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for bosom-friend; he might have lived with ments from his youth up: He can give Him, hearkenin' every day to His blessed loads o' money away, and nobody blames words, and lookin' upon His blessed face, him. Who then can be saved ?' Ah! they and feelin' the clasp of His hand. But he never thought the kingdom o'heaven is as missed it all; poor fellow ! poor fellow ! men runnin' a race; and who can run well
“What lack I yet?' he asked. He felt that is laden with thick clay? If a man is he wanted somethin', though he was so rich passin' over clayey ground, and he clogs his he had everythin—save eternal life. That own feet with it, how is he to win a race ? was what he lacked--eternal life. An awful He was a young man, and nimble enough to thing to miss that is, either in this world, or run along the high-road to meet with Jesus; the world to come. What is eternal life ? but his soul was heavy laden with the pleaWhy! the Bible tells us plain. * This is sures and the cares o' riches, and could not eternal life, to know Thee, the only true run up the shinin' road to God. God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast “Through a needle's eye! Isn't that much sent.' The poor young man had kept all the same as enterin' in at the strait gate ? the commandments, but he did not know The gate's just wide enough to let our souls God yet, nor Jesus, who had come to make in, but it can't be stretched to let in one rag God known. But he felt he was lackin' of our possessions. If we poor folk love our somethin'. 'Come, know me!' said Jesus. bits of cottages, or our gardens, or our boats, “Take up thy cross, and follow me, for that so as to make us forget God, why we are is the only way to eternal life. You shall trying to drive our camel through the needle's live with me, like these poor men, my dis- eye; and it can't be done. We're what the ciples; and I will teach you about my Father, world calls poor, almost all of us, but we can till you know Him and me. You can only make Jesus very sorrowful. If we were out know the Father through me!' What! was in a great storm, with darkness comin' on, there no other way for him to win eternal and rocks, strange rocks ahead, and us driftin' life ? Must he give up his rulership, and his on them, and we saw a quiet haven close by, possessions ?-great possessions they were. only with a channel so narrow and so low an Could he have no treasure except treasure archway to go under that we must lower our in heaven? Then the rich man went away masts and see that our tacklin' was all taut and grieved, and very sorrowful.
tight, would we go on to the rocks and be “I don't wonder at the Lord bein' very lost, rather than run into that safe harbour ? sorrowful too. Poor folks came, and could Nay, wouldn't we quit nets, and boats, and get all they wanted from Him. Sick folks all, and escape with our bare lives? You were healed, and blind folks received their would, you would. Well, then, for your soul's sight. Sad folks were comforted. Even sake, get rid of all that keeps you back from lepers and folks possessed with devils were God; enter in at the strait gate; go through set free. But when rich folks came the Lord the needle's eye. Peter said, “We have forcould do nothin' for them. They had got saken all, and followed thee; what shall we all they wanted, except eternal life. Except have therefore?' Ah! Peter, are you goin' eternal life, mark you! and they were too to make a bargain with the Lord ? But the rich to win that, in the only way it can be Lord was not grieved with him. The diswon. He may well be very sorrowful when ciples had done their part first; they had He looks at rich men.
done what the rich man could not do. They “It's easier,' said Jesus very sorrowfully, had forsaken all they had, and followed Him. ' for a camel to go through a needle's eye, They had gone through the needle's eye. than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of And what did Jesus promise them ? EverGod.'. Well! that's impossible !' say the lasting life! The only thing the poor rich disciples; and they were astonished out of young man lacked. Well done, disciples ! measure. They were never so astonished as at good and faithful servants ! ye shall lack that; they were exceedingly amazed. Even nothin'; enter ye into the joy of our Lord. when Jesus told them beforehand of the man “The kingdom of God! There are no ner of His death, they were not so amazed, and rich folks or poor folks there; no great men astonished out o' measure. Who can be or small men. •The rich and the poor meet saved if a rich man cannot?' they asked; together; the Lord is the maker of them all.' 'a rich man has everythin' his own way. He makes men rich or poor as He sees fit, He's a ruler, and everybody gives way to knowin' what is best for every one of us. him. He's plenty of time; there's nothin' We brought nothin' into this world,' says to hinder him from keepin' the command- | Paul to Timothy, and it is certain we can
carry nothin' out.' "The love of money is what joy unspeakable and full of glory is I the root of all evil,' he says again, which don't know yet, but my joy shall be full, and while some have coveted after, they have no man shall take it away from me. This is erred from the faith, and pierced themselves the kingdom of God. through with many sorrows. Jesus might “ Rich men that love their riches, and poor well be very sorrowful over the rich young men that hate their poverty cannot enter in, man. He went away to pierce himself except through the needle's eye. Which of through with many sorrows. Pierce himself you will pass through this needle's eye?” through with many sorrows!
