Isobel Miller gave up God for worldly pursuits. But as graduation approached and her engagement was broken, she questioned that decision. He reached out to her, ending years of searching, and building her up for decades of fruitful missionary service with her husband, John Kuhn, in China. What would you like to know about this product? Please enter your name, your email and your question regarding the product in the fields below, and we'll answer you in the next hours. You can unsubscribe at any time.
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This ebook is made available at no cost and with very few restrictions. These restrictions apply only if 1 you make a change in the ebook other than alteration for different display devices , or 2 you are making commercial use of the ebook.
If either of these conditions applies, please check gutenberg. This work is in the Canadian public domain, but may be under copyright in some countries. If you live outside Canada, check your country's copyright laws. If the book is under copyright in your country, do not download or redistribute this file. Ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. Jesus said unto him, I am the way , the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God. Sedgewick paused in his lecture as if a second thought had occurred. With a twinkle in his eye, he said, "Well, maybe I had better test it out, before being so dogmatic. Who believes that the story of Genesis is true? Please raise your hand. Up went my hand as bravely as I could muster courage. I also looked around to see if I had a comrade in my stand.
Only one other hand was up, in all that big group of perhaps a hundred students. Sedgewick smiled, then, as if sympathetic with our embarrassment, he conceded: "Oh, you just believe that because your papa and mama told you so.
Brought up in an earnest Presbyterian home my grandfather was a Presbyterian minister and my father an ardent lay preacher I had been carefully coached in the refutations of modernism before my parents had allowed me to enter the university.
If it had been a case of arguing the claims of modernism versus fundamentalism, I do not think I would have been shattered in my faith.
But there was no argument. There was just the pitying sneer, "Oh, you just believe that because your papa and your mama told you so," and then the confident assumption that no persons nowadays who thought for themselves, who were scientific in their approach to life, believed that old story any more. On the way home from class I faced the charge honestly.
Why did I believe the Bible? The Genesis explanation of life's origin? Why did I believe in Heaven and Hell? It was because I had been taught it by my parents and church from the hour I could understand anything. Was that reason enough for accepting it? No, I agreed with Dr. Sedgewick that it was not a sufficient basis to build my life upon. We had experienced remarkable answers to prayer in our family life—didn't that prove the existence of God?
But my psychology course taught that mind had a powerful effect over matter. If I had not been so gullible, maybe I could have seen a natural explanation. Our twentieth century believed only when there was a test and a proof. We were scientific in our investigations; we did not swallow the superstitions of our ancestors just because they were handed to us. Sedgewick, Professor of the English Department in our university, was an ardent follower of Matthew Arnold's "sweetness and light" philosophy, and of Thomas Hardy's materialism.
Yet he was so apparently patient and kind toward us whom he felt were still bound by our parents' old-fashioned thinking that he won our affection and respect. At the end of my walk home, I came to the conclusion that I would henceforth accept no theories of life which I had not proved personally.
And, quite ignorant of where that attitude would lead me, I had unconsciously stepped off the High Way where man walks with his face lifted Godward and the pure, piney scents of the Heights call him upward, on to The Misty Flats. The in-between level place of easy-going—nothing very good attempted, yet nothing bad either—where men walk in the mist, telling each other that no one can see these things clearly.
The Misty Flats where the in-betweeners drift to and fro—life has no end but amusement and no purpose—where the herd drift with the strongest pull and there is no reason for opposing anything. Therefore they had a kind of peace and a mutual link which they call tolerance. I did not know that I had stepped down to The Misty Flats.
I was just conscious of a sudden pleasant freedom from old duties. If there was no God, why bother to go to church on Sunday, for instance? Why not use Sunday to catch up on sleep, so that one could dance half the night away several times during the week? Again, if the Bible was but a record of myths and old-fashioned ideas, why read it every morning?
That took time and it was much easier to sleep until the very last moment, getting up just in time for the first class at college. Prayer, too, became silly—talking to someone who maybe did not exist. I would not call myself an atheist because, well, there were those childhood answers to prayer still to be accounted for. But I called myself an agnostic—I frankly did not know if there was a God or not.
