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immense works: I had thought that they were nearly universally and almost of necessity living without God in the world”—that their employment to a great extent being carried on during the sacred hours of the Sabbath, as well as during the week, almost precluded the possibility of many being under the influence of real and flourishing piety. But how glad was I to find so very large an assemblage of men from the various works; some with their skin stained with ore, others almost tan-coloured, from the scorching heat of the furnace or the heated metal on which they had been employed; others from coal-levels and pits-all clean and neat, yet having sufficient of the remains of their various employments left to indicate the nature of them. It did one good to watch the intense interest and strong emotion of feeling with which these hard-working and generally muchneglected men attended to the speeches. The impression produced on me, I fancied, was somewhat the same as that which the prophet must have felt when God revealed to him : “Yet have I left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed to Baal.” It was, I may say, “a time of refreshing from the presence of the Lord.”
While listening to the speeches, I was led to muse upon the very surprising nature of the gift to the apostles and their brethren, of the ability to speak (to them hitherto) unknown languages. The occasion had given rise to my fancying myself present at the feast of Pentecost, a witness of the wonderful and incontrovertible proofs of the authenticity of the doctrines of the glorious and happy dispensation which they were then introducing to the world, the full light and high privileges of which we so richly enjoy.
On leaving the chapel, I found it to be a very dark and threatening evening : this circumstance added to the interest with which I viewed the place, for the strong glare of light from the various works was thereby rendered more visible. Passing one of the immense cinder heaps, the sight was awfully grand. A large portion of it was composed of materiel in a highly-heated and in some places quite a glowing state; over this, flowing to and fro, was a thin sulphureous flame of various and quickly-changing colours, the chief of which were deep violet and pale red. I stood a few moments and watched it, and was reminded of its faint resemblance to that dreadful place and state of which it has been said by the lips of truth—“The worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.”
I passed on; and while taking another view of the interesting proceedings at the Pen-y-darran works, I heard the voices of some persons approaching. I very quickly discovered one to be that of the rev. gentleman before named. I followed at a little distance, and was exceedingly gratified to find that we were sojourners at the same house, and walked up the steps of the Castle Hotel almost immediately after him, very much desiring and almost determining to introduce myself to him, knowing very well that the mention only of my dear pastor's name would have been a sufficient passport to his room, and guarantee of a hearty welcome. However, I did not do so, feeling a little diffident, and thinking also, that after the evening's fatigue and excitement, an hour of quiet and retirement from company might be desired, for the purpose of retracing the events of the day, and for the devotional study of that holy word, to aid in the diffusion of which was the purport of his visit to this far-off place.
After passing an hour in the company of four commercial gentlemen, whose conversation was not at all congenial to my feelings-being the overflowings of pride and self-sufficiency - I retired to rest, gratified at the thought that my chamber was close to that of this minister of Christ, and that our prayers would for once in our pilgrimage ascend from one roof to the throne of grace.
A WORKMAN THAT NEEDS TO BE ASHAMED. ONE Sabbath evening I occupied my accustomed place in the school, and the usual devotional exercises being over, my active duties began. A short time was suffi.
cient to enable me to perform the first part of hear ing the children repeat the verses and hymns that had been learned, and I next proceeded to teach a passage from the Bible. In five minutes, or a little more, evident symptoms of weariness began to appear; a general restlessness, shifting of position, and a wandering eye, showed pretty plainly that the scholars were not much interested. This pained me a little; but I proceeded with, if possible, a more lively manner. No good effect seemed to follow; on the contrary, the evil increased; and among half-suppressed murmurs, I could hear them saying to one another, “What does he say?” “What does he mean?” “I don't understand him!”
Finding that I could not succeed in keeping my class quiet and attentive by any other method, I felt myself reduced to the necessity of telling a story or anecdote, to interest and enliven them. For a few minutes this succeeded; but to my great annoyance, before I had half-finished, the majority were showing most unequivocal signs of weariness, by yawning, rubbing their eyes, and fidgetting on their seats; and when I had done altogether, I was mortified to find that two of them were asleep. My vexation was by no means diminished on hearing one scholar say to another, in an audible whisper, that “surely they had heard that story before.”
