The Baldwn Library
m ._ I
%rtc~I3-~- i4 7~CZt
Hqow f4tly jnUsjnr came into it.
BY F. M. S.,
AUTHOB OF HOPE ON; OR, THE HOUSE THAT JACK BUILT."
"Do to-day's duty-look not on,
Work while there's strength and light;
The day's toil is enough to bear,
And then there cometh night.
Enough that He in whom you live,
Is with you if you fail,
And giveth help, and hope, and heart,
And patience to prevail."
Thoughts in Versefor the Hard-worik'ff
and the uffer-i9g.
WILLIAM WOOD & CO., 61 WALKER ST.
I. THE CLOUDS ARISE, 7
II. HOW MARTHA RULED, 20
III. A FRIEND IN NEED IS A FRIEND INDEED," 33
IV. EDDY IN MISCHIEF,. 44
V. "A SOFT ANSWER TURNETH AWAY WRATH," 54
VI. REPENTANCE, AND WHAT CAME OF IT, 62
VII. THE DAY OF TROUBLE, 71
VIIL CLEAR SHINING AFTER RAIN" 86
'(1e loaubs Zrise.
"Think of the happy dead,
Gone to their Sabbath rest,
The burden of their life laid down,
Now and for ever blest."
Thoughts in Verse.
MR. GLEGSON was a rich merchant, and
his house was one of those pretty sub-
urban villas which abound in the
neighbourhood of most of our mercan-
Mrs. Glegson was entertaining com-
pany in the drawing-room; her children
were amusing themselves in their spa-
cious play-room; and in her kitchen an
animated conversation was being ca;r-
8 THE CLOUDS ARISE.
ried on between her cook and kitchen-
maid, the latter a girl whom she had
god from a training-school two years
"Mrs. Burke," said Martha, looking
up from the duster she was hemming,
" I don't see why a girl shouldn't try to
better herself, if she can."
"Nor do I," replied the cook, who
was making pastry; but I don't think
girls do better themselves by changing
their places continually. What makes
you dissatisfied here, Martha ?"
"I'm not dissatisfied; only, I think
I should like to be something above a
kitchen-maid," she answered hesitat-
"I suppose you think yourself too
good for that kind of work ?" said Mrs
Burke, rather scornfully.
"Not exactly that; but I should
like to have higher wages, and-"
THE CLOUDS ARISE. 9
"And what ? Speak out, Martha."
"You have always been kind to me,
Mrs. Burke, but-"
"But you don't like being under any
one-that's the truth. Now, Martha
Wilson, listen to me. I know we can't
put old heads on young shoulders, but
believe the words of a woman old
enough to be your mother; it's a safer
and easier thing, by far, to be ruled
than to rule."
"Martha, some one wants to speak
to you at the back-door," said Anne, the
housemaid, entering the kitchen at this
moment; and Martha laid her work
down hastily and went to the door,
where a ragged boy of eleven or twelve
years of age was standing.
"I's come after you, Martha, for
mother's a-dying," were his 'only
The colour faded from Martha's
10 THE CLOUDS ARISE.
cheeks, and she leaned against the door
for support; she could hardly speak,
but grasping her little brother's hand,
she managed to say,-
Oh Dick not dying ? tell me she's
not dying !"
I tell you she be; and if you don't
look sharp you won't see her alive.
Don't get so white; put on your bon-
net, and come along."
It was the work of an instant with
Martha to return to the kitchen and
tell the sad news to the cook; then,
wrapping her shawl around her, and
tying on her bonnet, she hurried away
with her brother.
How long the minutes seemed as
they walked through the muddy streets,
until they came to the narrow court in
which was situated Martha's home!
But they were there at last, and she
opened the door, and entered the room,
THE CLOUDS ARISE. 11
which served as kitchen and sitting-
There was a cry from all the chil-
dren, who were huddled together on the
floor, but Martha heeded them not, she
was thinking only of her who was lying
in the inner chamber. Was she in
time ? Would she get one smile, one
blessing from the being whom she loved
best on earth? Yes; as she bent-over
the bed, and put her face close to that
of her dying mother, she could catch
the. whispered words,-
"I'm 'very happy now, Martha; I
know I'm forgiven for Christ's sake-"
Martha pressed her lips on the fore-
head upon which the cold dews of
death were gathering, though she could
not speak for crying; but her mother
"Be a good girl to father, Martha;
he'll want some one to -keep things
12 THE CLOUDS ARISE.
straight. God bless you, child." These
were her last words, and ere an hour
had elapsed, she was dead.
Martha went round to the other side
of the bed, and knelt down beside her
father, who was seated there with his
head buried in his hands.
"Father," she whispered, "dear fa-
ther, I will be a good daughter to you."
The man took no notice, except to
mutter to himself, Ah, Sally I might
have been kinder to you, God forgive
"Has she been long ill, father ?"
Yes; but she wouldn't mind it;
she went about her work the same as
ever, an d I didn't know how bad she was."
Did she suffer much ?"
Ay," said the father more kindly
"I hope you may never have to beai
so much, my girl; come in now, and
get some tea."
THE CLOUDS ARISE. 13
Martha knew that it would do him
good to bring him out of that room,
so she followed him into the other.
Coming from a gentleman's house,
where she had been accustomed to see
everything neat, clean, and comfortable,
it was a strange sight that met her
A smouldering fire lighted the grate;
but it could hardly be said to give
warmth to the room. A rickety table
stood in the centre, and some broken
chairs were scattered about in various
directions. There was no carpet on
the dirty floor, which was covered with
rubbish; the paper hung in shreds
on the wall; the cupboard door was
open, and the contents plainly visible,
-some cracked and dirty plates and
dishes, and a few broken crusts of bread
in a brown dish.
It certainly looked very dreary and
14 THE CLOUDS ARISE.
uninviting, but Martha was too sad to
think much about it, only she felt her
heart sink within' her, and the weight
upon it became heavier than before.
How could she give up a comfortable
place, to settle down in this miserable
room ? But she had not much time
for thinking about it, for the children
clamoured round her, all delighted at
the novelty of having her amongst
What a pretty frock you've got on,
Martha," they exclaimed, for her clean
cotton dress was a great contrast to
their own ragged ones.
Hush, dears; don't talk of that
now; do you know that God has taken
mother up to heaven," and Martha took
little Willie, the youngest child, on her
lap and hid her face on his shoulder.
"Up to heaven! is that the happy
place, Martha ?"
THE CLOUDS ARISE. 15
Who'll do for us now ?" asked Dick,
bending over a stick which he was cut-
ting, that no one might see the tears
which filled his eyes.
Martha will," replied his father,
who had not spoken before.
"Yes! Martha will," repeated little
Willie, nestling closer to her.
"Well, I hope Martha will get this
place a bit more .comfortable, for it
hasn't been so since poor mother got
bad," said Ben, the eldest boy.
"And get me some new shoes," said
Lucy, a girl of eleven, looking down at
those which hardly covered her feet,
and were full of holes. "I can go back
to the factory now, can't I, father?
Martha will do the work."
Yes," said her father, you may go
back as soon as you like."
16 THE CLOUDS ARISE.
How many of you work in the fac-
tory ?" asked Martha.
Only Dick and I," answered Lucy.
"And what does Ben do ?"
Oh, I'm errand-boy at Smith's," re-
"And Willie stays at home ?"
"Yes, and Eddy too."
