Well, I have been and come, and—wonder of wonders!—I have had a little tiny bit of a very much needed nap. Mr. Pratt gave us a really good sermon about living to Christ, and I enjoyed the hymns. We have had a talk, my John and I, about death, and I asked him which of us had better go first, and, to my surprise, he said he thought I should. I am sure that was noble and unselfish in him. But I am not going to have even a wish about it. God only knows which had better go first, and which stay and suffer. Some of His children must go into the furnace to testify that the Son of God is there with them; I do not know why I should insist on not being one of them. Sometimes I almost wish we were not building a house. It seems as if it might stand in the way, if it should happen I had a chance to go to heaven. I should almost feel mean to do that, and disappoint my husband who expects to see me so happy there. But oh, I do so long to be perfected myself, and to live among those whose one thought is Christ, and who only speak to praise Him!
I like you to tell me, as you do in your East Dorset letter, how you spend your time, etc. I have an insatiable curiosity about even the outer life of those I love; and of the inner one you can not say too much. Good-bye. We shall have plenty of time in heaven to say all we have to say to each other.
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Return to Town. Death of an old Friend. Letters and Notes of Love and Sympathy. An Old Ladies’ Party. Scenes of Trouble and Dying Beds. Fifty Years old. Letters.
Her return to town brought with it a multitude of cares. The following months drew heavily upon her strength and sympathies; but for all that they were laden with unwonted joy. The summer at Dorset had been a very happy one. While there she had finished Stepping Heavenward and on coming back to her city home, the cheery, loving spirit of the book seemed still to possess her whole being. Katy’s words at its close were evidently an expression of her own feelings:
Yes, I love everybody! That crowning joy has come to me at last. Christ is in my soul; He is mine; I am as conscious of it as that my husband and children are mine; and His Spirit flows forth from mine in the calm peace of a river, whose banks are green with grass, and glad with flowers.
To Miss Eliza A. Warner, New York, Oct. 5, 1868
This is the first moment since we reached home, in which I could write to you, but I have had you in my heart and in my thoughts as much as ever. We had a prosperous journey, but the ride to Rupert was fearfully cold. I never remember being so cold, unless it was the night I reached Williamstown, when I went to my dear sister’s funeral.... I have told you this long story to try to give you a glimpse of the distracted life that meets us at