Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

a state of independence. Idleness and sloth will place you in a state of dependence and servitude, and make you contemptible. Improve your mind in all useful knowledge. Never put off till to-morrow what ought to be done to-day: an afternoon man is always behind his business.

Be constant in your attendance upon public worship on the sabbath-day. In my opinion, it is wisely calculated for the happiness of the community for people to assemble once a week, to as

Deal uprightly with all mankind. Avoid bad company. Shun the gambler, the drunkard, the profane, and the idler, as you would a pestilence; they are the pests of society. It is an old saying, that a man is known by the company he keeps. Avoid putting it in the power of any one to wrong you; if you do, you may find villains in those you least suspect. Be cautious how you are bound for any person whatever, (at least without an ample security): as you come upon the stage of action you will have frequent appli-sociate together, and hear the moral cations; but never listen to them, for the moment you set your hand to an obligation you have brought yourself into difficulty. Be careful how you contract debts, and be punctual in the payment of all just dues. When a man loses his credit, it is all over with him as to his trade. Never be guilty of any dishonourable or mean dealing; deal uprightly with all. Be industrious, be prudent, and it will not fail to procure you a good livelihood. Remember that time is money, if well improved; if not, it is no more than a blank. God deals to us but one moment at a time, and when that is given the other moment has passed, and the future we know not of. Therefore, be diligent, and improve to the best of purposes the moments as they fly. Reflect that you were not sent into the world merely for yourselves, but to do all the good that lies in your power for your fellow-creatures, and to be useful members of society, that you may be in favour both with God and man.

Relieve the poor and distressed, wherever you may find them, according to your ability. A close application to business, with prudence and economy, will insure you an ample reward,

duties of life inculcated; it has a tendency to humanize the mind, reform the morals, and refine the manners of the people. The abolition of social public worship would have a tendency to throw society back to its primitive state, and they would lose sight of morality, and their manners become rude. Above all things, avoid a bigoted, persecuting spirit and temper of mind. Think freely for yourselves, and think and judge rationally, according to the nature, fitness, and reasonableness of things.

I have advanced for your consideration some of the most important rules of practical life, and shall now close, hoping, and earnestly praying to God to bless each of you, and enable you to improve all the talents committed to you to the best of purposes, that you may meet a reward for a virtuous life here, and finally be received into the mansions of everlasting bliss.

Remember, my children, that I have perambulated the path of life before you; and have learned the intricacies, and seen the thorns and the briers, as well as the pleasant flowers and the allurements, with which it is hedged about; and my advice comes from ob

servation and experience, and is the product of the purest love.

From your affectionate father,

DAVID HENSHAW.

Leicester, Jan. 27, 1797.

The foregoing extracts are taken from a manuscript paper found inclosed in an envelope that contained the will of the late David Henshaw, Esq. It was not written for the public eye.

The Fragment Basket.

POWER OF GENTLENESS. WHOEVER understands his own interests, and is pleased with the beautiful rather than the deformed, will be careful to cherish the virtue of gentleness. It requires but a slight knowledge of human nature to convince us, that much of our happiness in life must depend upon the cultivation of this virtue. Gentleness will assist its possessor in all his lawful undertakings; it will often render him successful when nothing else could; it is exceedingly lovely and attractive in its appearance; it wins the hearts of all; it is even stronger than argument, and often prevails when that would be powerless and ineffectual; it shows that a man can put a bridle upon his passions; that he is above the ignoble vulgar, whose characteristic is to storm and rage like the troubled ocean, at every little adversity and disappointment that crosses their path; it shows that he can soar away in the bright atmosphere of good feeling, and live in a continual sunshine, when all around him are like maniacs, the sport of their own passions.

REMORSE.

CHARLES IX., of France, was the perpetrator of the St. Bartholomew Massacre. Historians have attempted to relieve him of the dreadful responsibility of this bloody crime, by attributing its origin to his infamous mother, and the Popish ecclesiastics that surrounded her, and by representing him as unwillingly consenting to the deed. Under whatever influence he acted, it was by his orders that the massacre was perpetrated; and he even personally assisted, by firing from his palace windows upon the flying Huguenots.

Oh, my

The dreadful apparition of that wholesale murder ever afterwards haunted his imagination; and his agony of mind caused the blood to burst from his pores, and bathe his body with its crimson streams. According to Pierre d'L'Etoile, he earnestly besought his physicians to afford him relief; "for," he said, "I am cruelly and horribly tormented." They replied, that they had exhausted their art, and "that God was the only sovereign physician in such a complaint." His nurse, to whom he was much attached, and who was a Huguenot, hearing him sighing, weeping, and bitterly groaning, approached his bed; when, bewailing his sad condition, he exclaimed, “Ah! my dear nurse, my beloved woman, what blood! what murders! Ah! I have followed wicked advice! God! pardon me, and be merciful! I know not where I am, they have made me so perplexed and agitated. How will all this end? What shall I do? I am lost for ever! I know it!" Such was the end of a persecutor. ZEAL, THE WORLD'S DERISION. DOGS seldom bark at a man that ambles a fair, softly pace; but if he once sets spurs to his horse and falls a galloping (though his errand be of importauce, and to the Court, perhaps,), then they bark and fly at him. And thus they do at the moon, not so much for that she shines, for that they always see, but because, by reason of the clouds hurried under by the winds, she seems to run faster than ordinary. And thus if a man do but pluck up his spirits in God's service, and run the way of his commandments, it is Jehu's furious march presently; and he shall meet many a scoff by the way, that

runneth with more speed than ordinary.-Dr. Staughton.

