I HAVE of late thought myself like poor Job, having lost seven old and diseased sheep from the fold, who were taken from the evil to come, and all died in faith, leaving their flesh to rest in hope.
When I arrived in the chapel on Saturday eve, I had an account of the struggle of the Catholics labouring to get loose, to swallow up Zion. Then came Satan, and beat to arms, in order to alarm, awaken, and muster up his legions of inbred corruption; and, when the prince of this world cometh, how many of these does he find in me? I had little sleep, and in the morning was so cold and dead, so backward and inactive, so stubborn, perverse, and refractory, that I murmured, fretted, and complained bitterly; but when I went into the pulpit, and began to open my mouth, the salt, the cruse of oil, the springing well, the fountain of life, and wisdom's flowing brook, seemed all in motion together; light, life and love, joy and peace, spread their fragrant incense, and odoriferous perfumes all over the spouse's robes. No Doctor, no Rev. Mr. Huntington was there. "Wisdom killed her own beast, furnished her own table, prepared her own bread, mingled her own wine, bid her own guests, and entertained her own friends. "Eat, O friends; drink, yea; drink abundantly, O beloved." And since that time I have soared aloft, and flown my kite almost out of sight; so that I was in danger of breaking the string. But all this is now over; the Lord is gone on his way, and I am returned to my place, to bewail my fate, lament my loss, and to reflect upon times past. How trying are these continual changes, always craving, but never full! How transient are our visits! How short-lived are our joys! But you and I get old, and I have no desire to be young again. "The end of a thing is better than the beginning, and the day of death than the day of one's birth." A chosen vessel is born to trouble both at his first and at his second birth; but death ends it. These cold days and nights have shrivelled the Doctor quite up; and it is too cold and chilly to venture out.
Farewell! the best of all blessings be upon thee.
W. H. S.S.