THE WEARY AT REST.
The weary at rest. The idea was very strongly impressed upon my mind by a funeral which I once attended in the distant village of C. It was that of a very aged woman, whom I had often heard mentioned as one who had been subjected for many years to bodily suffering in no ordinary degree. I had never seen her, but was acquainted with many who visited her frequently; and I became interested from hearing her so often spoken of as a bright example of patience and resignation under affliction; and I was accustomed to enquire for her as often as I had opportunity. Owing to a rheumatic affection of her limbs, she had, as I was informed, been unable for several years to rise from her bed without assistance, and much of the time experienced severe pain. I was informed by her friends that through her protracted period of suffering she was never heard to utter a complaining or repining word, but was found daily in a calm even cheerful frame of mind. After a time I left the village and returned to my home. Returning thither to visit some relatives after the lapse of a few months, I met with a friend, soon after my arrival, who informed me of the death of old Mrs. H., which had taken place the day previous. Two days later I joined the large numbers who assembled to pay their last tribute of respect to one of the oldest residents of their village. As is usual upon funeral occasions, the coffin was placed in front of the pulpit, and a large number occupied the front pews which were appropriated to the friends of the deceased. In those pews were seated men in whose hair the silver threads were beginning to mingle, and women who were themselves mothers of families who all met around the coffin of their aged mother. Childhood, youth and middle age were all represented in that company of mourners. Their pastor, Mr. M., delivered a very appropriate discourse from the words, “Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord.” In the course of his sermon he took occasion to remark, that a funeral discourse should apply to the living—not the dead. I had before listened to different sermons from this same text; but I never listened to a more searching application of the words than upon this occasion.