"As the mountains"

The sun had set beyond the western slope, and the long twilight was fast deepening into the shades of night. Up the canon where the rugged cliffs first flung their heavy shadows, the winding road was already lost in the gathering gloom, but away on the distant mesa the great fantastic piles of rock yet stood out bold and weird against the eastern sky, the gorgeous coloring of their robes still showing crimson even in the fading light. In the valley below, the little town with its twinkling lights lay nestled among the mountains, like a child in its mother's arms at close of day. Gently the shadows crept apace, while one by one the stars came out overhead; and as the darkness deepened, the jagged outline of the mountain tops rose clearer and sharper against the cloudless sky, like giant guardsmen rousing themselves for their nightly vigils. Then the watchful sentinels seemed to come closer and closer, to remind one that "as the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about his people from benceforth even forever."

Sitting there in the hush of that twilight hour, one could understand in some degree the visions that came to the shepherd lad as he watched his flocks on the hills of Judæa. To him the mountains were the symbol of the great over-heart of Love, so invincible in strength, so far-reaching in height and breadth, so untiringly vigilant in tender care. Ages might come and go, empires rise and fall, but that divine goodness would stand like the eternal hills, unchanged from day to day,—a girdle of protection, an ever encircling presence, a crown of joy and beauty. To that mountain-loving poet, God's righteousness was "like the great mountains" whose heights invite the tireless climber to seek that nobler outlook which strengthens and inspires. To those who have struggled upward have ever come the wondrous, far-reaching visions of Truth,—the law of Sinai, the Sermon on the Mount, the transfiguration, the ascension, and that great discovery, the mountain that is "heaven-crowned Christianity" (Miscellaneous Writings, p. 328).

A Great Discovery
January 29, 1916

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