Ah, yes, I forgot Eddy. Where is
"I don't know; he was here a min-
ute ago. But he's so sulky and cross,
we like his room better than his com-
pany," said Dick.
"Poor Eddy !" and Martha sighed
as she thought of the little cripple
who had been loved best of all by the
mother who was gone.
Bed-time soon came; and before she
went up to the garret which she was
to share with Lucy, Martha went into
her mother's room.
THE* CLOUDS ARISE. 17
She opened the door noiselessly, and
crept in; but some one was there be-
fore hei, for the moonlight, which
streamed in at the window, fell on the
face of the dead and on that of her
little crippled brother Eddy. The
boy did not hear her light footstep,
nor did he raise his head, which was
resting on the bed. He was crying
bitterly, and Martha was so frightened
at the violence of his grief, that she
could not speak to him. At last she
heard' him say something in a low,
broken voice, as he raised the cold
hand which lay beside him. Mother!
O mother, speak to me! Tell me
you'll not go away! Oh, I will be
good If you leave me I shall have
nobody to love me !" He paused for
an answer; and then receiving none,,
he said again, in a voice of sorrow
which pierced Martha's heart, Mother;
18 THE CLOUDS ARISE.
dear mother, do speak to me !" Martha
went up quietly to him, and laying
her hand gently on his shoulder, she
The little boy raised his face. Oh,
how white and wan it was!
"Eddy, mother is in heaven now;
she cannot hear you speak to her."
Oh, she must hear me. She always
listened to me before."
But she can't now, Eddy, because
God has taken her away."
And will she never come back ?"
No; but if you ask the Lord Jesus
Christ, He will take you to be with
her some day."
"But there is no one to love me
"Iwill, Eddy;" and she drew him
tenderly into her arms, and kissed him
almost as fondly as his mother had
done. Eddy looked up into her face,
THE CLOUDS ARISE. 19
and there seemed to be something
there which he could trust, for by de-
grees his sobs became less violent; and
bidding his sister good-night quietly
he went up to his bed.
Both the brother and sister cried
themselves to sleep that night.
ijot) artlya Buleb.
"Who seeks in weakness an excuse,
His sins will vanquish never." -
MARTHA gave up her situation, and
with a brave heart began her home
duties. Her father put everything
under her care; and her head was full
of the changes which she would make
in those dingy and uncomfortable
rooms, and how she would be as good
a daughter and as good a sister as even
,her dying mother could have wished.
She thought how pleasant it would
be to control the rest of the family-
how she would labour and toil for
them-and how they would look up
to her, and be grateful for all her
"Yes, mother," she would sometimes
HOW MARTHA RULED. 21
whisper, as she lay awake hour after
hour, thinking over her plans, I can
never fill your place, but I will do my
best not to let the children feel your
But to rule was not so easy as poor
Martha had imagined; and a day spent
in her home, six months after her
mother's death, will show us this.
Wearied out, she had gone to bed
at a late hour; and, still weary, she
awoke in the morning. The daylight
was streaming into her room; and as
she heard a neighboring clock strike,
she sprang from her bed, frightened
to think how long she had slept,
dressed herself anyhow, and adminis-
tering a hearty shake to Lucy, who
was still sleeping, hurried down stairs.
There was a time when she would not
have left her room without kneeling
down to implore her heavenly Father's
22 HOW MARTHA RULED.
care and direction throughout the day;
but now she never thought of this,
"she had too much to do."
Her father, with an angry frown
upon his forehead, was kneeling by
the fire, which he was endeavouring to
"Late- again, Martha. Time was
when my breakfast was ready for me
at a proper time; but now things are
Martha took no notice of this speech,
except muttering something to herself
which could not be heard.
Come and light this fire," said
David Wilson, getting up; the sticks
Martha knelt down by the grate,
and succeeded in raising a flame; but
the room quickly filled with smoke.
The children came tumbling in, one
after another, not one of them looking
H1OW MARTHA RULED. 23,
half-awake, and all only half-washed
"No breakfast ready ?" said Ben;
"and it's time for me to be off. It's
Martha hastily put a dirty cloth on
the table, and laid the remains of a
loaf of bread and some salt butter
The kettle will boil presently,
"0 yes! it's always presently," re-
plied the boy, cutting a large slice of
What are you crying for, Eddy ?"
asked Martha, looking up, as the crip-
ple came in sobbing.
Dick hit me," whimpered the little
You're always making a fuss about
something," said his sister, crossly.
Eddy checked the sobs which were
24 HOW MARTHA RULED.
rising in his throat, and with a sullen
look sat down by the table; but he
did not taste anything.
Willie ran in, saying that he was
cold; and, indeed, his ragged little
frock did not look as if it had much
power of keeping him warm.
Why don't you dress that poor
child in something warmer, Martha2"
said the father, looking with pity at
his favourite child.
"You know as well as I do that we
have got no money to do it," replied
I know that there would be plenty
if you managed properly."
Martha's face grew darker; and she
muttered, I wish I had left you all to
manage for yourselves. I was well
enough off before I came here. Willie,
keep your hands off the loaf, will you!"
Her father then desired her to put
IIOW MARTHA RULED 25
up his dinner for him, for he was not
able to come back in the middle of the
day, as he was engaged as a porter in
one of the large warehouses in the
Martha cut two or three thick slices
of bread, and brought out of the cup-
board some dry cheese, which she
folded up in a piece of newspaper.
"Your poor mother used to give me
a change sometimes-either some slices
of bacon or bits of meat. I get tired
of cheese every day," said her father.
"I've not got money to buy either
bacon or any other meat," said Martha
again; but her father had left the
room before she had finished the sen-
As soon as the children had gone
off to their work, Martha sat down in
the, untidy, undusted, and smoky room,
to patch a coat of Ben's.
26 HOW MARTHA RULED.
Eddy and Willie were quarrelling at
the far end of the room.
"Eddy," cried Martha, "what are
you about ?"
"Nothing," replied the little boy.
"Don't make such a noise, then."
They were quieter for a moment or
two. Then they began again, and a
scream from Willie. drew Martha's at-
tention. She got up from her work,
went over to them, boxed their ears,
and with a rough shake sent them both
out of the room.
In a few minutes they were at play
in the street, with all those other rag-
ged and forlorn little urchins who are
turned out there by women, who are
either too lazy or too busy to attend
to them. If Martha could have known
that Eddy was learning to pilfer and
tell lies, and that Willie's baby lips
were framing themselves to utter oaths
HOW MARTHA RULED. 27
that would have shocked her ears had
she heard them, she would not have
thus carelessly thrust them into the
way of temptation; but she was too
busy to think of this.
She had her wish fulfilled now; she
had no one to obey. But her life was
not what she had fancied it would be.
The burden was heavier than she could
bear, and she would gladly have laid
As the last sound of the little boys'
footsteps died away, Martha's head was
bowed on her hands, and one or two
long, deep sighs broke the silence of
the room. She did not cry; she sel-
dom did so now; but her mind was
full of bitter thoughts. Why was all
her young life to be ground down in
this way ? Why was there none of the
brightness and joyousness of girlhood
in her lot ? Why was she to be
28 How MARTHA RULED.
blamed, and scolded, and unloved
while others were petted and given all
they could desire ? It was very, very
hard. And then she raised her head
again, and her fingers moved rapidly
over her work. Poor Martha !
Twelve o'clock came, and the chil-
dren assembled for their dinner. Mar-
tha got out the loaf, and some cold po-
tatoes, which was all that there was
Dick and Lucy came in; a few grum-
bling words about the uncomfortable
state of the room passed, and Martha's
heart was heavier than before.
