Sunday, November 22, 2020

Emory Upton to his cousin E——, May 1, 1859

WEST POINT, May 1, 1859.

DEAR COUSIN E——: I have heard that you have experienced a change of heart, and that you propose to live hereafter a Christian life. This gives me great joy. I, too, have given myself up to God. Being, therefore, new laborers in the vineyard of the Lord, I thought that a correspondence might mutually benefit and strengthen us in the determination we have made. I do sincerely hope that you have “offered yourself as a sacrifice, holy and acceptable before the Lord,” and have a hope of immortality. What a blessed thought! Is it not a sufficient inducement to remain faithful to the end? Yes! what is the length of life, compared with never-ending eternity?  Infinitely small.  Yet our actions during this instant are to determine our future condition throughout the eternity.  Let us strive to show ourselves worthy of the kingdom of heaven.  Let us be true to the trust confided in us.  We must necessarily encounter difficulties.  We may have to bear the scoffs of the world, but we should recollect that the Son of God not only had to bear this, but he was crucified, and his blood was shed for us.  Doubts may arise in our minds; but we must remember that we are infinite beings, and God is infinite.  How, therefore, can we expect to comprehend the ways of an Infinite Being?  Let us drop these doubts whenever they arise, and I hope and trust in God, “who is just and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness.” The more difficulties we triumph over, the greater will be our reward.  Let us not, therefore, be discouraged our disheartened, but may we grow in the knowledge and love of God, that we may finally be accounted worthy of a seat at his right hand.

SOURCE: Peter Smith Michie, The Life and Letters of Emory Upton, p. 16-17

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