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3. Another material point is, TO LET OUR EYE BE SINGLE IN SEEKING PRIMARILY THEIR SPIRITUAL WELFARE : an all-directing and controlling principle in education should be, to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, for our children. This should influence us as to the place in which we fix them, the company to which we introduce them, the books we wish them to read, the situation we desire for them, and, in short, as to everything we do concerning them.
4. THE DILIGENT AND RIGHT USE OF THE MEANS OF GRACE is a most important help for children-such as daily reading the scriptures, prayer, habits of self-examination, and regular attendance on public worship. But besides all these means, the most important, perhaps, is that constant inculcation of Divine truth to which we are so plainly directed in the Scriptures : “ These words which I command thee this day shall be in thine heart; and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and thou shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up: and thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thine house and on thy gates” (Deut. vi. 6-9). Particular instruction of the children by themselves, and a mother's private and individual conversation with them, are also of great moment.
5. DISCIPLINE is a matter of constant necessity. A welldisciplined Christian child is the best gift which a parent can bestow on his country; whilst children left to themselves, and with no settled habits of patient and steady application, are likely to be sources of much trouble to their fellow-creatures. Discipline will seek constantly to restrain, check, and subdue all that is wrong, or leading to wrong, and to animate and encourage all that is right. Every day brings fresh occasion for its exercise, with regard to appetite, pleasures, temper, coveting the things of others, neglecting duties, disorderly practices, and, indeed, all the varied events of life.
6. PUNISHMENT must not be withheld, but must be varied according to the degree of fault. It is important also that the scale by which we measure the degrees of wrong should be scriptural. Sin directly against God, and moral faults, such as falsehood, passion, and taking anything that does not belong to them, call for the severest punishment, and should never be passed by without chastisement : while accidents from carelessness, though they may occasion us a serious injury, yet should be visited with a lighter penalty, as not being intentional faults.
7. FOSTER AND ENCOURAGE, BY WISE AND CHRISTIAN APPROBATION, everything that is lovely and excellent. Much may be done in forming the character, by due attention to this : all truth, openness, generosity, self-denial, and love to others-all diligence and application in good pursuits should have the parental smile of
favour; as all those things which are opposite to these should be discouraged by marks of disapprobation.
8. EARNESTLY WATCH AGAINST SEEKING GREAT THINGS FOR YOUR CHILDREN. Oh! the inexpressible folly of aiming to gain for them high connexions, in classes of society above them; and for this end placing them in situations of danger, that they may form associations with their superiors! What havoc has this made among the children of pious parents! Mind not high things, should be our plain rule. Seekest thou great things for thyself ? seek them not. God give us grace to attend to these clear directions of His word! If we trust Him, His providence will call our children to those scenes in which they may safely and honourably serve others, and glorify His name; and we shall be preserved from the anguish of seeing them bring reproach on the gospel of Christ.
9. The last thing that I would notice is OUR OWN CONSISTENCY OF CONDUCT, as essential to the full effect of a Christian education. If Christian parents act inconsistently with their blessed principles, -if they are irritable, selfish, proud, disorderly, passionate, and covetous, what can be expected, but similarly evil tempers in their children ? But if they are poor in spirit, meek, mourning for sin, and hungering and thirsting after righteousness, and possess and manifest the other graces of a Christian, it is an immense auxiliary to all their religious instruction. In fact, it is one just retribution of all evil ways, that our children soon manifest similar evil ways : while on the other hand, an exhibition of holy conduct enforces every pious exhortation, and strengthens every solid principle, which we endeavour to communicate to them.
A HINT TO GRUMBLERS.—One day, an old man walked into a shop and asked a tradesman if he wanted any of his wares. The shopkeeper made a purchase, and in the meantime asked how he was getting on. The old man answered, “Better since I removed.” “Oh, have you removed ?” “Yes; I used to live in Grumbling Street, and I was never well ;, but since I have lived in Praise and Thanksgiving Street l' have got on a great deal better." He added, “Grumbling Street is a very unhealthy atmosphere, while Praise and Thanksgiving Street is altogether different.” We say to all who live in Grumbling Street, remove as quickly as possible; for, as this old man said, “No one is healthy in it ;” and get into Praise and Thanksgiving Street. Then, if you can appreciate the change, you can recommend it to others ; in other words, give up grumbling, and count your mercies, and say with the Psalmist, “BLESS THE LORD, O MY SOUL, AND FORGET NOT HIS BENEFITS.”
