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despair above described, when the first letter arrived from England, in answer to those which Emily had written respecting Christopher. This letter was from the trustees of the property left to herself and her brother by Mrs. Courtney; and the writer stated, that her brother was still living; and that, now being of age, he had applied for the first payment of the interest of his two thousand pounds that the money had been sent to a banker in London—that he had received it, in person, some few weeks before-but that his present situation was not known by them.
Who can describe the feelings of joy and gratitude which this letter imparted to the affectionate Emily. She flew with it to her father's chamber, and had she not been prevented by Madame Vauvrier, might, perhaps, have done serious injury by the suddenness of the intelligence; but, being brought to reflection by a hint from her aged counsellor, she left it to her to open the matter to the major.
I shall not enter into a full account of the manner by which Madame Vauvrier prepared Major Muller for the happiness which awaited him; but I shall only say, that he was deeply affected with the pleasing intelligence; and to the surprise of Madame Vauvrier, lifting up his eyes and hands to heaven, “My God!” he exclaimed, “ I thank thee,-unworthy as I am, of every mercy,-unworthy, as I am, to open my lips before thee, -I thank thee for this inexpressible blessing. O my son! my Christopher! thy father may yet live to see thee, to acknowledge his rashness-may yet live to tell thee of the mercies of his God!"
Here he burst into tears; and Emily entering at this moment, Madame Vauvrier beckoned to her to kneel down by the bed; while she uttered a prayer mingled with thanksgiving, in which the major joined with a fervour that evidently proceeded from his heart.
The progress of Major Muller towards recovery was most rapid after this letter had arrived from England; and still more blessed and happy was his gradual advancement from that time, in a new and holy life." All his infidel books were, from that day, cast away; many of his evil habits were discontinued; Monsieur Wietlesbach was taught to keep his proper place; the happy father dictated many
letters, written by Emily, addressed to his friends, in different parts of the world, requesting them to seek his son and send him home: while he frankly confessed his erroneous treatment of him, and expressed his humble hope, that he might, in future, prove himself a better father.
And thus this proud infidel became a new creature: old things were passed awayı old habits renounced; and the lion was now gentle as a lamb. His daily, his hourly study was now the Book of God. He received spiritual things with the avidity of one who, having long thirsted, meets with some clear and sparkling fountain, of which he feels he cannot take enough. He enjoyed the greatest pleasure in the society of Madame Vauvrier; though she still continued to wear her blue petticoat and black sick apron. Instead of the vile and low jests in which he formerly delighted, his imagination, which was naturally lively, regaled itself with the beauties of the prophetical books and the appropriate emblems with which they abound. It was his practice, when walking out with Emily in the precincts of the castle, to advert to these sacred passages; and he was not a little encouraged in it by Madame Vauvrier; who delighted to join him and his daughter in their walks; and to sit down with them, under the shade of the spreading trees in the front of the chateau; while all the beauties of the lake, the rocky hills on the opposite banks, and the snowy mountains in the back-ground, were extended before their eyes.
One evening, in the beginning of the second spring after the arrival of Emily and her father in this country, Madame Vauvrier paid her usual visit to the chateau, where the little party were assembled in the portico. Emily regaled them with one of the ancient hymns of the Vaudois, which she had set to her harp; bringing the wild air under the control of art, without depriving it of its simplicity and national character. The conversation of the party, on this occasion, took its direction from the subject of the hymn, which spoke of the spiritual Zion under the scriptural figure of a mountainous region, adorned with cedars, and refreshed by flowing springs. · Madame Vauvrier remarked, that, to a pious mind, there was not a country in the known world which presented so many objects tending to lead the mind to the contemplation of divine truth, and
the grandeur of the Creator of all things, as that in which they were so happy as to dwell.
“ I have often thought,” said she,“ that the Holy Land, under the peaceful reign of Solomon, might not be unlike our lovely country. And thus,” continued this venerable daughter of the ancient Vaudois, “ the unparalleled beauty of our native land supplied a lovely image of the glories of the earth, at that blessed period when the frosts of infidelity shall have passed away, under the fervent rays of the Sun of Righteousn
sness; when the flowers shall appear on the earth, the time of the singing-birds shall be come, and the voice of the turtle shall be heard in every land ;-when every blessing, both spiritual and temporal, shall be granted to the redeemed, under the peaceful reign of Him of whom Solomon was but a faint and imperfect emblem.”
Looking then towards Mont Blanc, which was suddenly brought to view by the rolling away of the clouds, which had hitherto rested on the lower mountains, the old lady proceeded to illustrate to her companions, in a metaphorical way, the resemblance which a snowy mountain bears to the Church of Christ on earth; and, being encouraged by major Muller, she entered into some particulars.
