A portion of a letter by Benjamin Morgan Palmer, to a friend from his childhood, Sallie Baxter (now Bird), written July 8, 1870. Both of them had experienced much grief with the loss of loved ones in death.
My bereavements have not been comparable with yours; still they were and are keenly felt. But I am continually surprised to find how I am able to gather all these tender and tearful memories about me, in the consciousness that in the bosom of them all I am more deeply, yet more serenely, happy that I even was before.
It seems a violent contradiction. But there is happiness in submission to God’s blessed will—in the subdued tone which grief lends to the character. There is a sanctifying virtue in sorrow, which brings us into closer sympathy with out transfigured ones who are with the Lord. It seems as though the rest into which they have entered had thrown a soft shadow upon our own life, tranquilizing those cares which formerly chafed us…
The Life and Letters of Benjamin Morgan Palmer, by Thomas Cary Johnson, Banner of Truth, p. 404.