As soon as she was alone again, she
went into her mother's room and open-
ed a drawer in which she had laid all
the articles of dress which belonged to
her. Alas! they were very few, and
much the worse for wear; but there
was one gown, which was tolerably re-
HOW MARTHA RULED. 29
spectable, and Martha unfolded it, and
looked at it long and sorrowfully; then,
rolling it into a small bundle, she put
on her own bonnet and shawl, and hur
ried down the street until she reached
a shop, which she entered. A few mi-
nutes after, she came out, with flushed
cheeks and a quick step, holding some-
thing tightly in her hand.
"There goes Martha Wilson," said
one of the neighbours; "so she's come
to it at last, with all her fine ways
when she came here."
"Come to what ?" asked the friend,
who had looked in for a few minutes'
gossip, with her baby in her arms.
"To what you and I came to long
ago, neighbour," replied the woman
with a bitter smile; "the pawnbroker's
The other sighed ; "It's a bad place,
and it's like taking spirits, I always
30 HOW MARTHA RULED.
think; it seems to brighten one up a
bit at the time, and then leaves one
worse than before."
"Poor Mrs. Wilson, she's a sad miss
to those children !"
"Yes; it goes to my heart to see
them going about in rags; and that
little Willie, he looks so miserable, and
swears as badly as any man in the
"It's hard work for that poor girl;
ay, it's a hard life for many of us, poor
folk. God knows we've a weary time
of it, and few to care-but I must go,
Meanwhile, Martha was disposing of
the money she had got; a few red her.
rings, a loaf of bread, and some candles
soon ran away with it all, but Martha
gave no thought to the morrow,-she
was content that there would be some
supper for her father when he came in,
HOW MARTHA RULED. 31
and that she would escape any rough
words for that night.
An evening passed in darning Wil-
lie's frock, in scolding the children, and
in sighing over the hardness of her lot,
ended the day which was only one of
the many that were spent in Martha's
home. It was no wonder that as the
tired girl laid her head on her pillow
she said to herself, "Must it always
last ? Am I never to have any more
happiness ? Things seem to get worse
every day, and I don't know what to
do 0 mother mother!"
" 2 JArnbr in Nrts is a SriiOnb inbebt."
"A man, who on his journey home
Has taken the wrong way,
Does not persist in going on
The wrong road all the day.
He turns right round, however steep
The homeward path may be;
And keeps on steadfast to the end,
And a wise man is he."
Thoughts in Verse.
"EDDY, why do you stay moping up
here ? go off and play with Willie,"
said Martha, one day, as she noticed
the cripple leaning against the window,
and gazing through the dirty panes of
I don't want to go out in the street,"-
replied the little boy, without looking
"Well, I can't have you here; I am
going to sweep the room."
Eddy did not move. Martha took
"A FRIEND IN NEED," ETC. 33
no more notice for a few moments, and
then said sharply, Eddy, be off !" But
still he did not go.
At last his sister went over to him,
shook him roughly, and opening the
door, she pushed him out.
(0 Martha! Martha! why did you
not find something for him to do, and
put him in the next room, until you
had done sweeping ? You little know
how bitterly you will repent your has-
tiness-you cannot see the look of an-
ger and pain which is passing over the
boy's face-you cannot hear his mut-
tered words, "Well, then, I don't care
now; I'll go and do it,"-and you do
not know that Joe Sparks, the worst
boy in the court, is waiting and watch-
ing for him. But a little patience on
your part might have saved him !)
Martha began sweeping. The dust
flew about in every direction, and she
34 "A FRIEND IN NEED," ET=C.
tried to open the window, but it had
stuck fast, and the consequence was
that the dust only changed its position
instead of being dispersed.
She was interrupted in her employ-
ment by hearing a knock at her door,
and on turning her head round, her
eyes met those of her friend Mrs.
Does Martha Wilson live in this
house ? she said, as she advanced into
Mrs. Burke ?-yes, here I am,"
and Martha threw down her broom,
and hurried over to her.
You Martha Wilson ? said Mrs.
Burke, looking with astonishment at
the figure before her; "I can't believe
"I dare say not," said Martha, sor-
rowfully, as her eyes dropped beneath
the gaze of her friend ; I am changed
9 A FRIEND IN NEED,7' ETC. 35
since you saw me last; and with the
corner of her ragged apron she began
dusting a chair for her visitor, and in-
vited her to sit down.
Mrs. Burke did so in silence, and
she did not speak for some time. Her
quick eyes glanced round the room,
and seemed to t-ke in the state of
everything in an instant. At last she
said, rather sharply,-
You were sweeping, Martha, weren't
Yes, Mrs. Burke; but it doesn't
That dust that you've been raising
is all settling again upon the chairs and
tables. Hadn't you better open the
It has stuck," said Martha, as she
hastily tried to close the cupboard
door which had no fastening; but her
attempt was useless, and the contents
36 "A FRIEND IN NEED;" ETC.
were more plainly visible than be-
Mrs. Burke went over to the win-
dow, and succeeded at last in forcing
it open. In came the pleasant fresh
air, which was so seldom admitted to
that gloomy room.
The good woman drew a long breath
of satisfaction as she felt the cool
breeze against her cheek, and then she
turned to Martha.
Well, my girl, and how have you
been getting on ? "
Martha's only answer was an asham-
ed glance at her dirty and ragged
dress, and at the state of the room.
Mrs. Burke laid her hand upon the
young girl's, and said quietly,-
"You've been having a hard time
of it, Martha ? "
Martha turned her face away and
replied, Rather hard."
"A FRIEND IN NEED," ETC. 37
And you've had nobody to help
No; I didn't want any one."
Mrs. Burke knew that this was not
true, for one glance at the girl's tired
and careworn face told her how the
Poor child," she said kindly.
The words were so gently spoken,
that they quite overcame the pride in
which Martha had wrapped herself,
and she laid her head down on the
table, and fairly sobbed aloud. "0
Mrs. Burke, indeed I have tried to
keep everything right, but it's no good,
and I'm not going to try any more "
You are not happy, Martha ? "
"No; indeed I'm not. Father's al-
ways cross with me, and he says I
waste the money, and that I can't do
anything, and the children hate me."
Nonsense, child; don't talk like that.
38 "A FRIEND IN NEED," ETC.
There is a bright side to almost every-
thing, so now let's look for the bright
side of your troubles. Are things so
bad that they couldn't be worse, Mai-
"No; I don't think they could, be."
Supposing your father had no
work, and that none of your brothers
could earn anything, wouldn't that be
worse ? Or if you were in bad health,
or some of the children were ill, what
would you do then ? 0 Martha you
have some things to be thankful for."
But in answer to this, Martha poured
out such a list of troubles, that Mrs.
Burke hardly knew where to begin to
set them to rights.
"This room is not so bad as you
make out, Martha; it is a good size,
and gets the morning sun, if it were
but clean and well aired. Do keep
the windows open; you don't know
"A FRIEND IN NEED," ETC. 39
how much the fresh air helps to make
a room healthy and cheerful."
"But I can't get the room clean,
"Have you tried, my dear ? "
"Yes; I have tried to do everything."
Mrs. Burke paused for a minute, and
then said earnestly, Martha, have you
asked your Father in heaven to help
you to do your work rightly ? "
"I used to ask Him," replied Mar-
tha, looking down uneasily.
