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[304] from the troubles and perplexities of time, to the eternal quietness which God giveth. I cannot but believe that, in the heat and glare through which we are passing, this book will not invite in vain to the calm, sweet shadows of holy meditation, grateful as the green wings of the bird to Thalaba in the desert; and thus afford something of consolation to the bereaved, and of strength to the weary. For surely never was the Patience of Hope more needed; never was the inner sanctuary of prayer more desirable; never was a steadfast faith in the Divine goodness more indispensable, nor lessons of self-sacrifice and renunciation, and that cheerful acceptance of known duty which shifts not its proper responsibility upon others, nor asks for ‘peace in its day’ at the expense of purity and justice, more timely than now, when the solemn words of ancient prophecy are as applicable to our own country as to that of the degenerate Jew,— ‘Thine own wickedness shall correct thee, and thy backsliding reprove thee; know, therefore, it is an evil thing, and bitter, that thou hast forsaken the Lord, and that my fear is not in thee,’ —when ‘His way is in the deep, in clouds, and in thick darkness,’ and the hand heavy upon us which shall ‘turn and overturn until he whose right it is shall reign,’ —until, not without rending agony, the evil plant which our Heavenly Father hath not planted, whose roots have wound themselves about altar and hearth-stone, and whose branches, like the tree Al-Accoub in Moslem fable, bear the accursed fruit of oppression, rebellion, and all imaginable crime, shall be torn up and destroyed forever.

Amesbury, 1st 6th mo., 1862.

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