But will they be wet and cold?
I cannot be sure; but from the look of the sky there to westward, I think some of them will be. So do you make up your mind to stay with me. But if it is fine and smooth to-morrow, perhaps we may row down the bay, and see plenty of wonderful things.
But why is it that Madam How will not tell people beforehand what will happen to them, as you have told me?
Now I will tell you a great secret, which, alas! every one has not found out yet. Madam How will teach you, but only by experience. Lady Why will teach you, but by something very different—by something which has been called—and I know no better names for it—grace and inspiration; by putting into your heart feelings which no man, not even your father and mother, can put there; by making you quick to love what is right, and hate what is wrong, simply because they are right and wrong, though you don’t know why they are right and wrong; by making you teachable, modest, reverent, ready to believe those who are older and wiser than you when they tell you what you could never find out for yourself: and so you will be prudent, that is provident, foreseeing, and know what will happen if you do so-and-so; and therefore what is really best and wisest for you.
But why will she be kind enough to do that for me?
For the very same reason that I do it. For God’s sake. Because God is your Father in heaven, as I am your father on earth, and He does not wish His little child to be left to the hard teaching of Nature and Law, but to be helped on by many, many unsought and undeserved favours, such as are rightly called “Means of Grace;” and above all by the Gospel and good news that you are God’s child, and that God loves you, and has helped and taught you, and will help you and teach you, in a thousand ways of which you are not aware, if only you will be a wise child, and listen to Lady Why, when she cries from her Palace of Wisdom, and the feast which she has prepared, “Whoso is simple let him turn in hither;” and says to him who wants understanding—“Come, eat of my bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled.”
“Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom: I am understanding; I have strength. By me kings reign, and princes decree justice. By me princes rule, and nobles, even all the judges of the earth. I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me. Riches and honour are with me; yea, durable riches and righteousness.”
Yes, I will try and listen to Lady Why: but what will happen if I do not?
That will happen to you, my child—but God forbid it ever should happen—which happens to wicked kings and rulers, and all men, even the greatest and cleverest, if they do not choose to reign by Lady Why’s laws, and decree justice according to her eternal ideas of what is just, but only do what seems pleasant and profitable to themselves. On them Lady Why turns round, and says—for she, too, can be awful, ay dreadful, when she needs—