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SYou will take care of me, father dear; I don't feel afraid when
you take hold of my hand." (See 9.)
BY THE AUTHOR OF
SABBATH TALKS ABOUT JESUS."
PUBLISHED BY KNIGHT AND SON,
SUFFER LITTLE CHILDREN TO COME UNTO ME,
AND FORBID THEM NOT.-LUKE xviii. 16.
" ALFRED knows his text for his
teacher this morning; do you know
"Yes, Aunt; I did not need to learn
it this time, for it was one I knew
before. Mother taught it me. Shall
I say it ?-' Suffer little children to
come unto me, and forbid them not.' "
"That is part of' the sweet story of
old,' which you so often sing about.
Why did Jesus need to say, Suffer
little children to come?"
2 SABBATH TALKS
"Because the disciples wanted to
forbid it. I think they can't have
loved little children, or they would not
have done so. Was it not very unkind
I am not sure that the disciples did
not love little children. Perhaps they
did not know whether their Master
would like to have them brought to
Him when they were so young."
"Their Master?-you mean Jesus.
But they must have known He loved
little children !"
How should they know it? They
had never heard Him say such words
as these before. It is true that you
have heard the words again and again,
but the disciples had never heard any-
thing of the kind. This was the first
time that ever these sweet words were
spoken. The disciples had seen many
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 3
proofs that Jesus was ready to heal
grown-up people, but we do not know
that they had ever yet seen Him bless
little children. Perhaps these little
children did not need healing. Their
eyes may have been bright, their
cheeks healthy, and their faces smiling.
The disciples did not see why Jesus
should be called upon to bless such as
these. They knew that He was the
Son of God, and they did not think
that the Son of God ought to have His
time taken up with noticing such
young ones. But they soon found out
their mistake, when He turned to them
and said, Suffer little children to come
unto Me,' as if He had read their
thoughts, and as if He meant to say-
Yes, let them come even to Me, though
I am the Son of God,-even to Me,
though I am the King of kings."
4 SABBATH TALKS
"I suppose the disciples were sur-
prised when they saw how kind He
"Yes, and they must have been sur-
prised when they heard how kindly He
spoke. Every word was full of love.
'Suffer children to come;' and not only
so, but 'Suffer little children to come.'
Jesus fixed no age, and made no ex-
ception. None are too young for
Him to bless. None are to be kept
away, and.none are to be kept waiting.
' Suffer little children to come;' suffer
them to come now. Jesus was very
earnest about it. When He had said,
'Suffer little children to come,' He did
not stop there ; but to make it stronger
still, He added, 'and forbid them not.'
He would have no hindrance put in
the way. He wished them all to come.
Christ had come to bless, and even
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 5
little children might come to seek the
blessing, and to get the blessing."
Oh, I should have liked to 'have
been with them then.' Do you think
He would really have put His hands on
my head, and blessed me, if I had been
"He would indeed, if you had only
lifted up your eye to Him, and stretched
out your little arm, and said,' Bless me
too, and suffer me to come.' "
I would go to Him this very minute,
Aunt, if He were here now."
"And is He not here now, Martha?"
No, He is in heaven now; but if
I get to heaven, may I go to Him there,
and will He still say, 'Suffer little
children to come unto me,' when He is
on His bright throne?"
"You need not wait for that time.
Though He is in heaven, He sees you,
( SABBATH TALKS
and He feels now just as He used to
feel when He was on earth, and still
He says,' Suffer little children to come
unto me.' "
"But how can I get to Him now He
is in heaven?'"
"Your soul can get to Him; your
thoughts can go up to heaven; you
can speak to Him in prayer; you can
say, 'Lord, I come; Thou hast bid me
come; I am only a little child, but
Thou hast died for little children, and
Thou hast said, Suffer little children to
come unto me;--I come now; bless me,
0 Lord; and bless me now.' "
How shall I know whether He has
blessed me? I cannot feel His hand
upon my head, can I?"
No, but you will feel His blessing
in your soul. Just as the touch of His
hand cured those who were sick, and
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 7
made them go away full of joy; so His
blessing in your soul will give you new
life, and strength, and peace. The
more .often you come to Him, the
oftener He will bless you; and the
more He blesses you, the greater will
be your holiness and happiness. It is
in order to make little children holy,
and to make them happy, that He so
lovingly says, Suffer little children to
come unto me.' "
8 SABBATH TALKS
PRESERVE ME, 0 GOD: FOR IN THEE DO I PUT
MY TRUST.-PsALAM xvi. 1.
"MOTHER, who wrote all these beautiful
"Good men,-children of God, who
loved to speak to Him, and to sing of
Him, and whom He taught how to feel,
and what to say. David wrote many
of the Psalms."
"In the Psalm we read this morning,
it is said, Preserve me, 0 God; for in
Thee do I put my trust.' What does
"Do you remember the little girl we
saw walking with her father in the
woods last week, Sarah?"
"Oh, yes, mother; wasn't she pretty?"
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 9
"She was a gentle, loving little
thing, and her father was very kind to
her. Do you remember what she said,
when they came to the narrow bridge
over the brook?"
I don't like to think of that bridge,
mother; it made my head so giddy.
It didn't look safe-just those two
timbers laid over, and no railing. If
she had stepped ever so little to one
side, she would have fallen into the
Do you remember what she said ?"
"Yes. She stopped a minute at
first, as if she didn't quite like to go
over, and then she looked up sweetly
in her father's face, and asked him to
take hold of her hand, and said, 'You
will take care of me, father dear; I
don't feel afraid when you take hold of
my hand.' And her father looked so
10 SABBATH TALKS
lovingly at her, and took tight hold of
her hand, as if he loved her very much.
I don't wonder he took good care of
her. I wish I could see them again."
"I think David felt like that little
girl, when he wrote the words which
you have just read."
"Was David going over a bridge,
"Not such a bridge as the one in
the woods; but he had come to some
rough place in his life; and whenever
he was in any way troubled, he used
to look up to God, just as the little
girl did to her father; and he used to
say, 'Preserve me, O God.' It is the
same as if he had said, Do Thou take
care of me, my kind heavenly Father;
-I shall not feel afraid, if only Thou
wilt hold me by the hand.' "
"0 mother, how beautiful! But
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 11
God did not really take hold of David's
hand, and lead him through the trouble
"No, Sarah; but God loves His
children who trust in Him, just as the
father loved his little girl."
"What is meant by trusting in Him?"
"It means to put ourselves in His
care, feeling that we are safe in His
Mother, may I trust in God ? will
He take care of me ?"
"Yes, my dear. If you trust in His
Son Jesus Christ for the pardon of
your sins, then you may trust in God
your Father for protection and care all
your life long."
"Will there be any bridges in my
life? I mean, shall I have troubles?"