Old Fosse had been standing with his face “But I was wishful to say a word or two turned towards the dusky group of listeners, about the kingdom of God. Paul was caught sitting silently in the dimly-lighted interior, up into the third heaven, and heard unspeak- while Justin had remained in the corner of able things, which it is not lawful for man to the porch, from which he could see the sunutter. That is the grand palace and throne lit cliffs. As the old man's voice, growing of the kingdom; but the kingdom of God is tremulous as it came near the close, altogether here in this life. Paul says, and he knew ceased, he moved quietly away, and taking better than most men, that it's righteousness, an unfrequented track, was soon beyond the and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. It's sound of the singing, which rose and fell at mostly an unspeakable thing, but I'll tell you measured intervals. It was a lovely summer all I can about it. There's righteousness. evening, and Justin sought a quiet, solitary You and me, we can live in this world in a spot on the cliffs, where no eye could see way to please the righteous God. I know him, and no foot pass by. I've my faults and failin's; all of us have ; He wished to be alone. All day his soul but there's many a thing I do that I can look had been dwelling in darkness; and a new up to God about, and know He is pleased light was dawning upon it, solemn and myswith it. I do always those things that terious as the daybreak after a tempestuous please Him,' says Jesus. Ah, Lord! Thou night. In his dread of poverty, and his dewert His only begotten Son, in whom He is sire to be rich, he had fallen into his temptaever well pleased. But we do not always tion and the snare spread for him, and had do things that please Him; only sometimes; erred from the faith. He had shut himself when we are most like little children playin' out of the kingdom of God. at work, and thinkin' they are pushin' father's Then there came to him one of those boat down into the sea with their little hands, strange and mysterious crises in the history whilst he's pullin' with might and main, and of the soul, which none know save those who smiles at them for helpin' him. God smiles are called to pass through them. A deep down upon us when we think we're helpin' awe overwhelmed him, and he hid his face Him.
even from the dying light of the day. The "Then after righteousness comes peace; earthy husk of life was stripped off, and the peace that Jesus left to His disciples. shrivelled up in the presence of the mighty He was goin' into glory; and He left His influence that swept over him.
His soul was peace
with us, a peace passin' all understand wrestling for a greater blessing than he had ing. I'll try to tell you what it is like, though ever dreamed of before. Not a word came it is unspeakable. Sometimes I've been far to his lips, or was fashioned in his brain. He away from land on the open sea, and there's was not conscious of the flight of the solemn been nought but blue sky above me, and the hours. The quiet sounds of night did not blue water all around me. The sky seemed penetrate his ear, and the soft summer breeze like the sea, and the sea shone like the sky; touched his head without arousing him. So all calm, quietness, peace. No land there with motionless was he, he might have been dead. its work and worry. And I've let myself float But when he raised his head and lifted up on it, like a babe lyin' on its mother's lap his pallid, awe-stricken face, there was no looking up to the blue smilin' sky above me. more irresolution in his heart. Herford lay That's how my soul is with God. I am' below him in the dusk of the summer's night, restin' upon Him in a great calm and peace. with its sleeping cottages and strip of silverThere's nought but God above, and beneath, sand, where the white-fringed waves were ripand all about my soul. When it lists up its pling quietly. Above it stood his home with eyes and looks around there's nought but one light burning still in Pansy's window. God to be seen; there's no fears, no cares, | The church stood out clearly on its little no steerin' or rowin' for itself. Above it there slope of rising ground. All this was his own is only the smilin' face of God. This is peace; I no longer. He must go out into the world
recognised no more as the prosperous land- village, the servant told him. Richard had owner and popular magistrate. There would not been present in the church the day be conflicting and false rumours about him, before, in spite of Pansy's entreaties that he and for a few days he would be the wonder would go with her to hear her father preach. and talk of the county. Then he would be The irritation of the continual sight of his forgotten, and Richard would be Herford of elder brother occupying the position that Herford.
