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(Continued from page 293.)

Sunday, May 6.-Morning and afternoon at Winchelsea church.Sharp soul-exercises. Much pro and con about a text. Doubts as to the portion that had been uppermost upon the mind for many days. Supplanted at the eleventh hour by the gentle whisper-[Reader, do you know anything of the "still small voice?"]" Go home to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee" (Mark v. 19). Great things indeed! Well might the poor man "who had been possessed with the devil, pray that he might be with the Lord." The smiles of Jesus are sweet-his immediate society most blessed; but the Lord has other and more important purposes in view than our personal comfort. This is a secondary matter, and reserved for a future period, In the meantime the Lord's business must be set about [see Luke ii. 49]. And if the Lord gives commission, "Go home to thy friends," to our friends we must go with his message, irrespective both of our feelings and our fears as to both receptions and results. Would God that we at all times felt the power of this truth, for a truth it is. Is it the Lord's message? Are they the words which He hath put into our mouth? Then we have nothing to do with what men think or say about it. This would be to interfere with the Spirit's work, who will deposit his own truth when, where, and as he pleases. The Lord, in merey, write 2 Cor. ii. 14-17 upon our hearts!

Afternoon, at the moment of opening the Bible to read another text, the eye dropped upon Deut. xxxiii. 27, "The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms." It stood before us in letters of gold. We felt compelled to read it as a text; and thanks to the Lord for somewhat of the realization of his presence.

The Lord, however, was indeed gracious in the evening. We had had the greatest possible dread of it in the prospect; but He who had, a thousand times before, been better to us than all our fears, was specially so then. Reader, never, never despair. The Lord enable thee to look away from all thy fears, darkness, and discouragements! He is a wonderworking God, and able to do for thee abundantly above all that thou canst ask or think. Be this thy motto every day, and all the day, "Is anything too hard for the Lord?" No, indeed, there is nothing too hard for him. It is a truth, that—

"The Lord can clear the darkest skies,
And give us day for night;
Make streams of sacred sorrow rise
To rivers of delight."

"Immortal faith the promise sees,
And trusts to Christ alone;
Laughs at impossibilities,

And cries, It shall be done.'"

Little did the writer of the Reflections, inserted at the foot of this page, think, when they were written, that some six or seven years after he should be permitted and privileged, from that same spot, to preach the unsearchable riches of Christ; and that with a peace and pleasure that compels him, in the review, to exclaim, "What hath God wrought?" It was to the preacher a time of memorial.-Lord, if it be thy will, make it so to many a hearer. Thou art at no loss. Nothing can impede thy truth; for thou wilt work, and who shall let or hinder it? Thine office it is, eternal Spirit, to act as the Remembrancer; and thou canst, if it pleaseth thee, graciously verify the subject of that evening, by causing him, who "went forth weeping, bearing precious seed, to come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him;" and, if it be thy holy will, may it be said of Rye church, "This and that man were born there."

In calling upon a poor dying young woman, after the morning service, was particularly struck with one observation. The Lord deeply write it upon all our hearts, dear readers! The poor girl was very weak, and low, and fearful; and, when talking about Jesus as her only hope and refuge, "Have you nothing to bring him?" was a question put to her;


no prayers, no good ways or doings?" "I have nothing but my sins” was her prompt but most forcible reply. "God fix that truth upon your heart," thought we, 66 for true enough it is that it is all you have to bring, and it is equally true that it is all God wants."

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It is the very pith and marrow of the gospel. It is, so to speak, the Gospel barter-the trading in which a precious Christ and poor sinners are day and night engaged. They, coming weary and heavy laden with sins, heavy enough and black enough to drown and damn a world, and he giving them in exchange for this, and nothing but this-and not for a single good thought, or word, or way-a pure, perfect, and permanent righteousness. Oh, precious, atoning blood !-oh, glorious, justifying righteousness!-and all-lovely Christ that hath shed the one, and clothed us in the other! May a covenant Christ, with covenant love, blood, and mercy, be increasingly our theme!" Nothing to bring to him but my sins!" Dear reader, try to think of that blessed expression. It is our striving to bring him something else that keeps us as we are and where we are; yes, even those of us who have known, and do know, the Lord. There is an ever-constant proneness in our hearts to bring our knowledge, or experience, or prayerful, meditative frames, or a something or other

