne'er be fu' content, until mine een do see
  The gowden gates o' heav'n an' my ain countrie.
  The earth is fleck'd wi' flowers, mony-tinted, fresh an' gay,
  The birdies warble blithely, for my Faither made them sae:
  But these sights an' these soun's will as naething be to me,
  When I hear the angels singin' in my ain countrie.

  I've His gude word of promise that some gladsome day, the King
  To His ain royal palace His banished hame will bring;
  Wi' een an' wi' hert rinning ower, we shall see
  The King in His beauty, in oor ain countrie.
  My sins hae been mony, an' my sorrows hae been sair,
  But there they'll never vex me, nor be remembered mair
  For His bluid has made me white, and His han' shall dry my e'e,
  When He brings me hame at last, to my ain countrie.

  Sae little noo I ken, o' yon blessed, bonnie place,
  I only ken it's Hame, whaur we shall see His face:
  It wad surely be eneuch for ever mair to be
  In the glory o' His presence, in oor ain countrie.
  Like a bairn to his mither, a wee birdie to its nest,
  I wad fain' be gangin' noo, unto my Saviour's breast,
  For He gathers in His bosom witless, worthless lambs like me,
  And carries them Himsel', to His ain countrie.

  He is faithfu' that hath promised, an' He'll surely come again,
  He'll keep His tryst wi' me, at what hour I dinna ken;
  But He bids me still to wait, an' ready aye to be,
  To gang at ony moment to my ain countrie.
  Sae I'm watching aye, an' singin' o' my hame as I wait
  For the soun'ing o' His footfa' this side the gowden gate:
  God gie His grace to ilka ane wha' listens noo to me,
  That we a' may gang in gladness to oor ain countrie.

  (_Unidentified._)


THE SINNER'S FRIEND.

  O thou, the contrite sinner's Friend,
  Who loving, lov'st them to the end,
  On this alone my hopes depend,
    That Thou wilt plead for me!

  When, weary in the Christian race,
  Far-off appears my resting-place,
  And fainting, I mistrust Thy grace--
    Then, Saviour, plead for me!

  When I have err'd and gone astray
  Afar from Thine own and Wisdom's way,
  And see no glimmering guiding ray--
    Still, Saviour, plead for me!

  When Satan, by my sins made bold,
  Strives from Thy cross to loose my hold,
  Then with Thy pitying arms enfold,
    And plead, oh, plead for me!

  And when my dying hour draws near,
  Darken'd with anguish, guilt, and fear,
  Then to my fainting sight appear,
    Pleading in Heaven for me!

  When the full light of Heavenly day
  Reveals my sins in dread array,
  Say, Thou hast wash'd them all away;
    Oh, say, Thou plead'st for me!

  --_Charlotte Elliott._


EVENING PRAYER AT A GIRL'S SCHOOL.

 "Now in thy youth, beseech of Him,
   Who giveth, upbraiding not,
 That His light in thy heart become not dim,
   And His love be unforgot;
 And thy God, in the darkest of days, will be
 Greenness, and beauty, and strength to thee."

 --_Bernard Barton._

  Hush! 'tis a holy hour--the quiet room
    Seems like a temple, while yon soft lamp sheds
  A faint and starry radiance, through the gloom
    And the sweet stillness, down on bright young heads,
  With all their clustering locks, untouched by care,
  And bowed, as flowers are bowed with night--in prayer.

  Gaze on,--'tis lovely! childhood's lip and cheek,
    Mantling beneath its earnest brow of thought--
  Gaze--yet what seest thou in those fair, and meek,
    And fragile things, as but for sunshine wrought?
  Thou seest what grief must nurture for the sky,
  What death must fashion for eternity!

  Oh! joyous creatures, that will sink to rest,
    Lightly, when those pure orisons are done,
  As birds with slumber's honey-dew oppressed,
    'Midst the dim folded leaves, at set of sun--
  Lift up your hearts! though yet no sorrow lies
  Dark in the summer-heaven of those clear eyes;

  Though fresh within your breasts th' untroubled springs
    Of hope make melody where'er ye tread;
  And o'er your sleep bright shadows, from the wings
    Of spirits visiting but youth, be spread;
  Yet in those flute-like voices, mingling low,
  Is woman's tenderness--how soon her woe!

  Her lot is on you--silent tears to weep,
    And patient smiles to wear through suffering's hour,
  And sunless riches, from affection's deep,
    To pour on broken reeds--a wasted shower?
  And to make idols, and to find them clay,
  And to bewail that worship--therefore pray!

  Her lot is on you--to be found untired,
    Watching the stars out by the bed of pain,
  With a pale cheek, and yet a brow inspired,
    And a true heart of hope, though hope be vain.
  Meekly to bear with wrong, to cheer decay,
  And oh! to love through all things--therefore pray!

  And take the thought of this calm vesper time,
    With its low murmuring sounds and silvery light,
  On through the dark days fading from their prime,
    As a sweet dew to keep your souls from blight.
  Earth will forsake--oh! happy to have given
  Th' unbroken heart's first fragrance unto Heaven.

  --_Mrs. Hemans._


  I worship thee, sweet Will of God!
    And all thy ways adore;
  And every day I live, I seem
    To love thee more and more.

  Thou wert the end, the blessed rule
    Of our Saviour's toils and tears;
  Thou wert the passion of His Heart
    Those three-and-thirty years.

  And He hath breathed into my soul
    A special love of thee,
  A love to lose my will in His,
    And by that loss be free.

  I love to see thee bring to nought
    The plans of wily men;
  When simple hearts outwit the wise,
    Oh thou art loveliest then!

  The headstrong world, it presses hard
    Upon the church full oft,
  And then how easily thou turn'st
    The hard ways into soft.

  I love to kiss each print where thou
    Hast set thine unseen feet;
  I cannot fear thee, blessèd will,
    Thine empire is so sweet.

  When obstacles and trials seem
    Like prison-walls to be,
  I do the little I can do,
    And leave the rest to thee.

  I know not what it is to doubt;
    My heart is ever gay;
  I run no risk, for come what will,
    Thou always hast thy way.

  I have no cares, O blessèd will,
    For all my cares are thine;
  I live in triumph, Lord, for thou
    Hast made thy triumphs mine.

  And when it seems no chance or change
    From grief can set me free,
  Hope finds its strength in helplessness,
    And gayly waits on thee.

  Man's weakness waiting upon God
    Its end can never miss,
  For men on earth no work can do
    More angel-like than this.

  Ride on, ride on triumphantly,
    Thou glorious Will! ride on;
  Faith's pilgrim sons behind thee take
    The road that thou hast gone.

  He always wins who sides with God,
    To him no chance is lost;
  God's will is sweetest to him when
    It triumphs at his cost.

  Ill, that God blesses, is our good,
    And unblest good is ill;
  And all is right that seems most wrong,
    If it be his dear will!

  --_F. W. Faber._


THE PEACE OF GOD.

  We ask for Peace, O Lord!
    Thy children ask Thy peace;
  Not what the world calls rest,
    That toil and care should cease,
  That through bright sunny hours
    Calm Life should fleet away,
  And tranquil night should fade
      In smiling day;--
  It is not for such Peace that we would pray.

  We ask for Peace, O Lord!
    Yet not to stand secure,
  Girt round with iron Pride,
    Contented to endure:
  Crushing the gentle strings
    That human hearts should know,
  Untouched by others' joy
      Or others' woe;--
  Thou, O dear Lord, wilt never teach us so.

  We ask Thy Peace, O Lord!
    Through storm, and fear, and strife,
  To light and guide us on,
    Through a long, struggling life:
  While no success or gain
    Shall cheer the desperate fight,
  Or nerve, what the world calls,
      Our wasted might:--
  Yet pressing through the darkness to the light.

  It is Thine own, O Lord,
    Who toil while others sleep,
  Who sow with loving care
    What other hands shall reap;
  They lean on Thee entranced,
    In calm and perfect rest:
  Give us that Peace, O Lord,
      Divine and blest,
  Thou keepest for those hearts who love Thee best.

  --_Adelaide Procter._


LISTENING IN DARKNESS--SPEAKING IN LIGHT.

 "What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light."
 MATT. x. 27.

  He hath spoken in the darkness
    In the silence of the night,
  Spoken sweetly of the Father.
    Words of life and love and light,
  Floating through the sombre stillness
    Came the loved and loving Voice,
  Speaking peace and solemn gladness,
    That His children might rejoice.
  What He tells thee in the darkness--
    Songs He giveth in the night--
  Rise and speak it in the morning,
    Rise and sing them in the light!

  He hath spoken in the darkness,
    In the silence of thy grief,
  Sympathy so deep and tender,
    Mighty for thy heart-relief.
  Speaking in thy night of sorrow
    Words of comfort and of calm,
  Gently on thy wounded spirit
    Pouring true and healing balm.
  What He tells thee in the darkness,
    Weary watcher for the day,
  Grateful lip and life should utter
    When the shadows flee away.

  He is speaking in the darkness,
    Though thou canst not see His face,
  More than angels ever needed,
    Mercy, pardon, love and grace.
  Speaking of the many mansions,
    Where, in safe and holy rest,
  Thou shalt be with Him forever,
    Perfectly and always blest.
  What He tells thee in the darkness,
    Whispers through Time's lonely night,
  Thou shalt speak in glorious praises
    In the everlasting light.

  --_Frances Ridley Havergal._


THE MORNING STAR.

  There is a morning star, my soul,
    There is a morning star;
  'Twill soon be near and bright, tho' now,
    It seem so dim and far.
  And when time's stars have come and gone,
  And every mist of earth has flown,
  That better star shall rise
  On this world's clouded skies,
                        To shine forever!

  The night is well nigh spent, my soul,
    The night is well nigh spent,
  And soon above our heads shall shine
      A glorious firmament;
  A sky all glad, and pure, and bright,
  The Lamb, once slain, its perfect light;
  A star without a cloud,
  Whose light no mists enshroud,
                        Descending never.

  --_Horatius Bonar._


  God of the world! Thy glories shine,
  Through earth and heaven, with rays divine:
  Thy smile gives beauty to the flower,
  Thine anger to the tempest power.

  God of our lives! the throbbing heart
  Doth at Thy beck its action start--
  Throbs on, obedient to Thy will,
  Or ceases, at Thy fatal chill.

  God of eternal life! Thy love
  Doth every stain of sin remove;
  The cross, the cross--its hallowed light
  Shall drive from earth her cheerless night.

  God of all goodness! to the skies
  Our hearts in grateful anthems rise;
  And to Thy service shall be given
  The rest of life--the whole of heaven.

  --_S. S. Cutting._


  There is a God!--all nature speaks,
    Through earth, and air, and seas, and skies;
  See! from the clouds His glory breaks,
    When the first beams of morning rise.

  The rising sun, serenely bright,
    O'er the wide world's extended frame,
  Inscribes, in characters of light,
    His mighty Maker's glorious name.

  Ye curious minds, who roam abroad,
    And trace creation's wonders o'er,
  Confess the footsteps of your God,
    And bow before Him, and adore.

  --_Steele._


  Lord, how mysterious are Thy ways!
  How blind are we! how mean our praise!
  Thy steps, can mortal eyes explore?
  'Tis ours to wonder and adore.

  Great God! I would not ask to see
  What in my coming life shall be;
  Enough for me if love divine,
  At length through every cloud shall shine.

  Are darkness and distress my share?
  Then let me trust Thy guardian care;
  If light and bliss attend my days
  Then let my future hours be praise.

  Yet this my soul desires to know,
  Be this my only wish below,
  That Christ be mine;--this great request
  Grant, bounteous God, and I am blest!

  --_Steele._


THE SHADOW OF THE ROCK.

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              Stay, Pilgrim, stay!
  Night treads upon the heels of day;
  There is no other resting-place this way.
              The Rock is near,
              The well is clear--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock.

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              The desert wide
  Lies round thee like a trackless tide,
  In waves of sand forlornly multiplied.
              The sun is gone,
              Thou art alone--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock!

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              All come alone;
  All, ever since the sun hath shone,
  Who traveled by this road have come alone.
              Be of good cheer--
              A home is here--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock?

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              Night veils the land;
  How the palms whisper as they stand!
  How the well tinkles faintly through the sand!
              Cool water take
              Thy thirst to slake--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock!

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              Abide! Abide!
  This Rock moves ever at thy side,
  Pausing to welcome thee at eventide.
              Ages are laid
              Beneath its shade--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock!

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              Always at hand,
  Unseen it cools the noon-tide land,
  And quells the fire that flickers in the sand.
              It comes in sight
              Only at night--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock!

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              'Mid skies storm-riven
  It gathers shadows out of heaven,
  And holds them o'er us all night cool and even.
              Through the charmed air
              Dew falls not there--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock!

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              To angels' eyes
  This Rock its shadow multiplies,
  And at this hour in countless places lies.
              One Rock, one shade,
              O'er thousands laid--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock!

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              To weary feet,
  That have been diligent and fleet,
  The sleep is deeper and the shade more sweet.
              O weary, rest!
              Thou art sore pressed--
          Rest in the shadow of the Rock!

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              Thy bed is made;
  Crowds of tired souls like thine are laid
  This night beneath the self-same placid shade.
              They who rest here
              Wake with Heaven near--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock!

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              Pilgrim! sleep sound;
  In night's swift hours with silent bound,
  The Rock will put thee over leagues of ground,
              Gaining more way
              By night than day--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock!

            The Shadow of the Rock!
              One day of pain,
  Thou scarce wilt hope the Rock to gain,
  Yet there wilt sleep thy last sleep on the plain;
              And only wake
              In Heaven's daybreak--
          Rest in the Shadow of the Rock.

  --_F. W. Faber._


ELEGY.

  Sleep on my love, in thy cold bed,
  Never to be disquieted!
  My last good night! Thou wilt not wake
  Till I thy fate shall overtake,
  Till age, or grief, or sickness, must
  Marry my body to that dust
  It so much loves, and fill the room
  My heart keeps empty in thy tomb.
  Stay for me there; I will not fail
  To meet thee in that narrow vale;
  And think not much of my delay:
  I am already on the way,
  And follow thee with all the speed
  Desire can make, or sorrows breed.
  For hark! my heart, like a soft drum,
  Beats my approach, tells thee I come;
  And howe'er long my marches be,
  I shall at last lie down by thee.

       *       *       *       *       *

  Each minute is a short degree,
  And every hour a step toward thee;
  At night when I betake to rest,
  Next morn I rise nearer my west
  Of life, almost by eight hours' sail,
  Than when sleep breathed his drowsy gale.
  The thought of this bids me go on,
  And wait my dissolution
  With hope and comfort. Dear, forgive
  The crime: I am content to live
  Divided, with but half a heart,
  Till we shall meet and never part.

  --_Henry King._


REST YONDER.

  This is not my place of resting
    Mine's a city yet to come;
  Onwards to it I am hasting--
    On to my eternal home.

  In it all is light and glory,
    O'er it shines a nightless day;
  Every trace of sin's sad story,
    All the curse, has passed away.

  There the Lamb, our Shepherd, leads us,
    By the streams of life along;
  On the freshest pastures feeds us,
    Turns our sighing into song.

  Soon we pass this desert dreary,
    Soon we bid farewell to pain;
  Never more be sad or weary,
    Never, never sin again.

  --_Horatius Bonar._


  Soldiers of Christ, arise,
    And gird your armor on,
  Strong in the strength which God supplies,
    Through His eternal Son:

  Strong in the Lord of hosts,
    And in His mighty power,
  Who in the strength of Jesus trusts,
    Is more than conqueror.

  Leave no unguarded place,
    No weakness of the soul;
  Take every virtue, every grace,
    And fortify the whole.

  Stand, then, in His great might,
    With all His strength endued,
  And take, to arm you for the fight,
    The panoply of God:

  That, having all things done,
    And all your conflicts past,
  You may o'ercome thro' Christ alone,
    And stand complete at last.

  From strength to strength go on;
    Wrestle, and fight, and pray;
  Tread all the powers of darkness down,
    And win the well-fought day.

  --_C. Wesley._


  Thy will be done! I will not fear
    The fate provided by Thy love;
  Though clouds and darkness shroud me here,
    I know that all is bright above.

  The stars of heaven are shining on,
    Though these frail eyes are dimmed with tears;
  The hopes of earth indeed are gone,
    But are not ours the immortal years?