No one can go through life without
troubles of some sort, and without
12 SABBATH TALKS
coming at times into difficulty and
danger. You are a happy little girl,
and have a good home, and your father
is able now to supply your wants. But
suppose he were to lose his property
and grow poor, and were not able to
get you warm clothes and good food, and
suppose we had to leave our pleasant
home;-then you would be in trouble,
and you would shed bitter tears, and
you would be afraid. Yet even then,
if you were to remember your heavenly
Father, you might look up to Him,
and say, 'Preserve me, O God; for in
Thee do I put my trust;-take care of
me now, for Thou art my Father; I
shall not be afraid of starving or of
suffering, if Thou wilt provide for
Do you think, mother, we shall
ever come to be poor?"
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 13
"Perhaps this kind of trouble will
not come to you, but other sorrows
may. Your father and mother may
leave you, and go to heaven. Then
you will be very lonely; you will not
have your parents to tell you what is
right; and you will be afraid to go on,
lest you should mistake the.way, and
do what would grieve them, and miss
the road to their bright home. But
even then you may look up with tear-
ful eyes, and say, 'Preserve me, O
God ; for in Thee do I put my trust;
-take care of me now, my heavenly
Father, for on earth I have no father,
no mother;-take care of me, and help
me to do right, and drive away my
fears.' Then He will look lovingly
upon you, and He will comfort you,
and bless you, and make you happier
than you ever expected to be again."
14 SABBATH TALKS
Dear mother, I hope no such sad
troubles will really ever come to me."
My child, if it is God's will, I hope
you will have your pleasant home, and
your fond parents for a great many years
to come; but is it not a good thing to
know beforehand where we may flee
for comfort when the worst of trials
I am afraid I should not know how
to trust my heavenly Father as David
did, and that I shouldn't feel as safe
with Him as the little girl did with
"You must pray to God to teach
you how to trust in Him. Ask Him
every day to help you. Read the pro-
mises He has made in the Bible, and
see how kind He has always been to
His children; so you will learn to love
Him, and to cast your care on Him,
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 15
and a delightful peace will dwell in
your heart, and keep you from fear.
But you must not think that great
troubles are the only ones we have to
meet with. You will have many small
troubles, and will need to look to your
heavenly Father to take care of you
through them all."
What small troubles do you think
I am likely to have, mother?"
"You had one this morning. Your
sister Emma was unkind to you, and
you took it sadly to heart."
"Could I go to God with that trou-
Yes, my dear; you can tell Him
(just as you would tell me) all that
makes you unhappy; and ask Him to
"And will He hear me? What will
He do for me?"
16 SABBATH TALKS
"He will help you not to be angry);
and His Holy Spirit will fill your heart
with sweet, gentle, loving thoughts, so
that very soon you will almost forget
Mother, I think the worst troubles
I have now, are when I so often do
what I ought not to do, and then after-
wards I feel so vexed, and do so wish
I could always do right. But I don't
see how I can go to God with such
troubles as these, for I know He is
displeased with me when I do wrong,
and then I am afraid to tell Him."
"Ah, Sarah, that is a great mistake.
You were not afraid to tell me the other
day that you went into the fields after
I told you not to go."
O mother, that is a very different
thing. I knew that you would be dis-
pleased; but then you love me so, and
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 17
speak so kindly to me,-forgiving me
when I am sorry,-that I love you
better than ever, and feel as if I could
never do any thing to grieve you
"Try to feel the same towards your
Father in heaven. He loves you
more tenderly than I do, and He is far
more ready to forgive than any earthly
being ever was, or ever can be. He
sees the first thought of sorrow in your
heart when you have done wrong, and
He pities you, and will listen to your
feeblest prayer, and will help you not
to do wrong again."
"Will He let me tell Him how
sorry I feel, and how much I wish to
Yes, and He is ready to forgive you
for Christ's sake. Whenever you have
been angry again, go to your room,
18 SABBATH TALKS
and confess your fault; ask Him to
forgive you, and to help you never
to be angry again. Say,' Preserve me,
0 God, for in Thee do I put my trust;-
take care of me when I am tempted,
and keep me from doing what is wrong.'
You will then rise from your knees
stronger than ever before, and with
such a love in your heart toward your
best Friend, that you will resolve to
keep from doing anything that could
grieve One so tender and so kind."
Mother, I am very glad we read
that Psalm this morning. I think I
love God better already, and I hope I
shall learn to trust in Him."
"I hope you will; and if you
begin when you are a little girl, you
will learn more and more about Him,
and be far happier than those who
have no such Friend."
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 19
"Cannot all people go to God with
their wants ?"
"Certainly, if they wish to do so,
and if they come through Christ; but
a great many people never choose to
tell God their troubles-never ask
Him to forgive them, or to help them,
or to preserve them. They did not
begin in their childhood, and it is diffi-
cult to learn this trust when we are
"Oh, I hope I shall learn it now,
while you can help me, mother."
20 SABBATH TALKS
MY HEART SHALL REJOICE IN THY, SALVATION.
PSALM xiii. 5.
"SALVATION That is the same
word I hear our minister say so often
in his sermons; and I have read it a
greatmany times in the Bible. I wonder
what it means. I will ask mother.-
Mother, what is Salvation ?"
Salvation is being saved from some-
thing. There may be a great many
kinds of salvation; salvation from
sickness, and from starving, and from
fire, and from anything which we
are afraid of, or which troubles us."
What does 'rejoice in Thy salva-
"The good man who said, My heart
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 21
shall rejoice in Thy salvation,' meant
that he took delight in thinking of
Is it God's salvation that the
minister talks about?"
Yes, my dear."
Why is it called God's salvation?"
"Because it is God who saves His
people, and salvation is therefore God's
work, God's gift."
Please, mother, tell me what God
saves people from?"
"From sin, and from the conse-
quences of sin."
0 mother, what hard words !
Please tell me all about it, and make it
"You know, Emily, that all little
girls and boys at times do wrong.
Sometimes they are disobedient; some-
times they are impatient and angry;
22 SABBATH TALKS
sometimes they tell lies; sometimes they
forget God, and neglect to pray to Him,
and do not love Him. Sometimes there
is, a naughty spirit in their hearts, which
makes them not wish to do anything
right. They are full of naughtiness,
and do not care to be good. Did you
ever see any little children who felt so?
do you ever feel so yourself?"
"Yes, mother, sometimes I do; but
only a little while now and then; for
you look so sad, and talk so nicely
to me about it, that I soon get over it
and begin to do better."
Suppose you had no one to tell you
of your faults, and teach you to over-
come such wrong feelings-do you
think you should ever grow better?"
"I am afraid not."
"No, you would grow worse and
worse, and instead of showing a
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 23
naughty spirit 'now and then,' you
would come at last to show it always,
and you would grow very selfish-very
impatient-very unlovely indeed,-and
very unlike the Saviour. Do you think
you should be happy then ?"
