from The Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan:
I saw, then, that they went on their way to a pleasant river; which David the king called "the river of God", but John, "the river of the water of life". Ps. 65:9, Rev. 22, Ezek. 47
Now their way lay just upon the bank of the river; here, therefore, Christian and his companion walked with great delight; they drank also of the water of the river, which was pleasant, and enlivening to their weary spirits. Besides, on the banks of this river, on either side, were green trees, that bore all manner of fruit;
and the leaves of the trees were good for medicine;
with the fruit of these trees they were also much delighted;
and the leaves they eat to prevent surfeits, and other diseases that are incident to those that heat their blood by travels. On either side of the river was also a meadow, curiously beautified with lilies, and it was green
all the year long. In this meadow they lay down, and slept;
for here they might lie down safely. When they awoke,
they gathered again of the fruit of the trees, and drank again of the water of the river, and then lay down again to sleep.Ps. 23:2, Isa. 14:30 Thus they did several days and nights. Then they sang--
Behold ye how these crystal streams do glide,
To comfort pilgrims by the highway side;
The meadows green, beside their fragrant smell,
Yield dainties for them; and he that can tell
What pleasant fruit, yea, leaves, these trees do yield,
Will soon sell all, that he may buy this field.
So when they were disposed to go on, (for they were not, as yet, at their journey's end,) they ate and drank, and departed.
Now, I beheld in my dream, that they had not journeyed far, but the river and the way for a time parted; at which they were not a little sorry; yet they durst not go out of the way. Now the way from the river was rough, and their feet tender, by reason of their travels; so the souls of the pilgrims were much discouraged because of the way. Num. 21:4 Wherefore, still as they went on, they wished for better way. Now, a little before them, there was on the left hand of the road a meadow, and a stile to go over into it; and that meadow is called
By-path Meadow. Then said Christian to his fellow, If this meadow lieth along by our wayside, let us go over into it. Then he went to the stile to see, and behold, a path lay along by the way, on the other side of the fence. It is according to my wish, said Christian. Here is the easiest going; come, good Hopeful, and let us go over.
HOPE. But how if this path should lead us out of the way?
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