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of the school had assembled in one room, and there the pious girls were pouring out their souls in importunate prayer; and the impenitent, with scarcely an exception, were borne down under a sense of their sins, and were crying for mercy.
The interest extended to many outside of the two seminaries." All the girls in the female seminary over twelve years gave tokens of being converted, and many of them were from that time bright and shining lights in that dark land.
In 1850 there was another awakening. “The efforts of the older girls for the salvation of the younger ones, and for the scores of women who were constantly resorting to our dwellings, were of a deeply interesting character.
In 1855 there was still another time of intense earnestness. “Before leaving the school-room on Tuesday afternoon, I said, 'If there is one of our dear family who feels that she must make her soul her first care, I should be glad to see her in my room at the ringing of the bell this evening. That bell rang; I sat alone in my room; the door opened, and one came in, then another, and another, till I could no longer say, 'And still there is room,'but could only say, 'In my Father's house there still is room.' Twenty-three were there with bowed heads; and never while I remember to pray for the dear Nestorians shall I forget the solemnity of that meeting.”
The secret of all this usefulness was, “prayer and pains, with faith in Jesus Christ.” Dr. Kirk said, “Fidelia Fiske had made the greatest sacrifice. She had given up her will; and when you have done that the rest is easy. To burn at the stake for a while, to be torn on the rack, to be devoured by wild beasts, is as nothing when
you have torn out your own will and laid it upon God's altar." Dr. Laurie says, "“ Miss Fiske's power was lovingness. And this was the steady outflow of her daily life; rather it was the outgrowth of Christ in her; for He abode in her, and she in Him. In her presence Christ seemed not far off; and afterwards you felt like saying with some of old, Did not our hearts burn within us ?' Yet with all this there was not the least affectation of superior goodness; no talk about eminent holiness, as though others did not know so much about it; but it was as if Christ's own love flamed from Him through a human heart, that we might admire its beauty and praise the Lord.”
It will easily be understood that sixteen years of constant labour told on Miss Fiske's health; and she was obliged to leave and return to America, hoping, however, to go back and lay her bones in Persia. One Sabbath, shortly before she left, she was very weak, and thought she would be unable for the day's work.
Finding there was some one directly behind me, I looked, and there was one of the Nestorian sisters who had seated herself so that I might lean upon her. I objected; but she drew me back, saying, If you love me, you will lean hard.' Did I not then
lean hard ? And then there came the Master's own voice, “If you love Me, you will lean hard;' and I leaned on Him too, and felt that He had sent the poor woman to give me a better sermon than I might have heard even with you.
After her return to America she was appointed for a time to preside over the daily devotional exercises in Mount Holyoke Seminary, where she had been educated. During January and February, 1861, her room was througed by those who sought her counsel and prayers; and fifty or sixty of the young ladies gave tokens of being converted. During the following year, out of three hundred and forty scholars, only nineteen, as far as could be known, left without an interest in Christ.
She had hoped to return to Persia, but the Lord willed otherwise. In 1864 she became very ill. Her arms were so swollen that she could not write, and she had at times intense suffering. Her last message to the teachers and pupils of Mount Holyoke
“Live for Christ.” On July 26th, 1864, she died. I heard a voice from heaven, saying, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth : yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them."
EVERLASTING LIFE AFTER DEATH.
“I know that my Redeemer liveth.”—Job xix. 25.
HE autumn wind is moaning low the requiem of the year ;
And tossing trees before the breeze are turning brown and bare.
glory in the end.
H. F. Lyte.
STARS FOR EVER AND EVER.
Lord of the harvest sent forth into His harvest.
the crown which the righteous Judge will give
DIED, Sept. 16, 1869.
(Dan. xii. 3). Early in life he was by trade a mason, and he used often to refer to that period. Though at that time unconverted, he was ever mindful of his mother, bringing her his wages weekly. In afteryears, one day when in Glasgow addressing a gathering of working men, his filial affection as well as shrewd observation, led him to exclaim, “Lads, do you know any one of your number who is not kind to his mother? Have nothing to do with such a selfish fellow. He is never to be trusted.” Broadfaced, and somewhat rough in exterior, he was full of heart; and he had, besides, a pleasant look and a kindly eye that opened his way among strangers.
Before conversion, he was often under alarm. Once, looking in at a chink in the door of a cottage from which he heard the voice of praise,—the sight of happy faces, and the song,
“O greatly bless'd the people are
The joyful sound that know," touched his heart, and he wished he were among them. At another time, a funeral awoke awful thoughts of a judgment to come; and again, one of his mother's simple illustrations lodged in his soul; and when, soon after, he stood by the opened grave
of his gentle sister Ann, the dull sound of the clods dropping on the coffin-lid seemed to him to ring into his conscience that one word, “ Eternity.”
