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corner off; and if, when you brought the last, the whole stock of misfits was sold heavy pile of plates, you had put them off to pay
the rent. Simon had always on the middle of the board, instead of been rather of a reading turn. The putting them on the corner, more than neighbours reckoned him great half off the table, by which their weight scholar; and as he sometimes put naturally tilted down the whole, there into rhyme a few verses of Scripture, was no fatality that could have caused or gave the rhyme of other people a this accident. Use your own reason and fresh measure and connexion, he was, judgment, attend to the instructions you moreover, reputed “something conreceive, and endeavour to make your siderable of a poet." As the shoeself familiar with the reasons, why one making trade failed, Simon found more method is safer and better than another, leisure for his literary pursuits, and enand you will seldom occasion_such mis- tertained a growing conviction that he chievous accidents as this. But let me was fitted for something higher than tell you, that it is sinful as well as fool the drudgery of shoemaking, and that ish to talk about being fated to do it was a shame for such talents as his wrong, either in little matters or great. to be buried. Simon's wite was
This is charging our follies upon God; thrifty, industrious, and intelligent woand, if you indulge a habit in trifling man; and perceiving that the support things, of saying, you cannot help do- of the family becam more and more ing wrong,' it is of no use to try to dependent on her, she endeavoured to do right,
'misfortunes will happen to obtain employment in needlework, and you,' and many other such foolish say- also opened a little school for children. ings, I am afraid you will apply the In her praiseworthy efforts, Mrs. Smith same sort of unreasonable reasoning to verified the saying, "Strive and thrive." things of the greatest moment; that you She performed her work with neatness will sin against God, and ruin your own and punctuality; and gave great satissoul, and imagine that you cannot help faction to the parents, by her manage. it, you are fated to it, and it is of no use ment of the little ones committed to to try to avert it. But in either case, her care. She got on beyond her exthese foolish excuses will neither do pectation; still it was hard for the supaway the blame of neglect or mis- port of the family to rest almost entirely conduct, nor prevent the unhappy re- on the labour of the mother; and Simon sults."
was urged to make some effort to assist “I cannot learn this new way, sir, her. “What could he do ?” was his and it is of no use to try; so I hope indolent reply, “he had not money you will be so kind as to find me some to buy a new stock.” It was suggested other sort of employment.” So said to him to apply for work at the large Simon Smith, on his return from a shops. He evidently did not like the fruitless attempt to be initiated into the idea of doing this, after having been a system of adult teaching. The said master; but perhaps fearing that the Simon was a shoemaker by trade; but objection, dictated by pride, would not as he never could learn (or rather never be sympathized in by those who condid learn) the art of measuring accu- sidered honest labour, however humble, rately, his shelves were generally stocked far more honourable than indolent de
misfits," which he was obliged pendence, he said he did not think he to sell at reduced prices, generally when could get work at present, not being a he was distressed for ready money, in busy time; it was of no use to try, consequence of some new failure in sa- However, a busy time came; the tisfactorily accomplishing an order, on great shoemaker in the next town had the payment for which he had calcu- a large government order, and being lated for the support of his family, or really pressed for hands, applied to Si. the purchase of materials. The patience mon with an offer of constant employ of customers was wearied out by the on advantageous terms. It seemed just vexation of always having their shoes the thing for him, and for a little time brought home, either too long or too he was quite pleased with it, there was short, too narrow or too wide ; and not the trouble of accommodating his work one after another dropped off, till-poor to the particular foot of every individual Simon and his family were often at customer ; but so many dozen pairs their wit's end for subsistence : and, at were to be made on such a last, or to
such a number, and so many dozens to she had derived from her three months' such a one.
