Chapter IX - Life in Moulmein. 1827-1831.
Mr. Judson was now forty years old. He had come to middle life, when one is no longer young, nor yet old -- a time when one naturally looks both before and after. At nineteen years of age he was graduated from college; at twenty he was converted; at twenty-two he resolved to become a missionary to the heathen; at twenty-four he was married to Ann Hasseltine and embarked for India; at twenty-five he arrived in Rangoon; at thirty-one he baptized the first Burman convert; at thirty-five he completed the translation of the New Testament into Burmese; at thirty-six he was fettered and imprisoned at Ava; at thirty-eight he heard the news of Mrs. Judson's death at Amherst; and at thirty-nine buried his little Maria by the side of her mother under the hopia-tree. He found himself alone, and might naturally have asked himself the question, "What have I to show for what I have done and suffered?" Many of his fondest hopes had been shattered. His family was gone. His little church at Rangoon was all but extinct. Very few Burmans had learned to believe in the living God. The deep shadow of loneliness pervades all of his letters written during this period.
His sadness was intensified by the slowness of American Christians in sending on reinforcements. He often felt that he had been left out on the skirmish line almost alone. A letter written after his death, by his surviving widow, shows how intense was his longing for the sympathy and co-operation of his brethren at home. "I cannot regret that Dr. Judson has gone. I believe it would have broken his heart to see Burma open and such a lack of missionary spirit. God spared him the trial, and though it has left me so very desolate, I feel a sort of gladness too, when I think of it. I suppose he sees it there, but he can understand it better."
The transition period from Amherst to Moulmein must have been a time of crisis. He was no longer stirred by the enthusiasm of youth. His constitution too had been impaired by the prolonged tortures of Ava and Oung-pen-la. He was alone. But his hardy nature did not dissolve in the alembic of despair. While at times he seemed to draw perilously near the verge of ascetic pietism, his healthy spirit soon recovered its equilibrium. He found his solace in new activities, and in a more intense self-denial. His piety was not professional or obtrusive. Mrs. E. C. Judson writes:
"I was first attracted by the freshness, the originality, if I may so call it, of his goodness ... His religion mingled in his letters generally, and in his conversation -- a little silver thread that it is impossible to disentangle."
He was a man of prayer. His habit was to walk while engaged in private prayer. One who knew him most intimately says that "His best and freest time for meditation and prayer was while walking rapidly in the open air. He, however, attended to the duty in his room, and so well was this peculiarity understood that when the children heard a somewhat heavy, quick, but well measured tread, up and down the room, they would say, 'Papa is praying.'"
During this period of sickness, sorrow, and solitude, his religion carried him to great extremes of self-denial. He was allowed by the governor-general of India five thousand two hundred rupees (about $2,600 at the time), in consideration of his services at the treaty of Yandaboo and as a member of the embassy to Ava. Besides this, the presents he received while at Ava amounted to two thousand rupees (about $1,000 at the time). All this money he paid into the treasury of the mission. Nor did he regard this as a donation. His view was that whatever a missionary might earn by such necessary and incidental outside work belonged, in the nature of the case, to the Board by which he was employed. Yet not only did he cheerfully give up these perquisites, but at a single stroke transferred to the mission all of his private property, the slow accumulation of many years of thrift.
But love of money was not the only worldly appetite which he nailed to the cross. He cut to the quick that passion for fame which was an inborn trait, and which had been inordinately stimulated by his parents during his earliest childhood. His overweening ambition received its first mortal wound, as he often remarked, when he became a Baptist. He declined the honorary degree of Doctor of Divinity conferred upon him by the corporation of Brown University in 1823.
The difficulty of writing his biography is enhanced by the fact that he destroyed, as far as possible, all his correspondence, including a letter of thanks for his services from the governor-general of India, and other papers of a similar kind. He seemed determined that his friends should have no material with which to construct eulogiums. He wanted to do his work and then forget all about it, and have every one else also forget it.
Again, Mr. Judson had a very strong relish for literature and linguistic research. One cannot fail to observe the poetic gems, original and quoted, scattered through his correspondence. The Burman literature, with its Buddhistic books and its fascinating poetry, was a vast mine unexplored. He was tempted to trace the winding paths which were ever opening before his scholarly mind, and to search this great and ancient treasure-vault. Might he not translate into English some beautiful fragments of this literature, and so enkindle in some of the highly organized minds of the Western world a greater interest in foreign missions? But no. He turned resolutely away from the alluring prospect. He was determined not to know anything among the Burmans save Jesus Christ and him crucified. As a missionary he was unwilling to disperse his mental forces over the wide surface of literary and philosophical pursuits, but insisted on moving along the narrow and divinely appointed groove of unfolding the word of God and meting it out to suit the wants of perishing man.
