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you do?” had been repeated, as it invariably was, till returned with reco. vered freedom, feeling and friendliness. This deportment was not the result of stoicism or indifference ; for Mr. Graham was extremely sensitive; but was the triumph of Christian principle and divine grace in a disposition naturally amiable. “I cannot," he would say, when some expressed surprise that he so uniformly suppressed every manifestation of resentment, “ act otherwise, when duty is so clearly revealed in the Word of God.”
As Society and Trustees' Steward, Mr. Graham had for many years been remarkably attentive and useful, but had declined taking a more spiritual office in the Church till death made vacancies which no other person so well qualified could be found to fill. During the last ten years he sustained the office of class-leader, the gifts of which he did not suspect himself to possess, so as to secure the esteem and affection of his members. The duty of visiting them in their sickness and other troubles, which thus devolved on him, opened a new sphere of usefulness in which he took great delight. He spent at least the whole of the intervals of public worship on the Sabbath, and frequently his week-day evenings, in these “works of faith and labours of love." Having been disciplined in the school of adversity and affliction-possessing a soul alive to every emotion the scenes of the sick-room were fitted to awaken-sympathetic, kind, gentle, cheerful, he was ever a welcome visitor ; his counsels and prayers being highly prized and eminently beneficial. The Society and congregation, as well as the members of his own class, shared in his attentions as circumstances required; while among the members of other. communities, where business led him, they were sought and enjoyed, in some cases for months ; the attention of no other spiritual adviser being deemed necessary.
It was in offices of kindness and Christian charity that Mr. Graham excelled. He could seldom be prevailed on to undertake any public exercise. The subject of extreme diffidence and excessive nervous timidity, he had a severe and protracted struggle before he obtained that amount of self-possession which enabled him in his latter years to pray in public, with even a moderate degree of comfort to himself. When his eldest son, John, was brought into the Church and began to exercise in public, a happy expedient occurred to the mind of Mr. Graham, by which he was frequently enabled to escape passing through a painful ordeal. The minister conducting the Sabbath-evening prayer-meeting, looking at Mr. Graham, would say, “ Brother Graham will engage in prayer.” A significant look and gesture, perfectly understood by his son, transferred the duty from sire to son, very much to the satisfaction of the former, though not of the latter, who inherited the constitutional nervousness of his father. Speaking in a love-feast was a severe task to him. He would rise suddenly, trembling from head to foot, his eyes closed, grasp the front of the pew, briefly and hurriedly relate his experience, and drop on his seat as if exhausted by the effort.
Singularly contrasting with this excessive timidity in public was the perfect self-possession he manifested in private. He was at ease among men of every grade of society. There was no indication in him of conscious inferiority in the presence of men of wealth, station, or cultivated intellect. Unabashed he took part in the conversation, which a wellstored mind and ready utterance enabled him to do respectably. An
almost inexhaustible fund of anecdote, a ready wit, a dry quiet humour, an exuberant good nature and a sprightly cheerfulness, made him an agree. able and interesting companion. Being asked how he succeeded in keeping himself so much at ease in the society of men occupying a position so much above his own, he replied that he never had to make any effort, for he had never but once felt abashed in the presence of a man, and that was Edmund Kean the celebrated tragedian.
Patience, fortitude and courage were remarkably developed in the character of Mr. Graham, and these graces were severely tried through life. He commenced business with promising prospects of success, having early manifested those qualities of mind and heart which made him beloved by many, and admired by all with whom he came frequently in contact. He seemed secure of steady support in his business ; but unforeseen fluctuations and disasters, accidents and sicknesses, with their attendant and consequent infirmities, crippling his energies, and the increasing claims of a numerous family, plunged him into difficulties which probably were increased by a perhaps blameable indifference to that which most men most prize, worldly prosperity ; for in the rivalry for fame, fortune or favour he was never seen. When a child, his thighbone was broken ; when a young man, one of his legs was broken by leaping off a sand-bank, and, some years after, the other was broken by his bootheel slipping off a paving-stone in the frost. Three times his arm was laid open to the bone, which operations were necessary for the removal of a disease occasioned by a slight blow on the elbow. He was afficted frequently with fevers and inflammations, and during his latter years was seldom free from some ailment. When suffering these visitations and their consequent embarrasments, his patience, fortitude and courage never failed him. "All things," he would say, “ work together for good to them that love God.” “What thou knowest not now thou shalt know hereafter.”
Though painful at present, 'twill cease before long,
And then, oh, how pleasant the conqueror's song! And, sustained by the unfailing consolations of his Christian faith, his submission to the divine will was meek, uncomplaining and cheerful. The secret of his perfect submission to God was this : seasons of suffering were especially seasons of prayer, when all was placed in the hands of infinite power, wisdom and mercy.
