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Yet shall to him the still small voice,
And after these things, He went forth and saw a publican named Levi, sitting at the receipt of custom, and He said unto him, Follow me: and he left all, rose up, and followed Him. St. Luke v. 27, 28.
YE hermits blest, ye holy maids,
The nearest heaven on earth,
The secret love of rural things,
The moral of each fleeting cloud and gale,
The whispers from above, that haunt the twilight vale:
Say, when in pity ye have gaz'd
On the wreath'd smoke afar,
Then as ye turn'd your weary eye
To the green earth and open sky,
Were ye not fain to doubt how Faith could dwell Amid that dreary glare, in this world's citadel?
But Love's a flower that will not die
For lack of leafy screen,
And Christian Hope can cheer the eye
Then be ye sure that Love can bless
Even in this crowded loneliness,
Where ever-moving myriads seem to say,
Go-thou art nought to us, nor we to thee-away!
There are in this loud stunning tide
Of human care and crime,
With whom the melodies abide
Of th' everlasting chime;
Who carry music in their heart
Through dusky lane and wrangling mart,
Plying their daily task with busier feet,
Because their secret souls a holy strain repeat.
How sweet to them, in such brief rest
As thronging cares afford,
In thought to wander, fancy-blest,
At once he rose, and left his gold;
His treasure and his heart
Earth and her idols part;
While he beside his endless store
Shall sit, and floods unceasing pour
Of Christ's true riches o'er all time and space, First angel of his Church, first steward of his Grace:
d It seems from St. Matthew ix. 8, 9, that the calling of Levi took place immediately after the healing of the paralytic in the presence of the Pharisees.
Nor can ye not delight to think
Where He vouchsaf'd to eat,
How the Most Holy did not shrink
From touch of sinner's meat;
What worldly hearts and hearts impure
That we might learn of Him lost souls to love, And view his least and worst with hope to meet above.
These gracious lines shed Gospel light
On Mammon's gloomiest cells,
As on some city's cheerless night
The tide of sun-rise swells,
Till tower, and dome, and bridge-way proud
And to wise hearts this certain hope is given;
"No mist that man may raise, shall hide the
To look on clearer Heavens, and scan
ST. MICHAEL AND ALL ANGELS.
Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation? Heb. i. 14.
YE stars that round the Sun of righteousness
With harps for ever strung, ready to bless
Ye eagle spirits, that build in light divine,
Faint warblers of this earth, that would combine
Your amarant wreaths were earn'd; and homeward all, Flush'd with victorious might,