Page images
PDF
EPUB

the above maxims at least once a week.

YOUNG MEN. I love to look upon a young man. There is a hidden potency concealed within his breast which charms and pains me. I silently ask — What will that youth accomplish in after life? Will he take rank with the benefactors or scourges of his race? Will he exhibit the patriotic virtues of Hampden and Washington, or the selfish craftiness of Benedict Arnold? If he have genius will he consecrate it, like Milton and Montgomery, to humanity and religion ; or like Moore and Byron, to the polluted altars of passion ? If he have mercantile skill, will he employ it like Astor, to gratify his lust of wealth, or to elevate and bless humanity, like some of our merchant princes? If the gift of eloquence be hidden in his undeveloped soul, will he use it like Summerfield, in favour of religion, or like Patrick Henry or Adams, in battling for human rights; or will he, for mammon's sake, prostitute that gift to the use of tyranny and infidelity ? Will that immortal soul, which beams with intelligence and power in his countenance, ally itself with its Creator, and thus rise to the sublime height of destiny; or will it wage war with truth and duty, and thus sink to degradation and death ? As I raise these great queries, I at once do reverence to the high potentiality of his nature, and tremble for his fate.

DANIEL WISE.

PUNCTUALITY. This is one of the most beautiful traits in one's character, and not only adds to a person's estimation in the midst of others, but is ever a source of great advantage to the one possessing it. Those unaccustomed to be punctual, and to perform their duties with promptness, are for ever in the drag. By their tardiness at the commencement of the day, they are just so much behind all during it; which, taken in connection with the accumulation of losses from the force of the habit during the day, results, at the close of it, in the loss of much precious time; and if continued through life, in the frustrating of many plans, and the blighting of many fond hopes, and, too frequently, is a clog to the progress of many who are dependent upon the exertions and instructions of these tardy ones, for means and ability and occasion to perform promptly the duties of life. It is particularly desirable and essential that the young, who

now forming habits for life, should cultivate Punctuality, as one of the noblest and most promotive traits of character, and one of the first among the graces which adorn a well-ordered life.

are

THE YOUNG MAN'S COURSE. I saw him first at a social party. He took a single glass of wine ; and that in compliance with the request of a young lady with whom he conversed.

I saw him next, when he supposed he was unseen, taking a glass to satisfy the slight desire formed

by his social indulgence. He thought there was no danger.

I saw him next again with those of his own age meeting at night to spend a short time in a convivial pleasure. He said it was only innocent amusement.

I met him next late in the evening, in the street, unable to get home. I assisted him thither. He looked ashamed when we next met.

I saw him next reeling in the street. A confused stare on his

countenance and words of blasphemy on his tongue. Shame was gone.

I saw him yet once more. He was pale and cold and motionless, and was carried by his friends to his last resting-place. In the small procession that followed, every head was cut down and seemed to shake with uncommon anguish.

His father's gray hairs were going to the grave in sorrow. His mother wept to think she had ever given birth to such a son.

The Letter Box.

NOVEL-READING VERSUS INTELLIGENCE AND PIETY. SIR, I have long observed with racter, are no less essentially and painful concern the growing love for eternally distinct. As an extended novel-reading by many church article is foreign to our purpose, we members, and the no less anxiety, remark : on the part of the editors of some of 1st. That habitual novel-readers our periodicals, to cater to the same are generally deficient in intelligence. depraved mental appetite. I protest The word "science" is derived from even against what are termed re- the Latin verb “scio," to know, and ligious novels-Divine truth needs the term is applied to "the knowno such aids to interest the mind or ledge of certain things," which reaffect the heart. Would an angel of quire closer and deeper thought than light from the throne of Jehovah is necessary to understand the comappear more beautiful or glorious by mon affairs of life. But some perbeing arrayed in the habiliments of sons who may be versed in the mortals ? Religion can never exert sciences are very deficient in what all its legitimate influence on the is termed "common sense," that is, spirit until it is presented to the practical wisdom in relation to the mind in its own pure and naked common affairs of life. Now, let the loveliness. Perhaps in refusing to majority of confirmed novel-readers endorse what many recommend, we be tried by both the above tests, and shall be considered “behind the age,' we hazard little in asserting that &e. Be that as it may; the principles such persons are usually deficient of of error and truth, darkness and intelligence, whether of a higher or light, however they may occasionally a lower grade; in fact, the practice be mingled and blended together so of novel-reading unfits the mind for as to obliterate their opposite cha- close and consecutive thought on any

subject. Novel-readers are generally very superficial in literary attainments; and as regards the common affairs of life, a novel-reading young man seldom rises above the character of a mere fribble; and lady novel-readers are generally ignorant of the domestic duties which they owe to their parents or husbands. In fact, confirmed novel-readers, whether male or female, are, in a majority of cases, a curse to their families, to the church, and to the world. It has always appeared strange to our mind that a person who possesses any taste for reading should prefer to revel in a world of fancy-should find more pleasure in pursuing false scenes and characters, than in acquiring the principles and facts of real knowledge. If a person, when hungry, always chose carrion, instead of sound and wholesome food, we should at once consider such an individual fit only for a lunatic asylum ; but is it not an intellectual and moral insanity to prefer fiction to facts ? Such are all novel-readers, "moral lunatics."

2nd. Novel-reading is opposed to the spirit of true piety. Is it not a waste of time and a perversion of the mind's energies to read novels, instead of reading works on every department of science, in order to accumulate ideas concerning the universe of matter and mind which God has placed among us? Are there not numberless books on every department of the arts and sciences, far more interesting, and a thousand times more instructive than any novel that ever was written? We would ask every novel-reading professing Christian, “Is not your in

tellect a talent committed to you by God? And can you pervert that mind, or waste its energies, and be guiltless ?” Certainly not. God holds you responsible for every talent, and the scrutiny of the great white Throne (unless you repent of this sin) will burn a lesson of eternal agony in your soul. Lost time and perverted intellect will ring the tones of eternal despair in your spirit.