  Father! forgive the heart that clings,
    Thus trembling, to the things of time;
  And bid my soul, on angel wings,
    Ascend into a purer clime.

  --_J. Roscoe._


  No, no, it is not dying
    To go unto our God,
  This gloomy earth forsaking,
  Our journey homeward taking
    Along the starry road.

  No, no, it is not dying
    Heaven's citizen to be;
  A crown immortal wearing,
  And rest unbroken sharing,
    From care and conflict free.

  No, no, it is not dying
    To hear this gracious word,
  "Receive a Father's blessing,
  Forever more possessing
    The favor of thy Lord."

  No, no, it is not dying
    The Shepherd's voice to know;
  His sheep he ever leadeth,
  His peaceful flock he feedeth,
    Where living pastures grow.

  No, no, it is not dying
    To wear a lordly crown;
  Among God's people dwelling,
  The glorious triumph swelling
    Of Him whose sway we own.

  Oh, no, this is not dying,
    Thou Saviour of mankind!
  There, streams of love are flowing,
  No hindrance ever knowing;
    Here drops alone we find.

  --_Malan._


  Watchman! tell us of the night,
    What its signs of promise are.--
  Traveler! o'er yon mountain's height,
    See that glory-beaming star!--
  Watchman! does its beauteous ray
    Aught of hope or joy foretell?
  Traveler! yes; it brings the day--
    Promised day of Israel.

  Watchman! tell us of the night,
    Higher yet that stars ascends.--
  Traveler! blessedness and light,
    Peace and truth its course portends!
  Watchman! will its beams alone
    Gild the spot that gave them birth?--
  Traveler! ages are its own,
    See, it bursts o'er all the earth.

  Watchman! tell us of the night,
    For the morning seems to dawn.--
  Traveler! darkness takes its flight,
    Doubt and terror are withdrawn.--
  Watchman! let thy wanderings cease;
    Hie thee to thy quiet home.--
  Traveler! lo! the Prince of Peace,
    Lo! the son of God is come.

  --_Bowring._


THE SPIRIT ACCOMPANYING THE WORD OF GOD.

  O spirit of the living God,
    In all Thy plenitude of grace,
  Where'er the foot of man hath trod,
    Descend on our apostate race.

  Give tongues of fire, and hearts of love,
    To preach the reconciling word;
  Give power and unction from above,
    Where'er the joyful sound is heard.

  Be darkness, at Thy coming, light;
    Confusion--order, in Thy path;
  Souls without strength inspire with might,
    Bid mercy triumph over wrath.

  O, Spirit of the Lord! prepare
    All the round earth her God to meet;
  Breathe Thou abroad like morning air,
    Till hearts of stone begin to beat.

  Baptize the nations; far and nigh,
    The triumphs of the cross record;
  The name of Jesus glorify,
    Till every kindred call Him Lord.

  God from eternity hath willed,
    All flesh shall His salvation see;
  So be the Father's love fulfilled,
    The Saviour's sufferings crowned through Thee.

  --_James Montgomery._

[Illustration: APPARITION TO THE SHEPHERDS.]


THE CLOUDLESS.

  No shadows yonder!
    All light and song;
  Each day I wonder,
    And say, How long
  Shall time me sunder
    From that dear throng?

  No weeping yonder?
    All fled away;
  While here I wander
    Each weary day,
  And sigh as I ponder
    My long, long stay.

  No partings yonder!
    Time and space never
  Again shall sunder;
    Hearts cannot sever;
  Dearer and fonder
    Hands clasp for ever.

  None wanting yonder,
    Bought by the Lamb!
  All gathered under
    The evergreen palm;
  Loud as night's thunder
    Ascends the glad psalm.

  _--Horatius Bonar._


COMFORT.

  Hast thou o'er the clear heaven of thy soul
        Seen tempests roll?
  Hast thou watched all the hopes thou wouldst have won
        Fade, one by one?
  Wait till the clouds are past, then raise thine eyes
        To bluer skies.

  Hast thou gone sadly through a dreary night,
        And found no light,
  No guide, no star, to cheer thee through the plain,
        No friend, save pain?
  Wait, and thy soul shall see, when most forlorn,
        Rise a new morn.

  Hast thou beneath another's stern control
        Bent thy sad soul,
  And wasted sacred hopes and precious tears?
        Yet calm thy fears,
  For thou canst gain, even from the bitterest part,
        A stronger heart.

  Has Fate o'erwhelmed thee with some sudden blow?
        Let thy tears flow;
  But know when storms are past, the heavens appear
        More pure, more clear;
  And hope, when farthest from their shining rays,
        For brighter days.

  Hast thou found life a cheat, and worn in vain
        Its iron chain?
  Has thy soul bent beneath earth's heavy bond?
        Look thou beyond;
  If life is bitter--_there_ forever shine
        Hopes more divine.

  Art thou alone, and does thy soul complain
        It lives in vain?
  Not vainly does he live who can endure.
        O be thou sure,
  That he who hopes and suffers here, can earn
        A sure return.

  Hast thou found naught within thy troubled life
        Save inward strife?
  Hast thou found all she promised thee, Deceit,
        And Hope a cheat?
  Endure, and there shall dawn within thy breast
        Eternal rest!

  _--Adelaide Procter._


"MASTER, SAY ON!"

  Master, speak! Thy servant heareth,
    Waiting for Thy gracious word,
  Longing for Thy voice that cheereth;
    Master! let it now be heard.
  I am listening, Lord, for Thee;
  What hast Thou to say to me?

  Often through my heart is pealing
    Other voices, Lord, than Thine,
  Many an unwilled echo stealing
    From the walls of this Thy shrine:
  Let Thy longed-for accents fall;
  Master, speak! and silence all.

  Master, speak! I do not doubt Thee,
    Though so tearfully I plead;
  Saviour, Shepherd! Oh, without Thee
    Life would be a blank indeed!
  But I long for fuller light,
  Deeper love, and clearer sight.

  Resting on the 'faithful saying,'
    Trusting what Thy gospel saith,
  On Thy written promise staying
    All my hope in life and death,
  Yet I long for something more
  From Thy love's exhaustless store.

  Speak to me by name, O Master,
    Let me _know_ it is to me;
  Speak, that I may follow faster,
    With a step more firm and free,
  Where the Shepherd leads the flock,
  In the shadow of the Rock.

  Master, speak! I kneel before Thee,
    Listening, longing, waiting still;
  Oh, how long shall I implore Thee
    This petition to fulfil!
  Hast Thou not one word for me?
  Must my prayer unanswered be?

  Master, speak! Though least and lowest
    Let me not unheard depart;
  Master, speak! for oh! Thou knowest
    All the yearning of my heart,
  Knowest all its truest need;
  Speak! and make me blest indeed.

  Master, speak! and make me ready,
    When Thy voice is truly heard,
  With obedience glad and steady
    Still to follow every word.
  I am listening, Lord, for Thee;
  Master speak, oh, speak to me!

  _--Frances Ridley Havergal._


THE LEPER.

 St. Luke. Chapter xvii.

  Room for the leper! "Room!" And, as he came,
  The cry pass'd on--"Room for the leper! Room!"
  Sunrise was slanting on the city gates
  Rosy and beautiful, and from the hills
  The early risen poor were coming in,
  Duly and cheerfully to their toil, and up
  Rose the sharp hammer's clink, and the far hum
  Of moving wheels and multitudes astir,
  And all that in a city murmur swells--
  Unheard but by the watcher's weary ear,
  Aching with night's dull silence, or the sick
  Hailing the welcome light and sounds that chase
  The death-like images of the dark away.
  "Room for the leper!" And aside they stood--
  Matron, and child, and pitiless manhood--all
  Who met him on his way--and let him pass.
  And onward through the open gate he came,
  A leper with the ashes on his brow,
  Sackcloth about his loins, and on his lip
  A covering, stepping painfully and slow,
  And with a difficult utterance, like one
  Whose heart is like an iron nerve put down,
  Crying, "Unclean! Unclean!"

                      'Twas now the first
  Of the Judean autumn, and the leaves,
  Whose shadows lay so still upon his path,
  Had put their beauty forth beneath the eye
  Of Judah's loftiest noble. He was young,
  And eminently beautiful, and life
  Mantled in eloquent fullness on his lip,
  And sparkled in his glance; and in his mien
  There was a gracious pride that every eye
  Follow'd with benisons--and this was he!
  With the soft airs of summer there had come
  A torpor on his frame, which not the speed
  Of his best barb, nor music, nor the blast
  Of the bold huntsman's horn, nor aught that stirs
  The spirit to its bent, might drive away.
  The blood beat not as wont within his veins;
  Dimness crept o'er his eye; a drowsy sloth
  Fetter'd his limbs like palsy, and his mien,
  With all its loftiness, seem'd struck with eld.
  Even his voice was changed--a languid moan
  Taking the place of the clear silver key;
  And brain and sense grew faint, as if the light
  And very air were steep'd in sluggishness.
  He strove with it awhile, as manhood will,
  Ever too proud for weakness, till the rein
  Slacken'd within his grasp, and in its poise
  The arrowy jereed like an aspen shook.
  Day after day, he lay as if in sleep.
  His skin grew dry and bloodless, and white scales,
  Circled with livid purple, cover'd him.
  And then his nails grew black, and fell away
  From the dull flesh about them, and the hues
  Deepen'd beneath the hard unmoisten'd scales,
  And from their edges grew the rank white hair,
  --And Helon was a leper!

                    Day was breaking,
  When at the altar of the temple stood
  The holy priest of God. The incense lamp
  Burn'd with a struggling light, and a low chant
  Swell'd through the hollow arches of the roof
  Like an articulate wail, and there, alone,
  Wasted to ghastly thinness, Helon knelt.
  The echoes of the melancholy strain
  Died in the distant aisles, and he rose up,
  Struggling with weakness, and bow'd down his head
  Unto the sprinkled ashes, and put off
  His costly raiment for the leper's garb;
  And with the sackcloth round him, and his lip
  Hid in a loathsome covering, stood still,
  Waiting to hear his doom:--

      Depart! depart, O child
  Of Israel, from the temple of thy God!
  For He has smote thee with His chastening rod;
      And to the desert-wild,
  From all thou lov'st, away thy feet must flee,
  That from thy plague His people may be free.

      Depart! and come not near
  The busy mart, the crowded city, more;
  Nor set thy foot a human threshold o'er;
      And stay thou not to hear
  Voices that call thee in the way: and fly
  From all who in the wilderness pass by.

      Wet not thy burning lip
  In streams that to a human dwelling glide;
  Nor rest thee where the covert fountains hide;
      Nor kneel thee down to dip
  The water where the pilgrim bends to drink,
  By desert well or river's grassy brink;

      And pass thou not between
  The weary traveler and the cooling breeze;
  And lie not down to sleep beneath the trees
      Where human tracks are seen;
  Nor milk the goat that browseth on the plain
  Nor pluck the standing corn, or yellow grain.

      And now depart! and when
  Thy heart is heavy, and thine eyes are dim,
  Lift up thy prayer beseechingly to Him
      Who, from the tribes of men,
  Selected thee to feel His chastening rod.
  Depart! O leper! and forget not God!

  And he went forth--alone! not one of all
  The many whom he loved, nor she whose name
  Was woven in the fibres of the heart
  Breaking within him now, to come and speak
  Comfort unto him. Yea--he went his way,
  Sick, and heart-broken, and alone--to die!
  For God had cursed the leper!

                              It was noon,
  And Helon knelt beside a stagnant pool
  In the lone wilderness, and bathed his brow,
  Hot with the burning leprosy, and touch'd
  The loathsome water to his fever'd lips,
  Praying that he might be so blest--to die!
  Footsteps approach'd, and, with no strength to flee,
  He drew the covering closer on his lip,
  Crying, "Unclean! unclean!" and in the folds
  Of the coarse sackcloth shrouding up his face,
  He fell upon the earth till they should pass.
  Nearer the stranger came, and bending o'er
  The leper prostrate form, pronounced his name--
  "Helon!" The voice was like the master-tone
  Of a rich instrument--most strangely sweet;
  And the dull pulses of disease awoke,
  And for a moment beat beneath the hot
  And leprous scales with a restoring thrill.
  "Helon! arise!" and he forgot his curse,
  And rose and stood before Him.

                           Love and awe
  Mingled in the regard of Helon's eye
  As he beheld the stranger. He was not
  In costly raiment clad, nor on his brow
  The symbol of a princely lineage wore;
  No followers at His back, nor in His hand
  Buckler, or sword, or spear,--yet in His mien
  Command sat throned serene, and if He smiled,
  A kingly condescension graced His lips,
  The lion would have crouch'd to in his lair.
  His garb was simple, and His sandals worn;
  His stature modell'd with a perfect grace;
  His countenance the impress of a God,
  Touch'd with the opening innocence of a child;
  His eye was blue and calm, as is the sky
  In the serenest noon; His hair unshorn
  Fell to His shoulders; and His curling beard
  The fulness of perfected manhood bore.
  He look'd on Helon earnestly awhile,
  As if His heart were moved, and stooping down
  He took a little water in His hand
  And laid it on his brow, and said, "Be clean!"
  And lo! the scales fell from him, and his blood
  Coursed with delicious coolness through his veins
  And his dry palms grew moist, and on his brow
  The dewy softness of an infant's stole.
  His leprosy was cleansed, and he fell down
  Prostrate at Jesus' feet and worship'd Him.

  --_N. P. Willis._


THINGS HOPED FOR.

  These are the crowns that we shall wear,
    When all thy saints are crowned;
  These are the palms that we shall bear
    On yonder holy ground.

  Far off as yet, reserved in heaven,
    Above that veiling sky,
  They sparkle, like the stars of even,
    To hope's far-piercing eye.

  These are the robes, unsoiled and white,
    Which then we shall put on,
  When, foremost 'mong the sons of light,
    We sit on yonder throne.

  That city with the jeweled crest,
    Like some new-lighted sun;
  A blaze of burning amethyst--
    Ten thousand orbs in one;

  That is the city of the saints,
    Where we so soon shall stand,
  When we shall strike these desert-tents,
    And quit this desert-sand.

  These are the everlasting hills,
    With summits bathed in day:
  The slopes down which the living rills,
    Soft-lapsing, take their way.

  Fair vision! how thy distant gleam
    Brightens time's saddest hue;
  Far fairer than the fairest dream,
    And yet so strangely true!

  Fair vision! how thou liftest up
    The drooping brow and eye;
  With the calm joy of thy sure hope
    Fixing our souls on high.

  Thy light makes even the darkest page
    In memory's scroll grow fair;
  Blanching the lines which tears and age
    Had only deepened there.

  With thee in view, the rugged slope
    Becomes a level way,
  Smoothed by the magic of thy hope,
    And gladdened by thy ray.

  With thee in view, how poor appear
    The world's most winning smiles;
  Vain is the tempter's subtlest snare,
    And vain hell's varied wiles.

  Time's glory fades; its beauty now
    Has ceased to lure or blind;
  Each gay enchantment here below
    Has lost its power to bind.

  Then welcome toil, and care, and pain!
    And welcome sorrow too!
  All toil is rest, all grief is gain,
    With such a prize in view.

  Come crown and throne, come robe and palm!
    Burst forth glad stream of peace!
  Come, holy city of the Lamb!
    Rise, Sun of Righteousness!

  When shall the clouds that veil thy rays
    For ever be withdrawn?
  Why dost thou tarry, day of days?
    When shall thy gladness dawn?

  --_Horatius Bonar._


THE SURE REFUGE.

  Jesus, my Saviour, look on me!
    For I am weary and oppressed;
  I come to cast myself on Thee;
    Thou art my Rest.

  Look down on me, for I am weak;
    I feel the toilsome journey's length;
  Thine aid omnipotent I seek;
    Thou art my Strength.

  I am bewildered on my way;
    Dark and tempestuous is the night;
  Oh! shed thou forth some cheering ray;
    Thou art my Light.

  I hear the storms around me rise,
    But when I dread the impending shock,
  My spirit to her refuge flies;
    Thou art my Rock.

  When the accuser flings his darts,
    I look to Thee--my terrors cease,--
  Thy cross a hiding-place imparts;
    Thou art my Peace.