But perhaps the severest sacrifice of all was the denial of his social instincts. It was not because he was unendowed with social sensibilities that he so cut himself off from the State or conventional dinner, and from a fashionable intercourse with Sir Archibald Campbell, and other cultivated Englishmen, as to incur the stigma of being called "odd." He did not withdraw to his hermitage in the jungle because he was a fierce and sullen fanatic. On the contrary, one who knew him most intimately says that "Perhaps his most remarkable characteristic to a superficial observer was the extent and thorough genial nature of his sociableness." Indeed, there was a spice of truth in the remark sneeringly made by a fashionable woman that "Judson abstained from society not from principle, but from cowardice -- he was like the drunkard who was afraid to taste lest he should not know when to stop." "His ready humor," Mrs. Judson writes, "his aptness at illustration, his free flow of generous, gentlemanly feeling made his conversation peculiarly brilliant and attractive, and such interchanges of thought and feeling were his delight." "He was not," she adds, "a born angel, shut without the pale of humanity by his religion." His was not the stern, unaesthetic nature of the great Reformer and theologian who, though he lived his life on the lake of Geneva, nowhere betrays in his voluminous writings that he was at all conscious of the beautiful panorama spread out before him. He was, as has been said of another, "a creature who entered into every one's feelings, and could take the pressure of their thought instead of urging his own with iron resistance." He was, in truth,
... Not too bright or good
For human nature's daily food;
For transient sorrows, simple wiles,
Praise, blame, love, kisses, tears, and smiles.
The author, among his own scanty childhood recollections of his father, well remembers the tenderness with which he nursed his sick boy; and a missionary associate says: "He had a peculiarly fascinating way of endearing himself to everybody whose hearts were open to his kindness." Mrs. E. C. Judson writes:
"He was always planning pleasant little surprises for family and neighbors, and kept up through his married life those little lover-like attentions which I believe husbands are apt to forget. There was, and always must have been, a kind of romance about him (you will understand I use the word italicized for want of a better), which prevented every-day life with him from ever being common-place. If he went out before I was awake in the morning, very likely some pretty message would be pinned to my mosquito curtain. If he was obliged to stay at a business meeting or any such place longer than he thought I expected, and often when he did not stay over the time, some little penciled line that he could trace without attracting attention, would be dispatched to me. And often when he sat at his study table, something droll or tender or encouraging or suggestive of thought, penciled on a broken scrap of paper, sometimes the margin of a newspaper, was every little while finding its way to my room ... He was always earnest, enthusiastic, sympathizing even in the smallest trifles, tender, delicate, and considerate -- never moody, as he has sometimes been described, but equally communicative, whether sad or cheerful ... He was always, even in his playfulness, intellectual; and the more familiar, the more elevated."
The little thoughtful attentions which he was continually paying to his fellow-missionaries, betrayed with what heartiness he entered into all their joys and sorrows. His friends, the Bennetts, had sent their children to America. One day Mr. Judson surprised them with a present of the portraits of their absent little ones, for which he had himself sent to this country.
He had a remarkable gift for comforting people, and was indeed a son of consolation. A lady to whom he paid a visit of condolence upon the death of her mother wrote to her friend: "He must have been peculiarly sympathetic himself, or he could not have entered into every one's sorrows so easily." If any one was in trouble, he was sure to be there. Every tone of his voice seemed calculated to touch the innermost chord of a troubled heart.
We left Mr. Judson, when we turned aside to look at his character, by the freshly made graves of his wife and child at Amherst. Amherst and Moulmein, situated about twenty-five miles apart upon the coast of a newly settled province, were competing for the honor of being the metropolis of British Burma. They were both planted in the jungle, dependent for their growth upon the tide of population which kept streaming away from the oppressions of Burman despotism toward the enlightened and liberal English rule that prevailed throughout the Tenasserim provinces. The scale, as has already been stated, was turned in favor of Moulmein, by the fact that Sir Archibald Campbell had chosen it as the headquarters of his army. It consequently grew into a large city with marvelous rapidity, while Amherst dwindled into insignificance.