What to do next I scarcely knew; but after a short pause, I asked a few questions that elicited no answers, and then gave utterance to a vehement denunciation of carelessness and inattention. This I might have saved myself the trouble of doing, as it shared the same fate as the other expedients. The time, however, must be filled up, and I got through it by such various means as presented themselves to my mind at the moment. When the hour of dismissal came, I took my way home quite worn out, -exhausted in body and mind and heartily glad that I had finished a task which had proved, for at least one night, to be a weary burden.
What made me uneasy and unhappy in my secret retirement? What prevented me from so implicitly casting my care upon God? It was because after-reflection and the upbraidings of my own conscience shewed me,
that for this ill-spent hour on the Sabbath, not the children, but I alone should bear the blame; for, on this occasion, my mind had not been previously in such a spiritual frame as to make me feel the importance of my work, and the need of preparation for it—some of the results being
1st. A number of questions that served only to cause perplexity and confusion; for I had not looked at the passage of Scripture until I came into the school-room.
2nd. A general confusion of ideas, and an incessant flitting from one thing to another; for I had no particular subject or aim in view.
3rd. An empty repetition of the most common and pointless phrases, having scarcely any connection, and still less interest.
It was not to be wondered at, that these things, along with a want of anything like a high tone of spiritual exercise, should produce such a misspent evening. "Want of success!” I might truly cry; but the blame was my own: and well might I have the bitter and humbling reflections, that I had foolishly taken out an empty vessel and expected to return with it full; I had taken no “precious seed” with me, but hoped to "return rejoicing, bringing my sheaves back again;” I had given cause for the chil. dren of my class to think less of the pleasantness and power of religion, and perhaps perilled the souls of some of them, by thus trifling an hour on the Sabbath evening.
Would that our Sabbath Teachers felt the danger of giving way to slothful indifference in preparing themselves for their classes! “We need more faith,” says one; "more prayer,” says another; “more study,” says a third; we need all; they all come under the head of “preparation." But it is as unscriptural to pray and not use means, as to use the means without prayer; and we can only hope for more success, when we make such a complete and conscientious preparation for our duties, as will enable us, in truth, “to watch for souls as they that must give in an account.” Scottish Sabbath School Teachers' Magazine.
PERSEVERANCE. Having made a wise and deliberate selection of a business, go through with it. Persevering mediocrity is much more respectable and unspeakably more useful than talented inconstancy. In the heathery turf you will often find a plant chiefly remarkable for its peculiar roots; from the main stem down to the minutest fibre, you will find them all abruptly terminate, as if shorn or bitten off, and the silly superstition of the country people alleges, that once on a time it was a plant of singular potency for healing all sorts of maladies, and therefore the great enemy of man in his malignity bit off the roots in which its virtues resided. This plant, with this quaint history, is a very good emblem of many well-meaning but little-effecting people. They might be defined as radicibus præmorsis, or rather inceptis succisis. The efficacy of every good work lies in its completion, and all their good works terminate abruptly and are left off unfinished. The devil frustrates their efficacy by cutting off their ends; their unprofitable history is made up of plans and projects, schemes of usefulness that were never gone about, and magnificent undertakings that were never carried forward; societies that were set agoing, then left to shift for themselves, and forlorn beings who for a time were taken up and instructed, and just when they were beginning to show symptoms of improvement, were cast on the world again. But others there are, who, before beginning to build, count the cost, and having collected their materials, and laid their foundations deep and broad, go on to rear their structure, indifferent to more tempting schemes and sublimer enterprizes subsequently suggested. The man who provides a home for a poor neighbour, is a greater benefactor of the poor than he who lays the foundation of a stately alms-house, and never finishes a single apartment. The persevering teacher who guides one child into the saving knowledge of Christ and leads him on to established habits of piety, is more useful than his friend who gathers in a room-full of ragged children, and after a few weeks of waning zeal, turns them all adrift on the streets again. The patriot