  Standing alone on Jordan's brink,
    In that tremendous, latest strife,
  Thou wilt not suffer me to sink;
    Thou art my Life.

  Thou wilt my every want supply,
    Even to the end, whate'er befall
  Through life in death eternally;
    Thou art my All.

  --_Unidentified._


UNFRUITFULNESS.

  My soul! what hast thou done for God?
    Look o'er thy misspent years and see;
  Sum up what thou hast done for God,
    And then what God has done for thee.

  He made thee, when He might have made
    A soul that would have loved Him more;
  He rescued thee from nothingness,
    And set thee on life's happy shore.

  He placed an angel at thy side,
    And strewed joys round thee on thy way;
  He gave thee rights thou couldst not claim,
    And life, free life, before thee lay.

  Had God in heaven no work to do,
    But miracles of love for thee?
  No world to rule, no joy in self,
    And in his own infinity?

  So must it seem to our blind eyes;
    He gave His love no Sabbath rest,
  Still plotting happiness for men,
    And now designs to make them blest.

  From out His glorious bosom came
    His only, His eternal Son;
  He freed the race of Satan's slaves,
    And with His blood sin's captives won.

  The world rose up against his love:
    New love the vile rebellion met,
  As though God only looked at sin,
    Its guilt to pardon and forget.

  For His Eternal Spirit came,
    To raise the thankless slaves to sons,
  And with the sevenfold gifts of love
    To crown His own elected ones.

  Men spurned His grace, their lips blasphemed
    The Love who made Himself their slave;
  They grieved that blessed Comforter,
    And turned against Him what He gave.

  Yet still the sun is fair by day,
    The moon still beautiful by night;
  The world goes round, and joy with it,
    And life, free life, is men's delight.

  No voice God's wondrous silence breaks;
    No hand put forth, His anger tells;
  And He, the Omnipotent and Dread,
    On high in humblest patience dwells.

  The Son hath come; and maddened sin
    The world's Creator crucified;
  The Spirit comes, and stays, while men,
    His presence doubt, His gifts deride.

  And now the Father keeps Himself,
    In patient and forbearing love,
  To be His creature's heritage,
    In that undying life above.

  O wonderful, O passing thought!
    The love that God hath had for thee,
  Spending on thee no less a sum
    Than the undivided Trinity.

  Father and Son, and Holy Ghost,
    Exhausted for a thing like this,--
  The world's whole government disposed
    For one ungrateful creature's bliss.

  What hast thou done for God, my soul?
    Look o'er thy misspent years and see;
  Cry for thy worse than nothingness;
    Cry for His mercy upon thee.

  --_F. W. Faber._


  Some murmur when their sky is clear,
    And wholly bright to view,
  If one small speck of dark appear
    In their great heaven of blue.
  And some with thankful love are filled,
    If but one streak of light,
  One ray of God's good mercy, gild
    The darkness of their night.

  In palaces are hearts that ask,
    In discontent and pride,
  Why life is such a dreary task,
    And all good things denied:
  And hearts in poorest huts admire
    How love has in their aid
  (Love that not ever seems to tire)
    Such rich provision made.

  --_Richard Chenevix Trench._


IF THOU COULDST KNOW.

  I think if thou couldst know,
    O soul that will complain,
  What lies concealed below
    Our burden and our pain;
    How just our anguish brings
    Nearer those longed-for things
    We seek for now in vain,--
  I think thou wouldst rejoice, and not complain.

  I think if thou couldst see,
    With thy dim mortal sight,
  How meanings, dark to thee,
    Are shadows hiding light;
    Truth's efforts crossed and vexed,
    Life's purpose all perplexed,--
    If thou couldst see them right,
  I think that they would seem all clear, and wise, and bright.

  And yet thou canst not know,
    And yet thou canst not see;
  Wisdom and sight are slow
    In poor humanity.
    If thou couldst _trust_, poor soul,
    In Him who rules the whole,
    Thou wouldst find peace and rest:
  Wisdom and sight are well, but Trust is best.

  --_Adelaide Procter._


COMPENSATION.

  O the compensating springs! O the balance-wheels of life,
  Hidden away in the workings under the seeming strife!
  Slowing the fret and the friction, weighting the whirl and the force,
  Evolving the truest power from each unconscious source.

  How shall we gauge the whole, who can only guess a part?
  How can we read the life, when we cannot spell the heart?
  How shall we measure another, we who can never know
  From the juttings above the surface the depth of the vein below?

  Even our present way is known to ourselves alone,
  Height and abyss and torrent, flower and thorn and stone;
  But we gaze on another's path as a far-off mountain scene,
  Scanning the outlined hills, but never the vales between.

  How shall we judge their present, we who have never seen
  That which is past forever, and that which might have been?
  Measuring by ourselves, unwise indeed are we,
  Measuring what we _know_ by what we can hardly _see_.

  Ah! if we knew it all, we should surely understand
  That the balance of sorrow and joy is held with an even hand,
  That the scale of success or loss shall never overflow,
  And that compensation is twined with the lot of high and low.

  The easy path in the lowland hath little of grand or new,
  But a toilsome ascent leads on to a wide and glorious view;
  Peopled and warm is the valley, lonely and chill the height,
  But the peak that is nearer the storm-cloud is nearer the stars of light.

  Launch on the foaming stream that bears you along like a dart,--
  There is danger of rapid and rock, there is tension of muscle and heart;
  Glide on the easy current, monotonous, calm, and slow,
  You are spared the quiver and strain in the safe and quiet flow.

  O the sweetness that dwells in a harp of many strings,
  While each, all vocal with love, in tuneful harmony rings!
  But O, the wail and the discord, when one and another is rent,
  Tensionless, broken or lost, from the cherished instrument.

  For rapture of love is linked with the pain or fear of loss,
  And the hand that takes the crown must ache with many a cross;
  Yet he who hath never a conflict hath never a victor's palm,
  And only the toilers know the sweetness of rest and calm.

  Only between the storms can the Alpine traveler know
  Transcendent glory of clearness, marvels of gleam and glow;
  Had he the brightness unbroken of cloudless summer days,
  This had been dimmed by the dust and veil of a brooding haze.

  Who would dare the choice, _neither_ or _both_ to know,
  The finest quiver of joy or the agony-thrill of woe?
  Never the exquisite pain, then never the exquisite bliss,
  For the heart that is dull to that can never be strung to this.

  Great is the peril or toil if the glory or gain be great;
  Never an earthly gift without responsible weight;
  Never a treasure without a following shade of care;
  Never a power without the lurk of a subtle snare.

  For the swift is not the safe, and the sweet is not the strong;
  The smooth is not the short, and the keen is not the long;
  The much is not the most, and the wide is not the deep,
  And the flow is never a spring, when the ebb is only neap.

  Then, hush! oh, hush! for the Father knows what thou knowest not,
  The weed and the thorn and the shadow lurked with the fairest lot;
  Knows the wisest exemption from many an unseen snare,
  Knows what will keep thee nearest, knows what thou couldst not bear.

  Hush! oh, hush! for the Father portioneth as He will,
  To all His beloved children, and shall they not be still?
  Is not His will the wisest, is not His choice the best?
  And in perfect acquiescence is there not perfect rest?

  Hush! oh, hush! for the Father, whose ways are true and just,
  Knoweth and careth and loveth, and waits for thy perfect trust;
  The cup He is slowly filling shall soon be full to the brim,
  And infinite compensations forever be found in Him.

  Hush! oh, hush! for the Father hath fullness of joy in store,
  Treasures of power and wisdom, and pleasures for evermore;
  Blessing and honor and glory, endless, infinite bliss;--
  Child of His love and His choice, oh, canst thou not wait for this?

  --_Francis Ridley Havergal._


VALIANT FOR THE TRUTH.

  Fight the good fight; lay hold
    Upon eternal life;
  Keep but thy shield, be bold,
    Stand through the hottest strife;
  Invincible while in the field,
  Thou canst not fail, unless thou yield.

  No force of earth or hell,
    Though fiends with men unite,
  Truth's champion can compel,
    However pressed, to flight;
  Invincible upon the field,
  He cannot fall, unless he yield.

  Apollyon's arm may shower
    Darts thick as hail, and hide
  Heaven's face, as in the hour,
    When Christ on Calvary died;
  No power of darkness in the field
  Can tread thee down, unless thou yield.

  Trust in thy Saviour's might;
    Yea, till thy latest breath,
  Fight, and like Him in fight,
    By dying conquer death;
  And all-victorious in the field,
  Then with thy sword, thy spirit yield.

  Great words are these, and strong;
    Yet Lord, I look to thee,
  To whom alone belong
    Valor and victory.
  With thee, my Captain in the field,
  I must prevail, I cannot yield.

  --_James Montgomery._


ADVENT.

  The Church has waited long
    Her absent Lord to see;
  And still in loneliness she waits,
    A friendless stranger she.
  Age after age has gone,
    Sun after sun has set,
  And still in weeds of widowhood
    She weeps a mourner yet.
        Come, then, Lord Jesus, come!

  Saint after saint on earth
    Has lived, and loved, and died;
  And as they left us one by one,
    We laid them side by side;
  We laid them down to sleep,
    But not in hope forlorn;
  We laid them but to ripen there,
    Till the last glorious morn.
        Come, then, Lord Jesus, come!

  The serpent's brood increase,
    The powers of hell grow bold,
  The conflict thickens, faith is low,
    And love is waxing cold.
  How long, O Lord our God,
    Holy and true, and good,
  Wilt Thou not judge Thy suffering Church,
    Her sighs and tears and blood?
        Come, then, Lord Jesus, come!

  We long to hear Thy voice,
    To see Thee face to face,
  To share Thy crown and glory then,
    As now we share Thy grace.
  Should not the loving bride
    The absent bridegroom mourn?
  Should she not wear the weeds of grief
    Until her Lord return?
        Come, then, Lord Jesus, come!

  The whole creation groans,
    And waits to hear that voice,
  That shall restore her comeliness,
    And make her wastes rejoice.
  Come Lord and wipe away
    The curse, the sin, the stain,
  And make this blighted world of ours
    Thine own fair world again.
        Come, then, Lord Jesus, come!

  --_Horatius Bonar._


A BETHLEHEM HYMN.

 "Mundum implens, in præsepio jacens."--AUGUSTINE.

  He has come! the Christ of God;--
  Left for us his glad abode
  Stooping from his throne of bliss,
  To this darksome wilderness.

  He has come! the Prince of Peace;--
  Come to bid our sorrows cease;
  Come to scatter, with his light,
  All the shadows of our night.

  He the mighty King has come!
  Making this poor earth his home;
  Come to bear sin's sad load;--
  Son of David, Son of God!

  He has come, whose name of grace
  Speaks deliverance to our race;
  Left for us his glad abode;
  Son of Mary, Son of God!

  Unto us a child is born!
  Ne'er has earth beheld a morn
  Among all the morns of time,
  Half so glorious in its prime.

  Unto us a Son is given!
  He has come from God's own heaven;
  Bringing with Him from above,
  Holy peace and holy love.

  --_Horatius Bonar._

[Illustration: CHRISTMAS CHIMES.]


A DESIRE.

  O, to have dwelt in Bethlehem
    When the star of the Lord shone bright!
  To have sheltered the holy wanderers
    On that blessèd Christmas night;
  To have kissed the tender wayworn feet
    Of the mother undefiled,
  And, with reverent wonder and deep delight,
    To have tended the Holy Child!

  Hush! such a glory was not for thee;
    But that care may still be thine;
  For are there not little ones still to aid
    For the sake of the Child divine?
  Are there no wandering Pilgrims now,
    To thy heart and thy home to take?
  And are there no mothers whose weary hearts
    You can comfort for Mary's sake?

  O to have knelt at Jesus' feet,
    And to have learned his heavenly lore!
  To have listened the gentle lessons He taught
    On mountain, and sea, and shore!
  While the rich and the mighty knew Him not
    To have meekly done His will:--
  Hush! for the worldly reject Him yet,
    You can serve and love Him still.
  Time cannot silence His mighty words,
    And though ages have fled away,
  His gentle accents of love divine
    Speak to your soul to-day.

  O to have solaced that weeping one
    Whom the righteous dare despise!
  To have tenderly bound up her scattered hair,
    And have dried her tearful eyes!
  Hush! there are broken hearts to soothe,
    And penitent tears to dry,
  While Magdalen prays for you and them,
    From her home in the starry sky.

  O to have followed the mournful way
    Of those faithful few forlorn!
  And grace, beyond even an angel's hope,
    The Cross for our Lord have borne!
  To have shared in his tender mother's grief,
    To have wept at Mary's side,
  To have lived as a child in her home, and then
    In her loving care have died!

  Hush! and with reverent sorrow still,
    Mary's great anguish share;
  And learn, for the sake of her son divine,
    Thy cross, like His, to bear.
  The sorrows that weigh on thy soul unite
    With those which thy Lord has borne,
  And Mary will comfort thy dying hour,
    Nor leave thy soul forlorn.

  O to have seen what we now adore,
    And, though veiled to faithless sight,
  To have known, in the form that Jesus wore,
    The Lord of Life and Light!
  Hush! for He dwells among us still,
    And a grace can yet be thine,
  Which the scoffer and doubter can never know,--
    The Presence of the Divine.
  Jesus is with his children yet,
    For His word can never deceive;
  Go where His lowly Altars rise
    And worship and believe.

  --_Adelaide Procter._


  It came upon the midnight clear,
    That glorious song of old,
  From angels bending near the earth
    To touch their harps of gold:
  "Peace to the earth, good-will to man,
    From heaven's all-gracious King:"
  The earth in solemn stillness lay,
    To hear the angels sing.

  Still through the cloven skies they come,
    With peaceful wings unfurled;
  And still celestial music floats
    O'er all the weary world;
  Above its sad and lowly plains
    They bend on heavenly wing,
  And ever o'er its Babel sounds,
    The blessed angels sing.

  Oh ye, beneath life's crushing load,
    Whose forms are bending low,
  Who toil along the climbing way,
    With painful steps and slow,
  Look up! for glad and golden hours
    Come swiftly on the wing:
  Oh rest beside the weary road,
    And hear the angels sing!

  For lo, the days are hastening on,
    By prophet-bards foretold,
  When with the ever-circling years
    Comes round the age of gold!
  When peace shall over all the earth
    Its final splendors fling,
  And the whole world send back the song
    Which now the angels sing!

  --_Sears._


  Hail to the Lord's Anointed,
    Great David's greater Son;
  Hail, in the time appointed,
    His reign on earth begun!
  He comes to break oppression,
    To set the captive free,
  To take away transgression,
    And rule in equity.

  He comes with succor speedy,
    To those who suffer wrong;
  To help the poor and needy,
    And bid the weak be strong;
  To give them songs for sighing,
    Their darkness turn to light,
  Whose souls, condemned and dying,
    Were precious in His sight.

  He shall descend like showers
    Upon the fruitful earth;
  And love and joy, like flowers,
    Spring in His path to birth;
  Before Him, on the mountains,
    Shall peace, the herald, go;
  And righteousness, in fountains,
    From hill to valley flow.

  Arabia's desert-ranger
    To Him shall bow the knee,
  The Ethiopian stranger
    His glory come to see;
  With offerings of devotion,
    Ships from the Isles shall meet,
  To pour the wealth of ocean
    In tribute at His feet.

  Kings shall fall down before Him,
    And gold and incense bring,
  All nations shall adore Him,
    His praise all people sing:
  For He shall have dominion
    O'er river, sea, and shore,
  Far as the eagle's pinion
    Or dove's light wing can soar.

  To Him shall prayer unceasing,
    And daily vows ascend;
  His kingdom, still increasing,
    A kingdom without end:
  The tide of time shall never
    His covenant remove;
  His name shall stand forever;
    That name to us is Love.

  --_Montgomery._


  I think, when I read that sweet story of old,
    When Jesus was here among men,
  How He called little children as lambs to his fold,
    I should like to have been with them then.

  I wish that his hands had been placed on my head,
    That his arms had been thrown around me,
  And that I might have seen his kind look, when He said,
    "Let the little ones come unto me."

  Yet still to his footstool in prayer I may go,
    And ask for a share in his love;
  And if I thus earnestly seek him below,
    I shall see Him and hear Him above--

  In that beautiful place He has gone to prepare,
    For all who are washed and forgiv'n;
  And many dear children are gathering there,
    "For of such is the kingdom of heav'n."

