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The Path of Love.

We have the same history, the same “pilgrim’s progress,” given to us in another form. Matilda calls it “The Path of Love.”—It is her own story, the years of dreary penance, followed by the revelation of Christ to the soul.

57

Then shall He speak and say—

58

He saith—

And she makes answer—

59

Then doth He speak and say—

“O thou that lovest, wouldst thou know

The path wherein thy feet should go?”

“Yea, teach it, Lord, to me.”

“Through drear repentance leads the way,

And the shame of sin confessed—

And when thou hast trod on the world’s display,

And on the devil’s behest,

And on the flesh in its haughty pride,

And on thy helpless will,

That holds the soul of the chosen bride

In bonds and slavery still,

And when the enemy conquered lies,

And weary art thou and athirst—

Then to Him whom thou lovest lift thine eyes,

To Him who loved thee first.”

“I hear a voice that calleth amain,

A voice of love and tears;

I have wooed, and I have listened in vain

Through long, long years—

And it speaks to-day.

My heart is troubled, and I must haste

To the sad sweet voice across the waste.”

And in the morning, when the dew is sweet,

She hears the gentle music of His feet—

She hears Him speak and say, “I heard thy voice.”

The glorious One draws nigh;

Amidst the dew when all the woods rejoice

With gladsome melody.

And she arrays herself in fair attire,

In raiment of a bride;

Her mantle is the holy judgment fire

Wherein the gold is tried.

Of meek humility her stole is spun,

Her robe is white as snow,

For unto Him, the High and Holy One,

She fain would go.

And thus she passeth through the forest dim,

Where holy people dwell,

And day and night, with dance and song and hymn,

Their gladness tell;

With solemn dance of praise that knows no end,

Hands linked with other hands of ancient years;

The mighty faith of Abraham His friend,

The longing of His seers;

The chaste humility of her who bore

God’s blessed Son;

And all the victories that in days of yore

His saints have won—

These join in dance attuned to glorious song

And move in cadence sweet,

And multiplied as ages pass along

Are those rejoicing feet.

“Beloved, do as they have done

Who praise My name alway.”

“Thou must lead me on,

And I will dance as they;

I move to music of Thy song

Rejoicing over me,

And so my halting steps are strong

To follow after Thee;

To pass within Thy love’s eternal rest,

And onwards to confess Thee undismayed;

And onwards yet, till on my Saviour’s breast

My soul is stayed;

And yet beyond that rest and joy of mine,

To joy which heart of man hath never known,

Where Christ rejoiceth in His Song Divine—

That joy of perfect love, O Lord, is Thine,

And Thine alone.”

“Beloved, thou hast praised Me in the dance

And weary are thy feet—

Behold in shadow of the trees of God

The rest is sweet,

Rest, rest with Me.”

“O Lord, too great this love of Thine,

Thine only can it be;

For, lo! my love, Lord, is not mine,

It comes from Thee.”

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