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Louis VII. of France watched a whole night. The entire length of the Cathedral is five-hundred and fourteen feet, But we can give no idea of its beauty and grandeur in a short space
like this. But however grand it may be as a church, yet the heart of a humble, loving, and active child of God is a more acceptable temple for Him to reign in. Of such a heart He has said, “This is My rest, and here will I dwell.”
T. J. B
The Organ Boy.
I was alone and sad ; very sad and lonely I felt. I was looking around on the shadows that. seemed deepening and darkening; and beheld not the sunlight bright and broken that lay at my feet.
And thus it is. How often comes murmur, when we should be careful for
nothing, but with prayer, supplication, and thanksgiving, make our requests known unto God.
At once there broke upon the stillness, the dearest, sweetest strains of music—so mild and winning that it startled
In a moment I knew what it was. It was only an organ boy in the streets. I did not look out, but taking a few pieces of silver in my hand, went to the door: he stood close by the step. What a pale, sad face met mine, and the large mournful eyes thanked me more than his broken Italian could !
I went in and closed the door. He continued playing piece after piece skilfully, with a master hand, as if in gratitude for what I had given him. The sad, sweet face, and the forsaken look, haunted me.
It was only an organ boy. How often I had heard the
words said, coupled with feelings of disdain. But even an organ boy might have a loving mother, a gentle sister, poor and dependent perhaps. I had given him some coin, and that was all that I could do-no, not all. He might be hungry. I laid some slices of cake upon a plate, and as I passed the table took up the first tract that presented itself, and placed it with them. He might need the bread of life. I opened the door and laid the plate upon the steps. What a look he gave me.
And the tears came into his dark, wistful eyes in answer to my own sad smile.
I went in, and kneeled down by the window, and looked through the closed blind to observe him. And a prayer was in my heart and on my lips that the little tract—“ How to become a Christian”—might be owned and blessed of God. I knew I had given it for Christ's sake. watched him to see if he would take those dear words of truth with him. He did. And how I hoped and prayed that he would have them read to him, that they might live in his soul the voice of eternal life.
The stranger boy went his way and I mine. Many shadows often came up in my pathway; many trials were meted out to me, and all this was forgotten. And was I remembered? And now, I think, I know, it is a cherished thing, a blessed thought, to feel that we have a place in the heart of another, though that heart be lowly and alone; to know that we have done deeds of mercy, and that we are remembered in prayer; that there are those who plead for us at the throne of grace. It is a beautiful, a blessed legacy. Life and love have made it precious, priceless.
Time passed on, and then came the dreadful war, with all its dread accompaniments of sorrow and suffering. A few months since, while on a journey, I went with some friends to visit one of the hospitals of the sick and wounded. How sad it was !—the bleeding hearts and broken hopes, and the silent struggle with suffering; I inwardly prayed that He, to whom all power is given, might be in their midst to help and to heal them.
The Physician stood silently counting the faint pulses of one who lay on a cot lower than the rest, but with pillows and clean coverings. His face was youthful, but oh! so faded and white, and sunken ! His eyes were closed, and his dark, damp hair, was pushed carelessly back from a pure brow, as clear as marble.
I lingered a moment. The face strangely attracted me; and then I passed on with the rest-a few steps only, for I felt faint and sick, and leaned against a pillar for support. Carefully, kindly, the physician laid back the almost lifeless hand, gently arranged the pillows, and with a heavy sigh, turned away to other places and faces.
The dying one slept. Still and motionless he lay there, and a light, holy and beautiful, trembled softly over the faded features. A step passed me. I could not leave the spot. I only shrank back farther among the shadows. It was the man of God that came and stooped over that smitten form. How sweetly that sufferer slept. It must be his last sleep on earth.
More than once the chaplain bent his face down to see if he breathed, and laid his hand lightly, lingeringly on the cold forehead. And then he awoke. There was a long troubled sigh, as if the spirit was unwilling to come back to earth ; and the large dark eyes looked up as from a great distance.
“ Am I dying now?"
I caught every word. It seemed so like some dear musicstrain that I had heard, that I could not wholly recall.
The minister had stood looking pityingly upon him. “ Do not fear to tell me. I am almost ready.”
That voice-it must be some half-forgotten dream I was trying to trace out.
“I do not know, dear brother; it may be. But have you found the Saviour of sinners? Is Jesus indeed precious ?
“O yes, yes, I have just seen Him-I am not wandering --I will tell you directly before I go."
“ Have you a mother, my brother? What can I do for you?” The minister could scarcely speak from emotion.
“ Yes sir, but not here."
The chaplain answered, “ And what shall I say to her) I will write whatever you wish me to.” “Thank you sir. But I will see her first. I will see her
She is in heaven.” What a holy light flashed up from that deep, dark eye!
“ But I have a little sister. It is almost all that I have of earth. If you would send some trifles to her, if you would pray for her : she will be all alone-a stranger indeed. But I have given her to God. She will be safe – But wont you pray for her ? And if you will but send her these-->"
With a trembling hand, he took from beneath his pillow a purse with a few pieces of gold, a Bible, a picture, and an almost worn-out little book of but few pages, There were blood drops upon it.
“And this has saved me-has saved my dear mother; with the divine blessing it has saved us both. It was long years ago. I was but a poor organ boy, with a sick mother and infant sister to do for. We were so destitute-and a kind lady gave me this little book.
And how glad my mother was when I read it all over to her. No one before had ever given us anything to tell us the way of salvation. And I have prayed for her every day—and my mother prayed for her. And I have wished--I have asked God if I might not see her-just to thank her-just to tell her of all the good her little gift has done. And tell her, thus al. ways to cast her bread upon the waters, thus to lend to the Lord. O blessed indeed is the cup of cold water given to fainting dying ones!”
Noiselessly I advanced among the shadows, with my hands tightened over my hushed heart, and listened.—The
deep, dreamy eyes were closed; the low words were but whispered, yet I heard them all.
“I had a dream just now—such a beautiful, blessed dream. I stood, a weary pilgrim, before the heavenly gates. I heard the angels' songs within, so glad, so joyous, I cannot describe them. They are too blessed for earth.
And then I passed in. O what a glorious place! Spirit words could only describe it ; the earthly has no language that can tell of the transcendent greatness and blessedness of that place of infinite love."
“ I met the angels that smiled so sweetly upon me, at every step. But I wanted to see my Saviour-I wanted to see my mother. It was not long. She was very near to Him. I saw them both. And then I was thinking of one more that I wished to see. But I did not know that she had come yet. And I heard the gates open.
And I saw her face among the angel throng gathered there. I knew it. She was the one that gave me this book. O how I wanted to go to her, and tell her what a blessed work she had done. I looked up to Him. He must have known what was in my heart, for He said, “ Yes.” I stood by her side, and held her hand in mine. Through the long, wide spaces of heaven I led her on. We stood before the Saviour. He had a shining crown in His hand, with very many glorious stars within it. She knelt before Him. He laid it upon her brow. But minemine was to meet her as she entered heaven, and lead her to Jesus. But-it was only a dream.”
A broken sob betrayed my presence. I stood over the dying youth. My tears fell fast upon his cold, white face. Those dark, mournful eyes looked up. He knew me. He had no power to move. Only the stiffened lips whispered faintly, wearily :
“Now I know that Jesus heareth my prayer. And now, let thy servant depart in peace, for my eyes have seen thy salvation.
Perhaps I shall be the first to meet you as you