Imatges de pàgina

RS. VINCENT.—I had that inestimable boon, a Christ-

ian mother, who has been in her grave these nineteen
years, but whose daily life illustrated the Gospel that

my minister preached to me on the Sabbath-day. I remember, when on one occasion a punishment was promised me, that my mother took me by the hand, led me to

my father, and said, “ Father, won't you forgive the boy this time for my sake?” He looked at her and then at me, and said, “My son, for your mother's sake I forgive you this time.” And then she took me by the hand into her own blessed room, where many and many a time she took her children for prayer, and she said, “ My son, it is in some such way that our Father in heaven forgives us, for the sake of Him who pleads for us." I understood the practical relation of the Lord Jesus Christ to my soul a good deal better by that simple illustration than if I had learned it as a mere definition from the Catechism.- Dr.Vincent.

MRS. BEECHER.—My mother was one of those gentle softspoken, quiet little women, who, like oil, permeate every crack and joint of life with smoothness. With a noiseless step, an almost shadowy movement, her hand and eye were everywhere. Her house was a miracle of neatness and order-her children, of all


ages and sizes under her perfect control, and the accumulations of labour of all descriptions which beset a great family where there are no servants, all melted away under her hands as if by enchantment. She had a Divine magic, too, that mother of mine ; if it be magic to commune daily with the supernatural. She had a little room all her own, where, on a stand, always stood open the great family Bible, and when work pressed hard, and children were untoward, when sickness threatened, when the skeins of life were all crossways and tangled, she went quietly to that room, and kneeling over that Bible, took hold of a warm, healing, invisible hand, that made the crooked straight, and the rough places plain.—Mrs. H. B. Stowe.

Mrs. CECIL.—Richard Cecil once broke out in the pulpit thus : As a public witness for God and His truth, I must tell you that you should never despair. No distressed woman ever hoped more against hope than the mother of your preacher. But she prayed and waited patiently. She put her trust in the Omnipotent arm. She not only prayed, but she instructed his mind, and then waited God's season. She lived long enough to hear that child preach the Gospel which he had once despised. And she said, 'Lord, now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace.

EARLY EDUCATION. HE most philosophic of poets has said, “The child is father to the man; » and whenever we reflect that whatever of good or ill we see in the active world around us, was formed in the cradles and nurseries of a generation ago, we can scarcely exaggerate the im

portance of a little child. In him is folded up, as it were, the hope of the future; like a tiny acorn which incloses the pride of the future forest. And the child, the incipient man, is in our hands; the opening intellect, the budding feelings, the dawning conscience, are committed to our care; that immortal being, with all his vast relations, will largely be just what we make him. We hold in our hand the seal on which the soft, ductile, impressible wax of infant character is to be moulded.

Educated our children must be; whether we will or not, whether we think of it or not, we are educating them every day. Perhaps they are not sent to school,—still they are being educated. They may not yet know a letter of the alphabet,-still their education is making swift progress. By our speech and by our silence, by our looks, by the tones of our voice, by our habits and peculiarities, by our conversation with each other, by our companions, by every incident which our little ones witness, they are swiftly and surely educated,—that is, moulded, formed, trained to what they will be hereafter.

How important, therefore, it is to have right principles of education! that the training of our children may not be a desultory and uncertain process, depending on ever-varying influences, and liable to constant change and contradiction, but resembling the work of a skilful architect, who lays no stone without an object, and in whose hands the fabric hourly grows, according to a well chosen and predetermined plan, into a stately and useful edifice.

But here human wisdom is insufficient. The Christian parent at least feels, with intense anxiety, the solemnity of the task which he cannot evade, and desires heavenly aid in the momentous work. And is it not given? The writer believes it is; not grudgingly, not feebly, not uncertainly, but clearly, fully, and abundantly, at sundry times and in divers manners, in forms suited to various intelligences and capacities, by precept, by doctrine, by example, by beacon, has God directed His people to train up a child in the way he should go.Emily Gosse.


H! for the peace which floweth as a river,

Making life's desert places bloom and smile!
Oh, for the faith to grasp heaven's bright" for ever."

Amid the shadows of this little while" !
“A little while" for patient vigil-keeping,

To face the storm, to wrestle with the strong; " A little while" to sow the seed with weeping,

Then bind the sheaves, and sing the harvest song.
“ A little while" to wear the robe of sadness,

And toil with weary steps through miry ways;
Then to pour forth the fragrant oil of gladness,

And clasp the girdle round the robe of praise.
“A little while,” midst shadow and illusion,

To strive, by faith, love's mysteries to spell ;
Then read each dark enigma's bright solution,

And hail sight's verdict, “ He doth all things well.”
“ A little while” the earthen pitcher taking

To way-side brooks, from far-off fountains fed
Then the cool lip its thirst for ever slaking,

Beside the fulness of the fountain-head.
“ A little while” to keep the oil from failing,

“ A little while" faith's flickering lamp to trim
And then the Bridegroom's coming footsteps hailing,

To haste to meet Him with the bridal hymn.
Thus He who is Himself the gift and giver,

The future glory, and the present smile,
With the bright shadow of the glad “ for ever,”

Can light the promise of the little while.”


