Imágenes de páginas

strong displeasure towards the cruel man, would, of course, be excited ; and withal, a desire that something should be done to prevent a repetition of the cruelty.”

“ If he could once have such a beating himself,” said George, 66 I do not think he would wish to beat his poor horse again.”

“The law provides punishment of a different kind for such an offence,” said his mother. “It is generally when men are angry that they wish to take the law into their own hands. They are not willing to wait until punishment shall be inflicted in the regular way, because they wish to gratify their angry passions by inflicting it themselves. It is right to wish a wicked man punished, that wickedness may be checked; not that our personal feelings of indignation may be gratified. It is right to imprison a violator of the laws; but we ought at the time, in the spirit of true benevolence, to desire that his punishment may result in his reformation and future wellbeing. I am very glad,” continued Mrs. Marshall, “ that you have taken so much interest in the subject, and I trust that you will strive and pray to be delivered from the dominion of angry passions. I can give you an anecdote, which may be of use.

An Arabian merchant, having hired a waterman's boat, refused to pay the freightage. The waterman, in a violent passion, appealed several times to the governor of Muscat for justice. The governor as often ordered him to come again ; but observing him one day present his petition with coolness, he immediately granted his suit. The waterman, surprised at this conduct, demanded a reason why he did not sooner grant his request. Because,' said the judge, you were always drunk when I saw you. But the waterman declared he had not been overtaken with wine for many years. The judge replied, " The drunkenness with which you were overtaken is the most dangerous of all—it is the drunkenness of anger.'

[ocr errors]

A. M.

MISTRESSES AND SERVANTS. Say what you will, both mistresses and servants fall into errors, ay, and good mistresses and good servants too.

“ Before you go, Rachel, just brush up the hearth,” said Mrs. Linwood to her servant-of-all-work. “Just brush up the hearth and make it look comfortable.”

Now there was nothing unreasonable in this, or rather there would have been nothing unreasonable had it not been

[ocr errors]

that Mrs. Linwood was well aware at the very moment she required the hearth to be brushed up and made comfortable, that Rachel was standing at the door waiting for an omnibus, the only one which would enable her to reach the inn in time to see her aged mother before she set off for the country, Poor Rachel, after a sad scuffle to get ready, had just opened the door, dressed in her best clothes, with her best gloves buttoned tight at the wrist, when the words of her mistress reached her ear: “ Before you go, Rachel, just brush up the hearth and make it look comfortable.”

Can it be wondered at, under these circumstances, that Rachel should feel impatient? With some little trouble she unbuttoned her gloves, and taking them off hastened into the parlour to brush up the hearth. Hardly had she taken up the brush when the omnibus dashed by, and poor Rachel lost her only opportunity of seeing her mother. Of course Mrs. Linwood was very sorry, but of what use was that to Sarah, her sorrow came too late. A little kindly consideration, in its proper place, would have been worth more than all her fruitless regret. Poor Rachel, when she went up stairs to change her clothes, sobbed aloud in the bitterness of her spirit, putting it down as a settled thing that she had an unkind and unreasonable mistress, who cared nothing for the feelings of a servant.

How was it, Mrs. Linwood, that with all your Christian graces and good qualities, you could thus heedlessly wound the feelings, and alienate the heart of a good servant? Surely you might have required an earlier and more seasonable attention to your hearth, nor would it have hurt you, in such a critical season, to have taken up the brush yourself. At the very worst you could only have soiled your fingers, whereas, by your unkind heedlessness, you justly incurred blame yourself and gave undeserved pain to another.

But was Rachel never in fault? Did she never forget what was due to her mistress ? She did. How very few servants can meekly bear reproof.

“ The handle of that door feels greasy, Rachel, please to wipe it with a towel,” said Mrs. Linwood mildly to her servant. “Greasy,” replied Rachel, rather abruptly, “I hardly know how that can be, for I have not been using grease. It can never be greasy!” Well! well! please to wipe it with a towel,” forbearingly rejoined her mistress. “But I do not feel any grease on it,” said Rachel. “ It does not feel sticky the least in the world. You must be wrong, ma'am. I cannot feel any grease upon it at all.” Mrs. Linwood walked away without speaking another word, but she did not, on that account, think the less of Rachel's faults in replying hastily and seeking to justify an error instead of correcting it in a respectful, submissive, and obedient spirit.

How was it, Rachel, that you, who know so well what is due from a servant to a mistress, could thus con mit yourself? Surely your mistress has a right to use her own judgment in such an affair as that of having the handle of a door kept clean! What motive could she have in telling you it was greasy if she did not believe it to be so ?

