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ÆTAT. 21] HOWE AND EDWARDS COMPARED.

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pleasure not less intense in examining the elegant mouldings, and the fair cornices of the exterior, with the beautiful 'carved work' of the interior. I do not remember that I ever had such views of the intimate and tender connection between Christ and His people, as I have derived from the verses I have read. May you and I, my dear friend, be among the number of those who 'bear much fruit.'-Our plan aimed at securing the results of mutual study of the same subject. We agreed on a chapter in the Bible for critical investigation, and at intervals compared notes, and thus reaped the benefit of each other's views.

"With Edwards I get on slowly, but successfully," he proceeds. "I think on the subject an hour or two every day. You know I do not compute my mental advancement by the number of pages I read. I am also reading Charnock on 'the Patience of God.' He is very excellent, but does not stand among the highest order of divines. Howe and Edwards are now decidedly my favourites; elected, I think, for ever. The noble soul of the former seems to grasp the whole range of truth; the bold and nervous spirit of the latter appears to have examined every part of its foundations. The mind of Howe was like a splendid temple, the residence of truth, which stood in bold and striking prominence, beautiful in symmetry and proportion, alluring all to come and survey the fair inhabitant. The mind of Edwards is like a gothic castle, which stands unshaken by assault-uninjured by the mouldering hand of time; and whose lofty and massive battlements frown upon the empire of darkness. I feel grateful that God ever sent two such spirits into the world. They elevate the standard of thought, and furnish a faint glimpse of the intellectual and moral grandeur of the world to come.

"I have a great deal to say for which I have neither time I wish I could concentrate my information. O for a lightning flash of intelligence which would reveal in a

nor room.

moment what would require a day to unfold by the ordinary medium! In a future state we may expect something of this sort; but such a flame would consume this earthly tabernacle.

"I have heard again from Miss * * girl. Her religion puts mine to the blush.

She is a good

"I have had many of those intellectual longings of late ; those aspirings after something great and excellent which words cannot express. How sweet are those lines—I repeat them many times a day :—

'Something far more divine

Than may on earth be mine,

Haunts my worn heart, and will not let me rest.""

CHAPTER IV.

AT AIREDALE COLLEGE. Sedbergh-Kirkby Lonsdale-Projects-Letter to Miss **-Humiliating discovery-Benefit of a Journal-Means by which his enjoyment of prayer was increased -Amplitude of means of self-improvement-Practices found to be injurious-Solicitude for usefulness-Concentration of energyImportant inquiry-Aphorisms on reading.

SHORTLY after his return from Northallerton, Sedbergh, a small market-town at the north-western extremity of the West-Riding, claimed his services. "This place has many natural attractions," he writes. "It is situated in one of the most romantic dells I ever saw. It is encircled by an amphitheatre of hills about ten miles in circumference, whose towering peaks pierce the clouds. The ground within this circuit is very varied. There are numerous abrupt and fantastic eminences which appear to mimic the gigantic hills. The whole country is beautifully wooded, and a mountain stream runs through it. I have this evening been tracing its meanderings, and I know not when I have enjoyed the scenes of nature more. This beautiful rivulet assumes almost every variety of aspect. Sometimes it glides along in silent and sullen majesty beneath the overhanging foliage which seems to frown upon it, and then it contends in angry surges with the rugged rocks over which it rushes. I was so enamoured of the fair goddess Nature that I could not help taking up the pencil and attempting to sketch her lovely features. But I am no artist; I have forgot myself; I can give you but 'a miserable daub.’”

These regions not then having been honoured with the visit of the steam-horse, Mr. Hessel had to break his journey at Kirkby-Lonsdale. The inn where he was accommodated

bears testimony to his devotedness. Before quitting it next morning he wrote: "Rose by half-past six. After breakfast I retired for prayer. I have reason to believe I had access to a throne of grace. I was especially enabled to pray for a blessing on my journey. I laid out a plan for my study, &c., during the coming month. The scenery around this place is beautiful. Have taken a walk into the church-yard, and on the river's bank-they are beyond description."

The following is the plan he mentions: "As it is of the utmost importance in any pursuit to have its objects well defined, so that the mind may clearly see at what it is aiming and be enabled to ascertain its progress, I will lay down the great objects to which I intend to consecrate the next month. I wish to acquire a better acquaintance with the classics. I have the painful retrospect of much time spent in them to no purpose simply on account of the way in which their study has been pursued. A careless mode of translating has been my mischief. From this I will now make a determined effort to extricate myself. The only rule I lay down is this general one—to make every word an object of distinct attention—to hold every image before the mind so long that a copy of it may be engraven upon the memory; never, if possible, pass by any thing obscure, but by careful and patient investigation clear up every difficulty.

"I wish to get into a better way of preaching. In the following things I will seek an improvement: 1. In voice. I want loudness, clearness, variety, strength. For this I will exercise myself every day upon some of the hills. 2. In style. I will aim at greater perspicuity. Avoid long sentences, in which the sentiment cannot be easily comprehended; and the contrary extreme of short ones, in which it cannot be easily retained. Unite simplicity with boldness and vigour. Make great use of direct address; I am confident it will tend to interest a congregation. The people

ETAT. 21] THE GRAND QUALIFICATION FOR USEFULNESS. 53

like to feel that the preacher is speaking to them—not repeating a composition. 3. In energy. Here I have failed. This is partly to be attributed to the peculiar delicacy of my mind, to depression of spirits when in the pulpit, and to the drudgery of repeating a discourse memoriter, by which the nobler faculties of the mind are cramped, but principally to a want of more piety. I know that if I formed a right estimate of the solemn situation I occupy when in the pulpit; if I could see and feel my own responsibility, the value of immortal souls, and the dread realities of eternity, I could not but be energetic. Prayer, then, must be the great means of increasing energy.

"These are the principal objects I propose, I have others but they are subsidiary. My aim is to come from Sedbergh a better classic and a better preacher."

"I promised in my last to give you an outline of my plan of future life," he writes to Miss * * on the Monday after his arrival. "Without attempting any formal representation of my purposes, I will offer a few cursory remarks respecting them. In our future correspondence I shall no doubt often allude to this subject. I wish to aim at a high standard of moral and intellectual excellence. Of moral excellence I am lamentably deficient. When I think of my privileges I have reason to be ashamed. I am convinced my dear C, that eminent piety is the only solid foundation for permanent and extensive usefulness. In order that you and I may be useful we must strive to be uncommon Christians. As to intellectual excellence it is my wish to cultivate those powers which God has given me to the utmost. I cannot charge myself with indolence. I believe I now do as much as my frame will bear. I say not this in a spirit of self-commendation, I merely state what I believe to be fact. I have reason to be grateful to the great author of my existence that He has given me an ardent, quenchless desire for knowledge, and has also

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