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peace and happiness. From the hospitable cottage where I had passed the night, we walked to the village school, which stands close to the venerable old Church ; and I could not help thinking that the situation was most happily chosen : for it should never be forgotten, that the first object of all instruction is to bring men pearer to God. The children were assembled in their classes, and every thing in the school was in neatness and order. The worthy Pastor of the parish had already arrived, and, before the children proceeded to their reading, he addressed them in a simple and affectionate manner on the duties they had to perform; they seemed attentive to what he said, and there was an easiness of illustration in his manner which evi. dently excited their interest. The children then read to us any part of the New Testament which we might fix upon, and we were requested to put some plain questions to them, as to the meaning of the more striking passages. So far as I had an opportunity of judging from the class which was before me, several of whom were very young boys, they seemed to have been very well taught. In the upper part of the room, the little girls were examined in a similar manner, by some ladies of the parish, who had kindly undertaken this:" labour of love.". I confess to you, Sir, I could not but feel interested in the success of such an institution; for it seems to me, that, in such labours, we are at once following the example, and obeying the command, of our blessed Master; for one of his last, and most carnest injunctions to a favourite disciple, was, " Feed my Lambs!”I think too, that to young females, religious instruction is, if possible, still more necessary, than to our own sex. Young women have feelings more tender and more easily awakened; but, unless properly, regulated, those feelings may become, (alas ! how frequently do they become !) their ruin. Besides, the young females
of the present race, must be the earliest teachers of the next : our first lessons of instruction come from our mothers. Let no one under-rate the mental faculties, or think lightly of the religious attain. ments of women. Our blessed Lord, during the days of his condescension on earth, set us an example the very contrary to this. To women many of his most affectionate admonitions were given ; for them many of his miracles were wrought. And they were among the most faithful of his fol. lowers. With all the timidity of their sex, they remained stedfast to him to the last. When « the disciples forsook him and fled,” when their hope and faith, in the hour of trial, died away, the love of Mary sustained her, and she continued fuithful. She was the last at his cross, the first at his sepulchre. Let this teach man to be humble! let it teach woman, that she was born for higher things than to trifle life away.
The bell of the church summoned us from the school to the house of prayer; and, as we accompanied the little ones across the Green, I could not help thinking how much better prepared theirminds were for the service of the day, than if they had heen suffered to spend the morning in idleness and folly. And I said to myself, “it is the same in lifefor that too is but a morning; and according as we pass it, will be our fitness to meet our God in that other world, to which we are all hastening.
The Church was well attended, for the exertions and earnestness of the Rector had drawn many to the House of God, who had long been strangers to the holy place. He spoke from his heart, and all listened to him with attention. The walk from the church to the village leads through the Manor Park, and is exceedingly beautiful. On the right hand is a clear running stream, winding through green pastures, and sheltered by a banging wood of considerable extent; on the left are the rising grounds and venerable trees of the Park, excluding the distant prospect, but contributing greatly to the beauty of the home scene. The cattle were re• posing under the shade, and seemed half conscious that to them too it was a day of rest. And merciful, indeed, is the provision which the goodness of God has made for them in the appointment of a Sabbath, instead of leaving them to the uncertain considera tion of their masters! The villagers were returning to their cottages and family meal, accompanied by our little friends from the school; there was a cheerfulness in their countenances, and an air of comfort in the general appearance of the village, which gave to the scene before me more interest than I can describe. . A general invitation seemed to have gone forth from all nature around me, “This is the day which the Lord hath made, let us rejoice and be glad in it!" When we were summoned to the evening service I never felt less disposed to neglect the kind invitation. I have ever been affectionately attached to our venerable English Church, and I believe (as a good man said long ago) “ that there are no prayers like her prayers.
While the sun was shedding his parting beams on the valley of Elford, I had an opportunity“ of meditating, in her fields," on the happy day I had passed. It requires a colder heart than mine to think even now of such days without gratitude; and, if I return from them to the labours of an active employment, and the daily business of life, neither wiser nor better, the fault must assuredly be in myself. Let me say one word to those of
readers who do not think sufficiently of the blessing of the Sabbath. One day in seven is but a little thing; but let him who has lived twenty-one years, bear in mind this awful truth, that he has lived, and has three years of Sabbaths to account for, I have been endeavouring to describe a Sabbath, such as I have passed in a retired country village; but, blessed be
God, his presence is not confined to time or place; for is wheresoever two or three are gathered together in His name," there hath He promised “to be in the midst of them." We may remember God in the crowded city, and amidst the bustle of men; we may forget Him in solitude, amidst all the beauties of his creation. Wheresoever our lot in life may place us, we may "worship God in spirit and in truth;" wherever we may be, we can render him no other acceptable worship.
The Sabbath, therefore, is a blessing, freely offered to all who will avail themselves of it: to all it is a pledge, that as Christ died and rose again, even so we also shall arise from the
grave on immortality. To the young it is a salutary check amidst the giddiness and levity of health and spirits ; it will not make them. gloomy, but it will teach them to be steady. To the active and the busy, of riper years, it is a periodical warning of the utter vanity of all human hopes, when compared with the prize of their high calling.” To the aged it is a merciful memorial, that when this life is over, there remaineth a rest for the people of God." May we all so pass our Sabbaths here, that we may hereafter enjoy one Sabbath without end."
Your constant Reader,
A LONDON APPRENTICE.
Questions and Answers
from Watts's Hymns,
THE EXCELLENCY OF THE BIBLE.
On all thy works I look ;
Shine brightest in thy Book.
Have much instruction giv'n;
How I may climb to Heav'n.
The goodness of the Lord ;,
In thy most holy Word.
Here my best comfort lies :
And bence my hopes arise.
What do you praise God for in this Hymn?
But where are his wisdom, power, and grace, most brightly shewn?
In his Word.
What instruction do you receive from looking at the stars?
They shew me the glory of God.
But while the fields provide you with the fruits : of the earth, for the support of your body, where must you look for the fruits of life and glory, for the support and nourishment of your soul?
In the Word of God.