The missionaries at first thought it best to have two stations, one at Amherst and the other at Moulmein -- the Wades to hold the ground in the former place, and the Boardmans in the latter, while Mr. Judson should move backward and forward between the two points. But they soon decided not to attempt to keep their hold on Amherst, but to concentrate all their forces in Moulmein. This town, as has been said, was situated at the mouth of the Salwen, on its west bank. It consisted principally of one street which extended along the river front about two miles. Behind the city was a long range of hills, dotted here and there with the graceful pagoda. In front swept the broad swift Salwen, "in which an English sloop-of-war was lying at anchor, and curiously shaped Indian boats were passing to and fro with each changing tide." Directly across the river lay the province of Martaban, still under Burman rule, the secure haunt of robbers and pirates; while far off to the seaward one could catch a glimpse of the high hills of Ballou Island.
The Boardmans were the first to remove to Moulmein, and were soon followed by the Wades, while Mr. Judson came last. We find in Mr. Boardman's journal, under date of August 12, 1827, the following minute:
"The Burman merchant to whom I gave the books called on me yesterday for further information on some point which he did not fully understand. While he was here the head man of the village also came; and these two together, with our Burman teacher, who seems to be inquiring, entered into some particular discussion of Christian history and doctrine. In the midst of this discussion, how great was my joy on beholding Mr. Judson approaching the house. It is now probable that we shall all be settled together at this place."
The mission house had been erected by the Boardmans at the expense of the mission, upon ground given by Sir Archibald Campbell. It was situated about a mile south of the English barracks, on a gentle westerly and southerly declivity, so that it commanded a view of the river and the sea. It contained three rooms fifteen feet square, and a veranda on all sides, but enclosed on three sides for a study, store room, dressing room, etc. The general had offered the missionaries a site within the cantonments, but they chose rather to be where they could come into closer and more direct contact with the natives. This, however, exposed them landward to tigers, and riverward to robbers from Martaban.
It was at this exposed spot that the Judsons, the Boardmans, and the Wades mustered their forces, and stood prepared to take advantage of the inflowing tide of Burmese population. They took with them from Amherst their whole little flock of native converts and inquirers, namely, Moung Shwa-ba, Moung Ing, Moung Myat-poo, Mah Doke, with her husband, Moung Dwah, and Ko Thah-byu, who afterward became the apostle to the Karens. Seventeen of the female scholars also accompanied them, besides the two little boys left motherless by the lamented Mah Men-la.
The missionaries and their converts at once began zayat work. There were soon in Moulmein four widely separated centers of gospel influence, namely: The mission house where Mr. Boardman labored; Mr. Judson's zayat about two miles and a half north of the mission premises, in a very populous part of the town ("a little shed projecting into one of the dirtiest, noisiest streets of the place"); Mr. Wade's zayat out in the country, about half a mile south of the mission house; and, besides, a reading zayat, where Moung Shwa-ba and Moung Ing alternately read the Scriptures to all the passers-by. At each of these stations public worship was held, followed by close personal conversation with any who desired to become acquainted with the new religion. Nor did the word thus preached return void. They soon had the happiness of baptizing Moung Dwah, one of the inquirers who had accompanied them from Amherst, and others speedily followed his example.
But not only was the zayat work crowned with success, the school work was not less effective. The school of girls which had been transplanted from Amherst increased in size and efficiency under the superintendence of Mrs. Wade and Mrs. Boardman, who not only taught the children, but imparted religious instruction to the Burman women. The tireless Boardman also opened a school for boys. Mr. Judson speaks joyously of an incipient revival in the girls' school, "similar to those glorious revivals which distinguish our own beloved land."
But amid the cares and toils of beginning a missionary enterprise in Moulmein, Mr. Judson did not remit his literary labors. The odd moments of time left from zayat work and school work were filled with the work of translation. Even before leaving Amherst he had embarked upon the prodigious task of translating the Old Testament into Burmese. He had begun with the Psalms. After the death of his wife and child his sorrowing heart instinctively turned for consolation to "the prayers of David, the son of Jesse."
While thus absorbed in the work of preaching and teaching and translating at Moulmein, he was not forgetful of the smouldering campfires he had left behind him at Rangoon and Amherst. At Rangoon especially, where he had first unfurled the banner of the Christ, and whence he had been rudely driven by the intolerant spirit of the king of Ava, a native church was speedily reorganized under a Burman pastor, Ko Thah-a, one of the original Rangoon converts.