Whatever your opinion might be about the matter, as it was not asked, neither should it have been expressed. You had nothing to do but to obey your mistress. Holy Scripture requires that servants should be subject with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward,” enduring grief, even when suffering wrongfully. “For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffetted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? But if when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God," 1 Pet. ii. 18-20.

Mistresses and servants, restrain what is in you that is unlovely, and take the Holy Scriptures for your guide. “Consider one another to provoke unto love and good works,” Heb. x. 24. Do as ye would be done by, and “Put on kindness, meekness, long-suffering; forbearing one another and forgiving one another,” John xiii. 35. You will then add greatly to each other's comfort, and avoid the faults of Mrs. Linwood and her servant Rachel.




THE WINDY DAY.. “ It is an ill wind that blows nobody good,” said Hannah Freeth, as she walked along one windy day in November with a pail upon her head. “ I wonder what good the wind will blow me.”

As Hannah spoke she turned into the narrow lane between the high hedges to avoid the wind, and there she met Amos Horton, who spoke to her thus :

“ This is a wild, windy day, Hannah ; take care that you turn it to advantage. What a glorious passage that is in the eighteenth Psalm, He rode upon a cherub, and did fly: yea, he did fly upon the wings of the wind ! What a beautiful account of the Saviour that is in the thirty-second chapter of Isaiah, “A man shall be as an hiding place from the wind, and a covert from the tempest; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land!' And what a striking account that is of the working of the Holy Spirit in the third chapter of John, “ The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth ; so is every one that is born of the Spirit! If you can remember these three texts, and they should lead you as a sinner to close communion with God, as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, the wind will not have blown upon you for nothing.

As Hannah Freeth went on, she said to herself, “ If the wind had not blown, I should not have come into the lane. If I had not come into the lane, I should not have met Amos Horton, and if I had not met Amos Horton, I should not have heard the words he has spoken to me. It is an ill wind that blows nobody good,' after all.”

DESPONDENCY. When God's children give way to despondency, it is a sad reproach to them. 6. There is a bit of blue in the sky yet," said Gideon Hawker, one stormy day in November, and so there is very often when we do not give ourselves the trouble to look for it. God • stayeth his rough wind in the day of the east wind,' and in the midst of judgment he remembers mercy.”

THE BEST MATERNAL CARE. MRS. SAVAGE, the daughter of Philip Henry, was the mother of nine children. The care and tenderness she discovered in their infancy did not exceed her concern for their souls. As they advanced in years her pious anxiety increased, and no pains were spared to teach them the things of God. A considerable part of the Lord's day evening was devoted to family instruction. She excelled in the happy art of recommending religion to the young. She gained their attention, and by a careful representation of piety, as the reverse of everything harsh and severe, they were encouraged to be inquisitive on Divine subjects. To her instructions were added the most affectionate prayers; and her children, when not immediately under her inspection, were visited with such letters of piety and love, as, with the blessing of God, were calculated to produce the happiest effects.

Her diary abounds with expressions of concern for her

0. H.

children. “Oh,” she writes on one occasion, “ that I could be every day travailing to see Christ formed in them. This week I was much affected when reading in course Prov. xxx. 8, • Remove far from me vanity and lies. It is the only prayer in that book. Methinks it is a very proper prayer for children. I have earnestly begged of God to remove from mine vanity and lies.”

At another time thus: “I read in course in my closet Isa. liv. with the exposition. I was much affected with the 13th

verse, • And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord.' Though it is spoken of the church's children, I would apply it to my own children in particular, and desire to act faith on it. I am caring and endeavouring that they may be taught and instructed in the good way. This is the inward desire of my soul. Now saith God, They shall be taught of me, and all thy children shall.' A sweet promise: it much satisfies me. Lord set in with poor parents who desire nothing in the world so much as to see their children walk in the narrow way' that leads to life.”

was much pleased,” is her memorial subsequently, 6 with a passage in a book by the famous Mr. White, which my dear father (Philip Henry) gave to my daughter Sarah lately. He says, 'I had rather find my children praying and weeping in a corner, that they can love God no more, than to have all the wealth in the world. Again, 'I had rather have my house filled with



than with diamonds. And I believe every godly parent is of the same mind.”

Mrs. Savage's Life.*




A FAIR, many would naturally think, is a very unlikely place in which to do any good, and those who go to fairs are very unlikely people to be persuaded to turn from vanity to the service of Christ. But there is encouragement for hope, even in the worst cases, in that Scripture, 'Is not this a brand plucked out of the fire! it is a brand, already burning, that is said to be plucked from the midst of the very fire.

The following siniple letter was addressed to a minister of the gospel by one who was a showman at a fair, and who was led to Christ in the manner he describes« On passing through this town, I have posted these few

* Published by the Religious Tract Society.

« AnteriorContinuar »