Oh no, indeed, mother, for I am
never so miserable as when I feel
"This naughtiness is called sin. It
is a bitter and an evil thing. When
we allow it to grow in our hearts, it
prevents us from loving God, our
heavenly Father; and if we are not
saved from it, we can never be happy,
nor live in heaven, for there is no sin
What a bad thing sin must be !"
"Sin is the worst thing in the whole
world. Nothing else gives half so much
sorrow. To have no friends, and no
24 SABBATH TALKS
home, and no clothes, would be much
better than to live in sin, and to have
sin always growing in us. I cannot
think of anything which I wish so much
to be saved from, as a sinful spirit. I
think I would rather be lame, or blind,
or hungry, or suffer any kind of pain,
than not be saved from sin."
You are not naughty, mother !"
"Yes, my precious child, the same
evil feelings that come up in your little
heart are sometimes in mine. When I
was a child I often felt them, and they
are not quite cured yet. I am too
often selfish and unloving; I grieve my
Saviour, and do not obey my heavenly
Father, and am unhappy because I am
sinful. I have shed many, many bitter
tears for this; I have wept more for
this than I ever did for anything else.
But I know it will not be always so. 1
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 25
shall some day be perfectly good, and
holy, and pure, just like the blessed
Saviour, and never have another wrong
feeling for ever."
"That will be when you are in
"Yes, Emily. 'There we shall see
His face, and never, never sin. "
"Shall I be there, mother?"
"Yes, if you are sorry for sin, and
strive against it constantly, and pray
every day for God's salvation. He
has said that He will surely hear such
prayers; and that if we confess our
sins, He will' forgive us, and cleanse
us from all unrighteousness.' And
there is another beautiful promise:
'Blessed are they that hunger and
thirst after righteousness, for they
shall be filled.'"
"But, mother, when I have been
26 SABBATH TALKS
naughty, and you have talked with me,
and prayed for me, and I feel sorry, then
I think I shall never do so or feel so
again. And yet, perhaps, the very next
day I have the same wicked feelings
again. I am afraid it will be always
so, and that they will always keep
"So they would, if we had no
heavenly Father, 4no kind Jesus, no
Holy Spirit, to save us from them.
God gave up His only Son, that we
might be saved. Jesus left heaven,
and suffered much, and then died upon
the cross, that our sins might be for-
given. And Jesus rose again, and
lives in heaven to pray for us, and to
send down His Spirit into our hearts,
that sin may be destroyed. Remember
that nothing is so much to be feared
and fought against as sin ; nothing is so
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 27
delightful, or so much to be desired, as
salvation from sin; and we have no
friend who loves us so well, or whom we
ought to love so much, as God who
gives us this salvation."
"Mother,the next time I feel naughty,
what shall I do?"
Remember that your heavenly
Father is willing to cure you of all
wrong feelings, and to make you like
the holy little children in heaven. Go
to your room, kneel down, and ask the
Lord to make you sorry, and to help
you to do better. Ask Him to forgive
you, for Jesus Christ's sake, and to
put better feelings within you. Then
say, 'Begone, bad thoughts; I am
resolved to feel right, and to do right.'
Set yourselves against the naughty
feeling. Try to do what is right.
Make your tongue speak gently and
28 SABBATH TALKS
lovingly. Do cheerfully whatever you
are bid to do, and strive against every
evil thought. Every time you try to do
this, you will find yourself growing
stronger and stronger; and your happi-
ness will be growing like the happiness
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 29
DO ALL THINGS WITHOUT MURMURINGS AND
DISPUTINGS.--PIL. ii. 14.
"PUT on your thick shawl when
you go out this morning, Mary; it is
"Oh, dear I don't like that shawl.
It isn't pretty, and it doesn't feel com-
fortable. Mayn't I put on the yellow
No, my child; the yellow one is
not warm enough."
"Oh, mother, please let me put on my
red cape, then; that is warm."
"Do as I bid you, Mary. Put on
your thick shawl, and don't say another
word about it."
Oh dear; I wish that thick shawl
30 SABBATH TALKS
had never been made! I always have
to wear it, and it is such an ugly
I think Mary has never learned this
Bible verse-" Do all things without
murmurings and disputings." Go,
Mary, and learn it now. If you will not
only learn it, but obey it, you will be
a much happier little girl; and I am
sure your mother's heart will be glad.
Nothing is more unpleasant than to
hear little children fretting and grum-
bling about what they are told to do.
And it is sinful, too. God has for-
George, I want you to do an errand
for me. Get your cap and your over-
coat, and be ready by the time I have
written this note."
0 mother, I'm just in the middle of
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 31
a story! Do let me wait till I have
"I cannot wait a moment, my boy.
Lay down your book, and come back as
soon as you can. Then you may finish
It looks like rain. I shall get
Take an umbrella, and walk quick-
ly; a little rain will not hurt you."
I don't like to go alone. May I ask
Willie to go with me ?"
No, George, I am in haste for this
medicine, and cannot wait while you go
for Willie. Don't be so slow. Let me
see you move as if you wished to please
I'm tired; and I don't like to do
errands. I wish you would hire a boy
to do them."
George's mother feels very sad. I
32 SABBATH TALKS
see tears in her eyes. The baby is ill,
and she wants his medicine, and her
.heart is grieved to see George so selfish
and lazy. If this little boy could learn
to do all things without murmurings
and disputings," how much better it
would be He could almost have gone
to the shop, and got back again while
he was speaking all those fretful words;
and then his errand would have been
done, and he could have finished his
story, and his kind mother would not
have been grieved.
God has given us a great many
commands in His word, and we always
find that obeying these commands
makes us the happier. It is so with
this one command that I have been
telling you about. Try it for a week,
little boys and girls. Do all things
without murmurings and disputings"
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 33
Go the moment you are sent, and do
exactly what you are bid to do, without
a word of grumbling; and see if you
are not far happier than when you fret,
and murmur, and sulk.
34 SABBATH TALKS
I WILL SING UNTO THE LORD AS LONG AS I LIVE.
PsALM civ. 33.
EDWARD, have you ever stood on some
beach by the sea-shore, and listened to
the unceasing sound of the waves?
The ocean is never quiet. Sometimes
its waters roll and dash, and roar
upon the sands; and sometimes they
come gently in, only whispering along
the shore. But they are never, never
quiet. All day, and all night, the ocean
sings its solemn hymn of praise to its
Have you ever risen, in the summer
time, with the first morning light, and
listened to the countless voices of the
birds? The air is filled with music.
to the unceasing sound of the waves?"
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 37
It seems as if each little throat were
trying to utter its loudest, sweetest
note. The birds have just woke up
from their night's long sleep, and they
are singing their morning hymn to the
God who made them.
