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ONE AFTERNOON.

BY ANNIE CLARKE.

ELINOR NOEL sat in a comfortable chair by a cheerful fire, her neglected work lying in her lap, her slender hands clasped, her eyes dreamy and sorrowful. Not far from her was her elder sister, sitting in an uncompromising, high-back chair, her needle flying fast, but her thoughts intent upon Elinor. Now and then she glanced at the unconscious girl, and her look was puzzled, anxious, half-vexed and half-pitying. At length she broke the silence so abruptly that Elinor started.

"Elinor, what has been the matter with you lately?"

"Elinor smiled, picked up her forgotten work, and asked, "Is anything the matter with me, Janet?"

"You know there is," said Miss Janet shortly. entirely changed girl, Elinor."

"In what way, pray?"

1

"You are an

"You don't seem to care about anything. You are that dull and glum "-Miss Janet was given to the use of terse and expressive language. "You are getting as thin as a lath; and you don't eat any more than a sparrow."

And if Miss Janet's speech began with something like vexation, it certainly ended with something very like anxiety. For they were alone in the world, these two, and Janet had been mother as well as sister to Elinor. The latter made no reply, and Janet

returned to the charge.

"There is old Mrs. Simpson; you used to go to see her twice a week regularly, and now you hardly go there; I don't see how you can neglect her so."

"She isn't neglected," said Elinor, quickly. "I always send her broth, and jelly, and things."

"When you know she likes you better than-than all the jelly in the world!" said Miss Janet, energetically. "And there is that little girl, Winnie Ried; she worships your shadow, almost, and you used to take her with you for your walks, and have her here, and make her little life pleasant; but now you hardly notice her. And there's the Sunday-school picnic next week."

"O Janet! Janet! you are as-promiscuous-as a mosquito!" said Elinor. "I'm changed; I'm dull and glum; I'm thin; I don't eat; I neglect old folks and am unkind to young ones; and now there is the picnic-I haven't done anything to that, for it hasn't come off yet."

But Janet meant to speak her mind. "You don't want to go to it, for one thing," she said. "And if you do go you will spoil it, unless you alter. Last year you were the life of it, seeing that everyone had a good time."

"Last year," said Elinor, bitterly, "One gets tired of the same things over and over again Besides, I am growing old, you know."

"My conscience!" said Janet, under her breath. She had no chance of saying more, for Elinor folded her work hastily, and went upstairs to her own room. And then Janet poked the fire uneasily, telling herself that she hoped the child wouldn't cry her eyes out, because of what her cross old sister had said.

If the truth must be told, Elinor had forgotten her sister before she reached her room. She drew a chair to the low window, and sat looking out. The gray sky and the dreary moor seemed to her as joyless and barren as her own life. Only a few short months before, she had been a happy, light-hearted girl, whose days were filled with duties that were cheerfully discharged, and simple pleasures that often grew out of the duties themselves. Then came a time when a great and bewildering joy was hers to take or to refuse; but between her and the bright pathway so tempting and so eagerly longed for, duty stood, and with relentless finger pointed another way. Elinor obeyed, not without a long and hard struggle with her rebellious will; but with what fainting of heart, with what shrinking from the darkened future, with what bitter longing for the "might have been," only God and her own soul knew. So quietly had the sacrifice been made, that even her sister had no idea of what it had cost her to give up all that made life sweet and beautiful. It seemed to her, worn with the long struggle, that she had done all she could, and that, having chosen the hard, dark path because it was the right one, she must faint and fall by the way. Surely, having such a heavy burden to carry, she need not add to it the old-time duties that had once been pleasures, but which now seemed as if they would be the "last straw!" So thinking, she fell asleep, and dreamed.

In her dream, she was walking along a stone-paved, dusty street, upon which the sun poured his pitiless rays. The blank stone houses offered her no shelter from the heat; the very wind was hot and stifling. Her feet were aching, her eyes burning, and her heart was very heavy. But as she went slowly and painfully along, she felt a little hand slipped into hers, and looking down, saw the child of whom her sister had spoken. The upturned face was very pleading, the brimming eyes so wistful that Elinor's heart smote her, and drawing the tiny form close to her, she met the eager look with a loving smile. The child's face brightened, and she trod the heated pavement lightly and in happy content; and somehow the old love and care of the child, which had seemed to be crushed to death beneath the weight of her sorrow, revived in Elinor's heart.