  I long for the joys of that glorious time,
    The sweetest, and brightest, and best,
  When the dear little children of every clime,
    Shall crowd to his arms and be blest.

  --_Jemima Luke._


  My Jesus, as Thou wilt;
    Oh, may Thy will be mine;
  Into Thy hand of love
    I would my all resign:
  Thro' sorrow or thro' joy,
    Conduct me as Thine own,
  And help me still to say,
    My Lord, Thy will be done.

  My Jesus, as Thou wilt;
    Tho' seen thro' many a tear,
  Let not my star of hope
    Grow dim or disappear:
  Since Thou on earth hast wept,
    And sorrowed oft alone,
  If I must weep with Thee,
    My Lord, Thy will be done.

  My Jesus as Thou wilt;
    All shall be well for me;
  Each changing future scene
    I gladly trust with Thee:
  Straight to my home above
    I travel calmly on,
  And sing in life or death,--
    My Lord, Thy will be done.

  --_Unidentified._


  How beauteous were the marks divine,
  That in Thy meekness used to shine,
  That lit Thy lonely pathway trod
  In wondrous love, O Son of God!

  Oh, who like Thee, so calm, so bright,
  So pure, so made to live in light?
  Oh, who like Thee did ever go
  So patient through a world of woe?

  Oh, who like Thee, so humbly bore
  The scorn, the scoffs of men, before?
  So meek, forgiving, god-like, high,
  So glorious in humility?

  The bending angels stooped to see
  The lisping infant clasp Thy knee,
  And smile as in a father's eye,
  Upon Thy mild divinity.

  And death, which sets the prisoner free,
  Was pang and scoff, and scorn to thee;
  Yet love through all Thy torture glowed,
  And mercy with Thy life-blood flowed.

  Oh, in Thy light be mine to go,
  Illuming all my way of woe;
  And give me ever on the road
  To trace Thy footsteps, Son of God!

  --_A. C. Coxe._


  O sacred Head, now wounded
    With grief and shame weigh'd down,
  Now scornfully surrounded
    With thorns, thine only crown;
  O sacred Head, what glory,
    What bliss, till now, was thine!
  Yet, though despis'd and gory,
    I joy to call thee mine.

  What Thou, my Lord, hast suffered
    Was all for sinners' gain;
  Mine, mine was the transgression,
    But thine the deadly pain:
  Lo, here I fall, my Saviour!
    'Tis I deserve Thy place;
  Look on me with Thy favor,
    Vouchsafe to me Thy grace.

  What language shall I borrow
    To thank Thee, dearest Friend;
  For this Thy dying sorrow,
    Thy pity without end?
  O make me thine forever;
    And should I fainting be,
  Lord, let me never, never,
    Outlive my love to Thee!

  Be near me when I'm dying,
    Oh show Thy cross to me!
  And for my succor flying,
    Come, Lord, and set me free!
  These eyes, new faith receiving,
    From Jesus shall not move;
  For he who dies believing,
    Dies safely, through Thy love.

  --_Bernard._


  Heart of stone, relent, relent!
    Break, by Jesus' cross subdued!
  See His body mangled, rent,
    Covered with a gore of blood;
  Sinful soul, what hast thou done?
  Crucified the Incarnate Son!

  Yes, thy sins have done the deed,
    Driven the nails that fixed Him there,
  Crowned with thorns His sacred head,
    Pierced Him with the cruel spear,
  Made his soul a sacrifice,
  While for sinful man He dies!

  Wilt thou let Him bleed in vain?
    Still to death thy Lord pursue?
  Open all his wounds again,
    And the shameful cross renew?
  No; with all my sins I'll part;
  Break, oh break, my bleeding heart!

  --_C. Wesley._


"BY THY CROSS AND PASSION."

 "He hath given us rest by His sorrow, and life by His
 death."--JOHN BUNYAN.

  What hast Thou done for me, O mighty Friend,
        Who lovest to the end!
  Reveal Thyself, that I may now behold
        Thy love unknown, untold,
  Bearing the curse, and made a curse for me,
  That blessed and made a blessing I might be.

  Oh, Thou wast crowned with thorns, that I might wear
        A crown of glory fair;
  "Exceeding sorrowful," that I might be
        Exceeding glad in Thee;
  "Rejected and despised," that I might stand
  Accepted and complete on Thy right hand.

  Wounded for my transgressions, stricken sore,
        That I might "sin no more:"
  Weak, that I might be always strong in Thee;
        Bound, that I might be free;
  Acquaint with grief, that I might only know
  Fulness of joy in everlasting flow.

  Thine was the chastisement, with no release,
        That mine might be the peace;
  The bruising and the cruel stripes were thine,
        That healing might be mine;
  Thine was the sentence and the condemnation,
  Mine the acquittal and the full salvation.

  For Thee revilings, and a mocking throng,
        For me the angel-song;
  For Thee the frown, the hiding of God's face,
        For me His smile of grace;
  Sorrows of hell and bitterest death for Thee,
  And heaven and everlasting life for me.

  Thy cross and passion, and Thy precious death,
        While I have mortal breath,
  Shall be my spring of love and work and praise,
        The life of all my days;
  Till all this mystery of love supreme
  Be solved in glory--glory's endless theme!

  --_Frances Ridley Havergal._


ABIDE IN HIM.

 "Tecum volo vulnerari
 Te libenter amplexari
       In cruce desidero." OLD HYMN.

  Cling to the Crucified!
      His death is life to thee,--
      Life for eternity.
      His pains thy pardon seal;
      His stripes thy bruises heal;
      His cross proclaims thy peace,
      Bids every sorrow cease.
      His blood is all to thee,
        It purges thee from sin;
      It sets thy spirit free,
        It keeps thy conscience clean.
  Cling to the Crucified!

  Cling to the Crucified!
      His is a heart of love,
      Full as the hearts above;
      Its depths of sympathy
      Are all awake for thee:
      His countenance is light,
      Even to the darkest night.
      That love shall never change--
        That light shall ne'er grow dim;
      Charge thou thy faithless heart
        To find its all in him.
  Cling to the Crucified!

  --_Horatius Bonar._

[Illustration: THE MAGI ON THE WAY TO BETHLEHEM.]


  Rejoice, all ye believers,
    And let your lights appear;
  The evening is advancing,
    And darker night is near;
  The Bridegroom is arising,
    And soon He draweth nigh:
  Up! pray, and watch, and wrestle!
    At midnight comes the cry.

  The watchers on the mountain
    Proclaim the Bridegroom near;
  Go meet Him as He cometh,
    With hallelujahs clear:
  The marriage feast is waiting,
    The gates wide-open stand;
  Up, up, ye heirs of glory!
    The Bridegroom is at hand.

  Our hope and expectation,
    O Jesus, now appear;
  Arise, thou Sun so longed for
    O'er this benighted sphere!
  With heart and hands uplifted,
    We plead, O Lord, to see
  The day of earth's redemption,
    That brings us unto Thee.

  --_Laurenti._


JOINED TO CHRIST.

  Joined to Christ in mystic union,
    We Thy members, Thou our Head,
  Sealed by deep and true communion,
    Risen with Thee, who once were dead--
  Saviour, we would humbly claim
    All the power of this Thy name.

  Instant sympathy to brighten
    All their weakness and their woe,
  Guiding grace their way to lighten,
    Shall Thy loving members know;
  All their sorrows Thou dost bear,
  All Thy gladness they shall share.

  Make Thy members every hour
    For Thy blessed service meet;
  Earnest tongues, and arms of power,
    Skilful hands, and hastening feet,
  Ever ready to fulfil
  All Thy word and all Thy will.

  Everlasting life Thou givest
    Everlasting love to see;
  They shall live because Thou livest,
    And their life is hid with Thee.
  Safe Thy members shall be found,
  When their glorious Head is crowned!

  --_Frances Ridley Havergal._


  "_Till He come!_"--Oh, let the words
  Linger on the trembling chords,
  Let the "little while" between
  In their golden light be seen:
  Let us think how heaven and home
  Lie beyond that, "_Till He come!_"

  When the weary ones we love
  Enter on that rest above,
  When their words of love and cheer
  Fall no longer on our ear,
  Hush! be ev'ry murmur dumb,
  It is only "_Till He come!_"

  Clouds and darkness round us press;
  Would we have one sorrow less?
  All the sharpness of the cross,
  All that tells the world is loss,
  Death, and darkness, and the tomb,
  Pain us only "_Till He come!_"

  See, the feast of love is spread,
  Drink the wine and eat the bread;
  Sweet memorials, till the Lord
  Call us round His heavenly board,
  Some from earth, from glory some,
  Severed only "_Till He come!_"

  --_E. W. Bickersteth._


  "Forever with the Lord!"
    So, Jesus, let it be;
  Life from the dead is in that word;
    'Tis immortality.

  Here, in the body pent,
    Absent from thee I roam:
  Yet nightly pitch my moving tent
    A day's march nearer home.

  My father's house on high,
    Home of my soul! how near,
  At times, to faith's aspiring eye,
    Thy golden gates appear!

  "Forever with the Lord!"
    Father, if 'tis thy will,
  The promise of thy gracious word
    Ev'n here to me fulfill.

  --_James Montgomery._


THE MEETING-PLACE.

  Where the faded flower shall freshen,--
    Freshen never more to fade;
  Where the shaded sky shall brighten,--
    Brighten never more to shade:
  Where the sun-blaze never scorches;
    Where the star-beams cease to chill;
  Where no tempest stirs the echoes
    Of the wood, or wave, or hill:
  Where the morn shall wake in gladness,
    And the moon the joy prolong,
  Where the daylight dies in fragrance,
    'Mid the burst of holy song:
        Brother, we shall meet and rest
        'Mid the holy and the blest!

  Where no shadow shall bewilder,
    Where life's vain parade is o'er,
  Where the sleep of sin is broken
    And the dreamer dreams no more:
  Where the bond is never severed;--
    Partings, claspings, sob and moan,
  Midnight waking, twilight weeping,
    Heavy noontide,--all are done:
  Where the child has found its mother,
    Where the mother finds the child,
  Where dear families are gathered,
    That were scattered on the wild;
        Brother, we shall meet and rest
        'Mid the holy and the blest!

  Where the hidden wound is healed,
    Where the blighted light re-blooms,
  Where the smitten heart the freshness
    Of its buoyant youth resumes:
  Where the love that here we lavish
    On the withering leaves of time,
  Shall have fadeless flowers to fix on
    In an ever spring-bright clime:
  Where we find the joy of loving,
    As we never loved before,--
  Loving on, unchilled, unhindered,
    Loving once and evermore:
        Brother, we shall meet and rest,
        'Mid the holy and the blest!

  Where a blasted world shall brighten
    Underneath a bluer sphere,
  And a softer, gentler sunshine
    Sheds its healing splendor here:
  Where earth's barren vales shall blossom,
    Putting on their robe of green,
  And a purer, fairer Eden
    Be where only wastes have been:
  Where a King in kingly glory,
    Such as earth has never known,
  Shall assume the righteous sceptre,
    Claim and wear the holy crown:
        Brother, we shall meet and rest,
        'Mid the holy and the blest.

  --_Horatius Bonar._


A LITTLE WHILE.

  Beyond the smiling and the weeping
            I shall be soon;
  Beyond the waking and the sleeping,
  Beyond the sowing and the reaping,
            I shall be soon.
        Love, rest and home!
        Sweet hope!
        Lord, tarry not, but come.

  Beyond the blooming and the fading,
            I shall be soon;
  Beyond the shining and the shading,
  Beyond the hoping and the dreading,
            I shall be soon.
        Love, rest, and home!
        Sweet hope!
        Lord, tarry not, but come.

  Beyond the rising and the setting
            I shall be soon;
  Beyond the calming and the fretting,
  Beyond remembering and forgetting,
            I shall be soon.
        Love, rest, and home!
        Sweet hope!
        Lord, tarry not, but come.

  Beyond the gathering and the strowing
            I shall be soon;
  Beyond the ebbing and the flowing,
  Beyond the coming and the going,
            I shall be soon.
        Love, rest, and home!
        Sweet hope!
        Lord, tarry not, but come.

  Beyond the parting and the meeting
            I shall be soon.
  Beyond the farewell and the greeting,
  Beyond this pulse's fever beating,
            I shall be soon.
        Love, rest, and home!
        Sweet hope!
        Lord, tarry not, but come.

  Beyond the frost-chain and the fever
            I shall be soon;
  Beyond the rock-waste and the river,
  Beyond the ever and the never,
            I shall be soon.
        Love, rest, and home!
        Sweet hope!
        Lord, tarry not, but come.

  --_Horatius Bonar._


ASCENSION DAY.

  Soft cloud, that while the breeze of May
    Chants her glad matins in the leafy arch,
  Draw'st thy bright veil across the heavenly way,
    Meet pavement for an angel's glorious march.

  My soul is envious of mine eye,
    That it should soar and glide with thee so fast
  The while my groveling thoughts half buried lie,
    Or lawless roam around this earthly waste.

  Chains of my heart, avaunt I say--
    I will arise, and in the strength of love
  Pursue the bright track ere it fade away,
    My Savior's pathway to His home above.

  Sure, when I reach the point where earth
    Melts into nothing from the uncumber'd sight,
  Heaven will o'ercome th' attraction of my birth,
    And I shall sink in yonder sea of light:

  Till resting by th' incarnate Lord
    Once bleeding, now triumphant for my sake,
  I mark Him, how by seraph hosts ador'd,
    He to earth's lowest cares is still awake.

  The sun and every vassal star,
    All space beyond the soar of angel wings,
  Wait on His word: and yet He stays His car
    For every sigh a contrite suppliant brings.

  He listens to the silent tear
    For all the anthems of the boundless sky--
  And shall our dreams of music bar our ear
    To His soul-piercing voice forever nigh?

  Nay, gracious Saviour--but as now
    Our thoughts have trac'd Thee to Thy glory-throne,
  To help us evermore with Thee to bow
    Where human sorrow breathes her lowly moan.

  We must not stand to gaze too long,
    Though on unfolding Heaven our gaze we bend,
  Where lost behind the bright angelic throng
    We see Christ's entering triumph slow ascend.

  No fear but we shall soon behold,
    Faster than now it fades, that gleam revive,
  When issuing from His cloud of fiery gold
    Our wasted frames feel the true sun, and live.

  Then shall we see Thee as Thou art,
    Forever fix'd in no unfruitful gaze,
  But such as lifts the new-created heart,
    Age after age, in worthier love and praise.

  --_John Keble._


THE SACRIFICE OF ABRAHAM.

 Genesis, Chapter xxii.

  Morn breaketh in the east. The purple clouds
  Are putting on their gold and violet,
  To look the meeter for the sun's bright coming.
  Sleep is upon the waters and the wind;
  And nature, from the wavy forest-leaf
  To her majestic master, sleeps. As yet
  There is no mist upon the deep blue sky,
  And the clear dew is on the blushing bosoms
  Of crimson roses in a holy rest.
  How hallow'd is the hour of morning! meet--
  Aye, beautifully meet--for the pure prayer.
  The patriarch standeth at his tented door,
  With his white locks uncover'd. 'Tis his wont
  To gaze upon that gorgeous Orient;
  And at that hour the awful majesty
  Of man who talketh often with his God,
  Is wont to come again, and clothe his brow
  As at his fourscore strength. But now, he seemeth
  To be forgetful of his vigorous frame,
  And boweth to his staff as at the hour
  Of noontide sultriness. And that bright sun--
  He looketh at its pencill'd messengers,
  Coming in golden raiment, as if all
  Were but a graven scroll of fearfulness.
  Ah, he is waiting till it herald in
  The hour to sacrifice his much-loved son!

