Heard (Henderson), Josephine D.
|IN MEMORY OF JAMES--M. RATHEL.|
CAME a stranger late among us,
With us came and cast his lot;
In the Master's vineyard toiling,
In God's service chose a spot.
Though upon his features ruddy
There was yet the smile of youth,
In his manly bearing steady,
Deep impressed the light of Truth.
He had come to lands far distant,
And with strangers made his home,
But his feet from paths of duty
Never once was known to roam.
Firm of purpose, pleasing manner,
Touched with fire from above,
Holding up the blood stained banner,
Zealous, full of Christian love.
Like the Master daily went he
Here and thither doing good
In the haunts of vice and mis'ry,
On "the solid Rock" he stood.
Young, but in the battle leading
Older souls who faint had grown;
With the youthful daily pleading
That the Saviour they should own.
Soon, alas, his work was ended,
By the monster stricken down.
Yet on Christ his hopes depended,
And by faith he saw his crown.102In his dying gained the victory
O'er the grave, and hell, and death;
For his voice was raised in praises,
Even with his latest breath.
Gazing on our fallen brother,
Gazing not with tearless eyes,
Ah! we thought of his fond mother,
Could she in our midst arise
See how loving hands and tender,
Wrought the wreaths of lilies fair,
Stranger hearts groaning with anguish,
Stranger eyes wept many a tear.
Though her heart is sad, but sadder,
For we know it might have been,
Had her boy in shame have fallen,
In iniquity and sin.
But the congregation passing
Slowly by look to gain,
For the last knew that before them
Lay a Christian free from pain.
Pain of earth, and care and sorrow,
From the tempter's snare set free,
Rest thou! In the bright to-morrow
We shall meet in heaven with thee!
Fare thee well and fare thee sweetly,
With the saints in glad array,
Time moves on, bears us fleetly
Towards the Resurrection Day!