I rambled. The Sabbath morn had dawned; and, its doors being open, I sought the ancient church, which occupied a central post within the town where I had taken up a temporary residence. The clerk, or sexton, was a man in years, and free to converse. He led me to a spot, beneath which lay a mistress in whose service he had lived, if I remember right, for forty years. Thus, though on earth she lingered long-to a goodly age, her time at last had come; and he who during life had waited on her with a faithfal and attentive hand, was yet to fill a solemn office-to stand above her tomb, and tell of one who once possessed the utmost life and vigour, but had now been summoned hence. "How soon," thought I, "will this be my condition; how short the race; how soon it's run; and how brief the season ere I shall occupy a little space beneath this earth; whilst few, perhaps, as they tread unthinkingly above me, will remember that the dust on which they walk once lived."—Heart Breathings, p. 120.

short of that total helplessness, and ignorance, and sinfulness, which are the best recommendations To JESUS. "The whole need not a physician, but they that are sick." And it is our mercy, when led by the Spirit to Jesus as poor, and as needy, and as void of all good in ourselves, as when first, in all our guilt, and filth, and wretchedness, we fell down before him, with a "Lord, help!" "Lord, save, or I perish!" "God, be merciful to me, a sinner!"

Met with another interesting case at Rye-one of severe bodily suffering, coupled with great anxiety of soul. In gazing upon a countenance where this inward and intense conflict is betrayed, one may well feel humbled in the dust before God. "Such was I," says the spectator; "that was my very condition. What hath God wrought, in that he hath brought me up out of that horrible pit, and out of the miry clay, set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings? And where, alas! is my sense of the mercy? where my gratitude? where my dependence in present, or in the prospect of future, trial?"

Reader, must you not, with the writer, plead guilty to these charges?

Thursday evening, May 10th.-At St. John's, Portsea. Subject, 2 Cor. i. 10, "Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver : in whom we trust that he will yet deliver." Past, present, and prospective. The "great death" to which the apostle alludes might, subordinately, have had reference to the many temporal dangers which he had encountered, as spoken of in the 11th chapter of the same epistle; but his allusion, primarily, was doubtless to the spiritual deaththat death in trespasses and sins to which he so specially refers in the opening of his 2nd chapter to the Ephesians. The deliverance from this death was an inconceivable mercy; the highest, greatest, and most glorious the Lord himself could bestow. And present succour and support do but ratify that inestimable benefit. Present deliverances stamp a holy validity upon the past so-sovereign-a-deliverance. And both present and past do most blessedly promise for the future; for "he is not a man that he should lie, nor the son of man that he should repent." Having entered into covenant with his chosen, that they shall be brought off more than conquerors through him who hath loved them, every deliverance, temporal or spiritual, past, present, or to come, is but the evidence, or guarantee, that—

"We to the end shall endure,

As sure as the earnest is given;
More happy-but not more secure,
The glorified spirits in heaven."

Bonmahon, Ireland.

(To be continued.)



SOME twenty years ago, an aged pilgrim, of approved faith and strict integrity, in one of our mutual conversations on the wondrous goodness and grace of God, made this remark, "I've often been ridiculed, maligned, and counted a hypocrite, madman, and enthusiast, and have suffered great persecution, for His name's sake, who hath through unmerited grace, made me to differ! but I am often cheered with that most delightful text, 'Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, the Lord knoweth them that are his.' And I have found, in all my afflictions, the word established, for he has been a God hearing and answering prayer; and he has thus owned or known my soul in adversity; and of course, I listened to his voice which speaks in promises of aid, and in precepts for my direction. Thus is the Bible made a light to my feet, and a lantern to my path; and if a rising thought, or a murmuring word from Satan's forge, or my corrupt flesh, escape me, I know its origin, and hurry to my Lord,* in fervent prayer, for pardon and for strength, to keep these enemies of my peace under his control. Thus I have been taught to know the voice of my dear Saviour, and to obey it, to recognize the voice of Satan speaking by the lips of the ungodly, and the more delusive voice of my corrupt nature, and herein is my safety rendered doubly sure.