Presently she felt herself being drawn by the clinging hands another way; and looking down again, saw the child pointing to an old forsaken road to the right. Elinor did not want to go; the way was steeper than the one they were treading; there were rough, large stones on it, and not far away a wall to climb, beyond which they could see brambles and trees, white with dust. But love led her, and she yielded; together they stumbled over the uneven stones and rubbish, together they climbed the ruinous wall, and pushed through the prickly undergrowth, and then

Elinor knew why the child had drawn her from the hopeless, joyless road.

For as they went along, there was young, tender grass undertheir feet, starred with flowers and gemmed with dew. The stifling wind was changed to a breeze that had life and healing in it. Sunlight was there, but it came shimmering through the leaves of budding and blossoming trees; stones were there, but they were covered with velvety mosses and tiny, delicate ferns. A brook, clear as a baby's eyes, laughed between its low banks, bright with primroses and sweet with violets. There were other flowers, too,-delicate white bells such as Elinor had never seen, and with a faint, strange fragrance; but these had to be sought, and were sometimes hard to find and gather; they grew almost out of reach, guarded and hidden by thorny leaves.

As Elinor sat down on the bank, with the lovely flowers in her hands, she became aware of a Presence that filled the place, and made it holy. Brighter than the sunshine, nearer than the child by her side, more real than the wind that swayed the trees, deeper than her deepest grief; a divine tenderness and strength, it surrounded and enfolded her so that all pain was transfigured, and her heart was filled with the peace that passeth understanding.

Miss Janet was folding up her work when she heard her sister's light step at the door. Looking up, she was surprised to see Elinor with her hat in her hand.

"You were right, as you always are, Janet," she said, gently kissing her. "I'm going to see Mrs. Simpson; and if Winnie is at home I'll bring her back with me. And I won't spoil the picnic. As to those other items (you got them dreadfully mixed, Janet), I will try to attend to them, too. There, am I not a model sister?"

"I wonder," said Miss Janet to herself, as she donned an apron preparatory to getting ready something "extra nice" for tea, and at the same time musing over the sweet, bright change in Elinor's face. "I wonder what has come over the child, all of a sudden? It couldn't have been what I said that did it!"

No, Miss Janet; your words did not do it; but they helped, asall true words must.

VICTORIA, B.C.

AFTERWARD.

SOME time, when all life's lessons have been learned,

And sun and stars for evermore have set,

The things which our weak judgments here have spurned,
The things o'er which we grieved with lashes wet,

Will flash before us, out of life's dark night,

As stars shine most in deeper tints of blue;

And we shall see how all God's plans were right,
And how what seemed reproof was love most true.

CHRISTIAN CULTURE.*

BY THE REV. A. H. REYNAR, LL.D.,

Dean of Faculty of Arts, Victoria University.

"And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in krowledge and in all judgment."-PHILIPPIANS i. 9.

RELIGIOUS men have often mistrusted, and do sometimes still mistrust, learning and the learned. So, on the other hand, learned men have often mistrusted, and do sometimes still mistrust, religion and the religious. In this mistrust the religious and the learned have both been right and both been wrong. For there is a knowledge, and there are learned men of whom the religious do well to stand in doubt, and there are religious men and forms of religion that the learned do well to mistrust.

