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128 AND 129, ALDERSGATE Sstreet, e.c.

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O the thousands of our young Gleaners, who are spread abroad far and wide, we come with hearty greetings, wishing you A HAPPY NEW YEAR, and earnestly praying that, during the year 1879, should your lives be spared, you may be blessed by the God of all mercy with every good which may prove conducive to your welfare and happiness in the world, where we trust you may become useful and honourable men and women; and, above all, may you know His great mercy to sinners, for whom the Redeemer bled and died, by experiencing in your own souls that divine favour and goodness which shall prove you to be of that number whom the Lord cares for in a special way, because, as the objects of His everlasting love, they are brought by living faith in Jesus Christ to taste the joys of His salvation.

Some who read the first pages of last year's LITTLE GLEANER are now no more in this world. They have been called to lay aside our little Magazine and all things else below, and to leave behind kind parents, companions, and friends; and the dark, cold, silent grave has opened to receive their bodies; but their immortal spirits have returned to God who gave them. Happy all who, in dying, died in the Lord; with them it was, and ever shall be, well. Some of you who read this may have had, during the year just ended, to mourn the loss of a beloved brother or sister, or perhaps of a tender parent, and your young hearts may have been well-nigh broken as they were parted from you, nev ragain to be seen by you upon earth; and even now the remembrance of them may fill you with deep sorrow, because their loving words and affectionate friendship below have for ever ceased. But, if they were blest with living faith in Christ, and if you are the happy possessor of "like precious faith," the time will come when

you will meet them again, and, though natural ties and relationships will be done away with, yet you will then know and love them in a far higher and sweeter degree than you ever did on earth, when, clad in blood-washed robes, you and they shall bow together before the throne of God and the Lamb, and sing of salvation for ever. Reader, may it be your blessed lot thus to know, love, and die in, the Lord Jesus, and to be owned of Him "in that day when He shall make up His jewels."

And now, dear young friends, as you all have been the recipients of many mercies during the months, weeks, and days of 1878, we pray that you may be blessed with a lively feeling of the goodness of the Lord, who has kept you in life, preserved unto you your health, and who has also constantly supplied your needs in innumerable ways; while the withholding of these benefits would have made your life miserable. And some of you may have some special mercies to speak of, such as restored health, deliverance from expected death, or marked preservation in time of danger. Oh, that you may remember whose power has saved you in the hour of peril; and, as you acknowledge the Lord therein, may you feel His goodness leading you to repentance.

And oh, what an unspeakable mercy if some of you (and we hope there are such among our many readers) can, of the three hundred and sixty-five days of the past year, claim one as your spiritual birthday, and can testify of what God has done for your soul, in quickening you by His Spirit, convincing you of your sin, and bringing you to the feet of Jesus, where only pardon and peace are to be found. And, if a more gradual work in the hearts of some has been now and again deepened, confirmed, and made more clear as being the work of the Holy Ghost, this is also matter for thankfulness, and we trust all such may


thereby be greatly encouraged still to "follow on to know the Lord."

Dear readers, we desire your real and eternal good, therefore we bring these things frequently before you, and we confidently assure you that, unless you are born again, repent of sin, and truly believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, you never can be saved. It is because we love and wish you well that we speak thus plainly; and, whatever others may say in praise of a religion without the work of the Holy Ghost, and however they may try to persuade you into a form without the power-a profession without a divine change we know that we declare the truth of God's holy Word when we tell you that any religion which lacks the new birth and living faith in Jesus Christ will never be acceptable to God. May the Lord help you to ponder these things in your hearts.

We hope that in the family you will be obedient to your parents, kind and loving to your brothers and sisters. In school, we trust you will be diligent in your studies, in order that, in after life, you may reap the benefit of present advantages; and such as are under masters and mistresses will do well to consider the counsel given to servants in the Word of God (1 Peter ii. 18, &c.); for remember that the manner in which you conduct yourselves in your present position may have a great deal to do with both your comfort and future well-being in the world. Our prayer for you all and each is, that the Lord may bless, guide and keep you from evil, and make your way through life prosperous, happy, and useful.

