He says: “Truly my sorrow is a sorrow wholly by itself. What is to be done with a love which belongs only to one, when that one is gone and cannot take it up? It cannot perish, for it has become a part of our own being. What shall we do with a lost love which wanders like a ghost through all the chambers of the soul only to feel how empty they are? I have about me—blessed be God! a dear daughter and grandchildren; but I cannot divide this love among them, for it is incapable of distribution. What remains but to send it upward until it finds her to whom it belongs by right of concentration through more than forty years.”
“I will not speak, my brother, of my pain—let that be; it is the discipline of love, having its fruit in what is to be. But I will tell you how a gracious Father fills this cloud with Himself—and covering me in it, takes me into His pavilion. It is not what I would have chosen; but in this dark cloud I know better what it is to be alone with Him; and how it is best sometimes to put out the earthly lights, that even the sweetest earthly love may not come between Him and me. It is the old experience of love breaking through the darkness as it did long ago through the terrors of Sinai and the more appalling gloom of Calvary. I have this to thank Him for, the greatest of all His mercies, and then for this, that He gave her to me so long. The memories of almost half a century encircle me as a rainbow. I can feed upon them through the remainder of a short, sad life, and after that can carry them up to Heaven with me and pour them into song forever. If the strings of the harp are being stretched to a greater tension, it is that the praise may hereafter rise to higher and sweeter notes before His throne—as we bow together there.”
SUMMERING AT SARATOGA AND MOHONK.
Bishop Haven.—Dr. Schaff.—President McCosh.
To the laborious pastor of a large congregation some period of recuperation during the summer is absolutely indispensable. The cavalry officer who, when hotly pursued by the enemy, discovered that his saddle-girths had become loose, and dismounted long enough to tighten them, was a wise man, and affords a good example to us ministers.
It was my custom to call a halt, lock my study door (stowing away my pastoral cares in a drawer) and go away for five or six weeks, and sometimes a little longer. A sea voyage was undertaken during half a dozen vacations, but during a portion of forty-two summers I “pitched my moving tent” in salubrious Saratoga, and a part of twenty-one summers was spent on the heights of Mohonk.