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for your own sake, that you try a milder method. Even though he has not returned like the poor prodigal, with an humbled heart, sensible of his unworthiness, go out and meet him. Show the affection of a father even to one who is unworthy to be called your son, and he may fall an humbled penitent at your feet. Children are commanded in the Holy Scriptures to obey their parents in all things; but the same Scriptures command parents also not to provoke their children to anger, lest they be discouraged, Col. iii. 20; Eph. vi. 4. Did Christ die for his enemies, and shall not we bear with our children? Come, Mr. Stanley, you must not be angry with me for being a little urgent in this matter. I want to see your son a contrite penitent; an humble-hearted, affectionate, and obedient child; and I think that, with God's blessing, this is more likely to be brought about by kindness than severity, by forgiveness than by punishment. It is said, that on one occasion, a pious parent, who could not prevail on a disobedient child to ask God's forgiveness for the transgression, went down on his knees himself, saying that if his son would not ask for pardon of God, he would ask it for him ; but no sooner did he begin to offer up his prayer, than he found his son a broken-hearted penitent, kneeling at his side. Try the same course, Mr. Stanley; who can tell but the same Divine blessing may accompany your prayers, and that you and your son may have reason to rejoice together?
A CALL ON AN EARLY RISER. You are up early, my friend, and are putting your potatoes into the ground as nimbly as though you had served an apprenticeship to the employment.
If the sluggard knew what he lost, surely he would never be in bed till all the first beauty of the morning has passed away. Look at that glorious sun, the ambassador of God, clothed in purple and gold, sent to proclaim the goodness and the greatness of his Almighty Maker to an unbelieving world! Hark at that harmonious music the rising lark is pouring from his warbling throat! These things make the mind cheerful, and bid the heart dance for joy. How sweet is the balmy breath of the morning breezes ! how green are the trees ! and how fair are the opening flowers! These things are beyond value, and yet they are bartered by the sluggard for an hour or two of guilty sloth, Abraham rose early to show his willingness to obey the commands of the Almighty, even though his son was to be offered up in sacrifice. Jacob, and Moses, and Joshua, and David,
were early risers. King Darius rose early when he went to the lions' den to inquire for Daniel ; and the pious women did the same when they visited the sepulchre where the body of the Redeemer had been laid. He who earns his breakfast before he eats it, is sure to enjoy it; and one mouthful of early air, is better than two bottles full of physic. The sober man rises early, but the drunkard lies late; the one has money in his pocket, when the other has holes in his elbows. Give me the potato that is planted early in the morning, for though it may not grow better on that account, yet the planter will look upon it with more pleasure; therefore it pleases me to see you stirring in your garden before the shutters of your neighbours are open. The sound of a digging spade, the clinking of a trowel against the bricks, and the ringing of a hammer on an anvil, at five in the morning, are music to my ears. I hope you will have a capital crop of potatoes, excellent health to enjoy them, and a glowing heart gratefully to acknowledge the goodness of God.
A CALL ON A SICK WOMAN. Well, Molly Symonds! I hope you find yourself better this mild weather. I have brought you a few comforts for your body and
your soul. If you could get to the door a little with your chair, while the sun shines, perhaps it would do you good.
Sickness and pain are trying things, but we must endeavour patiently to bear what God is pleased to put on our shoulders; for, whether we believe it or not, it is still a truth, that all things work together for good to them that love God. Your little habitation looks very comfortable, and your garden seems not to have a weed in it. Flowers for ornament, and herbs for use, are growing there. None but a heavenly hand could paint the one with such beauty, and enrich the other with such useful qualities.
What though we trace each herb and flower,
That sips the morning dew;
How vain were all we knew !
The mercies of God are continually around us in his providence and his grace, and so many tokens of his love should dispose us to trust in him at all times. Health is, to be sure, one of his greatest blessings; but even when this is withheld, there is much of comfort and joy left for those who regard this world only as a dark passage to one that is more fair and lightsome. Trials and troubles are grievous to us; but how sweet is the milk contained in the rough shell of
the cocoa-nut, and how much sweeter are the consolations which God is pleased sometimes to mingle with affliction! The rebellious heart, broken by sanctified sickness and suffering, turns as a chastened child to its heavenly Father, seeking and finding that mercy which is laid up in Christ Jesus for every repentant sinner. When your affliction has done you as much good as God intended it to do, he will remove it from you, Molly, and not before; therefore be patient, and commit yourself to the care of your heavenly Physician, that he may heal not only the injuries of the body, but also the diseases of the soul.
A CALL ON A POOR WEAVER. Visitor. That's right, Moreton ! I love to see a man industrious. Your shuttle goes backwards and forwards as though you were working with a right good will. The occupation of a weaver is not the most productive one in the world; but “a contented mind is a continual feast," and makes a little go a great way. How are your eyes now?" I see that you wear your green shade yet.
Moreton. Yes, I am obliged to wear it for the present; but my eyes are a little stronger than they were. Thank God, I can see to work