was his by birthright, was working within his He had suffered the bitterest pang for his shallow nature as much deep hatred as he daughter's sake. As yet indeed he did not was capable of feeling. He had met with know what the conflict had cost him, but it Diana as she came out of church, and walked There was
a great calm in his with her over the cliffs to Rillage Grange, inmost soul, as of one whose feet feel the where he stayed the rest of the day, and late steadfast rock beneath them after long on into the night. Leah Dart had found him buffeting with mighty waves of the sea. He there on her return from her uncle Fosse's knew that he had only one master, and that preaching, and as soon as Miss Di left her the yoke of all other servitudes was broken father and his guest, she relaxed her stringent from off his neck. The love of the world rule, and indulged her patient, and Master had been cast into the consuming fire of the Dick, with something very nearly approaching love of God, and had been destroyed for the carousals so strictly forbidden by Dr.
He had entered into the kingdom of Vye. Squire Lynn's glass she watched over God.
herself, but Richard was at liberty to drink
as much as he pleased. CHAPTER XXIX._RESTITUTION.
The consequence of this was that Richard It was more than ten years since Justin was feeling dull and in low spirits this had turned aside into that way which had morning. Whenever his spirits sank there seemed good in his eyes, but he had held the was a lurking imp of self-reproach ready to estates against the silent protest of his con- lift up its head, and torment him with vexing science no longer than eight days. He had thoughts of his old father dying, without been fully persuaded, possibly because he recalling the curses he had invoked upon wished it, that his step-brother was dead, and him. At these seasons Richard felt himself that Herford was fairly and justly his own. accursed. He was superstitious; the old Even during these eight days the conflict had stories told him in his earliest years by the been more on behalf of his daughter than credulous and ignorant fishermen of a former for himself. But now he was resolved to generation, had struck deep roots in his illface the reality, to be true. What he could informed and untrained mind. He had a do to shield Pansy from suffering he would fixed unshaken faith in the power of a curse, do, for himself he was almost ready to and of the sheer impossibility of escaping welcome it.
from its malign influence. His father's maleBut the path was no easy one to pursue, diction hung over him like an eternal threat, though the inward barriers were cast down. never to be repealed. This morning he had It was
a solemn night for Justin, as he awoke from a hateful dream, in which he deliberated over his immediate
his immediate action. had seen vividly his father's withered face, Richard must be reinstated in the house of and heard his broken voice muttering curses his ancestors, whilst he must turn out into against him. the world with a shadow attending him which He was making up his mind that he must would cling to his name, and dim the fair quit Herford, where every spot recalled his reputation he had won. He was utterly father, and seek some stirring scene where he stripped of all, even of his name, for he might stifle such memories. He strayed would no longer be Herford of Herford. absently through the churchyard, and into Now that the question was settled he could the church, the door of which was open. The see his position with great clearness : he must walls of the old chancel were covered with become an almost penniless man with a marble tablets to the memory of past Hersuspicion dogging him like his shadow. For fords of Herford, and Lynns of Rillage. His how would the world understand what he father's monumental stone was there, containhad done? What would those nearest to him ing simply his name, and the dates of his think of it? How would Diana, how would birth and death. There was no epitaph, Pansy bear it?
no panegyric on his virtues.—"Aged 83." He came down late in the morning and Those were the last characters. All the inquired for Richard, who was gone into the other Herfords had records of their having
him. There had been no interview yet between the brothers without a feeling of chilly reserve, and almost a sense of animosity between them. But at this moment Richard was soft-hearted. His thoughts had been dwelling on the past, and he could remember how proud he used to be of his big brother, when he was yet a young boy not old enough to rush into sin. How good Justin had been to him when he came home for his holidays ! He had indulged him with all the sympathetic kindness a big boy sometimes shows towards a little one. Richard could recollect riding aloft on his shoulders over the fields, and swimming out with him towards the whitecrested waves which tossed and played with
him safely while his brother's arm was about been good fathers, good husbands, and good him. He could not forget how earnestly friends. But no praise had been accorded to Justin had striven to turn him aside from his this last old man. He had lived and died, mad career of folly and disobedience, nor that was all. Richard stood gazing at it with how he had pleaded with him never to carry maudlin tears in his eyes.
out his threat of running away from home. “Father,” he muttered, “ if you'd forgiven The hardship of seeing Justin made the head me, I'd have given you a better stone than of the family consisted in the fact that he that."
was not really his own el brother and He turned round hastily, hearing a footstep heir to the estate.