  Light poureth on the world. And Sarah stands
  Watching the steps of Abraham and her child
  Along the dewy sides of the far hills,
  And praying that her sunny boy faint not.
  Would she have watch'd their path so silently,
  If she had known that he was going up,
  E'en in his fair-hair'd beauty, to be slain
  As a white lamb for sacrifice? They trod
  Together onward, patriarch and child--
  The bright sun throwing back the old man's shade
  In straight and fair proportions, as of one
  Whose years were freshly number'd. He stood up
  Tall in his vigorous strength; and, like a tree
  Rooted in Lebanon, his frame bent not.
  His thin white hairs had yielded to the wind,
  And left his brow uncover'd; and his face,
  Impress'd with the stern majesty of grief
  Nerv'd to a solemn duty, now stood forth
  Like a rent rock, submissive, yet sublime.
  But the young boy--he of the laughing eye
  And ruby lip--the pride of life was on him.
  He seem'd to drink the morning. Sun and dew,
  And the aroma of the spicy trees,
  And all that giveth the delicious East
  Its fitness for an Eden, stole like light
  Into his spirit, ravishing his thoughts
  With love and beauty. Every thing he met,
  Buoyant, or beautiful, the lightest wing
  Of bird or insect, or the palest dye
  Of the fresh flowers, won him from his path;
  And joyously broke forth his tiny shout,
  As he flung back his silken hair, and sprung
  Away to some green spot or clustering vine,
  To pluck his infant trophies. Every tree
  And fragrant shrub was a new hiding place;
  And he would crouch till the old man came by,
  Then bound before him with his childish laugh,
  Stealing a look behind him playfully,
  To see if he had made his father smile.
  The sun rode on in heaven. The dew stole up
  From the fresh daughters of the earth, and heat
  Came like a sleep upon the delicate leaves,
  And bent them with the blossoms to their dreams.
  Still trod the patriarch on, with that same step,
  Firm and unfaltering; turning not aside
  To seek the olive shades, or lave their lips
  In the sweet waters of the Syrian wells,
  Whose gush hath so much music. Weariness
  Stole on the gentle boy, and he forgot
  To toss his sunny hair from off his brow,
  And spring for the fresh flowers and light wings
  As in the early morning; but he kept
  Close by his father's side, and bent his head
  Upon his bosom like a drooping bud,
  Lifting it not, save now and then to steal
  A look up to the face whose sternness awed
  His childishness to silence.
                        It was noon--
  And Abraham on Moriah bow'd himself,
  And buried up his face, and pray'd for strength.
  He could not look upon his son, and pray;
  But, with his hand upon the clustering curls
  Of the fair, kneeling boy, he pray'd that God
  Would nerve him for that hour. Oh! man was made
  For the stern conflict. In a mother's love
  There is more tenderness; the thousand chords,
  Woven with every fibre of her heart,
  Complain, like delicate harp-strings, at a breath;
  But love in man is one deep principle,
  Which, like a root grown in a rifted rock,
  Abides the tempest. He rose up, and laid
  The wood upon the altar. All was done.
  He stood a moment--and a deep, quick flush
  Pass'd o'er his countenance; and then he nerv'd
  His spirit with a bitter strength, and spoke--
  "Isaac! my only son!"--The boy look'd up
  And Abraham turn'd his face away, and wept.
  "Where is the lamb, my father?"--Oh the tones,
  The sweet, the thrilling music of a child!--
  How it doth agonize at such an hour!--
  It was the last deep struggle. Abraham held
  His loved, his beautiful, his only son,
  And lifted up his arm, and called on God--
  And lo! God's angel stayed him--and he fell
  Upon his face and wept.

  --_N. P. Willis._


A SOLITARY WAY.

  There is a mystery in human hearts,
  And though we be encircled by a host
  Of those who love us well, and are beloved,
  To every one of us, from time to time,
    There comes a sense of utter loneliness.
    Our dearest friend is "stranger" to our joy,
    And cannot realize our bitterness.
    "There is not one who really understands,
    Not one to enter into _all_ I feel;"
    Such is the cry of each of us in turn,
    We wander in a "solitary way,"
    No matter what or where our lot may be;
    Each heart, mysterious even to itself,
    Must live its inner life in solitude.

  And would you know the reason why this is?
  It is because the Lord desires our love.
  In every heart he wishes to be _first_.
  He therefore keeps the secret key Himself,
  To open _all_ its chambers, and to bless
  With _perfect_ sympathy and holy peace,
  Each solitary soul which comes to _Him_.
  So when we feel this loneliness it is
  The voice of Jesus saying, "Come to Me;"
  And every time we are "not understood,"
  It is a call to us to come _again_:
  For Christ alone can satisfy the soul,
  And those who walk with him from day to day
  Can never have a "solitary way."
  And when beneath some heavy cross you faint,
  And say, "I cannot bear this load alone,"
  You say the truth. Christ made it purposely
  So heavy that you must return to Him.
  The bitter grief, which "no one understands,"
  Conveys a secret message from the King,
  Entreating you to come to Him _again_.
  The Man of Sorrows understands it well.
  In _all_ points tempted He can feel with you.
  You cannot come too often, or too near;
  The Son of God is infinite in grace.
  His presence satisfies the longing soul,
  And those who walk with Him from day to day
  Can never have a "solitary way."

  --_Unidentified._


THE CHILD'S WELCOME INTO HEAVEN.

  The golden gates were open
    And heavenly seraphs smiled
  And with their tuneful harpstrings
    Welcomed the little child.

  They shouted "high and holy,
    A child hath entered in,
  And safe from all temptation
    A soul is sealed from sin."

  They led him through the golden street
    On to the King of kings,
  And a glory fell upon him
    From the rustling of their wings.

  The Saviour smiled upon him
    As none on earth had smiled,
  And Heaven's great glory shone around
    The little earth-born child.

  On earth they missed the little one,
    They sighed and wept and sighed,
  And wondered if another such
    As theirs, had ever died.

  Oh! had they seen through those high gates,
    The welcome to him given,
  They never would have wished their child
    Back from his home in Heaven.

  --_Unidentified._


"NOW."

  A night of danger on the sea,
    Of sleeplessness and fear!
  Wave after wave comes thundering
    Against the strong stone pier;
  Each with a terrible recoil,
    And a grim and gathering might,
  As blast on blast comes howling past,
  Each wild gust wilder than the last,
    All through that awful night.

  Well for the ships in harbor now,
    Which caught the morning tide;
  With cable out and anchor sure,
    How peacefully they ride!
  Well for the barque that came at eve,
    Though watched with breathless fear;
  'Twas sheltered first ere the tempest burst,
    'Tis safe inside the pier!

  But see a faint and fitful light
    Out in the howling sea!
  A vessel seeks the harbor mouth,
    As in death agony.
  Though strong stone arms are open wide,
    She misses the only way;
  Alas! too late, the storm drives fast,
  The mighty waves they sweep her past,
  And against that sheltering pier they cast
    Their wrecked and shattered prey.

  The billows drive the barque along,
    Over the deck they dash,
  Where sailors five are clinging fast
  To broken stump of sail-less mast,
    Waiting the final crash.
  Is it too late? Can succor yet
  Those drowning men now reach!
  Life is so near--the firm-built pier
    Must be the death of each.

  The daring hearts--the sturdy arms,
    The swift and steady feet,
  They rush into a yawning grave,
  In strong recoil of mightiest wave,
  Treading most awful path to save,
    As they tread a homeward street.
  Over the boulders 'mid foam they rush
    Into the ghastly hollow;
  They fling the rope to the breaking wreck;
  The aim is sure, and it strikes the deck,
    The shouts of quick hope follow.

  Reached--not saved! there is more to do,
    A trumpet note is heard;
  Over the rage,--over the roar
  Of thundering billows on the shore,
    Rings out the guiding word.
  There is one chance, and only one.
    All can be saved, but how?
  "The rope hold fast, but quit the mast,"
    The trumpet signals "Now!"

  There is a moment when the sea
    Allays its furious strength;
  A shuddering pause with sudden whirl,
  Gathering force again to hurl
  Billow on billow, whirl on whirl;
    That moment comes at length:
  With single shout the "Now" peals out.
    The answering leap is made.
  Well for the simple hearts that just
  Loosing the mast with fearless trust,
    The strange command obeyed!

  The rope is good, the stout arms pull
    Ere the storm-lull is o'er;
  'Tis but a swift and blinding sweep
  Through waters wild and dark and deep--
    The men are safe on shore--
  Safe! though the fiend-like blast pursue;
    Safe! though the waves dash high;
  But the ringing cheer that rises clear
    Is checked with a sudden cry:--

  "There are but four upon the shore,
    And five were on the deck!"
  And strained eyes that pierce the gloom
  Still trace, swift drifting on to doom,
    One man upon the wreck.
  Again they chase in sternest race
    The far re-coiling wave;
  The rope is cast, the tossing mark
    It reaches not, the windy dark
    Hides him they strive to save.

  They rush again, again they fail,
    Again, and yet again:
  The storm yells back defiance loud,
  The breakers rear a rampart proud,
    And roar, "In vain, in vain!"
  Then a giant wave takes up the wreck
    And bears it on its crest;--
  One moment it hung quivering there
    In horrible arrest.
  The lonely man on vengeful sea
    A lightning flash uplit,
  Still clinging fast to broken mast
    He had not dared to quit.

  Then horror of great darkness fell,
    While eyes flashed inward fire;
  And over all the roar and dash,
  Through that great blackness came a crash,
    A token sure and dire.
  The wave had burst upon the pier,
    The wreck was scattered wide;
  Another "Now" would never reach
  The corpse that lay upon the beach
    With the receding tide.

  God's "Now" is sounding in your ears,
    Oh, let it reach your heart!
  Not only from your sinfulness
    He bids you part;
  Your righteousness as filthy rags
    Must all relinquished be,
  And only Jesus' precious death
    Must be your plea.

  _Now_ trust the one provided rope,
    Now quit the broken mast,
  Before the hope of safety be
    Forever past.
  Fear not to trust His simple word,
    So sweet, so tried, so true,
  And you are safe for evermore,
    Yes,--even you!

  --_Frances Ridley Havergal._


OCEAN TEACHINGS.

 "This great and wide sea."--PSALM civ. 25.

  That rising storm! It has awakened me;
    My slumbering spirit starts to life anew;
  That blinding spray-drift, how it falls upon me,
    As on the weary flower the freshening dew.

  That rugged rock-fringe that girds in the ocean,
    And calls the foam from its translucent blue,
  It seems to pour strange strength into my spirit,--
    Strength for endurance, strength for conflict too.

  And these bright ocean-birds, these billow-rangers,
    The snowy-breasted,--each a winged wave--
  They tell me how to joy in storm and dangers,
    When surges whiten, or when whirlwinds rave.

  And these green-stretching fields, these peaceful hollows,
    That hear the tempest, but take no alarm,
  Has not their placid verdue sweetly taught me
    The peace within when all without is storm?

  And thou keen sun-flash, through the cloud-wreath bursting,
    Silvering the sea, the sward, the rock, the foam,
  What light within me has thy pure gleam kindled?
    'Tis from the land of light that thou art come.

  And of the time how blithely art thou telling,
    When cloud and change and tempest shall take wing;
  Each beam of thine prophetic of the glory,
    Creation's daybreak, earth's long-promised spring.

  Even thus it is, my God me daily teacheth
    Sweet knowledge out of all I hear and see;
  Each object has a heavenly voice within it,
    Each scene, however troubled, speaks to me.

  For all upon this earth is broken beauty,
    Yet out of all what strange, deep lessons rise?
  Each hour is giving out its heaven-sent wisdom,
    A message from the sea, the shore, the skies.

  --_Horatius Bonar._


INCOMPLETENESS.

  Nothing resting in its own completeness
    Can have worth or beauty: but alone
  Because it leads and tends to further sweetness,
    Fuller, higher, deeper than its own.

  Spring's real glory dwells not in the meaning,
    Gracious though it be, of her blue hours;
  But is hidden in her tender leaning
    To the Summer's richer wealth of flowers.

  Dawn is fair, because the mists fade slowly
    Into day, which floods the world with light;
  Twilight's mystery is so sweet and holy
    Just because it ends in starry Night.

  Childhood's smiles unconscious graces borrow
    From Strife, that in a far-off future lies;
  And angel glances (veiled now by Life's sorrow)
    Draw our hearts to some belovèd eyes.

  Life is only bright when it proceedeth
    Towards a truer, deeper Life above;
  Human Love is sweetest when it leadeth
    To a more divine and perfect Love.

  Learn the mystery of Progression duly:
    Do not call each glorious change, Decay;
  But know we only hold our treasures truly,
    When it seems as if they passed away.

  Nor dare to blame God's gifts for incompleteness;
    In that want their beauty lies: they roll
  Towards some infinite depth of love and sweetness,
    Bearing onward man's reluctant soul.

  --_Adelaide Procter._


NOTHING TO DO.

  "Nothing to do" in this world of ours,
  Where weeds spring up with the fairest flowers,
  Where smiles have only a fitful play,
  Where hearts are breaking every day?

  "Nothing to do?" thou Christian soul,
  Wrapping thee round in thy selfish stole,
  Off with the garments of sloth and sin;
  Christ thy Lord hath a kingdom to win.

  "Nothing to do?" there are prayers to lay
  On the altar of incense day by day;
  There are foes to meet within and without;
  There is error to conquer, strong and stout.

  "Nothing to do?" there are minds to teach
  The simplest forms of Christian speech;
  There are hearts to lure with loving wile
  From the grimmest haunts of sin's defile.

  "Nothing to do?" there are lambs to feed,
  The precious hope of the Church's need;
  Strength to be borne to the weak and faint,
  Vigils to keep with the doubting saint.

  "Nothing to do?" there are heights to attain,
  Where Christ is transfigured yet again,
  Where earth will fade in the vision sweet,
  And the soul press on with wingèd feet.

  "Nothing to do?" and thy Saviour said,
  "Follow thou me in the path I tread."
  Lord, lend thy help the journey through,
  Lest, faint, we cry, "So much to do!"

  --_Unidentified._


  When death is drawing near,
  And thy heart shrinks in fear,
      And thy limbs fail,
  Then raise thy hands and pray
  To Him who smooths the way
      Through the dark vale.

  Seest thou the eastern dawn?
  Hear'st thou, in the red morn,
      The angels' song?
  Oh! lift thy drooping head
  Thou, who in gloom and dread
      Hast lain so long.

  Death comes to set thee free,
  Oh! meet him cheerily,
      As thy true friend;
  And all thy fears shall cease,
  And in eternal peace,
      Thy penance end.

  --_From_ "_Sintram._"


IT IS NOT DEATH TO DIE.

  It is not death to die--
    To leave this weary road,
  And, 'mid the brotherhood on high,
    To be at home with God.

  It is not death to close
    The eye long dimmed by tears,
  And wake, in glorious repose
    To spend eternal years.

  It is not death to bear
    The wrench that sets us free
  From dungeon chain,--to breathe the air
    Of boundless liberty.

  It is not death to fling
    Aside this sinful dust,
  And rise, on strong exulting wing,
    To live among the just.

  Jesus, thou Prince of life!
    Thy chosen cannot die;
  Like thee, they conquer in the strife,
    To reign with thee on high.

  --_Bethune._


RUGBY CHAPEL.

NOVEMBER, 1857.

  Coldly, sadly descends
  The autumn evening. The field
  Strewn with its dark yellow drifts
  Of withered leaves, and the elms,
  Fade into dimness apace,
  Silent; hardly a shout
  From a few boys late at their play!
  The lights come out in the street,
  In the schoolroom windows; but cold,
  Solemn, unlighted, austere,
  Through the gathering darkness, arise
  The chapel-walls, in whose bound
  Thou, my father! art laid.
  There thou dost lie, in the gloom
  Of the autumn evening. But ah!
  That word _gloom_ to my mind
  Brings thee back in the light
  Of thy radiant vigor again.
  In the gloom of November we passed
  Days not dark at thy side;
  Seasons impaired not the ray
  Of thy buoyant cheerfulness clear.
  Such thou wast! and I stand
  In the autumn evening, and think
  Of bygone autumns with thee.

  Fifteen years have gone round
  Since thou arosest to tread,
  In the summer-morning, the road
  Of death, at a call unforeseen,
  Sudden. For fifteen years,
  We who till then in thy shade
  Rested as under the boughs
  Of a mighty oak, have endured
  Sunshine and rain as we might,
  Bare, unshaded, alone,
  Lacking the shelter of thee.
  O strong soul, by what shore
  Tarriest thou now? For that force,
  Surely, has not been left vain!
  Somewhere, surely, afar,
  In the sounding labor-house vast
  Of being, is practiced that strength,
  Zealous, beneficent, firm!

