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“ You said that you had asked a friend of yours to give it to you."
“ And so I did, Master Paul, the best Friend I have in the world, or any where else ; I asked my heavenly Pather, as I always do when I plough, or sow, or water, or manure the ground, to make my land fertile ; for I know that in farming, as well as in other things, though Paul may plant and Apollos water, God alone can give the increase."
“ You said that it was not sent by the railroad."
" True, and I hardly suppose that the Railroad Company would have carried it if they had been applied to."
“But what mystery is there in the way in which this carpet, as you call it came to you?"
“ A very great one, for how it is that small seeds sown in the ground should be changed into grass and flowers, is only known to Him who knows all things. wonder at his works, but we cannot understand them. They are like the wind, that 'bloweth where it listeth ;'we hear the sound thereof; but no one knoweth whence it cometh, and whither it goeth.”
“ The grass is longer than the velvet pile of our carpet I see, but how do you make out the pattern to be so oldfashioned ? You said it was common in the days of Queen Elizabeth."
“I did, and I might have said in the days of Adam too, for these words are in the first chapter of the book of Genesis, “And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit-tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.' God's gifts, and tender mercies, and • lovingkindness, have been ever of old.”
“I don't wonder now at your saying the flowers were like real flowers, and that I might fancy the bees to be alive and flying ; but what did you mean by the beautiful border!”
“I meant the hedge-rose. Look at them, Master Paul, and see what a tangle there is of white-thorn, black-thorn, wild-plum, hazel-nut, green leaves and flowers, wild bluebells and violets, ferns and foxgloves, among them.
Is a fine carpet, but it has not a border that can be compared to mine. It may be said of these flowers, as our blessed Redeemer said of the lilies, “They toil not, neither do they spin ; and yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in
I all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.'—(Matt. vi.
29.) “It becomes us all to be very grateful for our comforts of every kind, Master Paul, whether they are the workmanship of the weaver or the handiwork of our Heavenly Father, not forgetting that we are pilgrims to another and a better world. All things around us are but for a time. The Apostle Peter tells us, that the heavens shall pass away,' and the earth, and the works that are therein, shall be burned up. Though we know not when this will happen, we know that it will happen, and we cannot do better than follow the Apostle's advice in looking onwards
for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness,' and in striving to 'grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.' To him be glory both now and ever. Amen.”
Just as old Jonathan had finished his remarks, a lad who had been ordered to do so, brought a beautiful long-tailed little pony, ready saddled and bridled, to the place where they were standing. Paul, though not much of a rider, was in a short time seen cantering round the meadow, with a delighted heart, while Tiger, the terrier dog, scampered along beside him.
That day take it altogether, was one of the happiest Paul Eddins had ever enjoyed. His pleasure quite made up for his disappointment; and he confessed to his father, as he returned home with a bunch of field-flowers in his bosom, that he did not think kind old Jonathan Cutler was half so much in the wrong as he had at first thought him to be in calling his flowery meadow a new carpet. Tract Magazine.
SWIFT TO HEAR, SLOW TO SPEAK. “What chapter did the minister read this morning, James ? ” said Mr. H
“ He read the first chapter of James,” was the prompt reply.
“What was in the chapter that particularly engaged your attention ? »
“I attended to the whole of it, but this verse made the most impression on my mind," James opened the Bible he had in his hand, and read, “Wherefore my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath."
“That is a very important precept,” said Mr. H. “ What is meant by being swift to hear ?
“I suppose it means that we should be ready to hear what any one has to say to us.”
“Suppose a person wishes to talk nonsense to us, or to pour slander into our ears, are we to be ready to hear ?”
“ No, sir."
“ That is true. We must always be ready to hear the truth, especially truth connected with duty. What is meant by being slow to speak, Henry ?”
“Does it mean that we should speak slow?” said Henry, with some embarrassment. James laughed, but a look from his father reproved him.
“ It is well,” said Mr. H.-," to speak with deliberation. James often speaks so fast, that it is difficult to understand what he says; but the apostle here means to tell us what we should think before we speak. If we always think over what we are about to say, and consider whether it is proper and timely, whether it will be agreeable to those present, and, above all, whether it will be pleasing in the sight of God, we shall obey the command of the apostle, and be slow to speak.”
“ The apostle says, we must be slow to wrath," said James. “ Does he mean that we should think the matter over before we get angry about it?"
"In that case we should not get angry at all ; for when we do get angry, the feeling always comes before we think.”
"If the result you mention should take place, that is, if we never were to get angry, it would not be a bad thing, would it?
“It would not displease God if you were never to get angry, would it?"
“No, sir. When the minister read the passage this morning, I thought it contained a sort of permission to get angry."
How did you come to that conclusion ? " “ If we are to be slow to speak, it implies that we have to speak sometimes, does it not?”
“Well, if we are to be slow to wrath, does it not imply that we are to get angry sometimes?"
"I do not object to your interpretation. We are to consider what we are about to say, and never speak except when it is proper to do so. And so we are to consider the matter when we are tempted to be angry, and are never to get angry except when it is proper to do so.”
"When is that?" "When we can be angry and sin not.” “It will be pretty hard to find out when that time comes.
“So I think; but till it is found we must not be angry at all. This is a precept that you ought to consider well. You know you are given to anger.
You need of all things to take care to be slow to wrath. You give pain to your friends, and displease God almost every day by not being slow to wrath."
In what respect does the reader differ from James in this matter? Has he no need to give attention to the exhortation of the apostle, or rather the command of the Holy Spirit speaking through the apostle ? “ Be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.”
POETRY_“I WILL NOT TELL A LIE."
“I WILL NOT TELL A LIE.”
So said a sweet and lovely child ;
I will not tell a lie."
ON TAKING GOD'S NAME IN VAIN.