It would have been no in the aisle. It was Justin coming up to grievance if Justin had been born a Herford.
These thoughts hurried through Richard's death-bed. But he had made a mistake; he mind as Justin came deliberately up the aisle, had put the wrong will into the wrong cover. and he held out his hand in silence and He gave my mother the will he wished kept, grasped Justin's hand warmly. Justin was and kept the one he wished destroyed—the startled and touched to the quick. There one that made me his heir. It was a fatal had been no sign of sensibility or of penitence mistake for me." before in the returned prodigal, yet here he “More fatal for me," said Richard with a was standing before his father's monument faint sneer. The suspicions that had been with tears in his eyes. The old love for his awakened by Leah Dart came back upon his younger brother, so soon smothered by the mind with fresh force. A sudden low susfatal indulgence that had ruined him, sprang picion was manifest in his tone and manner afresh into Justin's heart. He clasped Dick’s which made Justin wince. hand with a hearty pressure.
“ It was a mistake full of harm for us “ Justin," he said, after a long pause, and both,” he said. “It would have been best speaking in broken accents, “ it's an awful for me to have made the truth known at once ; thing to have your own father's curse hanging but several considerations weighed strongly over you! It can never be unsaid now, you with me. I made every possible inquiry know, and it's always working against me. after you; I advertised in every colonial How can a fellow repent, and grow better, paper, and in the chief American papers, when his father's curse is on him? I'm like begging of you to return.” Cain ; I'm doomed to be a vagabond on the " Ah! I saw some," interrupted Richard ; earth as long as I live.”
“but I'd heard the old man had cut me off Justin was grasping his hand still, and with a shilling, and I did not choose to come looking into his face with a grave and steady home to eat humble pie from a half-brother regard. He could love his prodigal brother that had no right to the property or the name. now, and feel a keen and deep desire for his By George ! it's a queer story; it'll take a welfare. But Dick's words stung him. Was good deal of looking into, this will.” it true that he had been binding his brother's “If you had come home,” said Justin quietly, soul to sin during all these years ?
'as soon as you saw my advertisement, I “ Would
you have repented if your father should have reinstated you. I took neither had forgiven you ?” he asked.
name nor property till I felt almost satisfied “How can I tell?” replied Richard almost you were dead. You have been at home petulantly. “He died cursing me; he cut eight or nine days, and I am ready to relinme off, his only son.”
quish all to you." “He forgave you before he died,” an “ Make me master of Herford !” exclaimed swered Justin; "he forgave you fully, and Richard, in intense surprise. he restored your birthright to you, as he “I have already sent for Uncle Watson," he thought.
our mother the will continued, “to advise us. He will satisfy which disinherited you, as he believed, and you that I am acting in perfect fairness. bade her burn it."
There may be some little delay, but from “ By George !” exclaimed Richard, turn- this time you are the sole owner of the ing very pale.
estates in my eyes. Richard, let this be the " It was almost the last thing he said in turning point in your life. You are not a his life," continued Justin, “ at the last hour. foolish, headstrong lad now; listen to reason. Till then he held fast by his resentment, and You will step at once into a good position, nobody knew he had forgiven you but me. with a fair income, larger than any of your But at the last he intended to make you forefathers had, and sufficient for the life of amends. There is no curse upon you. Dick, a country gentleman, who looks after his own my poor fellow, if that has kept you back lands and manages his own affairs. You from repentance and a better life, I shall will have considerable power and influence, rejoice for ever in what I am about to do for which you must one day give account to this day.”
God. If you have been troubled by the “My old father forgave me !” he mut- thought of your father's anger and curse, how tered.
much more you should be afraid of God's ! " Fully,” answered Justin ; "he intended I implore you, make this the point at which to destroy his last will, which disinherited you will turn away from your follies and sins, you. He always meant to destroy it the day and seek God's forgiveness. You would you came home again, and he had it burned, have sought your father's forgiveness if as he thought, and as I thought too, on his you had come home before he had died.