  Yes, in some far-shining sphere,
  Conscious or not of the past,
  Still thou performest the word
  Of the Spirit in whom thou dost live,
  Prompt, unwearied, as here.
  Still thou upraisest with zeal
  The humble good from the ground,
  Sternly repressest the bad;
  Still, like a trumpet, dost rouse
  Those who with half-opened eyes
  Tread the border-land dim
  'Twixt vice and virtue reviv'st,
  Succorest. This was thy work,
  This was the life upon earth.

  What is the course of the life
  Of mortal men on the earth?
  Most men eddy about
  Here and there, eat and drink,
  Chatter and love and hate,
  Gather and squander, are raised
  Aloft, are hurled in the dust,
  Striving blindly, achieving
  Nothing; and then they die,--
  Perish; and no one asks
  Who or what they have been,
  More than he asks what waves,
  In the moonlit solitudes mild
  Of the midmost ocean, have swelled,
  Foamed for a moment, and gone.

  And there are some whom a thirst
  Ardent, unquenchable, fires,
  Not with the crowd to be spent,
  Not without aim to go round
  In an eddy of purposeless dust,
  Effort unmeaning and vain.
  Ah yes! some of us strive
  Not without action to die
  Fruitless, but something to snatch
  From dull oblivion, nor all
  Glut the devouring grave.

  We, we have chosen our path,--
  Path to a clear-purposed goal,
  Path of advance; but it leads
  A long, steep journey, through sunk
  Gorges, o'er mountains in snow.
  Cheerful, with friends, we set forth;
  Then, on the height, comes the storm,
  Thunder crashes from rock
  To rock; the cataracts reply;
  Lightnings dazzle our eyes;
  Roaring torrents have breached
  The track; the stream-bed descends
  In the place where the wayfarer once
  Planted his footsteps; the spray
  Boils o'er its borders; aloft,
  The unseen snow-beds dislodge
  Their hanging ruin. Alas!
  Havoc is made in our train!
  Friends who set forth at our side
  Falter, are lost in the storm.

  We, we only are left!
  With frowning foreheads, with lips
  Sternly compressed, we strain on,
  On; and at nightfall at last
  Come to the end of our way,
  To the lonely inn 'mid the rocks;
  Where the gaunt and taciturn host
  Stands on the threshold, the wind
  Shaking his thin white hairs,
  Holds his lantern to scan
  Our storm-beat figures, and asks,--
  Whom in our party we bring?
  Whom we have left in the snow?

  Sadly we answer, We bring
  Only ourselves! we lost
  Sight of the rest in the storm.
  Hardly ourselves we fought through,
  Stripped, without friends, as we are.
  Friends, companions, and train,
  The avalanche swept from our side.

  But thou wouldst not _alone_
  Be saved, my father! _alone_
  Conquer and come to thy goal,
  Leaving the rest in the wild.
  We were weary, and we
  Fearful, and we in our march
  Fain to drop down and to die.
  Still thou turnedst, and still
  Beckonedst the trembler, and still
  Gavest the weary thy hand.
  If, in the paths of the world,
  Stones might have wounded thy feet,
  Toil or dejection have tried
  Thy spirit, of that we saw
  Nothing: to us thou wast still
  Cheerful, and helpful, and firm!
  Therefore to thee it was given
  Many to save with thyself;
  And, at the end of thy day,
  O faithful shepherd! to come,
  Bringing thy sheep in thy hand.

  And through thee I believe
  In the noble and great who are gone;
  Pure souls honored and blest
  By former ages, who else--
  Such, so soulless, so poor,
  Is the race of men whom I see--
  Seemed but a dream of the heart,
  Seemed but a cry of desire.
  Yes! I believed that there lived
  Others like thee in the past,
  Not like the men of the crowd
  Who all round me to-day
  Bluster or cringe, and make life
  Hideous and arid and vile;
  But souls tempered with fire,
  Fervent, heroic, and good,
  Helpers and friends of mankind.

  Servants of God!--or sons
  Shall I not call you? because
  Not as servants ye knew
  Your Father's innermost mind,
  His who unwillingly sees
  One of his little ones lost,--
  Yours is the praise, if mankind
  Hath not as yet in its march
  Fainted and fallen and died.

  See! In the rocks of the world
  Marches the host of mankind,
  A feeble, wavering line,
  Where are they tending? A God
  Marshalled them, gave them their goal.
  Ah, but the way is so long!

  Years they have been in the wild:
  Sore thirst plagues them; the rocks,
  Rising all around, overawe;
  Factions divide them; their host
  Threatens to break, to dissolve.
  Ah! keep them combined!
  Else, of the myriads who fill
  That army, not one shall arrive;
  Sole they shall stray; on the rocks
  Batter forever in vain,
  Die one by one in the waste.

  Then, in such hour of need
  Of your fainting, dispirited race,
  Ye like angels appear,
  Radiant with ardor divine.
  Beacons of hope, ye appear!
  Languor is not in your heart,
  Weakness is not in your word,
  Weariness not on your brow.
  Ye alight in our van! at your voice,
  Panic, despair, flee away.
  Ye move through the ranks, recall
  The stragglers, refresh the outworn,
  Praise, re-inspire the brave.
  Order, courage, return;
  Eyes rekindling, and prayers,
  Follow your steps as you go.
  Ye fill up the gaps in our files,
  Strengthen the wavering line,
  'Stablish, continue our march,
  On, to the bound of the waste,
  On, to the City of God.

  --_Matthew Arnold._


THE RIGHT MUST WIN.

  Oh, it is hard to work for God,
    To rise and take his part
  Upon this battle-field of earth,
    And not sometimes lose heart!

  He hides himself so wondrously,
    As though there were no God;
  He is least seen when all the powers
    Of ill are most abroad;

  Or he deserts us in the hour
    The fight is all but lost;
  And seems to leave us to ourselves
    Just when we need him most.

  Yes, there is less to try our faith,
    In our mysterious creed,
  Than in the godless look of earth,
    In these our hours of need.

  Ill masters good; good seems to change
    To ill with greatest ease;
  And, worst of all, the good with good
    Is at cross purposes.

  It is not so, but so it looks;
    And we lose courage then;
  And doubts will come if God hath kept
    His promises to men.

  Ah! God is other than we think;
    His ways are far above,
  Far beyond reason's height, and reached
    Only by childlike love.

  The look, the fashion of God's ways
    Love's life long study are;
  She can be bold, and guess, and act,
    When reason would not dare,

  She has a prudence of her own;
    Her step is firm and free;
  Yet there is cautious science, too,
    In her simplicity.

  Workmen of God! Oh lose not heart,
    But learn what God is like;
  And in the darkest battle field
    Thou shalt know where to strike.

  Thrice blest is he to whom is given
    The instinct that can tell
  That God is on the field when He
    Is most invisible.

  Blest too is he who can divine
    Where real right doth lie,
  And dares to take the side that seems
    Wrong to man's blindfold eye.

  Then learn to scorn the praise of men,
    And learn to lose with God;
  For Jesus won the world through shame,
    And beckons thee His road.

  God's glory is a wondrous thing,
    Most strange in all its ways,
  And, of all things on earth, least like
    What men agree to praise.

  As he can endless glory weave
    From what men reckon shame,
  In His own world He is content
    To play a losing game.

  Muse on His justice, downcast some!
    Muse and take better heart;
  Back with thine angel to the field,
    And bravely do thy part.

  God's justice is a bed, where we
    Our anxious hearts may lay,
  And, weary with ourselves, may sleep
    Our discontent away.

  But right is right, since God is God;
    And right the day must win;
  To doubt would be disloyalty,
    To falter would be sin!

  --_F. W. Faber._


THE SUBSTITUTE.

 "Jesu, plena caritate
 Manus tuæ perfortæ
   Laxent mea crimina;
 Latus tuum lanceatum,
 Caput spinis coronatum,
   Hæc sint medicamina"--OLD HYMN.


  I lay my sins on Jesus,
    The spotless Lamb of God;
  He bears them all and free us
    From the accursed load.
  I bring my guilt to Jesus,
    To wash my crimson stains
  White in his blood most precious,
    Till not a stain remains.

  I lay my wants on Jesus;
    All fullness dwells in Him.
  He heals all my diseases,
    He doth my soul redeem.
  I lay my griefs on Jesus,
    My burdens and my cares;
  He from them all releases,
    He all my sorrows shares.

  I rest my soul on Jesus,
    This weary soul of mine;
  His right hand me embraces,
    I on his breast recline.
  I love the name of Jesus,
    Immanuel, Christ, the Lord;
  Like fragrance on the breezes,
    His name abroad is poured.

  I long to be like Jesus,
    Meek, loving, lowly, mild,
  I long to be like Jesus,
    The Father's holy child.
  I long to be with Jesus
    Amid the heavenly throng,
  To sing with saints his praises,
    To learn the angel's song.

  --_Horatius Bonar._


JEPHTHAH'S DAUGHTER.

 Judges. Chapter xi.

  She stood before her father's gorgeous tent,
  To listen for his coming. Her loose hair
  Was resting on her shoulders, like a cloud
  Floating around a statue, and the wind,
  Just swaying her light robe, reveal'd a shape
  Praxiteles might worship. She had clasp'd
  Her hands upon her bosom, and had raised
  Her beautiful, dark, Jewish eyes to heaven,
  Till the long lashes lay upon her brow.
  Her lip was slightly parted, like the cleft
  Of a pomegranate blossom; and her neck,
  Just where the cheek was melting to its curve
  With the unearthly beauty sometimes there,
  Was shaded, as if light had fallen off,
  Its surface was so polish'd. She was stilling
  Her light, quick breath, to hear; and the white rose
  Scarce moved upon her bosom, as it swell'd,
  Like nothing but a lovely wave of light,
  To meet the arching of her queenly neck.
  Her countenance was radiant with love.
  She look'd like one to die for it--a being
  Whose whole existence was the pouring out
  Of rich and deep affections. I have thought
    A brother's and a sister's love were much;
  I know a brother's is--for I have been
  A sister's idol--and I know how full
  The heart may be of tenderness to her!
  But the affection of a delicate child
  For a fond father, gushing, as it does,
  With the sweet springs of life, and pouring on
  Through all earth's changes, like a river's course--
  Chasten'd with reverence, and made more pure
  By the world's discipline of light and shade--
  'Tis deeper--holier.

                        The wind bore on
  The leaden tramp of thousands. Clarion notes
  Rang sharply on the ear at intervals;
  And the low, mingled din of mighty hosts
  Returning from the battle, pour'd from far,
  Like the deep murmur of a restless sea.
  They came, as earthly conquerors always come,
  With blood and splendor, revelry and woe.
  The stately horse treads proudly--he hath trod
  The brow of death, as well. The chariot-wheels
  Of warriors roll magnificently on--
  Their weight hath crush'd the fallen. _Man_ is there--
  Majestic, lordly man--with his sublime
  And elevated brow, and godlike frame;
  Lifting his crest in triumph--for his heel
  Hath trod the dying like a wine-press down!
  The mighty Jephthah led his warriors on
  Through Mizpeh's streets. His helm was proudly set,
  And his stern lip curl'd slightly, as if praise
  Were for the hero's scorn. His step was firm,
  But free as India's leopard; and his mail,
  Whose _shekels_ none in Israel might bear,
  Was like a cedar's tassel on his frame.
  His crest was Judah's kingliest; and the look
  Of his dark, lofty eye, and bended brow,
  Might quell the lion. He led on, but thoughts
  Seem'd gathering round which troubled him. The veins
  Grew visible upon his swarthy brow,
  And his proud lip was press'd as if with pain.
  He trod less firmly; and his restless eye
  Glanced forward frequently, as if some ill
  He dared not meet, were there. His home was near;
  And men were thronging, with that strange delight
  They have in human passions, to observe
  The struggle of his feelings with his pride.
  He gazed intensely forward. The tall firs
  Before his tent were motionless. The leaves
  Of the sweet aloe, and the clustering vines
  Which half conceal'd his threshold, met his eye,
  Unchanged and beautiful; and one by one,
  The balsam, with its sweet-distilling stems,
  And the Circassian rose, and all the crowd
  Of silent and familiar things, stole up,
  Like the recover'd passages of dreams.
  He strode on rapidly. A moment more,
  And he had reach'd his home; when lo! there sprang
  One with a bounding footstep, and a brow
  Of light to meet him. Oh how beautiful!--
  Her dark eye flashing like a sun-lit gem--
  And her luxuriant hair!--'twas like the sweep
  Of a swift wing in visions. He stood still,
  As if the sight had wither'd him. She threw
  Her arms about her neck--he heeded not.
  She call'd him "Father"--but he answer'd not.
  She stood and gazed upon him. Was he wroth?
  There was no anger in that blood-shot eye.
  Had sickness seized him? She unclasp'd his helm,
  And laid her white hand gently on his brow,
  And the large veins felt stiff and hard, like cords.
  The touch aroused him. He raised up his hands.
  And spoke the name of God, in agony.
  She knew that he was stricken, then, and rush'd
  Again into his arms; and, with a flood
  Of tears she could not bridle, sobb'd a prayer
  That he would breathe his agony in words.
  He told her--and a momentary flush
  Shot o'er her countenance; and then the soul
  Of Jephthah's daughter waken'd; and she stood
  Calmly and nobly up, and said 'twas well--
  And she would die.

       *       *       *       *       *

                      The sun had well nigh set.
  The fire was on the altar; and the priest
  Of the High God was there. A pallid man
  Was stretching out his trembling hands to heaven,
  As if he would have pray'd, but had no words--
  And she who was to die, the calmest one
  In Israel at that hour, stood up alone,
  And waited for the sun to set. Her face
  Was pale, but very beautiful--her lip
  Had a more delicate outline, and the tint
  Was deeper; but her countenance was like
  The majesty of angels.
                            The sun set--
  And she was dead--but not by violence.

  --_N. P. Willis._


  Lord, many times I am aweary quite
  Of mine own self, my sin, my vanity--
  Yet be not Thou, or I am lost outright,
              Weary of me.

  And hate against myself I often bear,
  And enter with myself in fierce debate:
  Take Thou my part against myself, nor share
              In that just hate!

  Best friends might loathe us, if what things perverse
  We know of our own selves, they also knew:
  Lord, Holy One! if Thou who knowest worse
              Shouldst loathe us too!

  --_Richard Chenevix Trench._


CLEANSING FIRES.

  Let thy gold be cast in the furnace,
    Thy red gold, precious and bright;
  Do not fear the hungry fire,
    With its caverns of burning light;
  And thy gold shall return more precious,
    Free from every spot and stain;
  For gold must be tried by fire,
    As a heart must be tried by pain.

  In the cruel fire of sorrow
    Cast thy heart, do not faint or wail;
  Let thy hand be firm and steady,
    Do not let thy spirit quail:
  But wait till the trial is over,
    And take thy heart again;
  For as gold is tried by fire,
    So a heart must be tried by pain!

  I shall know by the gleam and glitter
    Of the golden chain you wear,
  By your heart's calm strength in loving,
    Of the fire they have had to bear.
  Beat on, true heart, forever;
    Shine bright strong golden chain;
  And bless the cleansing fire,
    And the furnace of living pain!

  --_Adelaide Procter._


GONE BEFORE.

  Thou art in heaven, and I am still on earth;
  'Tis years, long years, since we were parted here,
  I still a wanderer amid grief and fear,
  And thou the tenant of a brighter sphere.
    Yet still thou seemest near;
    But yesterday it seems,
    Since the last clasp was given,
    Since our lips met,
    And our eyes looked into each other's depths.

  Thou art amid the deathless, I still here,
  Amid things mortal, in a land of graves,
  A land o'er which the heavy-beating waves
  Of changing time move on, a land where raves
    The storm, which whoso braves
    Must have his anchor fixed
    Firmly within the vail--;
    So let my anchor be;
    Such be my consolation and my hope!

  Thou art amid the sorrowless, I here
  Amid the sorrowing: and yet not long
  Shall I remain 'mid sin, and fear, and wrong:
  Soon shall I join you in your sinless song.
    Thy day has come, not gone,
    Thy sun has risen, not set,
    Thy life is now beyond
    The reach of death or change;
    Not ended, but begun,
    Such shall our life be soon.

    And then,--the meeting-day,
    How full of light and joy!
    All fear of change cast out,
    All shadows passed away,
    The union sealed forever
    Between us and our Lord.

