Imatges de pàgina

subordination of the wife, the authority of the parent and the obedience of the child.

“O, not the smile of other lands,

Though far and wide our feet may roam,
Can e'er untie the genial bands

That knit our hearts to home !”

The mother is the angel-spirit of home. Her tender yearnings over the cradle of her infant babe, her guardian care of the child and youth, and her bosom companionship with the man of her love and choice, make her the personal center of the interests, the hopes and the happiness of the family. Her love glows in her sympathies and reigns in all her thoughts and deeds. It never cools, never tires, never dreads, never sleeps, but ever glows and burns with increasing ardor, and with sweet and holy incense upon the altar of home-devotion. And even when she is gone to her last rest, the sainted mother in heaven sways a mightier influence over her wayward husband or child, than when she was present. Her departed spirit still hovers over his affections, overshadows his path, and draws him by unseen cords to herself in heaven.

Our nature demands home. It is the first essential element of our social being. The whole social system rests upon it: body, mind and spirit are concerned in it. These cannot be complete out of the home-relations; there would be no proper equilibrium of life and character

without the home feeling and influence. The heart, when bereaved and disappointed, naturally turns for refuge to home-life and sympathy. No spot is so attractive to the weary one; it is the heart's moral oasis; there is a mother's watchful love, and a father's sustaining influence; there is husband's protection, and a wife's tender sympathy; there is the circle of loving brothers and sisters,-happy in each other's love. Oh, what is life without these? A desolation !—a painful, glooming pilgrimage through "desert heaths and barren sands." But home gives to life its fertilizing dews, its budding hopes, and its blossoming joys. When far away in distant lands or upon the ocean's heaving breast, we pine away and become "home-sick;" no voice there like a mother's; no sympathy there like a wife's; no loved one there like a child; no resting place there like home; and we cry out, "Home! sweet, sweet home!"

Thus our nature instinctively longs for the deep love and the true hearts of home. It has for our life more satisfaction than all the honors, and the riches and the luxuries of the world. We soon grow sick of these, and become sick for home, however humble it may be. Its endearments are ever fresh, as if in the bursting joys of their first experience. They remain unforgotten in our memories and imperishable in our hearts. When friends become cold, society heartless, and adversity frowns darkly and heavily upon us, oh, it is then that we turn with fond as

surance to home, where loved ones will weep as well as rejoice with us.

“Oh, the blessing of a home, where old and young mix kindly,

The young unawed, the old unchilled, in unreserved communion!

Oh that refuge from the world, when a stricken son or


May seek with confidence of love, a father's hearth and


Come unto me, my son, if men rebuke and mock thee, There always shall be one to bless,-for I am on thy side !”



"A HOLY home,

Where those who sought the footprints of the Lord,
Along the paths of pain, and care, and gloom,
Shall find the rest of heaven a rich reward,”

WHAT is the Christian home? Only in the sphere of christianity does the true idea of home become fully developed. Home with the savage is but a herding, a servitude. Even among many of the Jews it was little better

than a Mahommedan seraglio. The most eminent of the heathen world degrade the family by making it the scene of lust, and introducing concubinage and polygamy. Plato, one of the most enlightened of the heathen, had base conceptions of home, and abused its highest and holiest prerogatives by his ideas of polygamy. We find too that in the ethics of Aristotle, the most lovely and sacred attributes of the family are totally discarded. The home which he holds up to view is unadorned with chastity and virtue. And Sophocles follows in the same path, stripping home of all that is sacred and essential to its true constitution. And when we come down to the present age, and view this divine institute in the light of Mormonism and Socialism, who will say that here we have unfolded its true idea and sacred character?

How different is the true Christian home! Here the marriage union is preserved “honorable," held sacred, and woman is raised to her true position. In the sphere of the Christian church, home is brought fairly and completely into view. Here it rises above the measure of natural affection and temporal interest. It en, ters the sphere of supernatural faith, and be. comes the adumbration of our home in heaven.

The Christian home is a true type of the church. "The husband is the head of the wife, as Christ is of the church." The love of the family is self-denying and holy, like that between Christ and His church. The children

are "the heritage of the Lord;" the parents are His stewards. Like the church, the Christian home has its ministry. Yea, the church is in the home, as the mother is in her child. We cannot separate them; they are correlatives. The one demands the other. The Christian home can have existence only in the sphere of the church. It is the vestibule of the church, bound to her by the bonds of Christian marriage, of holy baptism, and of the communion of saints, leading to her in the course of moral development, and completing her life only in the church-consciousness.

Home is, therefore, a partnership of spiritual as well as of natural life. The members thereof dwell "as being heirs together of the grace of life." "Heavenly mindedness," "the hidden man of the heart," and a "hope full of immortality," are the ornaments of the Christian home. Hers is "the incorruptibility of a meek and quiet spirit;" her members are "joint heirs of salvation;" they are "one," not only in nature, but "in Christ." They enjoy a "communion in spirit," that their "joy might be full.” "What God, therefore, hath joined together, let not man put asunder.'

Such a home, being "right with God," must be "full of good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy." Here the Christian shows his real character. In the sphere of the church, the family reaches its highest excellence and its purest enjoyment. Says the learned D'Aubigne,

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