But do you ask Him every day;-
did you ask Him this morning ?"
Or yesterday ?"
Or all last week, or the week be-
fore ? "
Martha shook her head.
"Then, my dear, you cannot expect
to get on right. Will you let me be
40 "A FRIEND IN NEED," ETC.
your friend and try to help you, Mar-
"' Well, then, promise that you won't
let this day pass without going to Him,
telling Him all the care and trouble
you have, and asking Him to teach
you how to do His will in every act of
your daily life. Martha, He is the
only friend you can lean upon for help
But it's such a long time since I
said my prayers !"
"Never mind that; it's all the more
reason you should do so now. Tell
Him that as well as the rest, and ask
Him to forgive you for your Saviour's
Martha leaned her head upon hei
hands for a few minutes, and then look
ing up with a brighter face, she said
A FRIEND IN NEED," ETC. 41
"I will do it, Mrs. Burke; and now
please tell me what I can do to this
"Well, Martha," replied her friend,
smiling, "don't sweep it with the win-
dow and doors shut up; I think you
could scrub it thoroughly,-couldn't
you?-and wash the walls, and sweep
the cobwebs off the ceiling; none of
that is very hard, is it?"
No, but the chimney smokes."
"Well, I think I can get that cured
Thank you; but the furniture is so
bad, I don't know how to make it look
Mrs. Burke was almost inclined to say
that she did not, either; but, after a few
minutes' consideration, she replied,-
"Don't you think that you could
coax one of your brothers to do some
little bits of carpentering for you ? For
42 "A FRIEND IN NEED," ETC.
instance, to mend that cupboard-door;
it only wants a little fastening put on
it, and I'm sure your food would be
kept much cleaner, if the dust, and
ashes, and smoke didn't get to it. And
then, Martha, as I'm an old friend, you
won't mind my saying, that one thing
which would make your room look
much better, would be if you could
manage to keep clean and tidy your-
"Yes, Mrs. Burke, I know that.
Father used to say he didn't mind how
plain his supper was, when he saw me
looking tidy. But all my nice frocks
got worn out, and I cut up some for
the children, and I had no money to
get more, and by degrees I left off
'caring whether I was tidy or clean; I
lhad no time to think about that."
"But you must try to think about
it, Martha, and I will help you. My
"A FRIEND IN NEED, ETC. 43
husband and I have left service, and
have set up a baker's business in Temple
Street, close to you ; so I can see you
often. We have talked enough to-day,
and you won't forget what I've said; so
now good-bye; mend that great tear in
your frock, make your hair neat, and
clean yourself before your father comes
home, and get something for supper
with this," and she slipped a small coin
into Martha's hand, and, kissing her
warmly on both cheeks, went away.
God will reward you, honest Mrs.
Burke, for the work of love which you
have been doing in Martha's home-
you have been fulfilling His own in-
junction, "We, then, that are strong,
ought to bear the infirmities of the
weak, and not to please ourselves ....
for even Christ pleased not Himself."
bbn in Ifliostlief.
"Pilfer not the smallest thing,
Touch it.not, however thou need it;
Though the owner have enough,
Though he know it not, nor need it.
Upright heart, and honest name,
To the poorest are a treasure;
Better than ill-gotten wealth,
Better far than pomp or pleasure."
Hynva for Littl Children.
AND where was Eddy all this time?
Sorrowfully and slowly the little crip-
ple had left the house and limped down
the court, occasionally lifting his hand
to his eyes to wipe away the tears which
Willie was playing at pitch and toss
with some other little urchins as rag-
ged and dirty as himself; and, as Eddy
seated himself on the step of a neigh-
bour's door, he heard a fearful oath
come from his little brother's lips; but
EDDY IN MISCHIEF. 45
the lame boy was too well accustomed
to this kind of language to take much
notice of it. He had not been sitting
there long before he was joined by Joe
Sparks, a boy about two years older
than himself, who was dressed very
shabbily, and had a most mean and
cunning expression in his face.
Oh, there you are, Ted; I's been
watching this long time for you."
"What do you want ?" asked Eddy,
Do you forget what you promised
to do, lad ?" inquired Joe.
Eddy looked down uneasily, and then
replied, Joe, I'd rather not do it."
"Nonsense," said Joe; "what has
made you turn chicken-hearted ? I did
not think you such a fool."
"I'm afraid it's bad work, and we're
sure to be found out."
"Not a bit of it."
46 EDDY IN MISCHIEF.
Why won't you do it, Joe ? You
know you could get away so much
quicker than me."
Well, Ted, don't you see, the magis-
trates, they knows me of old; and their
worships told me last time, that when
they had the pleasure of seeing me
again before them, they'd give me two
years in the Reformatory, and I hap-
pens to prefer living at large just at
But, if it's so bad, I don't think we
ought to go and do it, Joe."
Stuff," said Joe, impatiently; but,
if you're such a coward, I'll get another
chap to come. I thought you'd like a
few coppers for yourself."
So I should," said little Eddy, wist
"Well, come along, then. I saw old
Sykes this morning, and he has pro-
mised to buy whatever we can get.
EDDY IN MISCHIEF. 47
Now, you know what you're to do. I'll
go into the yard and speak to the men,
and you must lay hands on all the long
nails and pieces of tin which you can
get-the more the better."
All this time they had been walking
slowly down the street; but suddenly
Eddy looked up in Joe's face, and said,-
Joe, won't it make God angry if we
steal; won't He send us to hell ?"
Joe started; for one instant he paus-
ed; a frightened, almost terrified look
came over his countenance, and seizing
Eddy's arm, he muttered, "He don't
watch such little chaps as we, does He ?"
"Mother said he watched us all."
Joe stood in silence for a few mo-
ments; then, with an uneasy laugh, he
said roughly, "Don't talk such rub-
bish; come along; have you turned
good? You're afraid of the peeler,
48 EDDY IN MISCHIEF.
"I'm not," said Eddy, though his
heart inwardly quaked, and his face
became paler than usual, at the thought
of the dangerous risk he was about to
run. But now they had reached the
end of the long alley, and in another
moment they had turned the corner
and were but of sight
Meanwhile, Martha had mended the
great rent in her dress after a fashion,
had made herself neater than she had
been for many a long day, had swept
up the ashes in the grate, and had
dusted the table. This all took some
time, and when it was done, she put on
her bonnet and shawl and went out to
get her father's supper.
As she walked along, she thought
how she could most judiciously spend
the shilling which Mrs. Burke had
given her. "Red-herrings? no! they
make us thirsty, and I don't think they
EDDY IN MISCHIEF. 49
are very nourishing; a small bit of
meat and a loaf, that'll be best. I have
heard say a very small quantity of meat
goes further towards nourishment than
anything else;" and having got what
she wanted, she turned her steps home-
ward with a lighter heart and a bright-
er face than she had since her mother's
death. Humbled she felt, indeed, when
she remembered how imperfectly she
had performed her home work; but yet
there seemed to be a light dawning in
the future. She would seek for strength,
where she knew it was to be found-
she would cast her burden on the Lord,
and ask Him to bear it for-her; and
these resolutions brought back the hope
which had nearly died out in her heart.
She looked up from the noisy bustling
street into the calm blue sky above her,
and thanked God that she still had
the opportunity of doing something to
50 EDDY IN MISCHIEF.
brighten her home; whispering a prayer
that He would forgive her the past for
her Saviour's sake, and help her for the
time to come; and there came into her
mind a verse which she had learned long
ago: "I the Lord thy God will hold
thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear
not, I will help thee."