  --_Horatius Bonar._


THE LENT JEWELS.

  In schools of wisdom all the day was spent:
  His steps at eve the Rabbi homeward bent,
  With homeward thoughts, which dwelt upon the wife
  And two fair children, who consoled his life.
  She meeting at the threshold led him in,
  And with these words preventing, did begin:--
  "Ever rejoicing at your wished return,
  Yet am I most so now: for since this morn
  I have been much perplexed and sorely tried
  Upon one point which you shall now decide.
  Some years ago, a friend into my care
  Some jewels gave--rich, precious gems they were;
  But having given them in my charge, this friend
  Did afterward nor come for them, nor send,
  But left them in my keeping for so long,
  That now it almost seems to me, a wrong
  That he should suddenly arrive to-day,
  To take those jewels, which he left, away.
  What think you? Shall I freely yield them back,
  And with no murmuring?--so henceforth to lack
  Those gems myself, which I had learned to see
  Almost as mine forever, mine in fee."

  "What question can be here? Your own true heart
  Must needs advise you of the only part:
  That may be claimed again which was but lent,
  And should be yielded with no discontent.
  Nor surely can we find herein a wrong
  That it was left us to enjoy it long."

  "Good is the word," she answered; "may we now
  And evermore that it is good allow!"
  And, rising, to an inner chamber led,
  And there she showed him, stretched upon one bed,
  Two children pale: and he the jewels knew,
  Which God had lent him, and resumed anew.

  --_Richard Chenevix Trench._


ON THE DEATH OF A MISSIONARY.

  How beautiful it is for man to die
  Upon the walls of Zion! to be call'd,
  Like a watch-worn and weary sentinel,
  To put his armor off, and rest--in heaven!

  The sun was setting on Jerusalem,
  The deep blue sky had not a cloud, and light
  Was pouring on the dome of Omar's mosque,
  Like molten silver. Every thing was fair;
  And beauty hung upon the painted fanes;
  Like a grieved spirit, lingering ere she gave
  Her wing to air, for heaven. The crowds of men
  Were in the busy streets, and nothing look'd
  Like woe, or suffering, save one small train
  Bearing the dead to burial. It pass'd by,
  And left no trace upon the busy throng.
  The sun was just as beautiful; the shout
  Of joyous revelry, and the low hum
  Of stirring thousands rose as constantly!
  Life look'd as winning; and the earth and sky,
  And every thing seem'd strangely bent to make
  A contrast to that comment upon life.
  How wonderful it is that human pride
  Can pass that touching moral as it does--
  Pass it so frequently, in all the force
  Of mournful and most simple eloquence--
  And learn no lesson! They bore on the dead,
  With the slow step of sorrow, troubled not
  By the rude multitude, save, here and there,
  A look of vague inquiry, or a curse
  Half-mutter'd by some haughty Turk whose sleeve
  Had touch'd the tassel of the Christian's pall
  And Israel too pass'd on--the trampled Jew!
  Israel!--who made Jerusalem a throne
  For the wide world--pass'd on as carelessly;
  Giving no look of interest to tell
  The shrouded dead was any thing to her.
  Oh that they would be gather'd as a brood
  Is gather'd by a parent's sheltering wings!--

  They laid him down with strangers, for his home
  Was with the setting sun, and they who stood
  And look'd so steadfastly upon his grave,
  Were not his kindred; but they found him there,
  And loved him for his ministry of Christ.
  He had died young. But there are silver'd heads,
  Whose race of duty is less nobly run.
  His heart was with Jerusalem; and strong
  As was a mother's love, and the sweet ties
  Religion makes so beautiful at home,
  He flung them from him in his eager race,
  And sought the broken people of his God,
  To preach to them of JESUS. There was one,
  Who was his friend and helper. One who went
  And knelt beside him at the sepulchre
  Where Jesus slept, to pray for Israel.
  They had one spirit, and their hearts were knit
  With more than human love. God call'd him home.
  And he of whom I speak stood up alone,
  And in his broken-heartedness wrought on
  Until his Master call'd him.

  Oh, is it not a noble thing to die.
  As dies the Christian, with his armor on!--
  What is the hero's clarion, though its blast
  Ring with the mastery of a world, to this?--
  What are the searching victories of the mind--
  The lore of vanish'd ages?--What are all
  The trumpetings of proud humanity,
  To the short history of Him who made
  His sepulchre beside the King of kings?

  --_N. P. Willis._


SET APART.

 "Know that the Lord hath set apart him that is godly for
 Himself."--Ps. iv. 3.

        Set apart for Jesus!
          Is not this enough,
        Though the desert prospect,
          Open wild and rough?
  Set apart for His delight,
        Chosen for His holy pleasure,
        Sealed to be His special treasure!
  Could we choose a nobler joy?--and would we if we might?

        Set apart to serve Him,
          Ministers of light,
        Standing in His presence,
          Ready day or night!
  Chosen for His service blest
        He would have us always willing
        Like the angel-hosts fulfilling
  Swiftly and rejoicingly each recognized behest.

        Set apart to praise Him,
          Set apart for this!
        Have the blessed angels
          Any truer bliss?
  Soft the prelude, though so clear;
        Isolated tones are trembling,
        But the chosen choir, assembling,
  Soon shall sing together, while the universe shall hear.

        Set apart to love Him,
          And His love to know!
        Not to waste affection
          On a passing show.
  Called to give Him life and heart,
        Called to pour the hidden treasure,
        That none other claims to measure,
  Into His beloved hand! thrice-blessèd 'set apart!'

        Set apart for ever
          For Himself alone!
        Now we see our calling
          Gloriously shown!
  Owning, with no secret dread,
        This our holy separation,
        Now the crown of consecration
  Of the Lord our God shall rest upon our willing head!

  --_Frances Ridley Havergal._


THE USEFUL LIFE.

 =Psychê mou, psychê mou,
 Anasta, ti katheudeis.=
 OLD GREEK HYMN.

  Go labor on; spend, and be spent,--
    Thy joy to do the Father's will;
  It is the way the Master went,
    Should not the servant tread it still?

  Go labor on; 'tis not for nought;
    Thy earthly loss is heavenly gain;
  Men heed thee, love thee, praise thee not;
    The Master praises, what are men?

  Go labor on; enough, while here,
    If He shall praise thee, if he deign
  Thy willing heart to mark and cheer;
    No toil for Him shall be in vain.

  Go labor on; your hands are weak,
    Your knees are faint, your soul cast down;
  Yet falter not; the prize you seek,
    Is near,--a kingdom and a crown!

  Go labor on, while it is day,
    The world's dark night is hastening on;
  Speed, speed thy work, cast sloth away:
    It is not thus that souls are won.

  Men die in darkness at your side,
    Without a hope to cheer the tomb;
  Take up the torch and wave it wide,
    The torch that lights time's thickest gloom.

  Toil on, faint not, keep watch and pray;
    Be wise, the erring soul to win;
  Go forth into the world's highway,
    Compel the wanderer to come in.

  Toil on, and in thy toil rejoice;
    For toil comes rest, for exile home;
  Soon shalt thou hear the Bridegroom's voice,
    The midnight peal, behold I come!

  --_Horatius Bonar._


HYMN.

  O holy Saviour, Friend unseen,
  The faint, the weak, on Thee may lean,
  Help me, throughout life's varying scene,
      By faith to cling to Thee!

  Blest with communion so Divine,
  Take what Thou wilt, shall I repine,
  When, as the branches to the vine,
      My soul may cling to Thee?

  Far from her home, fatigued, oppressed,
  Here she has found a place of rest,
  An exile still, yet not unblest,
      While she can cling to Thee!

  Without a murmur I dismiss
  My former dreams of earthly bliss,
  My joy, my recompense be this,
      Each hour to cling to Thee!

  What though the world deceitful prove,
  And earthly friends and joys remove,
  With patient, uncomplaining love,
      Still would I cling to Thee!

  Oft when I seem to tread alone
  Some barren waste with thorns o'ergrown,
  A voice of love, in gentlest tone,
      Whispers, "Still cling to Me!"

  Though faith and hope awhile be tried,
  I ask not, need not, aught beside;
  How safe, how calm, how satisfied,
      The souls that cling to Thee!

  They fear not Life's rough storms to brave,
  Since Thou art near, and strong to save;
  Nor shudder e'en at Death's dark wave,
      Because they cling to Thee!

  Blest is my lot, whate'er befall;
  What can disturb me, who appal;
  While, as my strength, my rock, my all,
      Saviour, I cling to Thee!

  --_Charlotte Elliot._


"BEHOLD, THE BRIDEGROOM COMETH!"

  I.

  Behold, a Royal Bridegroom
    Hath called me for His bride!
  I joyfully make ready
    And hasten to His side.
  He is a Royal Bridegroom,
    But I am very poor!
  Of low estate He chose me
    To show His love the more:
  For He hath purchased for me
    Such goodly, rich array,--
  Oh, surely never Bridegroom
    Gave gifts like His away.

  II.

  When first upon the mountains,
    I, in the vale below,
  Beheld Him waiting for me,
    Heard His command to go,
  I, poorest in the valley,
    Oh, how could I prepare
  To meet His royal presence?
    How could I make me fair?
  Ah! in His love He sent me
    A garment clean and white:
  And promised broidered raiment
    All glorious in His sight.
  And then He gave me glimpses
    Of the jewels for my hair,
  And the ornament most precious
    For His chosen bride to wear.

  III.

  First in my tears I washed me,--
    They could not make me clean:
  A fountain then He showed me,
    Strange until then unseen!
  So close I'd lived beside it
    For many weary years,
  Yet passing by the fountain
    Had bathed me in my tears.
  Oh, love, oh, grace, that showed it!
    Revealed its cleansing power!
  How could I choose but hasten
    To meet Him from that hour.

  IV.

  I said, delay no longer;
    He surely will provide
  All for the toilsome journey,
    Up the steep mountain side.
  He sought me in the valley--
    He knows my utmost need;
  But He's a Royal Bridegroom,
    I shall be rich indeed.
  Rich in His pardoning mercies,--
    Bounties that never cease:
  Rich in His loving kindness,
    Rich in His joy and peace,
  So then I took the Raiment.
    And the jewels that He sent;
  And, gazing on His beauty,
    I up the hillside went.

  V.

  And still with feeble footsteps,
    And turning oft astray,
  I go to meet the Bridegroom,
    Though stumbling by the way
  I soil my royal garments
    With earth whene'er I fall;
  I break and mar my ornaments,
    But He will know them all.
  For it was He who gave them;
    Will He forget His own?
  Ah! for the love He bore me,
    He called! will He disown?

  VI.

  He sent His Guide to guide me:
    He knew how blind, how frail
  The children of the valley:--
    He knew my love would fail.
  He knew the mists above me
    Would hide Him from my sight.
  And I, in darkness groping,
    Would wander from the right.
  I know that I must follow
    Slow when I fain would soar:
  That step by step thus upward,
    My Guide must go before.

  VII.

  Cleave close, dear Guide, and lead me!
    I cannot go aright!
  Through all that doth beset me,
    Keep, keep me close in sight!
  'Tis but a little longer;
    Methinks the end I see:
  Oh! matchless love and mercy,
    The Bridegroom waits for me;
  Waits, to present me faultless,
    Before His Father's throne;
  His comeliness my beauty,
    His righteousness my own.

  --_Unidentified._


  "It may be in the evening,
    When the work of the day is done,
  And you have time to sit in the twilight
    And watch the sinking sun,
  While the long bright day dies slowly
        Over the sea,
  And the hour grows quiet and holy
    With thoughts of Me,
  While you hear the village children
    Passing along the street
  Among those thronging footsteps
    May come the sound of My Feet:
  Therefore I tell you, Watch!
    By the light of the evening star,
  When the room is growing dusky
    As the clouds afar;
  Let the door be on the latch
        In your home,
  For it may be through the gloaming
        I will come.

    "It may be when the midnight
    Is heavy upon the land,
  And the black waves lying humbly
        Along the sand;
  When the moonless night draws close,
    And the lights are out in the house;
  When the fires burn low and red,
    And the watch is ticking loudly
        Beside the bed:
    Though you sleep, tired out on your couch,
  Still your heart must wake and watch
        In the dark room,
  For it may be that at midnight
        I will come.

  "It may be at the cock-crow,
    When the night is dying slowly
        In the sky,
    And the sea looks calm and holy,
  Waiting for the dawn of the golden sun
        Which draweth nigh;
  When the mists are on the valleys, shading
        The rivers chill,
  And my morning star is fading, fading
        Over the hill:
  Behold, I say unto you, Watch!
    Let the door be on the latch:
        In your home:
    In the chill before the dawning,
  Between the night and morning
        I may come.

  "It may be in the morning,
    When the sun is bright and strong,
  And the dew is glittering sharply
    Over the little lawn;
  When the waves are laughing loudly
    Along the shore,
  And the little birds are singing sweetly
    About the door.
  With the long day's work before you,
    You rise up with the sun,
  And the neighbors come in to talk a little,
    Of all that must be done;
  But remember that I may be the next
    To come in at the door,
  To call you from all your busy work
        For evermore:
  As you work your heart must watch,
    For the door is on the latch
        In your room,
  And it may be in the morning
        I will come."

  So He passed down my cottage garden,
    By the path that leads to the sea,
  Till he came to the turn of the little road,
    Where the birch and laburnum tree
  Lean over and arch the way.
    There I saw him a moment stay,
  And turn once more to me,
    As I wept at the cottage door,
  And lift up His hands in blessing--
    Then I saw His face no more.
  And I stood still in the door-way
    Leaning against the wall,
  Not heeding the fair white roses,
    Though I crushed them, and let them fall,
  Only looking down the pathway,
    And looking towards the sea,
  And wondering, and wondering
    When He would come back for me,
  Till I was aware of an angel
    Who was going swiftly by,
  With the gladness of one who goeth
    In the light of God most high
  He passed the end of the cottage
    Towards the garden gate,--
  (I suppose He was come down
    At the setting of the sun,
  To comfort some one in the village
    Whose dwelling was desolate,)
  And He passed before the door
    Beside my place,
  And the likeness of a smile
    Was on His face:--
  "Weep not," He said, "for unto you is given,
    To watch for the coming of His feet,
  Who is the glory of our blessed Heaven:
    The work and watching will be very sweet
  Even in an earthly home,
    And in such an hour as ye think not
        He will come."
    So I am watching quietly
        Every day;
    Whenever the sun shines brightly
        I rise and say,--
    Surely it is the shining of His face!
  And look unto the gates of His high place,
        Beyond the sea,
  For I know He is coming shortly
        To summon me.
  And when a shadow falls across the window
        Of my room,
  Where I am working my appointed task,
    I lift my head to watch the door, and ask
        If He is come;
    And the angel answers sweetly
        In my home,--
    "Only a few more shadows,
        And He will come."

  --_Unidentified_.


THE JOY OF ASSURANCE.

  It is too calm to be a dream,
  Too gravely sweet, too full of power,
    Prayer changed to praise this very hour!
  Yes, heard and answered! though it seem
  Beyond the hope of yesterday,
  Beyond the faith that dared to pray,
  Yet not beyond the love that heard,
  And not beyond the faithful word
  On which each trembling prayer may rest,
  And win the answer truly best.

  Yes, heard and answered! sought and found!
    I breathe a golden atmosphere
    Of solemn joy, and seem to hear
  Within, above, and all around,
  The chime of deep cathedral bells,
  An early herald peal that tells
  A glorious Easter tide begun;
  While yet are sparkling in the sun
  Large rain drops of the night storm passed,
  And days of Lent are gone at last.

  --_Frances Ridley Havergal_.


"HOW WONDERFUL!"

  He answered all my prayer abundantly,
    And crowned the work that to _His_ feet I brought,
    With blessing more than I had asked or thought--
  A blessing undisguised, and fair, and free.

  I stood amazed, and whispered, "Can it be
    That He hath granted all the boon I sought?
    How wonderful that He for me hath wrought!
  How wonderful that He hath answered me!"

  O faithless heart! He _said_ that He would hear
    And answer thy poor prayer, and He _hath_ heard
  And proved His promise. Wherefore didst thou fear?
    Why marvel that thy Lord hath kept His word?
  More wonderful if He should fail to bless
  Expectant faith and prayer with good success!