“It has always been granted," said the venerable woman, “ by those who know any thing of Scripture, that a mountain is an emblem of the spiritual Church; and, allowing this, let us contemplate yonder glorious object before us, and compare the various particulars in which the simile holds good. The church of God, being composed of the redeemed of all nations, is clothed with the righteousness of Christ, which, as a white and spotless garment, encompasses it around, as yon brilliant mantle of snow covers that summit, and stands as a beacon to the whole earth, while its glory is lifted up above the tops of the inferior hills. This righteousness experiences no change; it admits no defilement from the world below; it receives no spots or stains ; but remains for ever unpolluted and unaltered. Nevertheless, were the imputed righteousness of Christ, the only saving benefit belonging to the redeemed, the Christian character would be barren and unprofitable; but when the heavenly rays of the Sun of Righteousness beam upon their regenerated hearts, and they feel the softening powers of divine influence, then their graces flow
forth, and impart inestimable treasures to the whole earth. So, during the long night of wintry darkness, the springs of the hills, which take their rise in the mantles of everlasting snow, are bound up as the stones of the quarry; but when the sun, the emblem of Christ, sheds its kindly beams on the sparkling cliffs, then the waters begin to flow and to distil in a thousand rills and brooks, fountains, and refreshing streams, which, descending on the parched earth like the graces of the Holy Spirit on the changed heart, cause the tender herbs to spring, and the fragrant blossoms to unfold themselves, adorning the valleys, and crowning the earth with beauty. “ Thus,” said she, “ in the volume of nature are graven the hieroglyphics of everlasting truths. These truths, indeed, have hitherto been illegible to the knowing and prudent of the earth, though they have been comprehended, through all the long ages of papal darkness, by the poorest inhabitants of our sequestered country.”.
In this agreeable manner did the little company maintain their conversation ; the old and experienced Christian leading her disciples from one degree of information to another, till, by the divine blessing, those glories of the unseen world were unfolded to their view which the unenlightened never perceive.
In the mean time, Madame Vauvrier refused to be raised, by the bounty of the major, from her lowly situation. “ No,” she said, “I am content in my present state; I do not desire to change it. I do not wish high notions to be given to my grandchildren. They are, at present, happy in their simplicity; permit them to retain it. My daughter, too, is a humble and retired character; she descended earlier into obscure life than I did; she would not be happy in the society of her superiors. Leave us, dear lady," she would say, when addressing Emily, as you found us.Let it not appear, that, on my part, my regard for you is an interested one; or, on yours, that you still believe that happiness has any thing to do with an enlarged possession of the good things of this world.”
Thus the old lady pleaded, and Emily was convinced that she was right; nevertheless, she would not refrain from many little acts of kindness and attention, which might contribute to the comfort of the family. She observed what was old and worn out in their apparel and
the furniture of the cottage, and renewed them in the same form and precisely after the same fashion which they had long sustained; so that she gradually introduced a superior air of comfort throughout the family, without occasioning any departure from the simplicity of their appearance. She frequently met the little ones in the alpine pasture, conversed with them, instructed them, and improved herself by the simple piety of their innocent discourse. She became acquainted with Genevieve, their mother, and found her precisely what Madame Vauvrier had described her to be-a modest, humble person, truly pious, but decidedly inferior to her venerable parent in all intellectual acquirements.
In the mean time, letters were received from Charles Harrington, filled with expressions of kindness and unabated love. He was then in England, and using every means to find his friend. His letters, however, still brought a renewal of sorrow, because his attempts had hitherto failed. But this protracted trial, like every trial appointed by God, was not without its good effect. The major, by the divine blessing, appeared to be more and more humble under it, and gave evidence, that such a decided change had taken place in his heart, as afforded the most happy assurance that all would be finally well with him; for, if the work of grace was really begun, who could doubt but that it would be completed? What project of man fails, but because it is either ill planned, or that he who has begun it is changeable, or that he wants power to accomplish it ? But is the Eternal capable of such folly? Does the Almighty change his purposes? or must he forbear to carry them into execution from weakness? Who then can question, but what the Lord of all the earth has begun to do will be accomplished ? Such were the consolations derived when Emily contemplated her father's altered character; though she could not observe without anguish the gradual decay of his health, and his increase of bodily weakness ;-a decay which was probably hastened by his protracted anxiety and uneasiness, arising from his augmented sense of sin, and which he often expressed in a manner that brought tears in the eyes of his daughter.
“O,” he would say, “when I remember the manner in which I habitually spoke and thought of God, and the con
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