Or have you been out in the still
evening time ? Men have gone to their
homes, and all things are hushed to the
repose of night, but even then you can
hear thousands of insects. Before they
close their eyes, they chirp their even-
ing song of thanks to Him who painted
the butterfly's wing, and who supplies
the wants of the smallest creature He
Have you lifted up your eyes on a
frosty night in winter, and seen the
bright stars over your head? They
38 SABBATH TALKS
too, are singing in solemn tones their
For ever singing, as they shine,
The hand that made us is Divine.
Well, then, if all. things praise the
Lord, what shall little children do?
David says, "1 will sing unto the
Lord as long as I live." Do you say
this too, Edward. Sing some hymn of
praise to your heavenly Father, when
you rise in the morning. Sing to Him
in the day, and before you sleep at
night. Sing to Him in your heart.
Let sweet, and pleasant, and loving
thoughts be always going up to Him
who loves you and cares for you. Say
as David did, "I will sing unto the
Lord as long as I live !"
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 39
HOLD UP MY GOINGS IN THY PATHS, THAT MY
FOOTSTEPS SLIP NOT.-PsALM xvii. 5.
THIS is a prayer, Fanny. If it were
winter, and the paths were full of ice,
you would find it difficult to walk, and
you would be glad to take hold of your
father's hand, and you would beg him
to hold you up. You could take very
few steps without falling, unless he
were with you.
Life is a slippery path, in which we
are all walking; and we must say to
God, "Hold up my goings in Thy
paths, that my footsteps slip not."
We are trying to do right-to grow
like Jesus-and to please God; but
very often we are tempted to do
40 SABBATH TALKS
wrong, and if God is not near to help
us, we shall slide into sin.
Little James has broken his mother's
beautiful blue pitcher. He did not
intend to do it. It slipped from his
fingers, while he was looking at it.
James stands there, looking very sor-
rowful. He hears his mother coming.
What will he do? At first he thinks
he will go out at the front door, and
run away. Then he thinks he will say
that the cat broke it. He knows how
wicked this would be, but he feels afraid
of telling his mother that he did it.
James has come to a very slippery
place in his path. If God is not near
to help him, he will slide into a great
sin. He will say what is not true.
James must pray in his heart to his
heavenly Father, Hold up my goings
in Thy paths, that my footsteps
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 41
slip not. Help me, 0 help me not to
Your mother gives you leave to go
and spend an hour with Mary, and
tells you to come straight home. You
like to play with Mary, and you run
joyfully away to her house, and play
merrily till the hour is past. Then you
get your bonnet to go home, but Mary
says, Don't go yet. I am going out
for a walk. Do go with me a little way.
Your mother won't mind. I'll tell her
when we come back that I asked you."
You wish to go with Mary very much,
but you know it would be wrong. You
stop and think, and wish that your
mother were not so particular. A
naughty spirit is rising in your heart.
You have come to a slippery place in
your path. If you are not careful, you
42 SABBATH TALKS
will fall. If God does not help you,
you will disobey and grieve your
mother, and you will also displease
Him. Pray to Him earnestly, Hold up
my goings in Thy paths." You need
not speak a word with your lips, but
you can lift up your thoughts to Him,
and He will (as it were) take you by
the hand, and keep you from sliding into
that sin of disobedience, and you will
say, No, Mary, I must do as mother
told me ;" and you will go happily to
your home, and kiss your mother, and
you will be glad that you had a
heavenly Father to keep you from evil.
You are taught that it is your duty to
read your Bible, and to pray. You go
to your little room every morning to do
this. But sometimes, as you are going,
you think of dolly, and wish you
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 43
could play with her for a little while
first; or you want to go out for a run
in the garden; and you do not feel
inclined to read your Bible. You
would rather do something else, and
you turn to go out of your room. This
is a slippery place. No one can be safe
or happy without praying and reading
God's word every day. He bids us all
do this, and we sin against Him when
we neglect it. His eye sees you stand-
ing by the door. Go back, and kneel
down, and pray, Hold up my goings
in Thy paths, that my footsteps slip
not." He will hear you, and help you
to do right, and will not.let you slide
into this wrong thing.
Every day little children and grown
people have need to say this prayer, for
it is God only who can keep us from
44 SABBATH TALKS
THE LOED IS MY ROCK.-PsALI xviii. 2.
WHEN I go to the sea-side, Jane, I
bathe every day in the ocean. It is
very refreshing on a warm day to go
into the cool salt water. There are
some rocks in the water at one of my
favourite bathing places, and some
people wish they were away. But I
have found them very useful. When
the weather is pleasant, the water is
smooth enough; but sometimes, after
a storm, the waves come rolling in so
furiously that I could not stand'on my
feet, or be safe for a moment, if it were
not for the rocks. I hold fast to them,
and then the sea may dash upon me, but
it cannot carry me away. These rocks
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 45
are always there. The water comes
and goes. Sometimes it is high tide,
and sometimes it is low tide. Some-
times the rocks are covered so that
only the tops of them are to be seen,
and at other times they are quite bare
and dry. But they never move, and
when I want them they are always
there. I like those rocks. I think I
should have been carried away into
the sea, and been drowned, if it had
not been for them.
David calls God a rock. Do you
know why? Because we can cling to
Him when we are in trouble, and be
safe. I have seen a great deal of
trouble. Sometimes I have been very
ill, and did not know but I should die.
I did not know but I might have to
suffer great pain all the rest of my life.
46 SABBATH TALKS
I did not know but I should have to
lie for years and years in my bed, and
never walk upon the green earth any
more. Sickness is a great trouble. It
seems like the waves of the sea coming
up to carry away all our happiness and
comfort. God is our rock, when we
are ill. We must cling to Him. lHe
will save us. We must- pray to Him,
and think of Him, and love Him, and
trust Him; and perhaps He will make
us well,-or if not, He will comfort us,
and give us patience in our sickness,
so that it shall not destroy all our
peace. Learn to say, "The Lord is
my rock." You will be glad of this
when sickness comes.
I have seen sad days when my friends
died. They closed their eyes, and went
away where I saw them no more. I
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 47
was glad to have them go to Jesus and
be happy, but I was very sad without
them. I felt afraid, too. It seemed
as if the -great waves of the sea were
coming up to carry away all I loved,
and leave me alone. Bitter thoughts
were in my heart. But in that time of
trouble, God was my rock. I clung to
Him. God, our heavenly Father, never
dies. His eyes never close. He always
looks kindly upon us. He will never
leave nor forsake us. He is like a rock.
If the waves of trouble roll, and almost
hide Him from our sight, He is still
there. We can hold him fast in our
hearts. Sometimes we have friends,
and sometimes they leave us; but God
is always near.
There have been times when I felt
very unhappy, I hardly knew why. I
48 SABBATH TALKS
was tired of my work, and tired of my
books, and tired of my companions. The
world did not seem a pleasant world.
The sunshine did not look bright, nor
the song of the birds sound pleasant.