THE DUSTY BIBLE. WORTHY Christian mother was left a widow, in the city of Oxford, with only one son. She laboured hard to support him and herself; and at last got him apprenticed to a carpenter. He learned his

trade; and having passed through his apprenticeship, was able, as a journeyman, to gain bread for himself and his mother. She had diligently sought first the

kingdom of God and His righteousness, both for herself and for her son ; and God had, according to His promise, added the necessary things of this life : but it did not seem to be His pleasure to add also the things of the life to come for her boy. He grew up a civil lad, but very much like other lads in the world. There was nothing to comfort the widowed mother with the hope that “old things had passed away, and all things had become new,” in his heart. While he was a boy he did as he was bid; he read the chapter in the Bible every evening, as he was told; he learned the Sunday-school lessons by portions every day (except now and then—when, for his neglect, he was sent to bed without his supper); he got a prize at school for saying most verses by rote; and he occasionally brought home some goodconduct tickets. But to the anxious and observing attention of the mother, there were no marks of spiritual life. The mother sighed and prayed; and from time to time went into her chamber, and wept, and prayed again ; and she did all that her heart could suggest to draw her dear boy to the love of Christ. Yet still there were no signs of life, such as she longed for.

But now he was quite a man--at least he thought himself so; and the short step which was wanting in his years to bring him to manhood, only made him put on more pretensions to manly independence. He could not see any harm in doing as other young men did : a game of cricket on Sunday afternoon; what harm could there be in that? To be sure mother disapproved of it, and mother was a very good woman; but she could not expect him to be as good as she was. So he went cricketing of a Sunday, at first in the afternoon, and afterwards all day—at first slipping out of the house unseen by his mother, or staying till she was gone to church; at last boldly, with the bat and stumps in his hand before her face; ay, and in spite of the tears that silently trickled down her face.

Andrew's mother made many attempts to awaken her son from his dreams of worldly pleasure and forgetfulness of God. At first they were received by him kindly,—then coldly,—then angrily; and at last the subject was so painful that it was seldom alluded to; and it seemed, as far as Andrew was concerned, to be forgotten.

The mother determined to make one more appeal to his heart. She chose his birthday when he came to the age of twenty-one. She had deprived herself of many little comforts, and had laid by a small sum, with which she bought a very nice well-bound convenient Bible; and on the morning of the day he came of age, when she got his breakfast, before he went to his work, she blessed him, and poured out all the fondness of an affectionate mother's heart, while she made him a present of this Bible. After tenderly warning him of his spiritual danger, she earnestly begged of him one special favour; which was, that he would promise her to read a portion of that holy book, if it were ever so little, once in the course of each day. She pressed this upon him, the special desire of his only parent.

Andrew received her present very kindly—thanked her with some warmth-assured her of his affection and gratitude—said he would certainly behave better than he had done for the future; and at last, upon her repeated request, he made the promise she desired him. The mother had not done all this without prayer; and she retired to her room, and spread her case before the throne of grace, with earnest petitions that, for Christ's sake, God would bless this last attempt to bring him under the power of the Holy Spirit.

The mother felt that it would be wise to leave the matter where she had placed it; and that it might be a snare to him if she troubled him with questions as to whether he performed the promise : but it was the one object of her heart, and she could not rest without some means of finding out whether he read the Bible every day. She lived with her son in a small tenement, which consisted of a kitchen and a wash-house below, and two decent bedrooms above. When she went into his bedroom, she found that he had laid the Bible upon the little mantel-piece which was opposite the door; and finding day after day, when she went to arrange his room, that it remained in the same place, she bethought her of a means by which she might know whether it was ever used. She was a cleanly tidy person, and known amongst her neighbours for the neatness of her house. It was her custom very frequently to sweep the bedrooms, and she determined always ta leave the Bible on the mantel-shelf, without letting her duster or brush come near. In consequence of this, her very diligence in cleansing every other part of the room, made the more dust to fali upon this neglected shelf; and she was thereby enabled to see if, at any time, the Bible had been removed from its place.

Week after week passed, and month after month. When she went each morning into her son's room, as her anxious eye fell upon the Bible, she too plainly saw that no finger had been laid

Her heart sickened, but she lifted it up to the throne of grace,-“Merciful Father, for Christ's sake, give the Holy Spirit to turn the heart of my child, that he perish not with the world

upon it.

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