But is this antagonism and mistrust natural, inevitable and permanent, or is it only accidental and transient? I shall not endeavour to show from the nature of both learning and religion that there can be no necessary and final conflict between the two. For after I had said all in support of my hypothesis, ingenuity would doubtless find argument for the opposite hypothesis. But there is no arguing against facts, and to them we turn. It is well known that in all times and in all lands, many of the greatest of men have been at one and the same time most religious and most learned. In times and lands remote from us we have examples of this in Abraham, Moses and Solomon; Zoroaster, Confucius and Buddha; Plato and Socrates; Antonine and Seneca. In later times and of our own race, Newton and Locke, Herschel and Faraday, Thompson and Maxwell, Agassiz and Gray. These names prove that the antagonism between learning and religion is not essential and permanent, but accidental and transient. They even suggest, further, that however the harmony between the two may be imperfect on the lower levels, yet on the heights there is most frequently a perfect accord. One of the wisest of men has given it as a general truth that " a little philosophy inclineth a man's mind to atheism, but depth in philosophy bringeth men's minds about again to religion."

I have used these names to show what is the evidence of the facts as to the harmony of learning and religion. If I would appeal to the authority of great names, it would not be to the names of those who are partial to our own opinions, but rather to those with whom we are not in complete accord-to such names, for example, as John Tyndall and Herbert Spencer. The former tells us that the materialistic and atheistic view of the world could never commend itself to his mind, but that in the presence of stronger and healthier thoughts it ever dissolved and disappeared as offering no solution to the mystery of the universe in which we live and of which we form a part. And Spencer, notwithstanding his well-known doctrine of agnosticism, assures us that whatsoever mysteries may surround us and grow the more mysterious, the more they are investigated "this one absolute certainty remains, that we are in the presence of an infinite and eternal

*The Baccalaureate Sermon, preached to graduating class in Central Methodist Church, Toronto, June, 1894.

energy from which all things proceed." As to the nature of that infinite and eternal energy, he elsewhere tells us that it is a mistake to assume that the power that lies at the back of things is either a person or less than a person, and not rather a person or more than a person. Yet again Mr. Spencer declares that the "conception to which the investigations of modern science tend, is much less that of a universe of dead matter than that of a universe everywhere alive." So does this great teacher lead his followers through the wilderness of agnosticism and by the Dead Sea of atheism to the borders of a pure and lofty theism. And I doubt not that in the hosts of science will be found some Joshua, who will lead the people into the truth, scientific and religious, to the satisfaction of every yearning of the heart as well as every aspiration of the mind.

But we have not yet entered into this promised land. The noise of battleis about us, and in the confusion we cannot always distinguish friend from foe. Some good people there are who still fear the way of the school and college as too full of peril to the soul, and it is to be feared that our schools and colleges are not yet without men whose example and influence go to say, shun religion and the religious if you would be true to reason, and knowledge, and judgment.

On this special occasion I would not merely quote the great names that are a standing demonstration of the harmony of reason and religion. We are glad to have these names, and I am sure you will not allow them to be overborne by names of less weight. I would do more, too, than quote from the sayings of great men, who cannot be suspected of bias in favour of the accepted forms of Christian teaching. We are thankful also for their testimony to the truth. Many a modern Balak has cried to these men, and said, "Come curse me Jacob, and come defy Israel;" but like Balaam of old, they have replied, "How shall we curse whom God hath not cursed, and how shall we defy whom the Lord hath not defied."

The point of view I would have you take is that of the original sources of Christian teaching, the sacred Scriptures, the words of the holy men who spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.

In our text we have the teaching of St. Paul on the subject of our study, viz., The ideal of Christian culture, or the conception of the relation of learning and religion to each other. "And this I pray," etc.

The first and greatest doctor of the Christian Church had seemingly no thought of a necessary opposition between religion and knowledge. On the contrary, his ideal of the perfection of a Christian implies the harınonious combination of the supposed discordancies, and his hope for the beauty and beneficence of the Christian life is in the union of abounding love, with sound knowledge and broad culture.

It may help us in our study to look, as we pass, at the character of the people to whom these words were addressed, and also at the character of the writer. The Philippians had great advantages in the school of life. In the first place they were Roman citizens. For though Philippi was in Macedonia, it had been raised by Augustus to the dignity of a Roman colonia. Many of its inhabitants had come from Italy, and brought with them something of the Roman imperial strength and dignity. There was also a Greek element in the population of Philippi, who made the life of the city more beautiful and bright, and enriched it with the treasures of

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