I felt as if the great roaring waves of
the sea had swallowed me up, and there
was nothing above or around me but
the briny ocean. I felt afraid, too. I
knew I had done many things which
were displeasing to God. I had for-
gotten Him a great many times. I had
not loved Him as I ought. Sometimes
I had neglected to pray to Him, and I
had not tried every day to please Him,
but only to please myself. I was afraid
He would not take me to heaven-afraid
I should never be like the holy ones
there;-and I shed bitter tears, and was
in deep, deep trouble.
But the Lord was my rock then also.
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 49
I knelt down, and confessed my sinful-
ness. I told Him I knew I had done
wrong, and was often doing wrong. I
asked him to forgive me for Jesus
Christ's sake, and begged Him to love
me, and save me, and teach me to love
Him. And He heard my prayer. He
sent a sweet peace into my soul. I felt
as if I should always love Him, and live
to please Him. I clung to Him, and
the waves did not carry me away.
Then the sunshine was bright again,
and my comforts returned, and I was
very happy. Always, as long as I live,
I will love the Lord my rock.
50 SABBATH TALKS
THE EARTH IS THE LORD'S, AND THE FUJLNESS
THEREOF; THE WORLD, AND THEY THAT DWELL
THEREIN.-PSALM xxiv. 1.
"MOTHER,,do yOU know who is the
richest man in this town?"
No, my boy."
I do. I heard father telling a
gentleman the other day that Mr.
Burgess owned five hundred acres of
land, and was the richest man in all the
county. Do you know Mr. Burgess,
"Yes, I know him very well."
I wish I did."
"Why do you wish to know him,
Willie? Because he is rich ?"
Yes, mother ; I am sure it must be
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 51
a good thing to know rich men, for every-
body speaks of them with so much
respect. Do you think I shall ever be
I can't tell you that; but let me ask
you a question or two. Who, do you
suppose, owned Mr. Burgess's land
before he did?"
I don't know, mother; perhaps his
"And who owned it before his
I suppose his grandfather."
"And to whom do you think it
belonged before the first inhabitant
ever lived on our island ?"
Why, it belonged to nobody then."
Who do you think made that land,
suppose God made it, mother,
when He made the rest of the world."
52 SABBATH TALKS
"And if a person makes a thing, to
whom does it belong? If you make a
kite, whose is it?"
It is mine, unless I choose to give it
Who owns all the land in the world
then, Willie, and who is richer than all
other beings ?"
"You mean God, mother; but I
never thought of that before, and I
never heard anybody call God rich.
But if the land is all His, why do men
buy and sell it, and call it their own?"
God allows them to use His land
while they live in this world, and to
call it their own; but it does not really
belong to them; and they cannot take
it away with them when they die."
But, mother, some men have plenty
of money, and that must be their own ?"
No; even money is not their own.
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 53
Gold and silver are taken out of God's
earth. The gold and the silver are His.
David says, The earth is the Lord's,
and the fdlness thereof.' "
Oh, mother, that is what's written
up over the Royal Exchange."
"Yes. And God says, in another
place, 'The silver and the gold are
mine, and the cattle upon a thousand
hills.' God made all the precious
things that are hidden in the earth, and
they are all His. No man has anything
but what God gives him."
Then why do men think so much of
their money and their land ? and. why
do some rich people feel as if they were
better than poor people ?"
Because they forget that all they
have belongs to God, and that they
must leave it here for somebody else
when they go away."
54 SABBATH TALKS
But, mother, if all the land and all
.the money belong to God, why does He
give more to some than to others?"
God does not think riches the best
thing in this world. If He gives to one
man money, and to another a loving
heart and holy temper, He thinks the
poor man is better off than the one we
call a rich man."
But people must have some money,
or else starve."
Yes, but God has promised that His
children, who love and trust Him, shall
be cared for. Those who have no
money, can earn it; and those who are
too ill to earn it, often have money
given to them. God will take care
that none of His children shall be in
want of what is really good for them.
All the food in the world is His, and
they may ask Him for what they need."
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 55
"If I were hungry, and had no
money to get bread, and no friend to
get it for me, would God give me
"Yes, if you pray to Him for it;
and if He saw it best that you should
"Then does He never let good men
die of hunger ?"
"Sometimes He does: it is not long
since a missionary in South America
died for want of food. God could
have prevented this, but He saw it
best to take His servant home to
heaven, where he would never hunger
and never thirst again."
If God wished me to live longer,
would He send me bread from heaven ?"
"No; but He would send some of
His children to bring it to you; for
the people in the world all belong to
56 SABBATH TALKS
Him. 'The earth is the Lord's, and
the fulness thereof; the world, and they
that dwell therein.'
Does God send people where He
"Yes; when He thinks it best, He
gives us money; and when He thinks
it best, He takes it away. When He
pleases, He raises up friends for us;
and when He pleases, He takes them
away to a distance."
Is a poor man just as good as a
rich man, mother?"
If he loves God, he is not only as
good, but he is far better than the rich
man who does not love God."
What good is there, then, in being
If we are rich, we can do a great
deal of good. We can help the poor
and the industrious; and if we ask
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 57
God to teach us, He will show us a
great many ways in which we can be
useful, so that we may make a great
many people happy with our riches.
But it is a great deal better to be poor
than to be rich, unless we do good with
our money, and serve God with it."
Why, mother ?"
"Because God will be grieved and
angry, if we spend all His money on
ourselves, and only for our own comfort
Will He take it away from us?"
"Perhaps He will; or He may take
away our health, and then we cannot
enjoy it; or He may send so many cares
and troubles with it, that it will do us
no good. Great riches are no comfort,
unless the blessing of God comes with
them; and He does not give a large
blessing to those who are selfish."
58 SABBATH TALKS
"Are you willing to be poor, mo-
Yes, if the Lord pleases. He
knows what is best. If He will love me
and give me His Spirit, I can do without
riches. The best and happiest way is
to leave it all to Him."
Mother, please ask Him to give me
His blessing, and then I shall not care
to be rich."
I will ask that God's blessing may
always rest upon my precious child,
whether he is rich or poor."
I have a little money now. How
should I learn to use it so as to please
Do not spend it for sugar-candy or
cake, but put it by and keep it for some
useful purpose, or for some good end."
But, mother, I haven't much."
"A penny will buy bread enough to
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 59
keep a hungry child from starving, or a
book which will tell of Jesus Christ."
Must people give away all their
No, my boy. The first thing for a
man to do with money, is to provide for
his own family. God would not be
pleased with him, if he were to let his
wife and children suffer from want,
while he gave away a great deal to
others. Nor would He be pleased with
a little boy who would not give a
penny to his sister. But when our
own families are provided with what is
needful, then we must do what we can
for others. We must not spend all our
money for ourselves."
Mother, I have got six bright pen-
nies. Do they belong to God?"
Yes, my boy; but He has given
them to you that you may use them."
60 SABBATH TALKS
"What shall I do with them-I
mean, so as to please Him ?"
