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I Little While;
HEBREWS X. 37.
1 A little while-for God to toil; A little while—the foe to fight; To walk by faith, and not by sight. A little while-to long for day, While walking on the narrow way. A little while—to watch, and wait For Him whose coming 's at the gate. A little while--and He shall come To take His waiting people home. A little while of this dark night, And heaven shall burst upon our sight. A little while in death's cold river, And we shall bathe in life for ever. Then when we meet our Saviour's smile; How short will seem this little while ! How little worth our joy or sorrow, When we behold that glad to-morrow! Now, fights without and fears within ; Now, watching, waiting, woe, and sin; Now, tears and smiles mingling together, Dark clouds, with glints of brighter weather. Now, draughts of sorrow, drops of joy, And nothing good without, alloy ; Our briglitest, dearest pass away, While we are watching for the day. But then, we shall have full amends : Our joys all shared with long-lost friends: Then shall our mouth be filled with song, Cheer up, cheer up, 'twill not be long. “ Behold, I come ! and quickly," too ; This is good news for me and you. Then welcome toil with cheerful smile, Remembering the “little while." Work on, wait on, and never fearWe may not wait another year. R. R. T.
HESE words attracted my attention as, awaiting the arrival of my own
train, I watched a third-class carriage and its passengers just ready to start for London.
The above remark, “He's been a soldier by his walk," was in reference to an erect, firm-treading man who had alighted from the train, and had evidently been an object of interest to his fellow-passengers.
“Ay, and he's been a soldier by the way he carries his pack," said another.
6 Ay, and by his politeness,” observed a third. “Did you see how he touched his cap, only because yon gentleman looked at him? Most of us would have said, “What are you staring at?!”
The train snorted off, the man left the station, and I followed. “ Did you hear the remarks of your fellowtravellers, my friend ?”.
He smiled as I repeated them, and said, “ Just as it should be, sir-just as it should be! A soldier in plain clothes should be the same as a soldier in uniform. A truc soldier ought to walk so as to be known as such wherever he is.”
He again gave me a military salute, and we separated.
He left me full of serious thoughts, that came to me in the form of the following questions, which I have here set down, in the hope that you, my reader, will ask them of yourselfaloud, if you are alone; in your mind, if you are surrounded by comrades. And oh, believe me, a day will come-must come-in which you will thank God with all the powers of your soul, if you are able to reply a happy “ Yes” to each.
Ah—but stop! There is a question that takes a place before either of those I am about to ask ; it is this—and a solemn, all-important one indeed-
“ Are you a soldier of the Lord Jesus Christ ?" If so, then ask yourself the next three questions :
“ Is my walk such as to elicit from all with whom I associate the remark, 'He is a soldier by his walk?!” Then go on to inquire :
“I have a burden, in the form of a daily cross, to carry. Do I so bear it as to leave no doubt where I learnt to carry it ? Do I bear it soldierlike?"
“ As a soldier of the Lord Jesus I have a character to sustain. Do I so sustain it, even in the small kindnesses and courtesies of life, as to make the remark of me true, 'He must also be a soldier by the way he behaves towards all
-taking affront at nothing, but supposing the best of our actions?'”
I leave these questions with you, reader. I beseech you to think neither of them useless. The world judges you by them; but above the world's censure or praise is the honour of your Lord. A censure cast at you is a censure cast at Him. And can you bear the mere thought of His holy, everblessed name being spoken lightly of through any carelessness (I do not say wilfulness) of yours? He died for you when you were yet in your sins. Your least return is to live to Him.
I wish I could stop here, content to believe that all who may read this are soldiers of the Lord Jesus Christ. Alas, I cannot. I must turn to those who are not soldiers ; but I turn hopefully, for I have good news to give, and good news is ever welcome. The Captain of our salvation invites you to enlist to-day. Oh, haste to do so—-to-morrow may be too late ; and “too late” are awful words to the stoutest heart; those who have once heard the cry would close their ears ere they would hear it again! Enlist, I beseech you. You will find His service perfect freedom; whereas the service of the captain you now are under is slavery in disguise. You are chained hand and foot, but you know it not; for the chains are gilded- not golden-and appear to you as ornaments beautiful in themselves, and attractive to others. You
will discover the slavery one day. One day the chains will lose their tinsel; and you will then find the true, or rather false, character of him who, under pretence of leading you cheerily, as well as happily, through this life, has only been holding you in bondage. Under Satan's service you, too, have a walk to maintain—for Satan is watchful, and will keep you to his pace and make your bearing just what he chooses —I mistake much if you have not often groaned wearily over this walk, and wished for deliverance. There is deliverance offered you to-day. Do not be a coward. Arise, go boldly from his ranks-never heed the jeers of your comrades, nor the arrows which, maybe, will be sent after you ; if they wound, they cannot destroy. Straight on-enlist ! and the day of your enlistment will be the happiest of your life!
Under Satan's service you, too, have a burden to bear; and a burden it truly is. Of it can never be said, as of that carried by the Lord's followers, “ The yoke is easy and the burden is light.”. The one raises you heavenward; the other sinks you earthward, and will eventually sink you into hell, unless you are relieved by fleeing to the Lord. Under Satan's service, too, there are certain observances of daily life to be maintained; but they are hollow and formal-they appear all sweetness and benevolence, but they are established on no foundation save that of a vain desire to gratify the flesh. Have you, dear reader—whomsoever you may be, young, old, rich or poor-never discovered the hollowness of this world's smiling exterior-never trusted to it in time of need, and found that those very observances which drew you close in times of prosperity made a very wide "stand by” for you in days of adversity ?
In conclusion, I would say to you, solemnly, “ Choose you this day whom ye will serve !"
I would say, beseechingly, in our dear Saviour's own words, " Take My yoke upon you.”? I would say, warningły, in the apostle's words, “ The Lord cometh with ten thousands of His saints.” And for what will He thus come with a
Matt. xi. 30. - Joshua xxiv. 15. 3 Matt. xi. 29.
great army, as it were—for what purpose ? To take vengeance on all those who are walking after their own lusts. Oh, take heed lest this vengeance fall on you! It need not. Avert it by flying from the lists of the enemy, and going over to the right side--even to the Lord Jesus Christ.
A few words more to those who are soldiers—a few words from Holy Writ : “Walk in love;" “Put on the whole armour of God ;” “See that ye walk circumspectly;" “ Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”
Promises to Pilgrims. “Behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.”— GEN. xxviii. 15. P REMEMBER the first time I heard (that is, really
heard with the heart) these words of promise to the pilgrim. It was a cold Sunday night, the ist
of January, seven and twenty years ago. I was in a chapel in the east of London, sitting in a high pew, far back from the lofty pulpit, and near the door. I do not know the name of the chapel, for it was the first and the only time that I was within its walls. It must have been pulled down since, for I have searched in vain to find this humble place of prayer, which proved a very Bethel, or house of God, to me. I seem to see its heavy galleries, its little organ behind the preacher, the red-baize lining of the pew where I sat, and some of the old hymn-books on the shelf with loose or broken covers. For that was to me a memorable night. Lonely and dejected, I had wandered out from my most unhomely, uninviting lodgings. The streets were full of fog and voices, and crowded with people. Presently the chiming and tinkling of bells from two or three churches fell upon mine ear. Instantly, in thought, I was standing midst the snow, under the sombre branches