One of the fruitful results of novel-reading is the creation in the mind of false and frequently polluted ideas; and can heart-holiness exist in connexion with a polluted imagination ? Impossible! Professing Christian, you must abandon novelreading now and for ever, or your spirit be overwhelmed in an ocean of pollution through eternity. Ah! it will cost you many bitter tears of repentance-many agonising throes of faith in the blood that cleanseth from all sin-many fastings and baptisms of the Holy Spirit, to expel the fiends of pollution from your soul, whom by sickly novels you have been fostering for months and years. May God give you grace to part with this idol sin for ever.

Thos. L. NORTH.

DR. FULLER ON TOBACCO.

Baltimore. DEAR SIR, - I have just read a letter of yours in reference to tobacco, and cannot help bidding you Godspeed, no matter what any deacon, or any minister, or any body may say. I have not the pleasure of knowing you, but I have long known the pernicious influence of tobacco.

[ocr errors]

But, above all men, deacons and pastors love tobacco. A good deacon keeps good cigars—is a shrewd judge of good cigars, and his heart is full of happiness when his pastor and himself are regaling themselves with some choice brand just selected. Indeed, a good deacon will supply his pastor with good cigars, and the pastor declares they do him much good. They do him good before preaching, and they do him good after preaching. All this is a sore evil under the sun, but I fear it is incurable. Very respectfully,

RICHARD FULLER. George Trask, Esq.

OPPORTUNITY EMBRACED.

True, I have twice lost my voice, and after in vain trying medical skill, this potent weed has restored it. I therefore have been in the habit of using it before speaking in public. But one might as well use calomel because it had cured a fever. I have some months since utterly abandoned this poison, and my voice is better without it.

For my own part, I am persuaded that tobacco is doing more mischief than even intoxicating liquors. At the Virginia Springs, some time ago, I took the trouble to inquire of the invalids there, and almost every sufferer from rheumatism, neuralgia, dyspepsia, lumbago, paralysis, blindness, and all manner of disease, confessed to me - after some feeble attempt to defend this drug—that it was the cause of their sufferings, adding that they could not give it up. Some years ago I met a friend from Georgia in Paris, who told me that he knew tobacco was injuring his health, but as he could not abandon it, he had crossed the ocean, to see if Broussais could not enable him to gain his health, without relinquishing this baneful habit. I know more than one minister of the Gospel who would now be vigorous in mind and body, had they not used tobacco, but are mentally, physically, wrecks. And it is sad to think of their account to God for this suicide.

I wish you all success; but you have an arduous task, for the world and the Church will oppose and ridicule you. The editor can't compose a good article without tobacco; the lawyer can't plead without tobacco. The physician cannot detect the true diagnosis without tobacco.

ever

A SEATHOLDER in Chapel, having addressed a letter to one of the deacons, expressive of her dissatisfaction relating to some recent arrangements about sittings, the communication was prudently acknowledged in a friendly letter, concluding thus:

“To the watchful, observant and zealous Christian there are occurring occasions which present fitting opportunities in churches, schools, families, &c., for pressing personal religion on the attention. Now, can this be such an occasion as it regards you? The writer so views and improves it, and be assured of his sincerity and deep interest in your spiritual welfare.

“ The statements and explanations submitted in this letter, it is hoped, will tend to disabuse your mind and prove satisfactory; and

on

now suffer the word of exhortation' provided and freely offered—for 80

more vital and momentous has “God loved the world, &c.' 0, points.

then, let us, as Gospel hearers, ear“It is a great privilege to attend nestly crave the teaching of the Holy the house of God, and hear His Gos- Spirit, the converting grace of God, pel faithfully proclaimed, as is the and faith, personal, saving faith in case in our chapel; and were this the a crucified Saviour, as best evinced great object and desire of all hearers, in a holy life and godly conversation, how much more would they be really whilst we are careful to place our benefited, and just in proportion less entire reliance on the merits of disposed to notice and be disconcerted Christ for salvation. Then, then about other things — comparative only, can we be right, and safe, and trifles.

happy; then only fitted for all the “Heartily does the writer wish that good pleasure of God, for His service you, and all who attend, should, un- here, and His presence hereafter ! der the Divine blessing, be benefited, Affectionately wishing you such expesavingly benefited. We are all sin- rience and happiness, I am, ners against God, and need a Saviour;

Your assured Friend. and blessed be His name, there is one

Tye Christian Honseļold.

FAMILY WORSHIP. Several years since, says a corre- prayer, and we leaned over the gate spondent of the American Messenger, that we might catch every word. the writer started with a clerical The tones indicated a young man, brother to attend the General Asso- and the thought crossed our mind, ciation of Ct., at S

The Have they children? Soon he beday was warm, the roads hilly, and

gan to pray for the child that God night overtook us long before we had had given them-that God would reached the end of our journey. We spare his life, and that as he grew up inquired at the public-house the he might not be contaminated by the distance to S, but no one was world. My heart warmed as I said able to tell us. The landlord re- to myself, “ Yes, yes, my brother, marked that the minister was going commit that little one to God, and to the meeting, and he could pro- may He fulfil your petitions.” At bably give us the desired infor- the close of their worship we intro

duced ourselves to the family, and As we approached the house, the were cordially invited to pass the family were just striking up their night with them; but as it would be evening song. The female voice was necessary to start very early in the particularly sweet. At the close of morning to reach S. at the the song, a voice broke forth in

opening of the session, we declined.

mation.

« PreviousContinue »