Ko Thah-a visited Mr. Judson at Moulmein in order to be instructed as to what he should do with those whom he had persuaded to accept of Christ, and who wished to be baptized. It was thought best to ordain him as pastor of the church in Rangoon.
What a stubborn vitality there is in that seminal divine idea -- a local church. Mr. and Mrs. Judson formed such a church, when in 1813 they made their home at the mouth of the Irawadi, and all by themselves shared in that Holy Supper which was instituted to commemorate the Saviour's dying love. The church of two slowly grew into a church of twenty. Then came the war, and the long imprisonment of the pastor at Ava. The church was hewed to the ground. Only four members could be found, and these were transplanted to Amherst. More than two years later Ko Thah-a, who had been lost sight of in the interior of the country, makes his appearance in Moulmein. He has all along been secretly preaching the good news, and now he wants to go back to Rangoon and baptize the converts whom he has won. Out of the stump of the tree cut down there springs a shoot which has bloomed and flourished even to the present time. The Rangoon mission of 1892 embraces eighty-six churches, and four thousand five hundred and sixty-nine members. "There shall be a handful of corn in the earth upon the top of the mountains; the fruit thereof shall shake like Lebanon."
Ko Thah-a, the first Christian pastor among the Burmans, proved to be an able minister. Again and again he sent to Moulmein the cheering news of conversions and baptisms; and when, a year and a half after his ordination, Mr. Judson visited him at Rangoon and invited him to go on a missionary tour up the country, he declined, "on account of having so many irons in the fire" -- that is, hopeful inquirers -- that he must stay to bring forward and baptize. And Mr. Judson adds, "He is as solicitious and busy as a hen pressing about her chickens. It is quite refreshing to hear him talk on the subject, and see what a nice, careful old shepherd he makes. The Lord bless his soul and the souls of his flock!"
Neither did Mr. Judson forget the deserted mission field at Amherst, where lay the precious dust of his wife and child. Like the Apostle Paul, he felt the deepest solicitude for the spiritual welfare of the converts whom he had left along the track behind him. Moung Ing was ordained and sent to be pastor of the disciples at Amherst.
Moung Ing, however, though diligent and faithful and extremely desirous of doing good, seems to have proved rather a failure as a minister. The prospects at Amherst darkened. One feels his heart drawn out toward the poor fisherman, Moung Ing, one of the very earliest Burman converts, Mrs. Judson's only dependence at Ava and Oung-pen-la -- the first bearer of the gospel to the Tavoyans, and yet a man whose mission in this world, in spite of zeal, fidelity, and untiring industry, seemed to be ever to fail.
But the time had now come when this little company of missionaries at Moulmein had to be broken up. Judson, Boardman, and Wade -- an illustrious triumvirate could not long expect to work together in the same place. This would be too great a concentration of forces at one point. The gospel light must be more widely dispersed through the thick gloom of paganism. The Boardmans were the first to go, though the parting with their missionary associates was attended with the keenest suffering. Besides, they had originated the mission at Moulmein, and it was at a peculiar sacrifice that they pressed into the regions beyond. They chose Tavoy as their field of work. It seemed out of the question to assail Burma proper; and on the long coast of the ceded provinces, Amherst having dwindled into insignificance, Tavoy was the only important point within a hundred and fifty miles. If they went to Arracan, British territory situated on the other side of Burma proper, they would be too far away to meet with the other missionaries for such occasional consultation and concert of prayer as seemed advisable to the Board at home. Accordingly, on the 29th of March, 1828, when the missionaries had experienced for only seven months the joy of laboring together in Moulmein, Mr. and Mrs. Boardman, with their little family, set sail for Tavoy. They were accompanied by a young Siamese convert, Moung Shway-pwen, by a Karen, Ko Thah-byu -- subsequently the renowned apostle to the Karens -- and by four of the native schoolboys. With this little group of disciples, Mr. Boardman began that brief and heroic campaign among the Karens which has made his name so illustrious in the annals of missions.
On the 15th of December, 1829, Mr. Judson received news of the death at Washington of his brother Elnathan, with whom he had prayed so many years before by the roadside on his way from Plymouth to Boston. The letter that brought him these sad tidings assured him also that the wayside prayer had been answered.