You are a happy little boy, and
have a great many comforts. You have
nice clothes, and a good home, and
plenty of food-books enough-play-
things enough. Your little sisters have
all they want. You do not need to
spend the pennies either for yourself or
for them. I think, if you wish to
please God with them, you wi-11 spend
them for somebody that is not so happy
as you are."
There is a poor little boy who
goes to our Sunday-school, but he has
no hymn book. He has only got six-
pence that some one gave him for going
an errand. If I give him my six, he
will have enough to buy the hymn
book. I think that will be a right
thing to do-don't you, mother ?"
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 6]
"Yes, my dear boy."
Shall I make haste and go to
school, mother, so that I may give
them to him" before teacher comes?
How bright his eyes will look, and
how I shall love to see him reading in
the new hymn book! and, mother, will
you cover it as you did mine, so that
it may not be soiled ?"
Yes; bring it, when you come
"I think it is a good thing to spend
money so as to please God and not our-
selves; for I did not feel half so happy
when I bought sugar-candy with the
money grandpapa gave me on my
Striving to please God always
makes us happy; pleasing ourselves
brings nothing but unhappiness in the
62 SABBATH TALKS
DELIGHT THYSELF ALSO IN THE LORD, AND HE
SHALL GIVE THEE THE DESIRES OF THINE
HEART. PSALM xxxvii. 4.
REJOICE IN THE LORD, YE RIGHTEOUS.
PsALM xcvii. 12.
" WIH must we delight and rejoice in
the Lord ?"
Because He is a God of love, and
we can always come to Him through
Jesus Christ, and He will always hear
us; we can always trust in Him, and
He will always take care of us."
May we not rejoice and delight in
friends that are kind to us ?"
"Yes, my child, we have a great
many friends whom we love, and they
make us very happy when they are
with us. But sometimes they are
away; and sometimes they die and
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 63
leave us; and sometimes they grow
unkind and forget us, or do not love us
as much as they once did. Then we
are sorrowful instead of glad, and we
can no longer rejoice in them."
"But can't we rejoice in other
"There are a great many things
that can give us pleasure. We love to
see the sunshine, and to hear the song
of the birds;-our hearts beat with
joy-we bound along with delight.
But dark days come when the sun
does not shine, and when we see
nothing but clouds, and when winter
hushes the notes of the birds. Then
we feel unhappy, and there is a gloom
over all things."
Well, mother, but we have pleasant
"Yes, Agnes; our books and our
64 SABBATH TALKS
work sometimes give us pleasure.
They take up our thoughts, and it is a
good thing for us when we are diligent
and studious. But sometimes we are
ill, and can neither work nor read.
There is nothing earthly in which we
can always be glad, because the best
earthly things may leave us or disap-
point us. But God our heavenly
Father never leaves us, never fails us.
We can always rejoice in Him. If our
friends forsake us, and our hearts are
sad, we can still be glad in the Lord.
If the sunshine has fled, and dark,
gloomy clouds are over our heads, they
cannot hide our God from us, for He
still shines upon our souls, and we can
delight ourselves in Him. If we are
ill, and can do nothing but lie upon
our bed, still we do not lose our best
Friend, for He can comfort those who
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 65
are in distress. No sickness can pre-
vent our being glad that we have such
a Father. It will only make us love
"David says that if we delight in
God, He will give us the desires of our
hearts ;-is that a true promise?"
"Yes, Agnes; all the promises of
God's word are sure."
"Do you really believe God ever
gives people all that their hearts
"Certainly I do; but He will not do
this for all people-only for those who
love Him and delight in Him. And
He can well grant them their desires,
for they will ask for nothing wrong.
If a little girl loves her mother, she will
not wish for anything which her mother
would not think it best to give her,
nor wish to do anything which would
66 SABBATH TALKS
displease or grieve her. And if a child
loves God, he will pray only for such
things as it will please God to bestow."
"What must we pray to God for,
that He may give us what we ask ?"
"If we delight in the Lord, we shall
wish most of all to grow like His Son
Jesus Christ, and we shall ask Him to
teach and help us by His Holy Spirit.
Then we shall earnestly desire that all
our friends may love God, and we shall
pray for that. We shall wish to be
prepared for heaven, and we shall ask
for God's grace that our hearts may be
made new. And all these things God
will give us, if we love and delight in
Him. We shall not wish for riches,
nor fine clothes, nor for anything that
belongs only to this world. We shall
be willing that He should give us these
or not, just as He pleases. But we
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 67
shall desire to be like Him, and to please
Him, and to live with Him in heaven;
and these blessings He will surely be-
stow on His loving children."
68 SABBATH TALKS
WAIT'ON THE LORD, AND KEEP HIS WAY.
PSALM xxxvii. 34.
"MOTHER, why were you so displeased
with Ann this morning?"
Because she did not come when I
called her, but kept me waiting a long
What was she doing ?"
"She was about some work of her
own, and she did not come till she had
"Why must Ann always leave her
own work to do your's, mother, and
always come when you call her ?"
"Because she is my servant, and
lives with me to do my work. When
she first came here, she promised to
work for me, and to do just what I
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 69
wished; and I promised to pay her so
much money for waiting upon me."
Must all servants wait upon their
masters and mistresses?"
"Yes, Eliza, as long as they live
with them. If servants do right, they
will always come when they -are
called, and do what they are bid to
"I am glad I am not a servant. I
don't like to be called away from what
I am doing. I am afraid I should do as
"That would be showing a very
wrong spirit. Whether you are a
servant or not, you should always be
willing to leave your work or your play,
and do what you can to oblige others.
Little children especially must always
come when they are called. No
matter how pleasantly you are playing,
70 SABBATH TALKS
or how busy you may be, you should
run as soon as you hear your father
speak to you, and be always ready to
wait upon him."
But father does not pay me any
money for doing all his messages and
No ; but he gives you your clothes,
and provides for all your wants. He
is your father, also, and God has com-
manded you-to obey him."
"When I am grown up, shall I have
anybody to wait upon, and to leave my
work for? Ladies and gentlemen are
not servants to anybody, are they,
Yes, my dear, we are all servants
of God, and the Bible says we must all
wait upon Him. When you are grown
up, as well as now, you must be ready
to leave all and to serve Him."
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 71
"What must we do for God, mo-
The Bible says, Whatsoever ye do,
do all to the glory of God;'-that
means, we must do all we have to do in
such a way as will please Him. A
servant has to do all her work so as to
please her mistress. That is what she
is paid for doing. But that is not
enough. She must be ready always to
leave any work she is doing, at any
time, to do whatever her mistress sets
her to do. So we must, every day,
and all day long, be striving to please
God in what we do; and we must
also be ready at any time to leave the
things we like best, if He calls us to do
"How does He call us, mother? and
what does He set us to do ?"
