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other child left but our daughter, that we wanted an Abraham's faith to support us,
Wor. Ah, Sir! we get but poor consolation from any other quarter: it requires more than is to be found in nature under such circumstances, meekly to say, “ Thy will be done.”
Consid. Why, Sir, for a time I foolishly thought I could console my mind from natural reasons and moral philosophy; and it was just theu Mr. Lovegood sent us that excellent little treatise upon affliction,* entitled “ Correction, Instruction; or the Rod and the Word ;" together with a consolatory letter, written with such modest tenderness and humility, as very much captivated my wife and daughter, while I had too good an opinion of my own understanding, to suppose I needed any instructions from him ; yet I could not but at the same time, love and admire his design.
Wor. But I think, Sir, it was this event that first brought Mrs. Considerate and your daughter to Brookfield church.
Consid. Yes, Sir ;' and I found they were soon instructed in the lesson of meek and humble submission to the will of God, which I had still to learn ; and it was a long time before shame would let me go with them, though I never opposed. The preaching and conduct of Mr. Dolittle, gave me but a poor opinion of the religion he professed. Well, Sir, though it has been the will of God to deprive me of my future expectations, by taking from me two such dear children, yet may your daughter, and newly adopted son, long live to be a blessing to their neighbourhood! I really trust this will
* Written by Mr. Thomas Case, one of the ejected ministers, and recommended by Dr. Manton, of which a new edition has been lately published.
prove a happy event to many, though it is probable Mrs. Merryman, from her situation in life, might in some respects have formed a more advantageous connection for herself,
Wor. Why, we esteem it a very happy connection, when the better side of the question is taken into consideration ; for between friends, my daughter had a very handsome offer froin young Mr. Gay; and I was highly pleased with her conduct on this occasion. The moral character of Gay is quite unexceptionable, his fortune is ample, and in many respects he is a very desirable young man : but then his connections are quite in the world, and he himself is not averse to what are improperly called the innocent amusements, or rather gaieties of life.
Miss Consid. Yes, Sir, she was pleased to give me a hint that she had received such a proposal ; but said, however in other respects she might like him, yet, as it regarded religious matters, she thought they never could be happy with each other.
Wor. Why, we perceived that for some days there was a strong struggle upon her mind, till she broke it to us, with a full determination not to attend to it: and for a considerable time, we have discovered a much stronger bias towards Mr. Merryman.
Consid. Sir, I think nobody can wonder at that: since he has been blessed with the grace of God, he is become a very amiable youth. All that kpow him, one would think, would cry concerning him, “What hath God wrought !"
Wor. This made us determined to leave the young people to the leadings of their own minds. What she loses in point of affluence, I am satisfied, by the blessing of God, she will gain in point of happiness.
Consid. Sir, if God preserve their lives, I have no doubt that the union will be attended with his blesssing. We have nothing to do but to follow the wise rules which we find in our Bibles, and that will assuredly prove the ready way to happiness. When people are unequally yoked in any connections in life, especially in the marriage state, they may depend upon it, they will make themselves miserable through life. I cannot but think that the young lady has acted a part, as you observe, highly commendable to her character. If she should be the less affluent, I am sure she will be a thousand times more happy with Mr. Merryman, than ever she could have been with Mr. Gay.
Wor. She will doubtless be called to move in a more humble sphere; yet therein she will be much more likely to be protected and preserved. Thomas Newman, who just left the room as you came in, has been giving us a very pleasing nårration, how they were both received at Sandover on the day of their marriage.
Consid. Ah, Sir! I have heard all about it. The people of Sandover think themselves very happy on the occasion, though Mr. Spiteful of Mapleton, goes about from house to house, railing at the match like a mad
Wor. What is that to him ?
Consid. True, Sir; but I think he would burst if he had not now and then an opportunity to vent his spleen; he has got hold of the old stale cry, which is indeed promiscuously levelled against all religious people, that Mr. Merryman is a Jacobin, and is contriving all he can to overturn the Church and State ; and that all the canting tribe, round about the country, are secretly combined together in the same plot, by Sunday schools, and other religious exertions ; while I hope truly religious people are better taught than to interrupt the State, especially while the State never interrupts them.
Wor. I do not believe there is a man living, more attached to the government of his country than Mr.
Merryman. But let Mr. Spiteful rail on, for nobody believes him; I question if he believes himself.--Such persons' can do no harm, but as they do harm to themselves,
Consid. But, Sir, did you hear what a fine speech poor Thomas Newman made use of to him, when he took it into his head to banter the poor man, while he had some of his master's cattle to attend to at the last Mapleton fair?
Wor. What was that, Sir ?
Consid. Why, Sir, Farmer Snakish and Mr. Spiteful, who are first cousins came both of them together to the Upper Green, where you know the fair for cattle is kept; and seeing poor Thomas, who was there attending upon the sale of his master's property, they came up to hin, and began talking about the price of cattle; but more with a design to banter him, than to deal with hiin. They next began sneering at Thomas about his young master, how he came to run away from home so soon after his miraculous conversion, and whether it was not after some of his old wicked tricks.
Wor. What could they mean by that ?
Consid. 0 Sir, they had got hold of the story of Mr. Henry Littleworth's design in his journey to Locksbury, and this was their way of interpreting it. After this they began with their insulting speeches against Mr. Lovegood, laughing at Mrs. Chipman's miraculous conversion, and insinuating as though it was only a trick between her and Mr. Lovegood. Then they began making their bitter remarks on Mr. Merryman, saying that the top and bottom of his conversion, appeared now to be nothing but craft, that he might contrive to get your daughter for his wife. Thomas replied, that he was well persuaded such a conversion could never have been accomplished but by the great God himself ; adding, that it would be a greater miracle still, if God would
convert either of them. Upon this, old Spiteful cried, “ The great God! What do you know of the great God? I suppose Parson Lovegood has made you so wise, that you can tell us how great God is, and how little God is, and all about it."
Wor. To say the least of it, this sort of banter was horridly profane.
Consid. But Thomas's answer was remarkably to the purpose.—He paused and said, “Yes Sir, I can tell you, both how great God is, and how little God is.” Spiteful cried—“Ah, I thought Lovegood had made a clever fellow of you ; but let us hear it.”—Thomas answered, “Though he is so great, that even the heaven of heavens cannot contain him, being the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, and who dwelleth in the light which no man can approach unto, and which no man hath seen nor can see : yet he is so little, that he can dwell in the hearts of the humble and the contrite ; and take up his gracious abode, even in such a poor unworthy sinner as myself.”
While Mr. Considerate and Mr. Worthy were thus in conversation, Lord Rakish's carriage drove up to the door, with their congratulations on this event. Mr. Worthy rang the bell immediately, and ordered his boots, that he might appear as if he were going out, that his Lordship might think it necessary to shorten his visit. Mr. Considerate was very glad to make his escape
from the interview, while the poor flimsy conversation of his Lordship would be as uninteresting to the reader to peruse, as it would be unpleasant for the writer to relate. Nor has he time to give a minute account of what took place, at the promised marriage-feast at Brookfield Hall. Let it suffice, that it was conducted with that liberality, yet decency and sobriety, which are the standing orders of