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A humble, lowly heart to bear,
(From the Farmer's Golden Treasury.) Being in hopes of a crop next harvest, I sow this seed; but if my hopes should fail me, (which pray God forbid) I could not but confess that I were justly served, and that God did wisely punish my unfruitfulness towards him, in the unfruitfulness of my land towards me : for what fruit have I ever brought forth, answerable to the means of grace He hath afforded me? The seed of his word, which He so plentifully sows amongst us, seems to be thrown away upon the greatest part of us : whilst one, for custom's sake, just gives it the hearing, but never considers it, another is perhaps affected with it for the present: but, upon the next tempta; tion, forgets it: the heart of a third is so possessed with the cares of this life, as to leave no room for the thoughts of a better. Should one sow seeds in the highway, on a rock, or among briars and thorns, it would turn to as good account.
But give me, O Lord, an honest and good heart, that I may hear thy word, and keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience. Let thy word be to me as good seed sown upon good ground, that springs up, and bears fruit an hundred-fold. Give me, O Lord, an humble and teachable mind; mortify my lusts, subdue my passions, and wean me from
Exiracts from Grecian History. 501 this world, so that nothing may hinder thy word from having its due effect upon me: meantime, bless me in this my present work, O prosper
Thou the work of our hands upon us; and when Thou hast prepared me to leave this world, let me enter into Thy blessed kingdom.
EXTRACTS FROM GRECIAN HISTORY.
The young Spartans were not allowed to be noisy, or to chatter all the nonsense they could think of; but they were expected to listen to the instructive conversation of the older persons in the company. If they did not know the meaning of any thing, they were permitted to ask those who were wiser than themselves; but it was required that they should say nothing unless they had something sensible to say.
POWER OF GENTLENESS. A young man named Alcander gave Lycurgus a blow with a stick, and struck out one of his eyes. The people took the part of Lycurgus, and gave the young man up to him, that he might punish him as he pleased : but Lycurgus, instead of shewing any anger, spoke gently and mildly to him; and the young man was so much affected by his kindness, that he was very sorry for his fault, and determined not to give way to passion in future. He, afterwards, became the friend of Lycurgus, one of the wisest and best men in Sparta. Thus we see the powerful effect produced by gentleness, whilst we admire that spirit of forgiveness which is the strong mark of a noble and generous mind.
RESPECT FOR THE AGED. Lycurgus instructed children to pay great respect and attention to old people, and this good practice continued after they were grown up. The story is well known of the Athenian young men ridiculing an old man in a public assembly,—whilst the Lacedemonians rose up and offered him the best seat among them. The Athenians could not help applauding them; and the old man said, “The Athenians know what is right, but the Lacedemonians practise it.”
TEMPERANCE. No drunkenness was allowed among the Spartans, but a slave was sometimes made to drink to excess, for the sake of shewing the young men what a beastly appearance a drunken man made,
“Dost thou not think me very fine ?” said Crosus king of Lydia, when sitting on his splendid throne, and dressed in all his rich and splendid attire. - I think the pheasants and the peacocks finer,” said the wise Solon, “ because their dress is the gift of nature, and they do not have any care or trouble to adorn themselves."
HAPPINESS. Crosus was much surprised ; and he then ordered his officers to show Solon his immense heaps of treasure, and his rich furniture and ornaments. He sent for Solon a second time, and asked him whether he did not think him the happiest man in the world.--"No," replied Solon, “I know one man more happy; a cottager of Greece, who is neither rish nor poor, has but few wants, and has learned to supply them by labour."
A FATHER'S GIFT.
(Continued from the last Number, page 443.) Mary Williams every day increased in the favour of her employers; and, in continuing her history, I must mention one circumstance which added greatly to this, and gained her the notice of all the sensible people who either visited the family, or lived in it; and this was her good sense and strict principle, in regard to dress. The grateful love which Mary bore her parents, was one reason why she never bought a smart thing, or laid out a sixpence more upon herself than was absolutely necessary. Her wages when she first went to service, were very low, but she even then, laid by a little ; and as they were gradually increased, she laid by more, and regularly sent it to her parents : "they have put themselves to much expense for me, thought she, and the very least that I can do, is to try to return a part of what I owe to their goodness: all I owe, I never can repay them.'
-"In the name of wonder” said one of her thoughtless fellow-servants to her, “why do you never buy any of those pretty things that the rest of us do, why do you wear such plain things, when a little lace and ribbon would be so much more becoming and genteel.” “Oh!" said Mary laughing, “I think it much more becoming in me to send the money that lace and ribbon would cost, to my father and mother, who have done so much for me; and as for gentility, it is not what I pretend to aim at.” “Well,” said her fellow-servant, you might still save a trifle for your father and mother and yet spend a little to make yourself look more like other people.” “But I have much greater pleasure," answered Mary, "in saving all I can for home, than I could have in all the smart things in the world. My dear mother has not good health, and I love to think that my savings sometimes pay a neighbour for half a day's labour, or buy her some nice strengthening thing, which otherwise she would not have, for my father has a large family and is a poor man, and yet I know that he takes care to let my mother have the benefit of what I send : this year my wages are to be raised, and then my mistress advises that I should do as my parents both wish me to do, put a trifle into the Savings Bank, and this will by degrees become a nice little store, either for them or for me, in the time of need.”
Mary, however, was always so neatly and cleanly and suitably dressed, that she was seldom seen by strangers without being noticed, and if Mrs. Tarlton had no longer wanted her, two or three ladies had said how very glad they should be to take her into their families. She was, besides, a very great favourite with all her fellow-servants, though not one of the men-servants would ever think of taking a liberty with her, so chaste was her dress and manner. She had offers of marriage from two or three who were upper servants, but she determined that, if she ever did marry, it should be to a steady man, who feared God and was a faithful servant to his eartbly master, from his great desire to be found faithful to his heavenly one. At last such an one came to live at Mr. Tarlton's, and after the acquaintance of a year or two, he asked Mary to become his wife, having saved, as he told her, enough to furnish a small shop, with which they might, he hoped, begin very comfortably; Mary consulted her parents and her good mistress; and with the consent of all parties, she accepted this offer, but they wisely agreed to wait a few months that they might be able to fix on a business and a house the most likely to answer their purpose. They had just heard of one which they and their friends thought would answer, and had nearly fixed to take it and also settled the day of their marriage, when Mary was suddenly called home