The antipathies and the attachments of Mr. Graham were strong. Any attempt on the part of one to invade the rights or privileges of another, the slightest manifestation of despotism, oppression or cruelty, grated harshly on his kindly nature, and, if occasion presented itself, was fearlessly denounced and indignantly rebuked. His patience was sorely tried in the presence of those addicted to croaking and faultfinding. Their connexion with the Church, he often stated, he regarded as wholly mischievous, as they seemed to live for no other purpose that he could divine than to paralyze the energies and obstruct the usefulness of the zealous and enterprizing. Evil-speaking and talebearing he abhorred. “From these sins," says his oldest and most intimate friend, Mr. Tate, “he was wholly free." If at times compelled to hear a reproach against his neighbour, he never assisted in its circulation by becoming the medium of transmitting it to others.
Believing the principles which the Church polity of the Methodist New Connexion embodies and applies were scriptural, he held them tenaciously, and advocated them warmly. His attachment to our Connexion was enlightened, discriminating and unwavering. At the same time, free from bigotry, he lived on the happiest terms with the members of other Christian communities, rejoiced in the peace and prosperity of every section of the universal Church, and mourned over their divisions and declensions.
His love for the Society with which he was connected was eviuced by tireless endeavours to advance its interests. Always regular in his attendance on the means of grace, he marked absentees, visited and stirred them up; while many were induced by his solicitations to attend Salem who had been entirely neglecting public worship. When special services were to be held, wherever business led him, he invited the parties he came in contact with to attend them, and was always successful with many, and often with those who had never crossed the threshold of a Methodist chapel. “Did you see Mr. -- ?" he would say to some of his old friends, “he was never in a dissenting chapel before. I imagine he never heard such a sermon as that! He will have a different opinion of our ministers now. They only want to be known, sir !" It was manifest that the interests of the Church occupied a much larger share of his solicitude than his own personal interests, and that he did what he could to promote them.
In the domestic circle he was uniformly thoughtful, affectionate and gentle. Devotedly attached to every member of his family, all shared alike in his attention and solicitude. His mode of communicating religious instruction was attractive and impressive. He read the Scrip. tures with a peculiar and striking emphasis, and prayed in the family with remarkable earnestness, unction and appropriateness. He ruled his own household with a very gentle hand. His reproofs were proportioned to the offence committed, sometimes sarcastic and cutting, generally mild, always felt, and rarely ineffectual. A blow from him was a rare phenomenon, and evidently occasioned him more pain than the party who suffered it. If he erred, it was on the side of kindness and forbearance. Given to hospitality, he received his friends with a sincere and hearty welcome; and wherever he accepted an invitation made himself quite at home. Admonished at times that it would probably be more in harmony with the wishes of some parties if he declined their invitations than if he accepted them, his reply was, “ Perhaps so; but I am resolved that when I am invited, if it suit my convenience and inclination, I will accept the invitation. If they are sincere I shall gratify them if they are not I shall gratify myself; and punish their hypocrisy.” And his keen sense and exquisite relish for the ludicrous, combined with his contempt for insincerity and penuriousness, enabled him to enjoy the carrying out of this resolution in those few instances where he suspected it was a becoming corrective.
During the winter of last year he began to be troubled with severe pain in his ankle. His medical adviser was shortly after called in and various remedies applied, all of which afforded but slight temporary relief. The pain he suffered was excruciating. Writing to his son in the early part of this year, he said, “ Last night I had two hours' ease before I went to bed, and a good night's rest after ; which is more than I have had for four months. It has been trying work to attend to business. Saturday I feel very heavy, and it unfits me for the services of Sunday. I have lost four Sunday mornings and two whole Sundays, which to me is a great sacrifice; but I hope this will not last long."
It soon became evident to his family and friends that severe pain and the want of rest were rapidly undermining and breaking down his constitution. The members of his class observed a peculiar richness in his experience; while at the last love-feast he attended his constitutional aversion to speak of himself seemed to have quite forsaken him, and his language indicated a consciousness of justification by faith, an assured hope of heaven and a fixed resolution to persevere to the end. The last times he was able to attend public service were on the 22nd of June, when his son preached the anniversary sermons of the Sabbath-school, and on the evening of the following Sabbath, that he might be present at the renewal of tickets in his class. He sat during the last public service in his old place in the singers' pew, suffering severe pain. What were his feelings on that occasion may be judged from what he stated afterwards: “I twice tried to turn round and look on old faces, but it was too much for me, my feelings would not bear it.”