The preaching of the truth was not without effect upon him. Arrow after arrow was thus sent in; and he sought everywhere for relief. It was one day while standing at the end of his father's house, musing on John iii. 16, that the burden of sin rolled from his back. "I could not,” he says, “contain myself for joy. I sang the new song,-Salvation through the blood of the Lamb. The very heavens appeared as if covered with glory. I felt the calm of a pardoned sinner. Yet I had no thought about my
safety; I saw only the Person of Jesus, and wept for my sin that had nailed Him to the cross; and they were tears of true repentance. Formerly I set up repentance as a toll between me and the cross ; now, it came freely, as the tear that faith wept. I felt that I had passed from death into life,—that old things had passed away, and all things had become new." He wondered that he had stumbled at the very simplicity of the way. He now saw everything so plain, that he longed to go and tell all the world. He felt as if he could convince the most sceptical and the most hardened, and that if he met a thousand Manassehs, he could say to them, “Yet there is room.” “I went everywhere telling my glad story. Some, even of the saints, looked incredulous. Others, like the elder brother in the parable, did not like the music and dancing.' They warned me against enthusiasm, and exhorted me to be soberminded. One old man said, that I was 'on the mount, but would soon be down. Another said, that I needed great humility.' But I went on singing my song. Prayer had given place to praise, and night and day, for more than three days, I continued to thank God for · His unspeakable gift.' I longed to die, that I might sin no more, and that I might discover more fully the height and depth, and length and breadth, of that love which (I now knew) passeth knowledge."
The good and noble Duchess of Gordon now found in him the kind of man she wished to employ as an evangelist. To this work he gladly set himself with all his heart, often spending in it sixteen hours a day; for his bodily strength was great. Some of his sorest encounters were with men who had on a thick coat of evangelical varnish,” having the knowledge and the form, but not the life nor the power of godliness. Discovering that an old printing-press was for sale, he obtained it, and writing on it, " For God and eternity," at once set himself to learn printing, and was soon able to send out tracts. This gave a turn to his efforts, and led afterwards to the publication of the “Herald of Mercy,” the issue of which, from month to month, was owned of God by many remarkable conversions.
In 1854, having been asked to go to the Crimea to work as colporteur and evangelist among the soldiers, he at once threw himself into that work. Many a wounded and many a sick soldier did he relieve, pouring into his soul at the same time the truth about “ Eternity” and “The Blood of the Lamb;" and cheerfully he submitted to very great privations for their sake. With the few godly whom he found, he met for prayer. One day when he and a Christian sergeant had retired to a quiet spot for prayer and reading of the word of God, a shell dropped at their feet. They rose, and went a little farther off. But again their exercises were disturbed by another shell that fell close by, shaking the very ground beneath them. “Never mind,” said the soldier, “it is only the devil trying to spoil our enjoyment; let us go on.” They
had just resumed, when, with a loud fall, a thirty-two pound shot lay beside them. The missionary started up; but the soldier calmed his alarm by quietly quoting the lines,
“Not a single shaft can hit,
Till the God of love sees fit." Nor did he confine his labours to our own soldiers. Meeting with officers and men of the Sardinian army, he became deeply interested in them; and believing that God can use one text as well as a thousand, he committed to memory, from the Italian New Testament, that Gospel in miniature, John iii. 16,“ God so loved the world,” etc., and then passed from group to group with his brief gospel message. His frank, genial disposition, and his intense sympathy, opened a door everywhere for himself and for
Returning home, he laboured without ceasing. His “Herald of Mercy” had reached a circulation of 32,000 a month; and often did he get intelligence of the blessing carried to souls by its pages. An English lady in Constantinople, a tradesman in Berwickshire, a stranger in Crieff, a herdboy on the way side,-each of these spoke of salvation brought to them by the instrumentality
of that paper.
Throughout Banffshire, and in towns such as Dundee, his labours were marked with success. He seemed never
more at home than when speaking in the open air. A favourite text with him was, “This Man receiveth sinners ;” and very feelingly would he then set forth the love and pity and tenderness of the Lord Jesus, stating clearly the sinner's guilt and wickedness, the evil conscience, and the depraved heart. Nor did he fail at the same time to set forth the twofold remedy for such a case, namely, the blood of Christ, and the all-powerful working of the Holy Ghost. He would say, "Here is the sinner, and there is the blood. The great question is, How are they to be brought together? The answer is, By the Holy Ghost; He only can do it.”
On one occasion, when shown a calumnious statement against himself in a local newspaper, he said joyfully, “Man, I do like a little dirt cast upon me for the dear Master's sake. I think Gabriel would shake hands with me, and say, 'I never had such an honour.' Suffering for righteousness' sake is far better than a hundred dying testimonies of those who never did or bore anything for Jesus.”
His dying hours were full of the consolation of the Holy Ghost. On one of his last nights on earth, he would not let his chamber be darkened. “Light all the lights, and let not the room be like a charnel-house;" for it was to him a time of life, not death; of joy and victory, not sorrow or distress.