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A. B. Earle
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TOPIC and SUBTOPIC: Intercessory Prayer, Used Of God Mightily.

TITLE: Never Again

I was holding meetings in a beautiful town in New York, and for some reason there was a special interest felt for a Mr. Brown, who lived about a mile off.

One Christian would go and ask him to attend the meeting, then another, but he would say to them all: "I don't want religion. I have everything I want."

"He did not wish them to trouble themselves about him. He should not attend the meetings. He had a dear little girl; her name was Josephine. He would take her in his arms, and caress her, and say: "This is enough for me."

But God knew how to get Mr. Brown to meeting. He took Josephine, and put her in a coffin. I preached a funeral sermon at the house, from the words, "Suffer little children to come unto me."

If you want your children to be tenderly cared for, and have every possible advantage, let them come and live with me, Christ says.

After the services were closed, we all wanted to see the corpse. So the coffin was placed upon a stand in the yard that all might see. The father determined to be the last. He stood looking for a long time at the beautiful face of his Josephine, and when asked if the coffin could be closed, said: "You must not close this coffin!"

And finally he cried aloud: "She will never call me father again! She will never call me father again!" and repeated it, I think, a dozen times, until we were all convulsed with weeping.

At last the coffin was closed, and I went to the grave, and returned to the house with the family. As we sat in the parlor, Mr. Brown saw something of little Josephine's. (If you ever buried a dear one, you know there is a coat, or hat, or doll, or something to remind you that a dear one is gone.)

He walked the floor, crying out as before: "She will never call me father again."

I finally said: "Mr. Brown, be calm, and hear me. You say she will never call you father again. I am not sure of that. Little Josephine is now walking the golden street, and perhaps saying: "I wish my dear father was here."

"And if you should be converted, and go to heaven, the very first hand that grasps yours, and the first voice you hear may be your little Josephine's, saying: "O my dear father, have you come to live in heaven?"

God blessed these words; he became calm and thoughtful.

It was not long before he said: "I will seek Jesus, I will."

He sought Christ, and as soon as he found him he commenced preaching the glorious gospel of the blessed God.

The last I knew of Mr. Brown, he was preaching the gospel, and little Josephine waiting his arrival at the golden gates. Why would he not come before little Josephine was taken, while she could kneel by his side?

Why won't you come, dear friends, until God shall take some dear one from you, or you come wading through some deep affliction to Christ?

Come just as you are.

A. B. Earle, From: Incidents Used In His Meetings, published in 1888.

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