On the arrival at Moulmein of two new missionaries, the printer, Mr. Cephas Bennett, and his wife, it seemed best that the policy of dispersion should be still more rigorously pursued. Mr. Judson never approved of the concentration of missionaries at any one station.
He believed in multiplying the centers of light. It might be well for a new missionary upon his first arrival to be kept in training at some long-established post in association with experienced laborers, but then his ultimate aim should be to plunge alone into the thickest of heathenism.
Besides, the time had now come to make a new attempt to enter Burma proper. Accordingly, on February 21, 1830, Mr. and Mrs. Wade removed to Rangoon, Mr. Judson's old field, where the newly ordained Moung Thah-a and Moung Ing were laboring. The pain of parting was alleviated by the hope which Mr. Judson cherished of joining them again at Rangoon, with the purpose of once more penetrating the valley of the Irawadi in the direction of Ava.
He could not remain content at Moulmein. He was not satisfied with founding two or three missions on the outermost edge of British Burma. He longed to penetrate Burma proper again, and establish a line of mission stations in the Irawadi valley, that arterial channel through which the tide of Burmese population surged. Mr. Wade had gone before simply as an avant-coureur. His going to Rangoon was only a part of a more general movement. Leaving Moulmein in charge of Mr. Boardman, who had been temporarily recalled from Tavoy, Mr. Judson parted with him and the new-comers, Mr. and Mrs. Bennett, on April 26, 1830, and set sail for Rangoon, where he arrived six days later.
He spent only a few days with Mr. Wade in Rangoon. Then, in the company of five native disciples, he proceeded by boat to Prome, an ancient city situated on the Irawadi about one hundred and seventy miles from the mouth.
This brave effort, however, to plant Christianity at Prome, in the very interior of the Burman empire, the half-way place between Rangoon and Ava, proved a complete failure. Mr. Judson preached the gospel and distributed tracts all the way up the river, and for three months he and his disciples labored faithfully in Prome. He occupied daily an old tumbledown zayat at the foot of the great pagoda, Shway Landau, and thousands heard the gospel from his lips. But suddenly the zayat was deserted. He met with cold and rude treatment in the streets. The dogs were allowed to bark at him unmolested. It was rumored that the king at Ava was displeased that the Burman religion should be assailed in the very heart of his empire, and that he had given orders that Mr. Judson should be required to depart from Burma. It subsequently transpired that the king himself was in reality kindly disposed toward Mr. Judson. He had inquired some time before where Mr. Judson was, and when told that he was in Moulmein, he said: "Why does he not come here? He is a good man, and would, if he were here, teach and discipline my ministers and make better men of them." The ejection of Mr. Judson from Burma was a trick on the part of these very prime ministers. They hated all foreign intrusion, and represented to Major Burney, the English ambassador at Ava, that the king was very much displeased with Mr. Judson's attempt to introduce Christianity into the empire.
And so Mr. Judson was forced sadly and reluctantly to abandon his project of carrying the gospel into Central Burma. Although he was foiled in this effort, yet he did not withdraw immediately to Moulmein, but remained for almost a year laboring at Rangoon, situated just within the gate of the empire. He retreated only step by step from before Burman intolerance, disputing every inch of the ground.
Just at this time the whole land seemed peculiarly pervaded by a spirit of religious thirst. Everybody was curious to know about this new religion. The people seemed to catch eagerly at every scrap of information relating to Christianity. The ears of the heathen, to use their own vivid expression, had become thinner. Mr. Judson's house was thronged with inquirers. While he was not permitted in person to preach in the interior of the country, yet in Rangoon he freely distributed tracts and translations of the Scriptures, which sped on their way far up the Irawadi toward Ava. He thought it wise to take advantage of this floodtide of eager curiosity. A nation has its moods as well as an individual. Wasteful indolence might indeed substitute the lavish and indiscriminate use of printer's ink for the personal preaching of the gospel by the living voice. But, carefully watching the pulse of Burman life, he believed that at last the time had come when the printed page might be made a mighty engine for good, and could not be too freely used. Hence, to Mr. Bennett, the printer, and to the other missionaries at Moulmein, he sent agonizing appeals for more tracts, the echoes of which were wafted even to our own land.