Once the mother sat beside it
When the day was growing dim,
Soft and low, a cradle-hymn.
When the evening shadows creep,
In the pillows white and soft;
Folded there in dreams so oft;
Eyes we praised for purest ray,-
They have hid you all away.
We will put it out of sight,
For the little one to-night.
In the better fold above,
Resteth now in Jesus' love.
DESPAIR OF NONE. MONG the many interesting cases which Mrs. Vicars, of Brighton, has met in her devoted labours of love among the lost," one is especially worthy of being recorded, as illustrating the power of the Word of God, and as teaching us to despair of none. One morning Mrs. Vicars received an anonymous letter from a district visitor, giving her the address of
a woman whom the letter stated to be one of the worst characters in Brighton, and a great corrupter of others; so bad, indeed, that no respectable person had thought of entering her house for many a long year. But as the writer had been told that Mrs. Vicars did not shrink from visiting the vilest, would she go and see her? adding, that could any impression be made on her, it might be the means of saving scores. That same day saw Mrs. Vicars on her way to the house named in the letter. The door was opened by the very woman, and Mrs. Vicars at once boldly stated the errand on which she had come. “I have no time to hear about such things,” the woman answered roughly. “Religion is all very well for you gentlefolk, but poor folk can't afford it; one must live."
“ And we must die,” Mrs. Vicars said solemnly.
“Well, that's true, and I know all about that,” said the woman, with an odd boastfulness. “I am not so ignorant as some; I
warn't always like what you see me now. Why, up there," she added, pointing to a top shelf, “I have got a beautiful large Bible I bought with my own money-years ago it is now.” “A beautiful large Bible !” exclaimed Mrs. Vicars.
- How I should like to see it! Do you think you could get it down for
Well, ma'am, I'll try; but I'm afraid it will nigh smother you with dust; for it is right on the top shelf, where I can't get at it with a duster."
So, with the combined help of a table and a chair, she managed to get the Bible down. Alas! the dust stood so thick on it, that, in Whitefield's strong words, she would have no difficulty in writing
damnation with her own finger on the whitened cover. wiping it carefully with the corner of her apron, she laid it triumphantly down on the table before Mrs. Vicars.
“Well, that is a beauty !” exclaimed Mrs. Vicars; “and what a beautiful print too! Can you read it?”
“ Read it! I should think I can, indeed ; at least I can when I have got my glasses; but unluckily I happened of an accident with one of them.
"Can you find them? for if you will give them to me, I will get them mended for you.”
“Well, I can't say as how I know exactly where they are ; but I think I can lay my hand on them somewhere,” she said, proceeding to rummage in several drawers. Mrs. Vicars joined in the hunt; and during the search for the glasses the ice seemed to melt, and they got quite friendly.
"Here they are !” exclaimed Mrs. A., producing them at last from among a heap of odds and ends.
“And a capital pair of glasses too,” rejoined Mrs. Vicars : "this one is cracked; we must have a new glass for that eye; but the other is all right; just try it,” she added, opening the Bible. So, putting the odd glass to her right eye, the woman read a few words.
“ You do read well! why, you are quite a scholar ;' and so Mrs. Vicars kept on turning the pages, and getting her to read one verse after another, till she found the passage she wanted.
“There is nothing amiss with that glass, is there? Read this."
And the woman read, “ Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord : though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.”
Slowly she read the solemn words, through the one old spectacleglass; but, as she read, Mrs. Vicars felt one great warm drop after another falling upon her hand, which rested on the open Bible.
“Come, let us reason together :' your Father loves you; He is knocking at the door of your heart now. Come,' He says, 'let