But her happy thoughts were inter-
rupted as she saw a crowd of people
coming down the street, and she shrunk
from getting into it.
What is the matter ?" she asked of
two women, who were standing by a
doorway looking out.
They say it's the police taking
some chaps to the lock-up."
Poor fellows," said Martha; but she
felt, that if there were policemen near
she would be quite safe in going on.
And she was doing so, hardly raising
her eyes from the ground, when a bit-
EDDY IN MISCHIEF. 51
ter cry fell on her ear, and she heard
her own name uttered in the most
0 Martha, Martha, save me!"
She looked up and saw her little
crippled brother being led by one
policeman, while another followed
dragging Joe Sparks, who was making
violent efforts to escape.
Martha's face became deadly pale,
and she trembled from head to foot.
" Eddy, Eddy," she cried, forcing her
way through the crowd to his side.
Out of the way, young woman;
you must not stop the prisoner," said
"But it's Eddy; it's my own brother.
-Oh, there is some mistake, indeed there
No mistake in the fact that I found
these young chaps stealing nails and tin,
and so I'm taking them to the lock-up."
52 EDDY IN MISCHIEF.
Oh, it cannot be true; Eddy, speak;
tell me it isn't true."
He burst into tears. "It is true,
but I'll never do it again."
There, now, get out of the way,
young woman; you've got your answer."
Martha covered her eyes, and turned
mournfully away; but when Eddy
saw her going, he stretched out his
hand, seized her dress, and cried bit-
terly and imploringly: "If you hadn't
made me go out, I shouldn't have stole.
Oh, do not leave me now !-save me,
save me, Martha!"
But the policeman snatched his hand
away, pushed Martha aside, and pulled
his prisoner forward.
The sight seemed to leave the poor
girl's eyes; everything swam before
her, and she staggered on for a few
steps, vainly holding out her hands
towards Eddy, as her little brother's
EDDY IN MISCHIEF. 53
bitter cry again fell upon her ears;
but she would have fallen to the
ground had not an elderly man step-
ped through the crowd, and bidding
her lean on him, supported her to his
shop, which was close by.
"Why, it's Martha!" said a kind
voice by hei side as she entered; and
crying out, Eddy, 0 my brother!"
she fell inst asible into the arms of
"2t soft 2tnswer turned awaV 1ilrat1l."
"Forget not thou hast often sinned,
And sinful yet must be;
Deal gently with the erring one,
As God has dealt with thee."
WHEN Martha came to herself, she
found that she was lying in the little
parlour at the back of Mrs. Burke's
shop; while the -kind-hearted woman
was bathing her face with vinegar.
A dim sense of misery crept over
the poor girl as she regained recollec-
tion, and at last the dreadful scene
which she had witnessed a few minutes
before, came back upon her in vivid
Save him! oh, save him !" she
"I cannot do so yet, my dear," an-
SA SOFT ANSWER," ETC. 55
swered Mrs. Burke kindly. "He will
be tried at the Police Court to-morrow,
and then we will see what we can do;
but to-night he must sleep in the lock-
up, and it will do him no harm."
Oh, he is so weak and so sickly, it
may kill him; and it was all my fault
What do you mean, child ?" said
Mrs. Burke, gently forcing her back
into the chair from which she had
sprung in her excitement.
Oh, he said it, and it is quite true!"
"What is true ?"
"He wanted to stay at home with
me this morning, and I made him go
out' into the street; and if I hadn't, he
wouldn't have met that wicked Joe.
What shall I do ?"
"You can't do anything now, my
dear, except to bear it patiently. You
will never forget it, and I think it will
56 "A SOFT ANSWER," ETC.
be a lesson for your little brother-
perhaps the turning-point in his life.
Rest now, Martha, and we will do all
we can for him to-morrow."
"May I go to the court-house in the
"Better not," said Mr. Burke, who
had stepped in from the shop. "I
will go, but it is not a nice place for
young girls, and you could do no good.
Depend on it, I will let you know
about him as soon as possible." And
with this promise, poor Martha was
obliged to be content.
She was better now, and thought
she would rather go home; so Mrs.
Burke accompanied her, and as she
parted from her at her own door, she
said, kindly, Take this trouble where
you promised to take the others, even
to Him who never sent a weary or
heavy laden one away uncomforted.'
"A SOFT ANSWER," ETC. 57
Martha only bowed her head in re-
ply, but she did what her friend ad-
vised; and then, having left her bur-
den with the Lord, she set about her
work with a lightened heart, though
she very much dreaded her father's re-
turn. But he had heard the sad news
on his way home, from some of those
busy-bodies who are to be found in
courts and alleys as well as in squares
and terraces, always ready to talk about
matters which do not concern them,
and which they generally make worse
"What is this, Martha he said,
sternly, as he entered the room, and
saw the pale face and swollen eyelids
of his daughter; what's all this about
father, father, don't be angry;
Eddy has been taking something that
wasn't his, and the police have carried
58 "A SOFT ANSWER," ETC.
him off to the lock-up; but he is so
young. Don't be angry, father. Mr.
Burke-that's the new baker in Tem-
ple Street-says he will go to the
police-court to-morrow, and get him
off if he can. Father, don't look like
that; please don't."
But David Wilson's anger was rous-
ed. Poor though he was, he was scru-
pulously honest, and the thought of the
disgrace brought upon his name and
character by this behaviour of his son,
caused him to vent his displeasure upon
the first person who came near him.
"The young rascal!-but he shall
rue it-he shan't come in here again;
or if he does, I'll break every bone in
O father, father," cried Martha, in
an agony coming up to him, "don't
say that. -It was my fault; I sent him
out; I would not let him stop in with
A SOFT ANSWER,) ETC. 59
me-I put him in the way of tempta-
tion," and she looked into his face im-
"You did, did you ?" and his angry
eyes almost terrified her; but still she
"Yes, I did."
David Wilson paused for an instant,
and then his anger turned on his daugh-
Alack for the day that your mother
died. Nothing has gone right since-
the house has gone to rack and ruin;
you're cross to the children and lead
them into all that is wrong; you spend
all the money you can, and we never
see the good of it,. and everything as
dirty as it can be. But there shall be
a change; things shan't last like this,"
and he struck his hand violently on
The day before, Martha would have
60 "A SOFT ANSWER," ETC.
answered passionately, but now she
was too saddened and humbled to do
so; she merely bowed her head upon
her hands, rested them on the table,
and her slight frame shook with the
violence of her sobs. Her father's
heart was softened. If she had spoken
angrily in reply, he would have been
provoked to say more; but the meek
acquiescence of the words which she
uttered amidst her tears, "Yes, father,
it is all true-quite true, but it shall
not be so long; I am going to try "-
touched him; and after watching her
for a few moments, he said, I've been
hard upon you, child; I was hard upon
her, too, but she asked me not to be so
on the children," and he laid his hand
She raised her tearful face for an in-
stant, and said, eagerly, Father, I
don't mind what you say to me; I de-
"A SOFT ANSWER," ETC. 61
serve it all; but forgive him, forgive
Eddy, he is so weak and young."
But for my son to be a thief !"
A sudden thought darted into Mar
that's mind, and putting her hand on
his arm, she said in a low earnest voice,
"He was mother's son, too, and her
Her father started. "It's true; yes,
Martha, it's true; and for her sake the
boy shall be forgiven."