Every morning we have to dress
72 SABBATH TALKS
ourselves neatly-we have to eat our
breakfast-we have to learn our lessons
-we have to do our work. If we do
all these things, and do them well, and
if we have a kind and loving spirit all
day-still we are not pleasing God, if
we neglect His word, and do not pray
to Him. He has bid us seek His face.
If we listen, we can hear Him calling us
every morning to do this, and we should
leave everything else for it. It is
necessary to do a great many things,
but nothing is so important as to wait
upon the Lord, and keep His way.'
Ann was not idle when I called her this
morning. She was busy. She heard
me speak several times, and she did not
come. She kept on with what she was
about. She did not do right. She
was busy about the wrong thing. So,
little children and grown people are not
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 73
doing right, if they keep on doing other
work when the Lord calls them to
prayer. They should leave those things
which they think best, and obey His
voice ; then they can return to their own
work with His blessing upon them.
Sometimes God calls us to do things
very different from those which we plan
and wish to do. Little Susan has the
promise that she shall go to see Emily
on Saturday, and she is very happy
in thinking of it. But when Saturday
comes, it rains, and she cannot go.
God makes it rain. It is His wish that
Susan should stay at home. Susan
must not grumble and fret, but 'wait'
cheerfully 'on the Lord.' Susan's
mother has a large family, and a great
deal of sewing and other work to do for
them. She is a good mother, and pro-
vides for all their wants. God gave her
74 SABBATH TALKS
these children that she might take care
of them, but sometimes He calls her to
do something else for Him. Once
when she had a great deal of work cut
out, and was in a great hurry to get it
done, and was very anxious not to be
hindered, the Lord sent a long sickness
upon her, so that her work-basket had
to be put away, and she had to lie in
bed, and do no work at all but wait on
the Lord, while He taught her to please
Him, and not herself."
Mother, was not that very hard ?"
"God, our heavenly Father, is a
great deal wiser than we are, and He
knows best what is good for us. He
is trying to prepare us for heaven, and
very often He sees that we are so inte-
rested in earthly things, that we forget
all about heaven. Then in some way
He makes us remember that this world
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 75
is not our home, and that we shall never
be ready to go home, if we take no
time and no pains in preparing for it.
It is a very good thing that we have
a heavenly Father, who will not let us
always please ourselves. If little Mary
had no father and mother to teach her
what is right, she would grow up a
dunce and have a great many bad habits,
and never be fit to have a house and
family of her own. I have seen little
girls pout and fret when their mothers
corrected them, and look as if they
almost wished they had no mother to
please. And not long since I even
heard a little girl wishing that there
were no God, because then she could
never displease Him. But if there were
no God, we should never reach our
heavenly home, nor be fit for its joys.
There would be nobody to help us in
76 SABBATH TALKS
fighting against sin-nobody to forgive
us when we are sorry for sin-nobody
to put better thoughts in our hearts,-
and nobody to love us more than all
other friends. Oh, we should be very
lonely if there were no God. How could
I be happy without my heavenly Father
and my blessed Redeemer? I could
neither be happy nor good. How sad
I should be, if, when the angels carried
me up the shining way and through the
pearly gate, I were not to find Him
'Were I in heaven without my God,
'Twould be no joy to me !'
I am very, very glad that there is a God,
and that He knows all my faults. I am
glad that He hates sin. I am glad I
have to wait on Him, and not to please
myself; for I know that (if I ask Him)
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 77
He will cure me of sin. He will not
leave a single wrong thing in my heart.
He will not spare for my crying, but
will take from me all hurtful pleasures.
He will teach me patience, and sub-
mission, and humility, and meekness.
He will pity me, and love me, and en-
courage me. He will try. in a great
many ways to do me good, and He
will never leave me, if I only wait on
Mother, when you first talked
about this, I did not like to think of
it; but now it seems pleasanter to me.
1 wish I could always be willing to give
up my own way; but sometimes it
seems very hard."
78 SABBATH TALKS
EVEN THE VERY HAIRS OF YOUR HEAD ARE ALL
NUMBERED.-LUKr xii. 7,
"WHO can have been counting all the
hairs on this little boy's head? Was it
his father ? Did he love you so much
that he has counted all these fine glossy
hairs, and can tell just how many there
are? Go, Charlie, and ask your father."
"Father, did you count my hairs?
Do you know how many I have got ?"
No, my boy; I can't tell you that."
Perhaps, then, it was your mother.
She has taken care of you ever since
you were a tiny baby. She has watched
over you whenever you were ill. She
loves you better, and knows more
about you than any one on earth. Let
us ask her."
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 79
"Mother, have you ever counted the
hairs on my head ? Somebody has;-
was it you, mother?"
No, my dear little boy. I can tell
how old you are; and how many feet
and hands you have; and how many
eyes; and how many teeth; and I know
how many pinafores and stockings you
have. I have combed and brushed your
head a great many times, but I can't at
all tell how many hairs there are upon
"Who can it be?. Was- it your
sister Sarah ? Sarah, have you counted
the hairs upon Charles's head ? Some-
body knows the number of his hairs, and
he wishes very much to know who it can
have been. It was not his father nor his
mother. Did you do it ?"
No, indeed. I love Charlie very
much, and I cannot tell how many times
80 SABBATH TALKS
in a day I kiss him; but I am sure I
couldn't so much as guess how many
hairs he has."
"What ? Can there be any one who
knows more about Charles than his
father, and mother, and sister? Does
any one love him better? Would any
one take better care of him ?-Yes,
little boy; you have a Friend better
and kinder than they. God is your
best Friend, your heavenly Father. He
knows all about you, because He made
you. And He it is who has numbered
God loved you, Charlie, before any
one else began to love you, and He
gave you kind parents, and a pleasant
home, and all the comforts you have.
He knows a great deal more about you
than your father and mother do. He
can not only tell how many minutes
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 81
you have lived, but how many more you
will live in this world. He knows all
you say, and all the thoughts that are
in your heart. Your mother does not
know what you are thinking of, but
your heavenly Father does. He knows
everything about you.
God never forgets you, Charlie. He
takes care of you when you are asleep,
and when all are asleep around you.
He keeps you breathing. He enables
you to walk, and talk. He gives you
all that makes you happy. It is His
world you live in; His sun, that shines
upon you; His moon, that looks so
beautiful to you; and those are His
stars, that twinkle every night above
your head. Do you see it rain? It is
He who sends the rain, and sends it to
water His flowers. Everything you see
when you look out of your window,
82 SABBATH TALKS
belongs to this good heavenly Father.
He made all the cattle upon the hills,
and the fish that are in the sea. The
little birds sing songs to Him, because
He makes them so happy; and the
brook, that babbles over the stones,
murmurs His praise. His home is
heaven, but He is in all places. He sees
all that is done on earth. You cannot
see Him, but He always sees you, and
always takes care of you."
Does He count sister's hairs as well
Yes, He takes just the same care
of Sarah as of you."