In conclusion, we desire to assure our readers that it will be our earnest endeavour to make the GLEANER as interesting and instructive as ever-yea, we are concerned that it should materially improve, rather than go back, in quality and appearance, particularly so with respect to the illustrations-therefore, we hope all our young friends will seek to aid us by showing and recommending both GLEANER and SOWER wherever they can,


that by these means many new subscribers may be obtained; and, since we know we have the sympathies and prayers of many friends who are concerned for the welfare of the young, we feel sure they will not charge us with a feeling of rivalry in respect of other periodicals of like character, when we ask that ministers, Sunday school superintendents, and teachers will all kindly unite in the effort to render our Magazines more universally known, that thereby the good seed of the Word of God, in its simplicity and purity, may be spread abroad, and prove a means of supplanting much of that light and pernicious literature which now so abounds as an influence to evil.

Reader, may 1879 prove a happy year of mercy and divine favour to your soul. "The blessing of the Lord be upon you."

In accordance with the earnest and repeatedly expressed desire of many friends of the young, we have, just at the time for going to press, decided upon altering the form and enlarging the size of the LITTLE GLEANER, and we hope, by accompanying the useful reading it contains with greatly improved illustrations, to render it worthy of a place in every family, and of the attention of all who desire to scatter abroad good and useful reading for the young. We have many kind friends who, in urging us to this step, express a firm persuasion that, with the blessing of the Lord attending it, the circulation of the Magazine may thus be doubled, or even trebled, and its usefulness thereby be greatly increased. is with this end in view that we have, we trust in the fear of the Lord, entered upon the present undertaking, and our prayer is, may the Lord make it to prosper, by causing the good seed so scattered abroad to take deep root in the hearts of many of our young readers.


Those friends who desire to promote the still wider spread of the LITTLE GLEANER, can be supplied with quantities of the January number at half price, by applying to MR. E. WILMSHURST, 4, Spencer Place, Blackheath, London, S.E.



THE SPARROWS' [HE sparrow is too well known by our young friends to require much description, and not only is it familiar to English children, but to the little ones of every nation throughout Europe, and sincerely do we trust there are amongst them many kind-hearted girls and boys who daily follow the example of the young friend in our illustration, for truly they need many a meal during the long, cold winter months. was with much pleasure we once read of some children making a Christmas tree for the "dickey birds,” and tying on it pieces of bread, biscuit, and other niceties which they thought the birds would enjoy, and never did those kind-hearted children find so much happiness in any Christmas tree as they found in that; we are sorry to say that all are not so kind and thoughtful, and many a feast for the birds is thrown where they cannot get it, and many a cruel boy catches them in traps, or ruthlessly breaks their eggs and destroys their pretty nests, which have cost them so much labour to build. In France, this and other means used for their destruction have played such havoc amongst the sparrows that few are to be met with, consequently there has been a vast increase of caterpillars and other insects, which have been very injurious to the crops, so much so that the Government have had to issue a command that the extermination of small birds should cease. Why should these little chirping sparrows be treated so unkindly, for does not God take thought for them, so that not one of them can fall to the ground without His knowledge? and, seeing He feeds and cares for us, why should we not show our gratitude to Him by feeding and caring for the little sparrows?

"What! can't a little sparrow fly,

Or on this earth alight,
Without permission from on high,
And power to aid its flight?


"No, neither could I turn mine eyes,
If God His power withdrew;
My joints would stiffen, wither, die ;
My blood would cease to flow.

"We are dependent on the Lord
For every breath we draw,
Whose power could cast us with a word
In hell for evermore."



AT Rosenberg, in the neighbourhood of Gratz, a pair of swallows had built their nest in the floor of a peasant's house. When the door was closed, the only entrance to the room was through the window. One evening, at harvest-time, all the inhabitants of the house went to the meadows, almost two miles away. The wife forgot to leave the cottage window open, and scarcely was the harvesting under way, when a pair of swallows flew around her with loud twittering, hitting her on the head and shoulders with their wings. At last it occurred to the woman that these were certainly her swallows, and that the entrance to their nest had been closed. In spite of the distance and pressing work, she went back to see, and on opening the window had her supposition confirmed.

The great God cares for swallows and sparrows, and feeds and watches them ; and those who imitate Him in His tenderness towards the little birds can take comfort in the thought that the humblest child of God is of more value than many sparrows, and that their heavenly Father will also care for all His trusting little


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