Religious Items

Above the strom.—To the heart that lives by its higher nature; that finds its inspiration in love, and faith, and hope, and conscience; that works straight on, with or without sight, with or without fruit, praised or blamed—to such a one there is a superiority over all ordinary experiences of life, that can hardly be thought of except by those who have felt it. There is a great difference in a mighty storm, between a ship that sails below the clouds and that air ship, the moon, which sails so placidly far above them. The waves roar upon the ship, and roll it and pitch it shivering and trembling under its thunder-strokes; the clouds darken it; the winds tear at it, and hiss like airy serpents through its whistling rigging. And though it may outride the storm-whirl, it is with groans and strainings; and when the light of calm comes again, it lifts up its crippled spars and goes on its weary way, wrenched, leaking, and with the melacholy sound of the pumps night and day.

The same clouds, the same raging winds, to our eye, seem hurled against the moon; but leagues uncounted of peaceful ether lay between the storm and the bright orb. It rolls in peace. And so do hearts that travel close by the side of God; whose life is hid in Him; whose hopes and treasures are in heaven. Storms are always too low to reach those who are so high as this; while men who live upon the present, and by sin, and under the inspiration of their lower faculties, are storm-ridden.

Henry Ward Beecher.

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November 21, 1901

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