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life-giving power of faith, and did not respect this con-
version so much as he ought, because it was something
entirely new to him. Besides, he had previously known
of young Mander, only as much as the latter had chosen
to show of himself, and thus he knew not that the
gradual operations of the Spirit of God, which turns the
hearts of men like streams of water, had long since pre-
pared the dry ground for the seed. Even Oswald had
not understood this preparation, and had seen in it only
an impulse of childish weakness, which he thought it
his duty to combat, and which he tried carefully to con-
ceal, that he might not lose the name of a strong-
minded man. And what witness could there be of the
fearful torment of purification in that hour when every
wave was a messenger which repeated the same sen-
tence, "It is appointed unto men once to die, and after
that the judgment." ' Who could testify of the severe
conflict afterward, until the morning star rose in his
  In his later years, Oswald had many sad proofs that
he had trusted too much to himself in these first mo-
ments of enthusiasm, that the morning glow of the sun
of faith is not without succeeding clouds and storms,
that sometimes we may soar above heights, which, after-
ward, we only climb with difficulty. His fight was not
yet fought. He was still to strike into wrong paths.
But he had gained this, that his eyes were opened to
the true goal, and for this reason he was always able
to return to the right way, and his tears of repentance
were blessed by the consoling words, "There is joy in
heaven over one sinner that repenteth."
  And indeed, few gain more by their faith in the Gos-