THERE’S NAE STRIFE HERE
A word spoken in due season how good is it! Oh how unspeakably good! and who can recount the goodness of the Great Giver in sending the word at the seasonable moment? Illness had laid me low, and I felt myself returning to an unkind, unfeeling, ungrateful world. Satan is sure to find his way into a sick room, and to take advantage of a weak body and a weary mind. One after another his fiery darts had been aimed at me; I felt grieved with everybody and everything; my heart went to this grave and that grave, and it seemed as if sympathy and tenderness were buried with the friends of my youth. Turning on my couch in a restless impatient spirit, I said to myself, “How sorry I am I’m recovering;” when the door was gently opened, and an intimate choice friend came in. After conversing a little, M. said, “I have been thinking much of an observation an individual made to me, that at this present time the prevailing temptation of Satan is the sowing discord at home and abroad.” In a moment I was subdued;
I saw it was strife within which had been stirring up all these unhallowed feelings, and when again left alone to my own reflections, I felt how true was the remark which had been repeated to me. Oh, reader, is it not a mournful fact that Satan is sowing strife in our hearts, our homes, our streets, our churches! He hates love as much as he loves discord; and wherever there is union, off he goes to break it up. Is there happiness at the fireside? the devil will come and gender strife. Is there peace in the churches? listen to the war-note. He sets the minister against the people, and the people against the minister; envy, suspicion, and evil speaking break out among the members. One says to another. Is this thy kindness to thy friend? and in bitterness of spirit one unjustly slandered child of God exclaims, “It was not an enemy who reproached me, then I could have borne it; but it was thou!” and another, “the house of Judah hath dealt treacherously.” Oh amidst all this discord and strife of tongues, how sweet to get a glimpse of that heavenly city peaceful as a sea of glass, and of which the Scotch elder said, “There’s nae strife there!” and I will conclude by a brief reference to the remarkable fact which occasioned those words. There was a Scotch elder, who by his unrestrained temper was always creating disquiet at his chapel; and this was a source of deep sorrow to the venerable minister, a man of peace. There had been a great outbreak on Church matters, and the aged pastor sought repose at the house of a friend in the country. On the following morning the elder came down to breakfast, heavy and cloudy. His wife asked what was the matter? He said he had had a strange dream; that he was at the bottom of a steep hill, at the top of which was the gate of heaven, where saints and angels stood as he reached the top of the hill, who should come out to meet him but his aged minister, and, holding out his hand, he said to the elder, Come awa, John, come awa, there’s nae strife here. Just then, while recounting his dream, a letter was brought in, it was from the friend at whose house the old pastor had gone to seek quiet, and it stated that the dear man on the evening of his arrival had spoken with sorrow of the chapel-meeting, and expressed himself weary of all this turmoil, adding, “I wish my dear Lord would take me home.” The next morning he did not come down to breakfast and on going into his room they found him sleeping peacefully in death. He had gone to the country where there is nae strife.