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tervals, and Mr. Kemp has been a good deal distressed to find that our own outdoor servants are even more immoral than those of our neighbours, and we have now determined to board all the single men in our own house; of course, we shall give lower wages. We now have a check which they cannot resist; and as it has been reported that our servants corrupted the whole village; we now hope that their example may be useful, for we certainly have a very steady set.”
I suppose, sir, you are aware,” said Michael,
that our servants are looked at with a very jealous eye, and that a small fault in them is sure to be made much of. I do not believe half that was laid to their charge was true, but not having them under my own eye, I could not contradict
Have you heard how the Jennings' are going on?” said Mr. Brownrigg; “I am told that the old man is really much to be pitied; and his children are really a great trouble to him, a parcel of idle vain young people, and the poor wife looks worn down with care. I could but examine her pale features as she sat before me the other Sunday, and she walked out of church like a neglected thing, not one arm in the whole party was extended to her.".
Michael. I believe, sir, the old man is very much attached to her, so I have heard Betty Smith say. (Brownrigg.) “ Is it so? Well, I am glad of it; surely the mother of such a family must need it-must deserve it. I think there are six grown up, and I heard there were more young sprouts at a distance.” (Michael.) “. Yes, two or three at school.” (Brownrigg.)
- Well, what is to become of such a family brought up as they are. (Michael.)
I believe, sir, Mr. Jennings sees his error.” (Brownrigg.) “ Yes, yes, it begins to pinch now, that's the worst of it; we none of us see our errors till it is too late to amend them. For my own part, I cannot think what they propose to themselves. Why, don't you know, sir, that half the world, half the London world, I mean, rise in the morning without knowing where they shall lie down at night; at least, so says one who is supposed to have studied human nature well, ' thrown as it were upon existence by those ' whose irregular lives had plunged them ' into misery, without money, without friends, without education, with keen appetites, and strong passions; is it wonderful that vice and immorality should spread ?' But these things are mending, sir; the schools and the societies will certainly do great things.” “ And yet, my dear
uncle," said Esther, “how they are opposed, how many ill-natured things are said about those who are exerting themselves most strenuously. Why, my dear, it is much easier to find fault than to imitate, and if I like to be easy and quiet, and think of no one but myself, and some kind-hearted neighbour comes forward, and is endeavouring to do good to all around him, comparisons are made to my disadvantage, so that all I have for it is to pull down his fair name, and make out that he is doing nothing at all, or more than nothing, mischief.
Michael smiled; there was so much truth in the observation, that from that moment he entertained hopes of the candid open-hearted Brownrigg.
But we must visit our old friends at P., we must enquire after the first friends of Michael, whom we left in rather delicate health. Job said, “I would not live alway ;” and many a delicate sufferer since has breathed language not dissimilar. And what do we learn when we see these pillars of the earth trembling, and the strong bowed down. We learn, that the word of the Lord abideth for ever; we are there told, that whether there be tongues they shall cease, and whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away; nevertheless
we have a sure word of testimony. But how the heart of Michael was wounded, and all within him was melted, when he was told his excellent friend was fast sinking in the valley. Never had his faith been so tried, or any event touched him so nearly; he was ready to say, “ And I, whither can I go ?” and he felt that he was wrong, that he had been making man his stay; and poor Esther could say little to comfort him, for she knew from universal testimony the worth of him whom he trembled to lose. The disorder, under which his excellent friend laboured, was not one which pulls down the pillars of the body at once, but gradually saps the foundation till the strong man yields. There were many ebbings and flowings—he was now a little better, and now again he drooped ; and the eyes that derived light and 'brilliancy from his eye were often so suffused with tears, that they sought where to weep. How needful is it for the Christian to live in the habitual conviction," he doeth all things well;" for however God may be pleased to listen to the prayer of his people to soften the pang of departure, and to permit faith to support us in that trying hour, he does not alter the chain of his providences, but he gives strength to bear whatever he is pleased to inflict. The spoiler
is in the world, and sin hath tainted all; and the bare idea, that we could not stand in his sight if he were to mark one sin of a thousand, should bend the haughty brow, and silence all reply; but “ God be merciful to me a sinner.
Thus would Mr. Walker argue with his beloved wife, as she sat by the side of his sofa; she would sometimes say, My love, I cannot give you up, I cannot feel resignation, and what is more, I cannot ask for it. I seem afraid of having my desires granted, and my treasure removed, an poor dear Sophy feels just as I do. The sufferer smiled on her faintly,
" that is to say, my dear, that you are both rebels; and that, instead of supporting me in my weakness, you would bow me to earth again with your love and tenderness. Alas ! you know not how I need you to encourage me, and how dark the path has been through which I have travelled lately; I can say, that this hath been my prayer, • Lord, grant that I, who have preached to others, may not myself be cast away.
Oh, my love, can you doubt for a moment of your safety.' My dear wife, I am very weak, and the enemy hath been very busy with me.
He suggests very truly. what have you suffered for your God? what have you endured ? Son, remember that