GOOD GOVERNMENT. THERE was a law among the Persians, that when their governor was dead there should be a lawlessness for five days after, that every man should do what he list. Now for those five days there was such killing and robbing, and destroying one another, that by the time the five days were over they were glad of government again. So that any kind of government is better than no government. But happy is that people that live under a good government, where justice flows from the Supreme, as head, and is conveyed by subordinate ministers unto the people. -Anthony Burges' Sermon before the Lord Mayor of London, 1646.

RICHES, WITHOUT CONTENT,

ARE NO GAIN.

A MAN diseased in body can have little joy of his wealth, be it never so much. A golden crown cannot cure the headache, nor a velvet slipper give ease of the gout, nor a purple robe fray away a burning fever. A sick man is alike sick, wheresoever you lay him; on a bed of gold, or on a pad of straw; with a silk quilt, or a sorry rag on him. So no more can riches, gold and silver, land and livings, had a man much more than ever any man had, minister unto him much joy: yea, or any true or sound joy at all, where the mind is distract and discontent. Without contentment there is no joy of aught: there is no profit, no pleasure in anything.-Gataker.

PROCRASTINATION.

THE chariot wheels, when they run, the second runs near the first all the day long, but never overtakes it. In a clock, the second minute follows the first, but never reacheth it. So it is with procrastinaters in religion; such as defer the time of repentance, as the doing of it by-and-by, and to-morrow and to-morrow. Now these little distances deceive us and delude us. We think to do it in a short time; and by reason of the nearness and vicinity of the time, we think we shall do it easily, that we can take hold of that time.

[blocks in formation]

GOD'S PEOPLE KNOWN TO HIM. TAMAR may disguise herself, and walk in an uuaccustomed path, so as Judah may not know her. Isaac, through the dimness of his sight, may bless Jacob, and pass Esau. Tract of time may make Joseph to forget or be forgotten of his brethren. Solomon may doubt. to whom of right the child belongeth; and Christ may come to his own, and not be received. But the Lord knoweth who are his, and his eye is always over them. Time, place, speech, or apparel, cannot obscure or darken his eye or ear. He can discern Daniel in the den -Job, though never so much changed, on the dunghill;-let Jonah be lodged in the whale's belly, Peter be put into a close prison, Lazarus be wrapped in rags, or Abel rolled in blood; yet can he call them by name, and send his angels to comfort them. Ignorance and forgetfulness may cause love and knowledge to be estranged in the creature, but the Lord is not incident to either; for his eye, as his essence, is everywhere; he knoweth all things.

John Barlow, 1616.

SATAN'S PRISONERS. MARK the gaolers. They often suffer their prisoners to have their hands and feet free; neither are they in any fear that they will make an escape, so long as the prison doors are sure locked and fast barred. Thus dealeth Satan with those men that he holdeth in captivity: he letteth them sometimes have their hands at liberty, to reach out an alms to the poor; and sometimes their feet at liberty, to go to church to hear the word preached; but he will be sure to keep their ears, which are the gates and doors of their soul, so fast made up, that they shall hear nothing to

their comfort, and, if they do, it shall be to little purpose.-Daniel Featley.

DANGER IN TRIFLES.

By the want of one nail, the iron shoe is lost, and the shoe being lost the horse falleth, and the horse falling, the rider perisheth. Such are the dangers that he incurreth that neglecteth small things. The neglect of the lesser maketh way but for the greater evil, and he that setteth light by small things, falleth by little and little.

EARLY EDUCATION. You cannot too highly estimate the nature on which you operate. You cannot too highly appreciate its future destinies. That little boy may yet occupy the pulpit or thunder in the capitol. That little girl may wield an influence that shall travel down to the general conflagration.

Mind is unsearchable. You know

not what hidden energies your pupils may possess. There may lie concealed within them the intellect of a Luther, a Milton, a Franklin, a Washington; and on you devolves the responsibility of its development. Perhaps you are training the fathers of future reformation, the heroes of future discoveries and inventions, the orators whose voices will hereafter shake the nation.

The infant has faculties which an angel cannot comprehend, and which Here is eternity alone can unfold. your encouragement. You are engaged in no trifling employment. You are laying the foundation of imperishable excellence and felicity. Your work, if you succeed, will outlive empires and

states.

HOW TO GIVE.

