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An awful pause! prophetic of her end.
Thou who didst put to flight
How poor, how rich, how abject, how august,
Connection exquisite of different worlds!
'Tis past conjecture; all things rise in proof;
Why, then, their loss deplore that are not lost :
Yet man, fool man! here buries all his thoughts ,
61. Refuge in Divine Love.
Mrs. Malcolm. You look with affright on that drea.y dwelling, I perceive.
Edith. Yes; but Love might transform even that wretched hut into a bower of paradise.
Mrs. Malcolm. Do you believe there is such a thing as paradise on earth, Edith?
Edith. Once I did. - Mrs. Malcolm. And even in that wretched hut ? Edith. Ay, any where; even in that wretched hut.
Mrs. Malcolm. And you have discovered the fallacy of your expectations ?
Edith. Alas! yes. Mrs. Malcolm. You are not singular, my love. We all set out in life with the hope of creating for ourselves a paradise on earth; and all, sooner or later, live to mourn the vain, the unhallowed expectation.
Edith. Not all.
Mrs. Malcolm. All — all;— be assured it is so ordained , and those who have grasped at happiness have found it either a shadow or a shroud. So it has ever been, and so it will ever be.
Edith. Are you not happy ?
Mrs. Malcolm. Resigned, contented, grateful, — these, I hope, I am; but happy I am not, according to my ideas of felicity.
Edith. Yet you have every thing; while I Mrs. Malcolm. But every thing here below is imperfect, and, in its nature, fraught with anxiety and sorrow. And shall I own my weakness - my sinfulness? Even in the midst of the many blessings with which you see me surrounded, still, still my heart yearns for my long-lost boy; still a haunting mystery seems to me to hang over his fate; still a false, delusive voice whispers to me, at times, that perhaps he yet lives — lives a captive or a slave! Judge, then, whether I can be what you would call happy.
Edith. But he was not your all.
Mrs. Malcolm. Ah, Edith, is there any of us whose all centres in one frail, perishable creature' Has God given us affections, and feelings, and capacities of enjoyment, to be all lavished exclusively on one object -- and that object not himself?
Edith. It may be sinful; no doubt it is so; but — but I cannot help it.
Mrs. Malcolm No, dearest, you cannot help it; but God will help you. Only be assured he loves you with a love inconceivably beyond that which any creature has ever felt, or ever can feel, for you, and your heart will no longer remain closed against the consolations he offers you. Ah, Edith, it was when the doors were shut, that He who came to succor and to save, stood in the midst of his disciples; and it is when the heart is closed against all earthly consolation, that divine love still finds entrance.
Fraucht, laden, loaded, charged, filled, stored, full. – Delusive, apt to deceive, tending to mislead the mind: ive, 103. - Exclusively, without admission of others to participation, with the exclusion of all others. er, 28; ly, 110.
62. The Power of choosing within ourselves
CHEVALIER MONTENERO and Father Francis. Chevalier M. Well, it is in vain we struggle against Jestiny. For sixteen years I have been seeking those papers; but always, by some unfortunate accident, they have been thrown out of my reach. Destiny wills not that I shall have them, and I will give up the search.
Father F. And what is it you mean by Destiny, my dear bon ? Many people allow their energies to be benumbed, and even their religion, by a theory of fatalism, which has its foundation in a great mistake.
Chevalier M. It appears to me, my good father, that Fate grasps us, as it were, in a cleft stick, as I have seen many a boor catch a viper : there we may struggle as much as we like, but we are fixed down, and cannot escape.
Father F. Nay, nay; it is denying the goodness of God. Every one must feel within himself the power of choosing whatever way, or whatever conduct, he thinks fit. A man standing at a spot where two roads separate, — does he not always feel within himself the power to follow whichever he likes? And yet, perhaps, death lies on the one road, and good fortune on the other.
Chevalier M. But if he be destined to die that day, that day will he die ; and if you allow that God foresees which road the traveller will take, of course he must take it, and his free will is at an end.
Father F. Nay, my son, not so. What you call foresight is, in the Deity, what memory would be in man, if it were perfect. — It is knowledge. Standing in the midst of eternity, all is present to the eye of God; and he knows what man will do, as well as what man has done; but that does not imply that man has not the liberty of choice ; for it is his own choice that conducts him to the results which God