And you'll be kind to him, and
not let the others plague him ?"
Yes, I will. Now go and get me
rlepetntanc, ani alw t came of it.
"Think kindly of the erring;
Oh. do not thou forget,
However darkly stained by am
He is thy brother yet.
Oh, kindly help the erring I
Thou yet may'st lead him back,
With gracious, words and tones of love,
From misery's thorny track."
MRS. BURKE came over early in the
morning to let Martha know that her
husband was going to the court-house;
and knowing that employment was the
best means of settling the girl's mind,
she told her of various things which'
she might do towards improving the
state of the room, and the first of these
was scrubbing the floor, for which pur-
pose the good woman opened a basket
which hung upon her arm, and took
out of it a new scrubbing brush, as she
REPENTANCE, ETC. 63
thought it possible that Martha might
not have one at hand; and then having
set the girl to work, she went back to
keep the shop during her husband's
absence, taking little Willie with her
to keep him out of harm's way; and
the child was in no small degree de-
lighted when he was seated on a high
chair by Mrs. Burke's table, pasting
paper bags for her.
Martha was very busy all the morn-
ing, but still she could not help looking
up anxiously every few minutes to see
if there were any signs of Mr. Burke.
The floor looked clean, the air was
fresh and pure, the cupboard door was
mended, and the cobwebs were swept
off the ceiling; these were the first
steps towards improvement, and Mar-
tha surveyed them with great satisfac-
tion; she had just put some plates on
the table, and got out something for
64 REPENTANCE, ETC.
the children's dinner, when she heard
footsteps at the door, and Mr. Burke
entered, followed by little Eddy.
The boy's head was bent very low,
so that his sister could not see his face,
and he walked over to the window and
stood looking out of it.
There he is, Martha," said the
good-natured baker. "They've let
him off with a caution, as it's his first
offence, and in consideration of his
youth and weakness; and I think and
hope that it will be his last."
"Thank you. Oh, I can't tell you
how from my heart I thank you for
your goodness, Mr. Burke," said poor
Martha, grasping his hand, but unable
to say more.
He shook it heartily, and then mut-
tering something about his wife want-
ing him, he hastily left the house.
Somehow his eyes felt very dim for a
REPENTANCE, ETC. 65
few minutes- afterwards; he would not
have acknowledged how much he felt
the forlorn condition of the little crip-
ple boy, or the simple gratitude of the
Martha looked anxiously towards
her brother after Mr. Burke left the
room, but he kept his face pressed
against the glass and would not look
She went over to him and touched
his shoulder, but still he did not
"Eddy!" she said gently.
He only shook her hand off impa-
tiently; but she was not thus easily to
be repulsed, for she had prayed long
and earnestly that she might be ena-
bled to win back her little brother's
love, and she felt sure that God would
hear her prayer; so she spoke again
66 REPENTANCE, ETC.
"Eddy, I did very wrong to make
you go out the other day."
He did not answer.
Have you left off loving me, Eddy ?"
Still he was silent.
"I love you better than ever, now,"
she went on, and her voice trembled.
He turned round suddenly and flung
himself into her arms. "0 Martha,
Martha," he sobbed, "don't give me
up, don't let them all hate me, it'll be
"We shall not, you know we shan't,
"I want to go clean away and not
see you any more. I'd like to die and
go to mother."
Hush, dear Eddy; do you think if
God did let you die, that you'd go and
live with Him ?"
A very faint No !" was the answer.
Why not ?" asked Martha.
REPENTANCE, ETC. 67
"Because I be a thief."
"Are you sorry you stole, Eddy ?"
Yes, oh, yes;" and the little boy
let his head fall upon her shoulder.
"Then God will forgive you," said
Martha, earnestly. "I've heard out of
the Bible some words like these,-' If
we confess our sins, he is faithful and
just to forgive us our sins, and to
cleanse us from all unrighteousness.' "
"Do you think He'll forgive me,
when I've been so bad ?" said Eddy,
"I know He will; don't you remem-
ber, mother used to tell us about the
Lord Jesus Christ forgiving the thief
who was nailed to the cross by His
side; won't you ask Him, Eddy ?"
And ask Him to keep you from
ever doing it again; won't you ?"
68 REPENTANCE, ETC.
"I want help as much as you do,
Eddy boy. I know we can't keep on
doing right, unless He keeps on help-
ing us, so we must ask Him to teach
us, and take care of us."
0 Martha, it was so bad this morn-
ing; I thought when they sent Joe to
the Reformatory, they'd be sure to
send me too; and I cried so, and I
couldn't hardly speak, and I never
looked up till they said I might go
home; and the gentleman, he spoke so
grave about my never stealing again;
and then Mr. Burke brought me
"Thank God," whispered Martha.
'" Is father very angry ? Will he beat
me ?" asked her little brother fearfully.
"No, Eddy, I don't think he will;
but if he does you must bear it pa-
At this moment the father's step was
REPENTANCE, ETC. 69
heard outside, and he entered, accom-
pianied by Dick and Lucy.
"Why, there's Eddy!" cried the lit-
tle girl, as she caught sight of him.
A quick frown came on the father's
forehead, but it passed away as he fixed
a keen and piercing gaze upon his little
boy. There was something in that
small white face, with its wistful blue
eyes and frightened look, that remind-
ed David Wilson of his wife; and lay-
ing his hand on the child's shoulder he
said sternly, but not harshly, My
chap, I had a mind to give you a hid-
ing; but you've had a lesson, and I
don't think you'll forget it, so I'll for-
give you; and mind, you children, I
mean this affair to be dropped amongst
us; let it be a warning to all of you,
but I'll not have anything more said
And that day was the turning-point
T7 REPENTANCE, ETC.
in little Eddy's life. At night in his
small garret, long after Willie was
asleep, Eddy knelt by his little bed,
imploring pardon from his Saviour for
the past; asking to have all his sins
washed away in His blood; and to be
given His Holy Spirit, to make him fit
to live with Him for ever in heaven.
And the cripple's prayer was heard
on high by Him who says, "Call upon
me in the day of trouble, and I will
deliver thee;" and an answer of peace
was sent down into his sorrowful little
(94e iDan of trouble .
Then fear not, poor and patient ones,
Who toil in suffering now;
GoD knows the struggle of your life,
And seen your anxious brow.
Fear not, though hungry, desolate,
Ye walk in darkness on,
And see no light; be patient still,
Your day of joy will dawn."
ThougMts in Verse
THE sunshine had found its way into
Martha's home; and it was pleasant to
see the good which it began to accom-
We have seen the first steps towards
improvement, but Martha found the
work slow and difficult; there was so
much mischief to be undone, before
any real good could be done.
However, she had a wise and faith-
ful friend in Mrs. Burke, who put her
in the way of performing various house-
72 THE DAY OF TROUBLE.
hold duties, of which she had formerly
been ignorant. Ben was found to be a
willing carpenter, and entered heartily
into his sister's improvements; and
they were rewarded for their work by
their father's look of surprise at the
altered appearance of the room, and
his hearty words of praise.
Why, Martha, girl! things are look-
ing up; this is cheerier than it's been
for many a long day."
But not only the room was changed,
but Martha herself, both outwardly
and inwardly. Outwardly, for her
dress, though very poor, was under Mrs.
Burke's directions well washed and
patched; and inwardly, for God's Holy
Spirit had worked a change in her
heart. "'Old things were passing away;"
her fretfulness, anger, laziness, and cold-
ness; and, all things were becoming
new," for there were springing up within
THE DAY OF TROUBLE. '3
her the fruits of that blessed Spirit
which are, "love, joy, peace," &c.
Eddy was altered too. It was touch-
ing to see the humility which was writ-
ten in his face, and how for some time
he shrunk from the rest of the family;
but he clung to Martha, and lost no
opportunity of doing little thought-
ful acts of kindness to save her trou-
Mrs. Burke took a great fancy to him,
she pitied him at first, and then his
quiet, humble manner, won upon her
warm heart, and she constantly had
him with her, while she helped Martha
very much by sending little Willie to
But very often large black clouds
arise, which for a time obscure the
brightest sunshine; and so it was in
Martha's home. It was after she had
"suffered a while," that she was to be
74 THE DAY OF TROUBLE.
" made perfect, established, strengthened,
It had been cleaning-day, but the
cleaning was done, and Martha had
seated herself with her work. near the
open window, for it was the summer
time, and was looking with admiration
at the beautiful blossoms on a geranium,
which Mrs. Burke had given to Eddy,
and which the little boy had placed in
the window, that Martha might see it
when she was sewing.
The cripple was sitting near her,
reading to her the last number of a
magazine which had been lent to him
by his kind friends. He had just
finished the description of a happy
home circle, when he paused, and look-
ing up in his sister's face, he said,-
Martha, shall we ever be like that ?"
I hope so," replied his sister, with a
THE DAY OF TROUBLE. 75
"I thought people couldn't be very
happy unless they were rich."
"0 Eddy, dear, you know better.
The Saviour didn't think that, because
He made all the poorest people happy;
it's His love, I think, that makes us so,
and we can all have that."
Does father love Him ?"
Martha sighed, she very much feared
that he did not.
Father doesn't never read the Bible,
nor go to church, Martha."
We will hope and pray that he
may some day," said Martha.
I wonder who that is coming in; it
isn't time for Ben."
It's a man's step; who can it be ?"
but not much time was left for wonder-
ing, for a man from the warehouse
where their father worked, hastily
entered the room, saying, "You must
come instantly; your father has had
T6 THE DAY OF TROUBLE.
a. terrible fall, and is dangerously
Martha sprang from her seat with a
cry, Father, father did you say ? Oh,
take me quick; he is dead, and you
will not tell me."
"Hush, my girl, you must be more
quiet; if you put yourself in such a
fuss, you'll do more harm than good;
your father is hurt very badly, but
you'll do no good by screaming, so;
just put on your bonnet and come along
Tremblingly Martha obeyed, her face
growing paler with every moment's
delay; but just as she was leaving the
room, Eddy slipped to her side, and
laying his hand on hers, whispered,
" God says, 'Call upon me in the day of
trouble.' I'll do that, Martha, because
I'm of no other use, but I know that
will do some good."
THE DAY OF TROUBLE. 77
Do, dear," replied Martha, as she
kissed him; and then, Eddy, go to Mrs.
Burke and tell her, and ask her to come
Quickly she followed her guide to
the narrow street, where the great
warehouses towered story upon story
above her head. They paused at the
entrance of one of them, and entered
the yard, where poor David Wilson
lay, stretched on some sacks of wool.
He was groaning terribly, and Martha
could not restrain a violent burst of
tears as she saw the agony he was en-
during. Kneeling down beside him,
she took his hand, and then raising his
head, made him lean against her; this
seemed to give him some small relief,
for opening his eyes, he smiled faintly
at his daughter, murmuring,-
"That's better; don't fret, Sarah !"
(Sarah had been the name of his wife.)
78 THE DAY OF TROUBLE.
"Will he die ?" asked Martha, look-
ing up imploringly in the faces of the
men who stood near.
"Don't know," was the reply.
"We've sent for a doctor, but he's
"His leg's broken, I think, and there
seems something the matter with his
side," said another.
Oh but he is dying-look-look !"
said Martha, as she pointed with terror
to his face, over which an ashy pale-
ness was creeping, and the hand within
hers became cold and lifeless.
"Father, father," she cried; but he
did not answer, and his head lay power-
less on his daughter's shoulder.
"He is dead," she almost screamed.
" Oh, what shall I do ?" and in a moment
there rushed into her mind all the
pain and loneliness of orphanhood; she
fancied herself bereft of a father's care,
THE DAY OF TROUBLE. 79
left unprovided for with all her young
brothers; and then what would become
of her father! where would his soul
be ? Could she look forward to meet-
ing him again ? and was she never to
hear his voice any more ? Was she to be
alone, utterly alone ?
In the bitterness of her sorrow, she
forgot the scene around her, and bowed
her head over the insensible form which
"Martha, my child, my poor child,"
said Mrs. Burke's kind voice by her side.
She raised her face, and her good
friend started at the sight of the fixed
despair written upon it, as she cried-
"Oh, Mrs. Burke, he is dead !-he is
No, dear, I trust not; he has fainted
from the sharpness of the pain; but
let me support him while you fetch a
80 THE DAY OF TROUBLE.
Martha obeyed, and by the time she
returned, the doctor had come,. and
her father had recovered conscious-
"It is a bad accident," said the doc-
tor; he had better be put on a stretch-
er and taken to the Infirmary."
"Oh, no, no t" pleaded Martha; "do
let us have him at home. I'll nurse
him so well! Oh, please do."
The doctor looked inquiringly at
Mrs. Burke, who gently put her hand
on Martha's shoulder and said, "It will
be far better for him to go to the In-
firmary, my dear."
"Oh, no, no !" said poor Martha, "I
must have him at home."
Mrs. Burke looked puzzled for a mo-
ment, and then said, "Martha, I've
often given you advice before, and
you've taken it; won't you do so now,
when I tell you that it would be for
THE DAY OF TROUBLE. 81
your father's good to go to the Infir-
Martha did not reply, and the doctor
went away to order a stretcher.
"Well, Martha?" said her friend,
after a few minutes had passed, during
which the groans of the suffering man
had been the only sound which had
broken the silence.
Do as you like," she said, turning
away her head; and as her father was
lifted up, she stood wistfully gazing
after him until the stretcher and the
men who bore it were out of sight.
Now, Martha dear," said Mrs.
Burke, putting the girl's trembling
arm within her own, "you must come
home with me for a little while."
Martha knew not, and cared not,
where she was going, and did not re-
sist Mrs. Burke's wish; so the kind
woman brought her into the quiet lit-
82 THE DAY OF TROUBLE.
tie back parlour, which had been
Martha's refuge in all kind of troubles,
and making her sit down, she talked
to her kindly and soothingly about
her father's accident. But Martha
hardly answered her, and Mrs. Burke
soon saw that the girl was vexed.
"Martha, my dear, you think I was
hard on you just now."
"No;' 1 suppose you thought I
wasn't fit to nurse."
"Not a bit of it, my dear; but listen
awhile. Your father's accident is a
very severe one; I'm afraid his illness
will be long and serious; and, in the
first place, are you capable of meeting
the expense of it, now that his wages
are stopped ?"
Martha shook her head, and Mrs.
Burke went on. There will be medi-
cine, and lotions, and 'good food, and
various kinds of comforts which you
THE DAY OF TROUBLE. 83
have not got, and which he will have
in the Infirmary. Then, again, there
is the noise of the children; you know
you can't keep them like mice for a
"No; it would be very hard."
Well, my dear, now there's a sister
of Mr. Burke's whose husband was
very ill, and she would have him at
home; and so it went on, until I went
to see them; and then how do you
think I found them ? The poor man
was very ill, and the wife didn't know
much about nursing; she did what she
could, poor soul; but while she was
attending to him, her little children
were going to rack and ruin, and so
were all her household concerns. I
went into the sick man's room; nothing
was nice there. The air was close and
confined, the window never was opened,
the bed was untidy and uncomforta-
84 THE DAY OF TROUBLE.
ble,-everything wore a look of dis-
comfort that was very trying; the
poor man had no nourishing food; his
wife said she couldn't afford it when
there were so many mouths to feed,
and so he was not regaining his
strength. Poor things my heart
ached for them, and we did what we
could; but think how much better
off that man would have been in the
"Yes," said Martha.
"There your father will be tended
by an experienced nurse, have the
best medical attendance, get every-
thing he wants to make him well, and.
he will be about again in half the time
that he would have been getting well
at home. Are you vexed still, my
* girl ?"
"No," said Martha, throwing her
arms for an instant round Mrs. Burke's
THE DAY OF TROUBLE. 85
neck, and then she added, I must go
home; the children will want me."
"Well, my child, I think you'll want
something to do now; so, if you are
able, I can give you some needle-work
to be at in spare moments; and I'd
like you to let me have Eddy for a
bit; I've a fancy for that boy, and
I'd take care of him."
"Thank you," said Martha grate-
fully, and then she hurried home.
The cloud was dark; but still there
was a rainbow of comfort to brighten
Ttear fJ9ining after Bain."
"Put thou thy trust in God,
In duty's path go on;
Walk in his strength with faith and hope,
So shall thy work be done.
Through waves, and clouds, and storms,
His power will clear thy way;
Wait thou his time-the darkest night
Shall end in brightest day."
AND Martha waited with patience and
trustful hope for the time when God
should see fit to drive away the dark
clouds, and let the sunshine again into
Six months passed away, and a new
year came, with its untrodden path, its
hidden cup of joys and sorrows.
It was the evening of New Year's
Day, and there was joy everywhere;
none of the sadness which is so much
connected with the evening before was
CLEAR SHINING," ETC. 87
mixed with it. The old year had
passed away with all its sorrows, its
sins, and its cares; and now there was
hope to brighten the unknown future
in nearly every heart.
It certainly was a pleasant sight,
that joyous party. Martha's father
sat in an arm-chair, which had been
lent by Mrs. Burke. He had quite re-
covered from his accident, and was
going back to work the next day.
Willie was on his knee, neatly and
comfortably dressed. Eddy, who was
now regularly employed in Mrs. Burke's
shop, was sitting on a low stool near
the fire, turning over the leaves of a
nice copy of the Pilgrim's Progress,"
of which his friends had made him a
present that day. Dick and Lucy
were roasting chestnuts between the
hot bars, burning their fingers in their
attempts to pull them out; while Ben
88 CLEAR SHINING," ETC.
was cutting out a little boat for Willie.
Martha was spreading the tea-table,
and seeing that everything was in
readiness, for they were expecting
visitors that evening.
"I wonder when they'll come," said
Lucy, pulling her fingers out quickly
from the hot ashes, into which the last
chestnut had fallen.
"They ought to be here now," said
"Eddy says they've baked a big
cake for us, father, ever so much big-
ger .than my head," whispered Willie
I told you not to tell," said Eddy,
giving him a little poke with the end
of his crutch.
Oh, father won't tell," replied Wil-
But I heard what you said," put
CLEAR SHINING," ETC. 89
"Well, here they come, so there's
not much longer to keep the secret,"
said David Wilson as he stood up to
welcome his guests. I'm glad to see
you, Mrs. Burke; it's kind of you to
be so friendly."
Mrs. Burke was too busy kissing
the children to notice this remark, and
soon they were all seated at tea; and
Martaha saw from her friend's face how
pleased she was with the order and
cleanliness of everything.
After tea they had some games,
and then Mr. Burke made a great
dish of snapdragon for the children,
and looked as pleased as they did,
while he listened to their peals of
This amusement was followed by
singing for Martha; Dick and Eddy
had sweet clear voices, and sung a
great many songs very well.
90 OLEAR SHINING," ETC.
What's that you were singing last
Sunday ?" asked their father.
Martha coloured a little, and hesi-
tated, for she did not know that he
had overheard them, but Eddy an-
"It was a hymn, father."
Sing it now."
Which was it ?" asked Martha
brightly, for we sung a good many."
I don't know, but I mind that I
heard it long ago, and the only words
in my head are:-
'Worthy the Lamb, our lips reply,
For He was slain for us.'"
Oh, I know, I know! cried Dick;
"it's the one I like best, because I can
sing loud in it,-
Come let us join our cheerful songs.' "
Mrs. Burke smiled at the good rea-
son which Dick assigned for liking it,
"CCLEAR SHINING, ETC. 91
and then they all joined in singing the
words which are so well known, and so
heartily beloved throughout our land.
A long silence ensued, which was
broken by David Wilson saying
"I haven't heard that since I was a
boy in church with my mother; ah,
she was a good woman! "
Now we must go," said Mrs. Burke,
standing up; we've had a very plea-
sant evening, Mr. Wilson."
"You needn't go so early, surely ?"
said David Wilson cordially.
"Yes, we must. Much obliged to
you all the same; but my Thomas likes
to read a chapter of the Bible and
pray with the family before we go to
bed, and we must not keep the maid-
servant and the boys up any longer;."
and with a kindly Good-night," she
parted from them ; but as she kissed
92 CLEAR SHINING," ETC.
Martha, she whispered, "God bless
you with His choicest blessings through
the year that is coming, my child;
may He be your best Friend and con-
Martha squeezed her friend's hand
tightly in answer, and then the baker
and his wife went away.
I'm glad you coaxed me into stop-
ping at home this evening, Patty," said
Ben; I've had a jolly time of it, and
I don't believe I should have been bet-
ter off with those chaps who asked me
to go out with them."
"I don't think you would," said his
sister, looking up at him quietly.
"This room is much nicer than it
used to be; it doesn't seem like the
same at all," he remarked after a few
"You've helped to make it nice,
Ben," said Martha.
"CLEAR SHINING," ETC. 93
"Not much, Patty; but I'll do my
best to keep it so."
All this time David Wilson had
been sitting thoughtfully, leaning his
elbows on the table and his head on
his hands; at length he looked up and
"Children, listen to me. While I
was ill I thought a good bit, and now
I want to tell you something. We've
not been living as we should; we've
been forgetting God, children; and not
living as if heaven was before us. Let
us change; it is high time we should.
We have many mercies: God has
spared me still' to work for you; He
has raised up kind friends for us; and
last, not least, He has given me this
good daughter, and you this good sis-
ter," and he laid his broad hand upon
Martha's head, and then added reve-
rently, "Let us try to thank Him in
94 CLEAR SHINING," ETC.
our lives. Willie, my lad, get down
Martha's eyes kindled with pleasure,
and she listened with an overflowing
heart, while her father read a psalm,
and then kneeling down, repeated the
Quietly and gratefully she went to
bed, at the end of that day of happi-
ness; but ere she did so she poured
out her heartfelt thanksgiving to her
Father in Heaven for His mercies tQ
her in helping her to see the error of
her old ways, and mentally resolved io
struggle on bravely and cheerfully for
the sake of the dear ones around her.