AT a missionary meeting held among the negroes in the West Indies, these three resolutions were agreed upon :"1. We will all give something. 2. We will all give as God has enabled us. 3. We will all give willingly." As soon as the meeting was over, a leading negro took his seat at the table, with pen and ink, to put down what each came to give. Many came and gave, some more and some less. Among

those that came was a rich old negro,
almost as rich as all the others put to-
gether, who threw down on the table a
small silver coin. "Take dat back
again," said the negro who received
the money. "Dat may be according
to de first resolution, but not according
to de second." The rich old man ac-
cordingly took it up, and hobbled back
to his seat in a great rage. One after
another came forward, and almost all
giving more than himself, he was fairly
ashamed, and again threw down a piece
"Dar!
of money on the table, saying,
take dat!" It was a valuable piece of
gold; but it was given so ill-temperedly
that the negro answered again, “No,
dat don't do yet. It may be according
to the first and second resolutions, but
not according to de last ;" and he was
obliged to take up his coin again. Still
angry at himself and all the rest, he
sat a long time, till nearly all were gone,
and then came to the table, and with a
smile on his face, very willingly gave a
large sum to the treasurer.

well," said the negro,

"Very

"dat am accord

ing to all de resolutions.”

ONLY A HALF-PINT DAILY. "I AM no drinker, I only take a halfpint daily." How often do we hear poor women repeat those words; and they little think that as small as the quantity may appear, that trifle, as they call it, is taking away many comforts from them in the shape of clothing in the course of a year. Now, we will suppose that the half-pint costs three halfpence, or tenpence-halfpenny per week. Just take and put that sum in a box, and at the end of twelve months you will find that you haye £2 5s. 7 d.; and that if you have taken no more than the half-pint, you have spent in the course of ten years the sum of £22 16s. 3d. Yes, it is a fact; you have spent the large sum of £22 16s. 3d. in the half-pint! "Oh! what a many comforts I could now have," I think I can hear you exclaim, "if I had but put by that money, and not have spent it in the half-pint." The man who takes but a quart per day, has spent in the same length of time, £91 38.-Celestina.

HYMN ON PRAYER.

(From the German.)

Poetry.

FRIEND and follower of the Lord,
Obedient to his will and word,
Is thy soul thy highest care?
Be watchful, and be wise in prayer.
Thy Sire above will ne'er despise
The breathings that sincerely rise;
Then oft lift up the humble lays
That speak of gratitude and praise,
And day by day his presence greet,
And cast thy sorrows at his feet.
What honour and degree are thine,
To stand before his sacred shrine !
Say, did his glory e'er require
That man should to his courts aspire ?
Or is it rather for thy need
He gives thee privilege to plead ?
Shame be to thee, if shame have sway,
To seal the lips he form'd to pray.
Is it a task too hard to sue
For joys he offers to thy view?
And does it not exalt thy mind
To plead thy wants, to him resign'd?
To walk obedient to his will,
And feel his presence round thee still?
Thy faith by works of love proclaim,
And spread the wonders of his name?
Ne'er from sincerity depart,

For God the Spirit sees thine heart :
When urgent need bows down to pray,
No want of words shall stop the way;
But learned phrase, or artful speech,
His holy ear can never reach :
While faltering faith, with simple mind,
Shall aye a sure acceptance find.

He honours best the Lord of heaven
Who wrestles hard till peace be given;
While he who prays without desire,
Pollutes the altar with strange fire.
Who swears allegiance to his name,
Yet, shameless, treads the path of
shame,

And still complains of prayer unheard,
That sinner mocks his Maker's word.
Wing to his throne your soul in prayer,
And find a Father's friendship there:
In sorrow pray, and you shall feel
God has the sovereign power to heal;
And when the tempter's snares assail,
His arm shall over all prevail;

Or when thy spirit sinks in gloom,
Pray, and his light shall thine relume.
Then often pray! With will resign'd,
His wounded body call to mind:
Think on the persevering love
That long forbade thy steps to rove
How, in thy youth, he stemm'd thy
pride,

And manhood found him still thy guide:
Acknowledge all to him you owe,
Who bless'd thee still with bliss or woe.
Then ever pray! and lift thine eyes
To that bright rest above the skies,
And with the eye of faith behold
Glory ineffable unroll❜d:

The wonders of that blissful state
Nor heart can think, nor tongue relate:
Yet such reward, in heavenly sphere,
Repays our transient service here.
Then pray, and contemplate with zeal
His love who bled a world to heal;
That man should by his blood be bought;
How does the deed surpass thy thought!
In God alone the mystery lies,
For ever shut from human eyes;
Vain the attempt to trace the plan
Which God restores to godless man.
Then pray! and, hid from human eye,
Disclose thy cares to him on high:
He sees thine heart, and looks to hear
From thence the fervent wish sincere.
"Tis not the bended knee alone,

Nor sighs, nor tears, nor wailing groan,
That bid the stream of blessing flow;
But faith sincere, in fervent glow.
Then ceaseless pray! for God pervades
The noonday heats, the midnight shades;
Nor think thy prayers alone are heard,
When with the multitude preferr'd
God is not man, but bends to grant
All that we truly ask and want;
While suppliant worlds would not ob-
tain,

Yet ne'er forsake the social throng,
By tears and groans, one wish profane.
Who meet for prayer or sacred song;
But sound his holy name on high,
And make his saints thy company;
So shall his blessed Spirit move
Your mutual prayer to mutual love;
And acts of love his favour win,
Who saves thee from the scourge of sin!

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »