Page images
PDF
EPUB

many a year, grasps it still, and of unearthly joy, which He who had they enter together the haven of put into her hand the chalice of rest.

sorrow, had hid at the bottom beTheir joy is not yet full till another neath the wormwood draught. heart shares it. Gladness, exulta- Augustine was one of the most tion, triumph, praise, are the words renowned, and, which is of infiby which Augustine describes the nitely more importance, one of the emotions of his mother's heart, most useful men of antiquity. The when she heard from his own and foundation of both was his conAlypius's lips the joyful tidings. version. Never was that change Long had she sown in tears, but more thorough, and never was it her harvest of gladness was now more accurately delineated. Reader, come, and the bitterness of the cup may you give to all around equal she had been drinking for long proofs of a new heart and a right years was forgotten in the ecstacy spirit!

PHILEMON.

The Letter Box.
INFIDELITY.

TO YOUNG MEX. For many years past a chief place by his zeal for Christianity. The in the school of infidelity has be- following is his own account of his longed to Mr. Thomas Cooper, a labours since the end of May :man of talent and genius, who, by

1. May 31 to June 4, five nights' his eloquence, did much to uphold

discourses at Leeds; June 6th (Sunthe young men of England in their

day), preached twice for the Wesunbelief and wickedness. It has, leyan Reformers at Sheffield. however, pleased the Father of

2. June 7th to June 11th, five mercies to arrest him in his course,

nights' discourses at Sheffield ; June

13th (Sunday), preached twice for and not only so, but to employ him the United Methodist Free Church, to spread the very gospel he once

Sheffield.

3. June 14th to June 18th, five destroyed. Of all living men few

nights' discussion with G. J. Holywere less likely to become converts, oake, at York; June 20th (Sunday), but the purposes of God are not to preached twice for the Primitive be thwarted; when the time comes

Methodists and Wesleyan Reform

ers at York. the work is achieved in the twink

4. June 21st to June 25th, five ling of an eye, and none can hinder nights' discourses at Sunderland; it. Mr. Cooper seems a real con

June 27th (Sunday), preached three vert; and having taken his side,

times for the Baptists at Sunder

land. he declines conferring with flesh 5. June 28th to July 2nd, five and blood, and labours like a man nights' discourses (second series) who really believes the Scriptures

at Leeds; July 4th (Sunday), of the holy apostles. His zeal on

preached thrice for the Baptists at

Leeds. behalf of infidelity is far exceeded 6. July 5th to July 9th, five

nights' discourses at South Shields; July 11th (Sunday), preached thrice for the United Methodist Free Church, South Shields.

7. July 12th to July 16th, five nights' discourses at Newcastle-onTyne; July 18th (Sunday), preached thrice, once for the Baptists, and twice for the United Methodist Free Church, at Newcastle-on-Tyne.

8. July 19th to July 23rd, five nights' discourses at North Shields; July 25th (Sunday), preached thrice for the United Methodist Free Church at North Shields.

9. This week I am delivering a second series of five discourses, and have to preach thrice next Sunday, here, in Sunderland. Next week, and two following weeks, I visit Hexham, Morpeth, and Stockton-on-Tees, and re-visit Newcastleon-Tyne, On Monday, 23rd August, I return home (to 10, Devonshire Place, Stoke Newington Green, London), if God permit; and on Sunday, August 29th, have promised Mr. Stanion (whom I knew and loved when he was a boy) to preach in his chapel, Shacklewell Green, not far from my home. On the following Sunday, September 5th, I preach at Norwich;

and, from Norfolk, depart for the West of England, to lecture and preach for several weeks; and then to various parts of the Midlands, Staffordshire, the West Riding, &c., up to Christmas, before which time I must not have another holiday.

God condescends to bless me, and to work by me. I am strong enough to talk three times every Sunday, as well as to keep up my lectures five nights in every week. And here I am, holding prayer. meetings every morning at eight o'clock; a practice I commenced in South Shields, where it was attended with great good; and the same is being experienced here, More than 200 persons were pre, sent this morning, and all seemed to be praying. Everywhere there is a deep desire that England may see a revival of religion, such as America is now seeing; and surely these daily prayer-meetings, if held

in every town in the country, may help to bring it. As for myself, by God's help, I will live and work for him alone during the brief remainder of my life. I must work hard, for I have lost many precious years. I preach for any religious body that asks me; and the chapels of every denomination (save the old Wesleyans) have been thrown open to me throughout this tour. God owns my preaching, by convincing and saving sinners; to him be all the glory! As for conflict with sceptics, it is very easy work for me.

Their opposition is but feeble as it regards argument; and it is only now and then that they show any ill feeling towards me. Working men, all over these parts, know me too well to suspect me, or be angry with me; and all listen to me with most devoted attention. I hope God has made me instrumental in beginning a process of conviction with several doubters of some years' standing. I have, at least, their own confession to that effect. On the other hand, assurances numerous that the arguments I have been enabled to advance have delivered many young men-some of them members of religious societiesfrom harassing doubts, which might be deemed an incipient scepticism.

I beg an interest in the prayers of every servant of Christ who may read these words. My heart is very thankful for what God does for me and by me; and I only desire to be kept in humble devotedness to my Saviour while I live, that I may be with him for ever when I die.

are

Young men! ponder these facts, and receive the lesson they impart. Let all into whose locality Mr. Cooper may come go and hear him. He knows both sides. He has proved infidelity, and eschewing that, he has embraced Christianity. He now testifies against the whole of his past course, and standing beside the cross of his Lord, he points to it all who hear him.

consumma

We do not despair of Mr. Holyoake. How glorious tion to see those two very able and eloquent men travelling over England in company, to publish far and wide the glad tidings of salvation!

Wherever Mr. Cooper appears, Christians of all sects will of course overpower him with kindness. Most sincerely do we wish him God speed!

P. P. P.

Christian Biography.

a

MRS. MARTHA WILLIAMS. CHRISTIAN biography has always family of the late Rev. Peter Edoccupied a prominent place in all wards, then pastor of Chapel Street ages; and none has been more Chapel, Wem, and celebrated as the valuable than that of Christian author of“ Candid Reasons." Here mothers, they always exercising a she was again blessed in living in a salutary influence on the walk and pious family. Mr. Edwards, being conduct of their children. They an excellent Hebrew holar, it was ofttimes, by their pious examples his custom to read from his Hebrew and excellent counsels, have proved Bible in English at family prayer, in the hands of God the ablest and and offer a short exposition on the best preachers of the word.

portion read in a critical and pracThe subject of this memoir, Mrs. tical manner. The Hebrew Bible, M. Williams, was born in the vici- with its quaint binding and autonity of Wem, in Shropshire, in the graph of this truly great man, is year 1780. But little is known of now in the possession of the Rev. her early life; but there is no doubt E. Hill, of Shrewsbury. She often she was early instructed in the prin- spake of the care Mr. Edwards took ciples of the Christian religion. As to explain the Scriptures to his soon as her years and strength ren- family. dered her services useful, she was Leaving this excellent family, taken into the family of the late she became in the year 1802 the Mrs. Williams, the excellent mother wife of Mr. Joseph Blakeway, of of the late Sir J. B. Williams, whom Barker's Green, Mr. Blakeway was she nursed. , She often spake of the an humble Christian, and with his excellent counsel Mrs. Williams wife became members of the church gave her, and imperceptibly im- under Mr. Edwards' care. United bibed many of the excellences of in heart and soul to serve God, that distinguished lady. She used they lived together in sweet harfrequently to revert to this period mony. In 1807, Mr. W. Blakeas one in every way beneficial to way, their eldest child, was born, her in forming her mind. Removing who is now the only surviving memfrom the family of Mrs. Williams, ber of that family; and in speaking she found another situation in the of his excellent parents, in a letter

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

now before me, he says, “ Although I attend the Church of England instead of the religious persuasion in which I was brought up, yet I shall to the latest period of my existence ever regard with the most grateful recollection the sound moral and religious instruction it was my parents' daily practice to impart." Their second son, Joseph, was born in 1810, but soon it was evident that the devoted husband and father must leave them. He died on May 6th, 1817. His end was peace.

Mrs. Blakeway being now a widow, a relative, residing then in London, procured her youngest son, Joseph, admission into Christ's Hospital. His letters to his mother bear a strong testimony to the value of his parents' counsel. The letter from his nurse at the hospital (who was a pious woman), announcing his death in 1825, exhibits the development of that religion in a dying hour which it had been his mother's care to instil into his young and tender mind.

In February, 1827, she was married to Mr. Thomas Williams, of Brickbank, near Wem, who was himself a widower, left with three children, to whom Mrs. Williams faithfully discharged the duties of a mother, and won from those children love and respect.

The children soon grew up, and dispersed themselves, and her latter years were years of comparative ease and affluence. Her neat cottage and well-trimmed garden were models of neatness and cleanliness, and were visited by many friends who delighted to associate with

her; and to those who needed her counsel, she gave it in a mild and touching manner. She was a great reader, and much admired the works of the Henrys, Baxter, and Dod. dridge, copies of many of which she possessed. Constant in her attendance with her husband at the house of God, she became one of those living epistles, known and read by all who knew her. Possessing a very retentive memory, she would frequently repeat to her friends some striking passage either from a sermon she had heard, or a verse of some hymn she had learnt, which bore upon the conversation. In giving counsel she was mild, but firm; in rebuke, exceedingly gentle, but touching. Possessing means, she was ever ready, as far as her means would allow, to alleviate suffering humanity. As long as she was able, she in her own district was a distributor of religious tracts.

About two years before her decease she had a paralytic stroke, which partially deprived her of the use of her limbs. Yet drawn by her kind husband every Sabbath to Wem, distant from her residence nearly a mile and a half, she still filled her place in the house of God, and, unlike many, she liked to be there in time. She much enjoyed those precious seasons, and her heavenly mind would soar in the hymns of the sanctuary to the heavenly world, and thus she seemed daily meetening for that great and final transition when she was absent from the body, but present with the Lord.

She departed this life on June 12th, 1855, being gathered like a

shock of corn fully ripe into the heavenly garner. The Rev. J. Pattison, of Chapel Street Chapel, Wem, preached her funeral ser

mon.

be drawn, that if acted upon by the mothers of this empire, would in another generation work mighty wonders. If Christian mothers would but imitate the excellent example of our departed friend, they would find that in some future day their labours had received God's blessing.

AMICUS.

Much more might have been said that would have been deeply interesting in the life of this good mother in Israel; but from this feeble outline there is a lesson to

Soutly Africa.

[ocr errors]

DR. LIVINGSTONE'S TRAVELS.

REMARKABLE INSTANCE OF BIRD CONFINEMENT. We passed through large tracts bill, which he killed. He informed of Mopane country, and my men me that, when the female enters caught a great many of the birds her nest, she_submits to a real called korwe (Tockus erythrorhyn- confinement. The male plasters up chus) in their breeding places, the entrance, leaving only a narrow which were in holes in the mopane slit by which to feed his mate, and trees. On the 19th we passed the which exactly suits the form of his nest of a korwe, just ready for the beak. The female makes a nest of female to enter; the orifice was her own feathers, lays her eggs, plastered on both sides, but a space hatches them, and remains with the was left of a heart shape, and ex- young till they are fully fledged. actly the size of the bird's body. During all this time, which is stated The hole in the tree was in every to be two or three months, the male case found to be prolonged some continues to feed her and the young distance upwards above the opening, family. The prisoner generally beand thither the korwe always fled to comes quite fat, and is esteemed a escape being caught. In another very dainty morsel by the natives, nest we found that one white egg, while the poor slave of a husband much like that of a pigeon, was gets so lean that, on the sudden laid, and the bird dropped another lowering of the temperature, which when captured. She had four be- sometimes happens after a fall of sides in the ovarium. The first rain, he is benumbed, falls down, time that I saw this bird was at and dies. I never had an opporKolobeng, where I had gone to the tunity of ascertaining the actual forest for some timber. Standing length of the confinement; but, on by a tree, a native looked behind passing the same tree at Kolobeng me, and exclaimed, “ There is the about eight days afterwards, the nest of a korwe." I saw a slit only, hole was plastered up again, as if, about half an inch wide and three in the short time that had elapsed, or four inches long, in a slight hol- the disconsolate husband had selow of the tree. Thinking the word cured another wife. We did not korwe denoted some small animal, disturb her, and my duties prevented I waited with interest to see what me from returning to the spot. he would extract; he broke the This is the month in which the clay which surrounded the slit, put female enters the nest. We had his arm into the hole, and brought seen one of these, as before menout a tockus, or red-beaked horn- tioned, with the plastering not quite

« PreviousContinue »