“Yusuf, can I ever become such a Christian as you?” returned Kedar, in a half-awed tone at the thought.
“My son, look not on me,” returned Yusuf, tenderly. “Strive only to perceive Jesus in all your life, to find him a reality to you—a companion, ever with you, walking by your side in the hot mart, riding by you in the desert, sitting by you in solitude,—then, where he is, evil cannot come. Your life will become all upright, conscientious, and loving, for his life will show through yours.”
“And do temptations never come to those so blessed?”
“Ah, yes, Kedar, so long as life lasts ’our adversary, the devil, goeth about as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.’ Yet, think you that the God who ’stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, who layeth the beams of his chambers in the waters, who maketh the clouds his chariot, who walketh upon the wings of the wind, who maketh his angels spirits, his ministers a naming fire’—think you that such an One is not able to stand between you and the tempter? Think you that he before whom devils cried out in fear, is not able to deliver you from the power of evil? Kedar, know that the Christian may even glory in his own weakness, for Jesus has said, ‘My strength is made perfect in weakness;’ and yet, while thus feeling his helplessness, the believer must ever be conscious of the unconquerable strength of Christ, and should rest serene in the knowledge that, clothed in the full armor of God, he is able to withstand all the darts of the wicked one.”
Kedar said no more, but from that hour his humility, his patience, his gentleness, began to show forth as the outcome of the power of that working of the Spirit, whose fruit is “love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance.”
KEDAR RETURNS TO HIS HOME.
“Death exempts not a
man from being, but only presents an
When Kedar left Yusuf on that memorable night it was not to sleep. He ascended the stair and went out upon the hanging balcony, where he could look at the sky and the mountains, and ponder over the conversation of the evening. His was not the excitable, rapturous joy experienced by many, but a feeling of quiet contentment that settled upon his soul, and brought a calm smile to his features.
So he sat, when Manasseh burst upon him exclaiming, “What! my invalid able to stay up all the night as well as half the day! Come, listen to me! I have news!”
“This evening a courier from Medina arrived in the city. He has with him a proclamation requiring all unsubmissive Jews to leave Mecca by to-morrow night at the latest.”
“So soon!” exclaimed Kedar. “Where are they to go?”
“I have just talked with Yusuf, and with Amzi, who, poor fat man! is trying to get a little sleep in the fresh air of the housetop. They propose that we join my father’s family in Palestine. Of course, I do not object!” added the youth, with a smile.