"Impressed with this experience, I took an evening walk upon the downs near the sea, to inhale the briny air, and haply to obtain some useful lesson from the objects which engaged my sight. Scattered o'er a vast extent of open ground, without a tree for shelter or for shade, a numerous flock were feeding, as far as the eye could see; they seemed but specks of white upon the verdant plain. Under a little bush, on a rising hillock, I perceived the aged shepherd seated, with his crook laid down, and his faithful dog attentive to his hand, with which he was taking his homely supper. I joined the party, and with the looks of seeming pleasure at the notice I had taken of him in his humble lot, he doffed his hat, and exposed to view that hoary head which is a crown of glory, when it is found in the way of righteousness. I bid him cover this token of an advanced age and toilsome pilgrimage, and inquired how long he had been used to this employment? He replied, 'from a child. My father tended here during three score years, and I have succeeded him for more than forty by myself: and before that with him, when the flock was large, more than thirty.' 'Then,' I replied, 'you have attained a good old age.' "I am now fourscore.' 'You have had a deal of time to think on death and an eternal world; and if you can read, you must surely have met with the Bible.' 'Oay! dear sir, that's my chief delight, my friend, companion, guide; my healing balm for every sore, though, thank my blessed Lord, my afflictions which all are heir to, have been but light compared with Then I have a kind master, and a healthy flock, and from long habit, I love them as though they were my own. I am no hireling, sir. though my master keeps me from want of every kind.' 'You seem, ny friend, to have laid up some store of wisdom from that sacred book, now pray tell me, is it true in experience that your flock hear your voice and


"Hurry to my Lord." Reader, do you? Soul, dost thou?

follow you; and will not obey the voice of strangers, not knowing theirs?' 'Ay! as true as you stand there, and I sit here.' 'I always thought as much,' said I, 'but I want a proof to satisfy others.' 'Then you shall have it,' replied the shepherd. In a few minutes I shall call that widely scattered flock to fold'-'And,' said I, 'let me first try my voice, under your direction, to ascertain whether they will attend to me or not.' Then he doffed his great coat, I put it on, and took his crook in hand, and he concealed himself behind me; he then taught me two notes which he used, and may be guess'd at by the way of spelling, Yo-ho—, the last not elongated, and more exalted. On hearing something like the usual sound, some of the more distant lifted up their heads and looked, but turned again to feed; the rest regarded not. I repeated the call, but all in vain, not one was interrupted by my voice. I am satisfied,' said I, 'that word is true, "They know not the voice of strangers, nor will they follow;" now try your method and confirm the whole, by showing that they will hear your voice and follow you.' He then assuming his coat and crook, lifted up his hand to his mouth, and cried Yo-ho, the dog flew off to the most distant part of the downs, to see if any wanderer had got entangled in the little thickets, and in a moment every sheep had turned round, and with the leading bell-wethers, marching in thickening order towards the fold which was not far from where we stood, towards which he walked gently forward, and arrived long before the leading sheep; and as they all drew near, the universal bleet declared their pleasure to behold their faithful guardian, whose kindly eye surveyed every sheep, to see the state in which his health appeared, and at the same time to take the muster roll, which soon was perfected with one exception. The dog who had quietly attended them to the fold, was now commissioned to fetch the missing sheep; he flew away with nose on ground and eyes of fire, and soon was out of sight, but in a few seconds we perceived a sheep with speed pursuing the new-trodden track of those who had arrived; the dog behind, but not annoying or alarming him. When he arrived the universal answer to his bleating sounded on my heart, 'Ah!' thought I, 'it is thus, the joy in heaven is marked when a poor sinner is brought to repentance from his wandering state.' 'Twas evident from his shaggy and mudstained fleece, he had been caught by a bush on the edge of some filthy ditch, from whence the dog had drawn him forth, for he also was muddy and some wool hung upon his flanks. Good dog!' 'naughty sheep!' were all that the culprit and the servant got for this event. The approbation so scantily pronounced seemed all-sufficient to the dog, who licked his master's hand, and had a quiet pat in secret, to induce faithful conduct on a future trial. The reproof so mild seemed to contain a volume. 'Why didst thou wander from the rest? Why wast thou not content within bounds? thou hast paid dearly for thy discontent, and had no helper come, you soon had perished in the mire, or been the food of ravenous enemies. Beware of straying from your quiet companions, and you are safe; for they are watched and kept within the view of him who loveth them.' I was highly pleased with this strong evidence of the beauty, fitness, and instructive tendency of that condescending comparison which our Saviour makes between himself and shepherds, his people and sheep. Having taken a Christian leave of the old shepherd, I returned to my lodging and set down in my diary a brief account of this pleasing occurrence."-The Nosegay. By Rev. W. Gurney.

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