“Gracious Father,” he exclaimed, “let, your mercy reach this most pitiable family! Look with eyes of pity and compassion upon this afflicted and bereaved woman! Oh, support her—she is poor and nearly heart-broken, and the world has abandoned her! Oh, do not abandon her, Father of all mercy, and God of all consolation!”
As he concluded, the widow recovered, and felt his tears falling upon her face. On looking she perceived how deeply he was affected. Her lips opened unconsciously with a blessing on him who shared in, and soothed her sorrows—her voice was feeble, for she had not yet recovered her strength; but the low murmur of her prayers and blessings rose like the sounds of sweet but melancholy music to heaven, and was heard there.
Mr. Clement then went over to the bed, and with his own hands smoothed it down for the little sick sister of the departed boy, adjusting the bed-clothes about her as well as he could, for the other children were too., young to do anything. He then divided the hair upon the lifeless child’s forehead—contemplated his beautiful features for a moment—caught his little hand in his—let it fall—oh! how lifelessly! he then shook his head, raised his eyes, and pointing to heaven, exclaimed—
“There—Mrs. Vincent, let your hopes lie there.”
He then departed, with a promise of seeing her soon.
CHAPTER XII.—Interview between Darby and Mr. Lucre
—Darby feels Scriptural, and was as Scripturally
Christian Disposition towards Father M’Cabe—A few Brands offer
Themselves to be Plucked from the Burning—Their Qualification, for
Conversion, as stated by Themselves.
Mr. Lucre, like almost every Protestant rector of the day, was a magistrate, a circumstance which prevented Mr. Clement from feeling any surprise at seeing a considerable number of persons, of both sexes, approaching the glebe. He imagined, naturally enough, that they were going upon law business, as it is termed—for he knew that Mr. Lucre, during his angel visits to Castle Cumber, took much more delight in administering the law than the gospel, unless, when ready made, in the shape of Bibles. When Darby, also, arrived, he found a considerable number of these persons standing among a little clump of trees in the lawn, apparently waiting for some person to break the ice, and go in first—a feat which each felt anxious to decline himself, whilst he pressed it very strongly upon his neighbor. No sooner had Darby made his appearance than a communication took place between him and them, in which it was settled that he was to have the first interview, and afterwards direct the conduct and motions of the rest. There was, indeed, a dry, knowing look about him, which seemed to imply, in fact, that they were not there without some suggestion from himself.