But sister's hair was all taken off,
when she had the fever; could He
count as well after that ?"
"Yes; not a hair of our head can
perish, unless He chooses; and not a
hair of our head can grow, unless He
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 83
wills it. No one can take such care of
us as God takes. No one can be so
kind or so full of love as God is. He
has been very good to Charlie. And
Charlie should thank Him for this, and
should learn to say,
Lord, let Thy tender love to me
Draw forth my heart in love to Thee!"
84 SABBATH TALKS
LOVE SUFFERETH LONG, AND IS KIND.
1 Con. xiii. 4.
DAY after day, and night after night,
for eleven days and nights, little
Freddy's mother has held him on her
lap. She has not undressed herself,
nor gone to rest in bed. She has not
left the room, except for a few moments
at a time. She looks very, very tired.
Little Freddy is ill. Poor baby! he
lies very still on his mother's lap. He
does not open his bright eyes, and
laugh as he used to do when Alice
comes into the room. He does not
creep about the floor, and under the
bed, playing at hide-and-seek. He
moans and cries, (a little, faint cry,)
and suffers sadly. His mother looks at
him, and the tears come into her eyes.
"Day after day, and night after night, little Freddy's mother has
held him on her lap."
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 87
She is afraid that he will die, and be
taken from her. She stoops down, and
kisses his pale cheek. She takes a soft
handkerchief, and dips it in cool water,
and bathes his forehead. Sometimes she
puts a little pillow under his head, and
holds him on it until her arm aches.
Sometimes she lays him over her shoul-
der, and rocks him gently. Sometimes
she puts him into his cradle for a few
minutes. Often she walks with him in
her arms across the room, backwards
and forwards, backwards and forwards,
very patiently, singing a low song.
She hardly eats any food. She does not
go out to ride. She does nothing but
take care of her precious baby. She is
very tired; she feels ill; but she does
not think of that. She loves little
Freddy better than she loves herself.
" Love suffereth long, dnd is kind."
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John's father sits in the evening by
the fire, with a letter in his hand. It is
from John's teacher, asking that John
may be taken away from school and
kept at home. The teacher says that
he is a troublesome boy. He is dis-
obedient and idle. He will not study
himself, and he tries to hinder the other
boys. He whispers, and laughs, and
will not do as he is bid. That is a sad
letter for the father to read. He is
troubled. He hardly knows what to do.
He has had a great deal of unhappiness
about John. The next morning he calls
his son to the parlour, and talks to him.
He tells him how grieved he is at his
bad conduct. He reminds him how
often he has been punished, and how
often he has been kindly warned, and
all in vain. John sees that his father
is unhappy, but he does not care. He
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 89
is taken away from that school and sent
to another, but he does not grow good.
Every day he does something wrong.
Sometimes his father talks to him.
Sometimes he has to punish him.
Often he mourns sadly over him.
Often, if you could see him in the dark
night, after everybody else is in bed,
you would see him praying for his son.
But he does not get out of patience
with him. He does not send him away
from home, and tell him never to come
back. Oh,. no; he buys him books, and
birds, and tools, and rabbits, hoping to
win him to better ways. Not long since
he gave him a new kite, because for one
whole day he had not been disobedient.
John's father will never leave off trying
to make him a good boy, for he loves
his son. "Love suffereth long, and is
90 SABBATH TALKS
In a poor-looking cellar where the
pleasant sun never shines-with no
carpet on the floor, no chairs to sit in,
and hardly any fire in the small old
grate-Ellen sits on a low stool, sewing
very fast, and looking very pale. It is
almost night. She hears a step, and
grows paler still. Some one opens the
door, and comes reeling into the room.
It is her father. She goes to meet him
and help him to a seat, for he seems not
able to walk. He will not be helped.
He speaks very unkind words to her;
and when she comes nearer, and tries to
take hold of his hand, he strikes her.
Ellen's father drinks, and it makes him
tipsy, so that he does not know what he
is doing. He loved Ellen, when she
was a little baby, and he used to hold
her in his arms as your father does
you; but when men begin to drink, it
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 91
takes away their love to their wives and
children, and makes them very cruel and
unkind. Ellen does not speak sharply
to her father. When she finds he can-
not get on alone, she goes again to him
and takes hold of his hand, while he
totters across to a chair by the fire.
Then she goes quietly to the closet, and
brings out his supper. It is all she has
in the house;-a piece of dry bread,
and a cold potato; no butter, no meat,
no tea. Her father spends all his
money in drink, and very often poor
Ellen is nearly starved. All the food
she and her father have, she buys with
the little money she earns by sewing;
and he would get that away from her if
he could. Ellen puts the bread, and
the potato, and a mug of water on the
table, and says, Father, your supper
is ready." Oh, how he talks when he
92 SABBATH TALKS
sits down! He uses dreadful language.
He is angry because there is no more to
eat, although it is his own fault.
When he has eaten his supper, he
goes to bed, and'Ellen sits alone again
at her work. The tears roll down her
face. She remembers better days than
these, when she had a kind father, and
a tender, loving mother, and a dear
little baby sister, and a cheerful home.
Her mother died a year ago, and the
sweet baby could not live without her.
Jesus pitied it, and took it home. Ellen
was left with her father, and her father
does not love her now. But she loves
him, and though he treats her unkindly
and frightens her, she never answers him
unkindly. She works hard to get food
for him and for herself. She tries in
every way to make him happy. She
talks pleasantly to him when he comes
WITH LITTLE CHILDREN. 93
home sober; and she sings little songs,
for Ellen can sing very sweetly. Every
day she prays many times for him, that
God will pity him and save him. I
think her prayers. will be answered.
The blessed Saviour hears, and He is
very pitiful. He knows everything that
occurs. He sees every tear poor Ellen
sheds. I hope He will give her father
a new heart, and make him very sorry
for all his sins, and give him strength to
leave off his evil ways.
Some kind ladies have tried to per-
suade Ellen that she ought to go away
from her miserable home; and they
have told her that they would find her a
better one. But she says, "No." She
will never leave her father. She will
always stay with him, and always love
him, and do everything for his comfort.
" Love suffereth long, and is kind."
94 SABBATH TALKS
See, Alice is drawing her little
brother about the garden! What a
bright, happy little boy he is Alice
looks tired., Well she may. It is no
small task to take care of little Johnnie,
and she has had him now for several
hours. Now she takes him indoors.
He requires constant watching. She
must not forget him for a moment.
Sometimes he creeps to the fender, and
is going to reach over and take up a
coal from the hearth, and Alice must
jump up to save him fiom being burned.
Next he climbs into a-chair, and there
he stands, rocking backwards and for-
wards, while his black eyes twinkle,
and he crows with delight, not knowing
how soon he would get a fall if sister
Alice did not sit patiently by, watching
every movement, and holding her hand
behind him. Then he tries to walk