  --_Frances Ridley Havergal._


THY WAY, NOT MINE.

  Thy way, not mine, O Lord,
    However dark it be!
  Lead me by Thine own hand,
    Choose out the path for me.

  Smooth let it be or rough,
    It will be still the best,
  Winding or straight, it matters not,
    It leads me to Thy rest.

  I dare not choose my lot:
    I would not, if I might;
  Choose Thou for me, my God,
    So shall I walk aright.

  The kingdom that I seek
    Is Thine: so let the way
  That leads to it be Thine,
    Else I must surely stray.

  Take Thou my cup, and it
    With joy or sorrow fill,
  As best to Thee may seem;
    Choose Thou my good and ill.

  Choose Thou for me my friends,
    My sickness or my health,
  Choose Thou my cares for me,
    My poverty or wealth.

  Not mine, not mine the choice,
    In things or great or small;
  Be Thou my guide, my strength,
    My wisdom, and my all.

  --_Horatius Bonar_.


A CHILD'S FIRST IMPRESSION OF A STAR.

  She had been told that God made all the stars,
  That twinkled up in heaven, and now she stood
  Watching the coming of the twilight on,
  As if it were a new and perfect world,
  And this were its first eve. She stood alone
  By the low window, with the silken lash
  Of her soft eye upraised, and her sweet mouth
  Half parted with the new and strange delight
  Of beauty that she could not comprehend,
  And had not seen before. The purple folds
  Of the low sunset clouds, and the blue sky
  That look'd so still and delicate above,
  Fill'd her young heart with gladness, and the eve
  Stole on with its deep shadows, and she still
  Stood looking at the west with that half smile,
  As if a pleasant thought were at her heart.
  Presently, in the edge of the last tint
  Of sunset, where the blue was melted in
  To the faint golden mellowness, a star
  Stood suddenly. A laugh of wild delight
  Burst from her lips, and putting up her hands,
  Her simple thought broke forth expressively--
  "Father! dear father! God has made a star!"

  --_N. P. Willis._


"COME UNTO ME!"

  Art thou weary? Art thou languid?
    Art thou sore distrest?
  "Come to Me," saith One, "and coming,
            Be at rest!"

  Hath He marks to lead me to Him,
    If He be my Guide?
  "In His feet and hands are wound-prints,
            And His side."

  Is there diadem as monarch
    That His brow adorns?
  "Yea, a crown in very surety,
            But of thorns!"

  If I find Him, if I follow,
    What his guerdon here?
  "Many a sorrow, many a labor,
            Many a tear."

  If I still hold closely to Him,
    What hath He at last?
    "Sorrow vanquished, labor ended,
              Jordan past!"

  If I ask Him to receive me,
    Will He say me nay?
    "Not till earth and not till Heaven
              Pass away!"

  Finding, following, keeping, struggling,
    Is He sure to bless?
    "Angels, martyrs, prophets, pilgrims,
              Answer--Yes!"

  --_From St. Stephen the Sabaite._


"LOOKING UNTO JESUS."

  Thou, Lord, my path shalt choose,
  And my Guide be!
  What shall I fear to lose
          While I have Thee?
  This be my portion blest,
  On my Redeemer's breast,
  In peaceful trust to rest:
          He cares for me!

  Shall I then, choose my way?
            Never, oh, no!
  I, a creature of a day,
            What can I know?
  What dread perplexity,
  Then would encompass me;
  Now I can look to Thee,
            Thou orderest so!

  This lightens every cross,
            Cheers every ill;
  Suffer I grief or loss,
            It is Thy will!
  Who can make no mistake,
  Chooseth the way I take,
  He who can ne'er forsake,
  Holds my hand still!

  Sweet words of peace and love
            Christ whispers me!
  Bearing my soul above
            Life's troubled sea!
  This be my portion blest,
  On my Redeemer's breast,
  In peaceful trust to rest:
            He cares for me!

  Christ died my love to win,
            Christ is my tower!
  He will be with me in
            Each trying hour!
  He makes the wounded whole,
  He will my heart console,
  He will uphold my soul
            By His own power!

  To Thee, the only, Wise,
            Whatever be,
  I will lift up mine eyes
            Joyful in Thee!
  This be my portion blest,
  On my Redeemer's breast
  In peaceful trust to rest:
            He cares for me!

  --_From the German._


EVENING HYMN.

  The shadows of the evening hours
    Fall from the darkening sky;
  Upon the fragrance of the flowers
    The dews of evening lie;
  Before Thy throne, O Lord of Heaven,
    We kneel at close of day;
  Look on Thy children from on high,
    And hear us while we pray.

  The sorrows of Thy servants, Lord,
    O do not Thou despise;
  But let the incense of our prayers
    Before Thy mercy rise;
  The brightness of the coming night
    Upon the darkness rolls:
  With hopes of future glory chase
    The shadows on our souls.

  Slowly the rays of daylight fade;
    So fade within our heart
  The hopes in earthly love and joy,
    That one by one depart:
  Slowly the bright stars, one by one,
    Within the heavens shine;--
  Give us, O Lord, fresh hopes in Heaven,
    And trust in things divine.

  Let peace, O Lord, Thy peace, O God,
    Upon our souls descend
  From midnight fears and perils, thou
    Our trembling hearts defend;
  Give us a respite from our toil,
    Calm and subdue our woes;
  Through the long day we suffer, Lord,
    O give us now repose!

  --_Adelaide Procter._


ARE ALL THE CHILDREN IN?

  The darkness falls; the wind is high;
  Dense, black clouds fill the western sky;
    The storm will soon begin;
  The thunders roar, the lightnings flash,
  I hear the great round rain-drops dash,
    Are all the children in?

  They're coming softly to my side,
  Their forms within my arms I hide,
    No other arms are sure:
  The storm may rage with fury wild,
  With trusting faith each little child
    With mother feels secure.

  But future days are drawing near;
  They'll go from this warm shelter here
    Out in the world's wild din.
  The rains will fall, the cold winds blow,
  I'll sit alone and long to know
    Are all the children in.

  Will they have shelter then secure,
  Where hearts are waiting strong and sure,
    And love is true when tried?
  Or will they find a broken reed,
  When strength of heart they so much need
    To help them brave the tide?

  God knows it all; His will is best;
  I'll shield them now and yield the rest
    To His most righteous hand:
  Sometimes the souls He loves are riven
  By tempests wild, and thus are driven
    Nearer the better land.

  If He should call me home before
  The children go, on that bless'd shore
    Afar from care and sin,
  I know that I shall watch and wait
  Till He, the keeper of the gate,
    Lets all the children in.

  --_Unidentified._


HE LEADS US ON.

        He leads us on,
  By paths we did not know
  Upward He leads us, though our steps be slow,
  Though oft we faint and falter on the way,
  Though storms and darkness oft obscure the day,
        Yet when the clouds are gone
        We know He leads us on.

        He leads us on
  Through all the unquiet years;
  Past all our dreamland hopes, and doubts, and fears
  He guides our steps. Through all the tangled maze
  Of sin, of sorrow, and o'erclouded days
        We know His will is done;
        And still He leads us on.

        And He, at last,
  After the weary strife--
  After the restless fever we call life--
  After the dreariness, the aching pain,
  The wayward struggles which have proved in vain,
        After our toils are past--
        Will give us rest at last.

  --_Unidentified._


NOTHING BUT LEAVES.

  Nothing but leaves: the spirit grieves
    Over a wasted life.
  Sins committed while conscience slept;
  Promises made, but never kept;
    Hatred, battle, and strife--
        Nothing but leaves.

  Nothing but leaves: no garnered sheaves
    Of life's fair ripened grain;
  Words, idle words, for earnest deeds.
  We sow our seed--lo! tares and weeds:
    Go reap with toil and pain
        Nothing but leaves.

  Nothing but leaves: memory weaves
    No veil to sever the past;
  As we return our weary way,
  Counting each lost and misspent day,
    We find sadly, at last,
        Nothing but leaves.

  And shall we meet the Master so,
    Bearing our withered leaves?
  The Saviour looks for perfect fruit:
  We stand before Him, humbled, mute,
    Waiting the word He breathes--
        Nothing but leaves.

  --_Unidentified._


BECAUSE HE FIRST LOVED US.

  I love Thee, O my God! but not
    For what I hope thereby,
  Nor yet because who love Thee not
    Must die eternally.
  I love Thee, O my God! and still
    I ever will love Thee,
  Solely because, my God, Thou art
    Who first has lovèd me!

  For me, to lowest depths of woe
    Thou didst Thyself abase;
  For me didst bear the cross, the shame,
    And manifold disgrace;
  For me didst suffer pains unknown,
    Blood-sweat and agony.
  Yea, death itself--all, all for me!
    For me, Thine enemy!

  Then shall I not, O Saviour, mine!
    Shall I not love Thee well?
  Not with the hope of winning heaven,
    Nor of escaping hell;
  Not with the hope of earning aught,
    Nor seeking a reward;
  But freely, fully, as Thyself
    Hast lovèd me, O Lord!

  --_Francis Xavier._


SONNET.

  Our course is onward, onward into light:
  What though the darkness gathereth amain,
  Yet to return or tarry, both are vain.
  How tarry, when around us is thick night?
  Whither return? what flower yet ever might,
  In days of gloom, and cold, and stormy rain,
  Enclose itself in its green bud again,
  Hiding from wrath of tempest out of sight?
  Courage!--we travel through a darksome cave;
  But still, as nearer to the light we draw,
  Fresh gales will reach us from the upper air,
  And wholesome dews of heaven our foreheads lave,
  The darkness lighten more, till full of awe
  We stand in the open sunshine--unaware.

  --_Richard Chenevix Trench._


REST AT EVENING.

  When the weariness of Life is ended,
    And the task of our long day is done,
  And the props, on which our hearts depended,
    All have failed or broken, one by one:
  Evening and our Sorrow's shadow blended,
    Telling us that peace is now begun.

  How far back will seem the sun's first dawning
    And those early mists so cold and gray!
  Half forgotten even the toil of morning,
    And the heat and burden of the day.
  Flowers that we were tending, and weeds scorning,
    All alike are withered and cast away.

  Vain will seem the impatient heart which waited,
    Toils that gathered but too quickly round;
  And the childish joy, so soon elated
    At the path we thought none else had found;
  And the foolish ardor soon abated
    By the storm which cast us to the ground.

  Vain those pauses on the road, each seeming
    As our final home and resting-place;
  And the leaving them, while tears were streaming
    Of eternal sorrow down our face;
  And the hands we held, fond folly dreaming
    That no future could their touch efface.

  All will then be faded:--night will borrow
    Stars of light to crown our perfect rest;
  And the dim vague memory of faint sorrow
    Just remain to show us all was best,
  Then melt into a divine to-morrow:--
    O how poor a day to be so blest!

  --_Adelaide Procter._


  Now the day is over,
    Night is drawing nigh,
  Shadows of the evening
    Steal across the sky.

  Now the darkness gathers,
    Stars begin to peep,
  Birds, and beasts, and flowers,
    Soon will be asleep.

  JESU, give the weary
    Calm and sweet repose;
  With Thy tenderest blessing
    May mine eyelids close.

  Grant to little children
    Visions bright of Thee;
  Guard the sailors tossing
    On the deep blue sea.

  Comfort every sufferer
    Watching late in pain;
  Those who plan some evil
    From their sin restrain.

  Through the long night watches
    May Thine Angels spread
  Their white wings above me,
    Watching round my bed.

  When the morning wakens,
    Then may I arise
  Pure, and fresh, and sinless
    In Thy Holy Eyes.

  Glory to the FATHER,
    Glory to the SON,
  And to Thee, Blest SPIRIT,
    Whilst all ages run.

  --_Unidentified._


THE LAND OF LIGHT.

  That clime is not this dull clime of ours;
      All, is brightness there;
  A sweeter influence breathes around its flowers,
      And a far milder air.
  No calm below is like that calm above.
  No region here is like that realm of love;
  Earth's softest spring ne'er shed so soft a light,
  Earth's brightest summer never shone so bright.

  That sky is not like this sad sky of ours,
      Tinged with earth's change and care;
  No shadow dims it, and no rain-cloud lowers,--
      No broken sunshine there!
  One everlasting stretch of azure pours
  Its stainless splendor o'er these sinless shores;
  For there Jehovah shines with heavenly ray,
  There Jesus reigns dispensing endless day.

  Those dwellers there are not like these of earth,
      No mortal stain they bear;
  And yet they seem of kindred blood and birth,
      Whence, and how came they there?
  Earth was their native soil, from sin and shame,
  Through tribulation they to glory came;
  Bond-slaves delivered from sin's crushing load,
  Brands plucked from burning by the hand of God.

  Those robes of theirs are not for these below;
      No angel's half so bright!
  Whence came that beauty, whence that living glow?
      Whence came that radiant white?
  Washed in the blood of the atoning Lamb,
  Fair as the light those robes of theirs became,
  And now, all tears wiped off from every eye,
  They wander where the freshest pastures lie,
  Through all the nightless day of that unfading sky!

  --_Horatius Bonar._


  Abide with me! fast falls the evening tide,
  The darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide;
  When other helpers fail, and comforts flee,
  Help of the helpless, oh, abide with me.

  Swift to its close ebbs out life's little day;
  Earth's joys grow dim, its glories pass away;
  Change and decay on all around I see;
  O Thou who changest not, abide with me.

  I need Thy presence every passing hour,
  What but Thy grace can foil the tempter's power?
  Who like Thyself my guide and stay can be?
  Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.

  I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless;
  Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness.
  Where is death's sting? where, grave, thy victory?
  I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.

  Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes;
  Shine through the gloom, and point me to the skies;
  Heaven's morning breaks, and earth's vain shadows flee;
  In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.

  --_Lyte._


FAREWELL OF THE SOUL TO THE BODY.

  Companion dear! the hour draws nigh,
  The sentence speeds--_to die, to die_.
  So long in mystic union held,
  So close with strong embrace compell'd,
  How canst thou bear the dread decree,
  That strikes thy clasping nerves from me?
  --To Him who on this mortal shore,
  The same encircling vestment wore,
  To Him I look, to Him I bend,
  To Him thy shuddering frame commend.
  --If I have ever caus'd thee pain,
  The throbbing breast, the burning brain,
  With cares and vigils turn'd thee pale,
  And scorn'd thee when thy strength did fail
  Forgive!--Forgive!--Thy task doth cease,
  Friend! Lover!--let us part in peace.
  If thou didst sometimes check my force,
  Or, trifling, stay mine upward course,
  Or lure from Heaven my wavering trust,
  Or bow my drooping wing to dust--
  I blame thee not, the strife is done,
  I knew thou wert the weaker one,
  The vase of earth, the trembling clod,
  Constrained to hold the breath of God.
  --Well hast thou in my service wrought,
  Thy brow hath mirror'd forth my thought,
  To wear my smile thy lip hath glow'd,
  Thy tear, to speak my sorrows, flowed,
  Thine ear hath borne me rich supplies
  Of sweetly varied melodies,
  Thy hands my prompted deeds have done,
  Thy feet upon mine errands run--
  Yes, thou hast mark'd my bidding well,
  Faithful and true! Farewell, farewell!

  Go to thy rest. A quiet bed
  Meek mother, earth with flowers shall spread,
  Where I no more thy sleep may break
  With fever'd dream, nor rudely wake
  Thy wearied eye.

                    Oh, quit thy hold,
  For thou art faint, and chill, and cold,
  And long thy gasp and groan of pain
  Have bound me pitying in thy chain,
  Though angels urge me hence to soar,
  Where I shall share thine ills no more.
  --Yet we shall meet. To soothe thy pain,
  Remember--we shall meet again.
  Quell with this hope the victor's sting,
  And keep it as a signet ring,
  When the dire worm shall pierce thy breast,
  And nought but ashes mark thy rest,
  When stars shall fall, and skies grow dark,
  And proud suns quench their glow-worm spark,
  Keep thou that hope, to light thy gloom,
  Till the last trumpet rends the tomb.
  --Then shalt thou glorious rise, and fair,
  Nor spot, nor stain, nor wrinkle bear,
  And, I with hovering wing elate,
  The bursting of thy bonds shall wait,
  And breathe the welcome of the sky--
  "No more to part, no more to die,
  Co-heir of immortality."

  --_Mrs. Sigourney._


THE END.





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