Compelled by a stern, unyielding necessity, and sustained by a heaveninspired fortitude and courage, he continued, without a murmur or complaint, to drag his sinking, wasting body a weary, painful round of employment for a few days longer, when, nature worn out, he sunk on the bed of death. Just a fortnight previous to the day on which he died a physician was called in. His ominous words were, “I shall give Mr. Graham some powerful medicino; if that fail, the only hope of saving his life will be to amputate the limb, and he is so greatly reduced that I fear that operation will not save him.” He continued to sink, spoke seldom and at times incoherently. Yet when roused, his quiet humour, innocent pleasantry and cheerful serenity of soul would break out, like gleams of sunshine in the dark and cloudy day, welcome to the sad hearts of his family and friends where hope and despair trembled in the balances. Urged one day to rise and have his bed made, in making the attempt which, owing to weakness and pain, was very distressing, he looked smilingly on his friend, Mr. Tate, who was in the room, and said, “ Non-resistance and passive obedience."
Mr. Tate, whose unremitting attention to his dying friend has imposed a large debt of gratitude on the bereaved, writing to Mr. Graham's son during the last days of agonizing suspense said, “Believe me, your dear father is a pattern of patience and meek submission to the divine will. Never a sigh nor a pitiful look. A countenance the picture of content. When asked by the doctor, “How are you? Mercifully dealt with, doctor,' is the reply. There is no symptom of uneasy feelings. He is cheerful, easy, happy midst all that can annoy and distress."
The Rev. W. Hughes says, “Soon after my arrival at North Shields, I embraced an opportunity of calling upon our late departed brother Graham, having been informed of his indisposition. I found him, though attending to his worldly business, suffering greatly from a diseased leg. He gave me to understand that he had no fears in reference to futurity, and that religion afforded him never failing consolation. I, in common with his friends, fondly indulged the hope that he would shortly be restored to health, and that I should have frequent opportunities of conversing with him on subjects in which he felt most deeply interested. But, oh! how inscrutable are the ways of Providence, and how mysterious is the procedure of the Most High! for at the time his friends were indulging hopes of his recovery, the disease assumed a more serious aspect, and fears as to the result took possession of every mind. During his affliction I saw him frequently. In a few words he would express his confidence in the truth of religion and the atonement of Christ, and thus rejoice in hope of the glory of God; but he was generally unable to converse on these important topics at length, the disease of which he was the subject evidently affecting the mind. As one day succeeded another he evidently became weaker, and, to all human appearance, was hastening to the tomb, the grave of all earthly hopes, and distinctions, and grandeurs, and in a short time he left this world of noise and show for a heaven of beauty, and rest, and glory."
On the 29th of July his leg was amputated. The courage which the emergency required he summoned up; conversed with his surgeons at intervals during the operation, and calmly looked on the limb just severed from the body, till requested by Sir J. Fife to look away. It was the last effort of sinking nature to survive for the sake of those he loved, and for whom he wished to live. He did well till twelve o'clock that night, when he became feverish. At four the next morning he sunk and changed for death ; and from that hour toiled insensibly with the last enemy till eight, when he expired in the 58th year of his age, having been 37 years a member of the Methodist New Connexion.
During the closing scenes of his life, Mr. Graham enjoyed largely the consolations which he so often had administered to others. All that affection, friendship, professional skill and Christianity could do to alleviate his sorrows and smooth his dying pillow was done. As he approached the crisis, the interest and sympathy manifested by all who knew him became intense. The sensation produced by his death was deep and general. “Devout men followed him to the tomb and made great lamentation over him." The proverb was verified in him, “A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one's birth.”
His death was improved in Salem Chapel, on Sabbath evening, Aug. 24th, 1851, by the Rev. W. Hughes, who delivered an able and impressive discourse on Revelations vii. 9, 10, to a crowded congregation. “Mark the perfect man and behold the upright, for the end of that man is peace."
A YOUNG WOMAN.-A young wo- that profaned Sabbath she became man was devoted to the world. The ill, and soon sunk into a state of love of dress reigned in her breast. insensibility. Thus she continued Dress was her idol. The time for a till Friday, the day of her anticipated fair was approaching, and she had a pleasure ; but on that day, about new garment in which she designed three o'clock, she expired, at the very to attend its scenes of dissipation. time when she would probably have Part of several preceding Sabbaths been in the fair, had not disease and had been employed in preparing some death disappointed her expectations. of her apparel, as she usually left Some time before she died the hair this work for that sacred day. On was shaved from her head; and she Saturday evening before the fair she was then sufficiently sensible to say, was not quite well; the next morn. “Not my hair, not my hair; I am ing, however, she attended to some tormented in my soul!" worldly business. In the evening of