And while thus striving to satisfy the thirst of the Burmans for religious knowledge, he did not intermit his long and laborious task of translating the Scriptures. He shut himself up in the garret of the mission-house, leaving his Burman associates to deal with the inquirers below, only referring to him the more important cases. In his seclusion he made such long strides in his work that, at the close of his stay a Rangoon, he wrote in his journal: "1831, July 19. Finished the translation of Genesis, twenty chapters of Exodus, Psalms, Solomon's Song, Isaiah, and Daniel."
It was about this time that the Mission Board in this country sent him an earnest and affectionate invitation to revisit his native land. He was about forty-two years old, and had been absent from America eighteen years. His health was shattered. His family he had laid in the grave. He said several years later that he had never seen a ship sail out of the port of Moulmein bound for England or America without an almost irrepressible inclination to get on board and visit again the home of his boyhood. And yet in reply to this urgent invitation from his brethren, he wrote that he would "not feel justified in accepting their invitation to return home."
While in Rangoon he received the heavy tidings that the beloved Boardman had died in the jungles back of Tavoy. Sorrow had come upon the Boardman family in quick and uninterrupted succession. The death of a little daughter, Sarah, was followed by the revolt of Tavoy, and during this brief uprising of the Burmans against their masters, Mr. Boardman had been subjected to an exposure and hardship such as his consumptive habit was ill able to endure. From that time he visibly declined. To use Mrs. E. C. Judson's words: "His cheeks were a little more hollow, and the color on them more flickering; his eyes were brighter, and seemingly more deeply set beneath the brow, and immediately below them was a faint, indistinct arc of mingled ash and purple like the shadow of a faded leaf; his lips were sometimes of a clayey pallor, and sometimes they glowed with crimson; and his fingers were long, and the hands of a partially transparent thinness."
The newly appointed missionary to the Karens, Mr. Mason, arrived in Tavoy June 3, 1831. "On the jetty," he wrote, "reclining helplessly in the chair which had served the purpose of a carriage, a pale, worn-out man, with the characters of death in his countenance, waited to welcome his successor." Mr. Boardman was preparing to take a tour into the jungle in order to baptize some recent Karen converts. His emaciated form was to be carried on a litter several days' journey into the wilderness. Remonstrance was unvailing; for he had set his heart upon accomplishing his purpose. Besides, it was thought that the change of air might do him good. Even after setting out, he was advised to return; but his reply was: "The cause of God is of more importance than my health, and if I return now, our whole object will be defeated. I want to see the work of the Lord go on."
After a long journey of several days through the wilderness, he witnessed the baptism of thirty-four Karens, and died in the heart of the jungle sustained by the presence of the native disciples, his infant son, and devoted wife, who in describing the scene writes as follows:
With the love-light in his eyes,
Mute the dying teacher lies.
It is finished. Bear him back!
Haste along the jungle track!
See the lid uplifting now-
See the glory on his brow.
It is finished. Wood and glen
Sigh their mournful, meek Amen.
'Mid that circle, sorrow spanned,
Clasping close an icy hand,
Lo! the midnight watcher wan,
Waiting yet another dawn.
When Mrs. Boardman with her son George, about two years and a half old, were thus suddenly left in all the perplexity and desolation of widowhood and fatherlessness, she received from Mr. Judson the following words of tenderest consolation and counsel:
"RANGOON, March 4, 1831.
"My DEAR SISTER: -- You are now drinking the bitter cup whose dregs I am somewhat acquainted with. And though, for some time, you have been aware of its approach, I venture to say that it is far bitterer than you expected. It is common for persons in your situation to refuse all consolation, to cling to the dead, and to fear that they shall too soon forget the dear object of their affections. But don't be concerned. I can assure you that months and months of heartrending anguish are before you, whether you will or not. I can only advise you to take the cup with both hands, and sit down quietly to the bitter repast which God has appointed for your sanctification. As to your beloved, you know that all his tears are wiped away, and that the diadem which encircles his brow outshines the sun. Little Sarah and the other have again found their father; not the frail, sinful mortal that they left the earth, but an immortal saint, a magnificent, majestic king. What more can you desire for them? While therefore your tears flow, let a due proportion be tears of joy. Yet take the bitter cup with both hands, and sit down to your repast. You will soon learn a secret, that there is sweetness at the bottom. You will find the sweetest cup that you ever tasted in all your life. You will find heaven coming near to you, and familiarity with your husband's voice will be a connecting link, drawing you almost within the sphere of celestial music."
Table of Contents
The Reformed Reader Home Page
Copyright 1999, The Reformed Reader, All Rights Reserved