It was a popular thing to be on The Misty Flats: you had plenty of company. And one was respected as being modern and intelligent to question the old faiths. Life drifted along so pleasantly— for a while.
My home training still had an effect upon me. Jesus Christ, now seen blurred in the mists which denied His Godhead, is an acknowledged historical character. And His name was still an ointment poured forth to me.
He was like a perfume which haunts and calls so that one stops, lifts one's head and drinks it in wistfully. His name was the sweetest melody I knew and it never failed to stir my heart, even though I had ceased to seek Him. His purity and holiness made me hate besmirching things. So when I broke with the old religious habits and frankly went into the world, I was still choosey in what I did. I never smoked. The tainted breath and stained fingers or teeth of the smoker revolted me.
I told myself I was too dainty for such doings. Neither did I drink. My father, brokenhearted at my callous turning-of-the-back on all my home training, still warned me as a medical man what drink could do to a girl.
Hall and I have such come to us for consultation all the time. They never meant to, but there they are.
Keep away from liquor and you can keep yourself pure, perhaps. Also I had signed the pledge when twelve years old, and a certain whimsical loyalty to my childhood self kept me from breaking it. So amidst the gay group at the university I was considered a good girl , and even a Christian!
But I myself knew that I wasn't. In my studies I took the honors course in English Language and Literature which brought me much under the influence of Dr.
But in my extracurricular activities I was mostly interested in the Players Club, the amateur theatrical club of the university. Apparently I had a gift for acting comedy parts, and in my freshman year I won life-membership in the Players Club, not usually attained by a first-year student.
The staff patron of our theatricals was Professor H. Wood, also a member of the English Faculty. He was a believer in God and Christ, and not an atheist like Dr.
Sedgewick, and his friendship helped to keep me from extremes. But the theater was his hobby and soon became mine. Urgently my mother pleaded with me to attend the Young Women's Christian Association.
I went several times, but was frankly bored, so dropped it. I loved the theater and I liked to dance and these activities occupied my spare time. In fact, our Varsity yearbook has, as comment opposite my picture: "And oh the tilt of her heels when she dances!
In my second year I was elected to be Secretary of the Student Council, at that time the highest position to which a woman student could be elected. I met the leading young people of the university and became secretly engaged to Ben, one of the star Rugby and basketball players. Ben was a returned soldier from World War I, several years older than I, not handsome, but six feet two or three in height.
He came of a good Baptist family and my mother encouraged our friendship. He even took me to his church on Sunday nights!
It made a nice inexpensive date, for Ben did not have much money and when he asked me to marry him he said that our engagement must be kept secret lest his "old man" be angry with him for getting involved before he graduated.
I insisted that my parents be told, but his never were. We went together for nearly two years, and my path was perceptibly downgrade. Wherefore their way shall be unto them as slippery ways in the darkness: they shall be driven on, and fall therein: for I will bring evil upon them, even the year of their visitation, saith the Lord.
After the stretched muscles of climbing, to find oneself on the level is very relaxing and pleasant. Therefore The Misty Flats are attractive to foot, eye, and palate at the beginning. There is no hint that the pretty mist will gradually close in and bring darkness. There is no suggestion amid the gay chatter of the populous throng that there are slippery places, which are going to bring hurt. In the boasted freedom of drifting whither you will, there is certainly no sign that one is being driven on , as Jeremiah so shrewdly perceived was the reality.
And above all, there is never a hint that the end of The Flats is the visitation of the Lord and the judgment of sin. Yet all that is the real truth.
By searching / Isobel Kuhn.
This ebook is made available at no cost and with very few restrictions. These restrictions apply only if 1 you make a change in the ebook other than alteration for different display devices , or 2 you are making commercial use of the ebook. If either of these conditions applies, please check gutenberg. This work is in the Canadian public domain, but may be under copyright in some countries.
By Searching (Isobel Kuhn)