But Simon soon got tired tuition in London. Her husband, as of constant work; he wanted more time long as I knew him, continued to de" to cultivate his 'poetical talent;" he pend on her for his support, and satisfound out that it was impossible to please fied himself with forming schemes, or his master, it was of no use to try; and going here and there to inquire after again he threw himself upon the re-openings for the exercise of his talents sources of his industrious wife. A and the maintenance of his family. friend of my uncle's was about to es- “It is of no use to try, the case is tablish a school, both for children and altogether hopeless, it is but spending adults, to be taught at different times. labour in vain.” So said one after anHe was desirous of obtaining a suit- other of the neighbours, who had run able master and mistress to carry out together on an alarm being given that his plans, and applied to my uncle for a youth had fallen into the river. At his advice and recommendation. My uncle first, all were eager enough to assist replied, that he knew a very worthy in getting him out. In fact they ran woman every way suitable for the female against one another in their eagerness department; and he hoped that with a to be nearest to the spot, and to get little instruction, her husband also might the first sight when the body was brought be found competent for the other. out of the water. But when curiosity So desirous was he of rendering them was gratified, the spectators dropped off; efficient instruments in carrying out his they soon got tired of rubbing. One friend's scheme of benevolence, and also of the surgeons was called away to a of enabling them to avail themselves patient; the other looked at his watch, of so good an opening for the support said he had an appointment, and that he of their family, that he offered to join really considered all further efforts usehis friend in bearing the expense of less. He had never known an instance their being sent to London for proper of recovery, after so long a submersion, instruction. The matter was proposed as in the present instance. His young to the parties, and joyfully accepted. man, however, might stay and try a Mrs. Smith set herself with spirit, in- little longer for the satisfaction of the dustry and perseverance to improve the family, and that of my uncle, who apinstructions afforded her, and qualify peared deeply interested in the case. herself for the post contemplated. But, I have read," said my uncle, in the alas ! her endeavours were rendered un- Humane Society's Report, of success availing, and her hopes thwarted by the after four, and even six hours' labour, apperverseness, indolence, and self-conceit parently in vain ; and I am resolved not of her husband. He could not, at his to give up this case without persevering, age, become a learner of new systems; for at least that length of time. I hope but felt sure that he had great abilities a few will stay to assist; but if not, for teaching, and, let him but pursue his I will do what I can alone.” My uncle's own way, he knew he could do well ; determination seemed to animate afresh but to conform to the rules and methods the young surgeon, who had begun to of the institution in which he was flag in consequence of the dispiriting replaced, -he could not do it, and it was marks of his master; and two or three of no use to try.
stout men said they were willing to stay " It is of no use," said my uncle, as long as his honour pleased, and to “ to try to help those who will not try do any thing that he wished them to to help themselves ; I am sorry, very do, though for their parts they were sorry, for the sake of the deserving certain sure” that the poor lad would woman that this well-intended effort never revive. Their efforts had not should prove a failure ; but I have quite been continued up to the shortest time, done with endeavouring to find situ- which my uncle had named, when á ations for a man who will not exert slight indication of returning animation himself to fill them. He must suffer stimulated them afresh to persevere; for his own folly ; and if he suffered and before the more distant period had alone, it could scarcely be matter of arrived (six hours) their efforts were regret. Simon's wife returned to her crowned with complete success. “Well, former employment, and often expressed sir,” said the young surgeon, as he thankfulness for the great advantages shook hands with my uncle at parting,
" this result is altogether beyond my near to it was a tree of choice apples, expectation ; I have to thank you for just beginning to look ruddy; and on a valuable professional lesson, which I the other side, one well hung, with hope never to forget.” That individual magnum bonum plums. Through the is not now a young man ; and, in cases palisades, too, it was easy to see the similar to that just referred to, he has well-trained vines, apricot, peach, and been peculiarly favoured in the enjoy- nectarine trees, cach bearing their ment of success, as the result of perse- respective produce in several stages of vering effort.
advance. Joe Sharp often passed that “ 'Tis of no use to try; the excel. way, both by day and by night; but lence of my pattern renders success in he never attempted to enter. The trees attempting to imitate it altogether hope were not less tempting or less accesless; it is impossible for me to follow sible than in any former year; but it the example of
was plain that the temptation was not with your false humility,
said my irresistible. It was observed, that a uncle, "try, try, again and again; he few days after the above notice was exis more likely to shoot high who aims hibited, in going to and from his work, at the moon, than he who only aims Joe took the path across the fields, inat a jackdaw in the hedge. If you stead of going round the road way, by really wish to attain excellence, it is the lawyer's garden. Now," continued not impossible to you, any more than to my uncle, "I am no friend to steel any other finite and fallible being ; but traps and spring guns. I would rather if you indolently resolve to rest satis- lose every bit of fruit that my garden fied with any thing short of excellence, produces, than I would endanger the you may depend upon stopping very life or limb of the greatest rogue in far short of reaching it. In moral ex- the world; but I think every person, cellence, no man ever yet reached higher who desires to conquer a bad temper, than he aimed; and no man was ever or break a bad habit, should contrive justly discouraged in the pursuit of ex- for himself some moral restraint, at cellence, which he sincerely desired to least as powerful and efficacious. If
every angry breath of yours pressed “My temper is naturally hasty and upon the wire of a spring gun, or if passionate; I really cannot help it. a glass of spirits were only to be reached If I resolve against it ever so, it takes by putting your hand within the jaws me unawares, and I cannot resist it; it of a steel trap, do you not think you is of no use to try.” “ Yes, I must should find that you had power to readmit that the habit to which you al- sist the temptation, if you chose to do lude is objectionable and dangerous; so ? Then, do not deceive yourself, by but I have been so long accustomed to it, saying, it is of no use to try. Read and it has gained such an ascendancy the declarations and warnings of Scripover me, that it is next to impossible ture, and if you believe them to be as for me to break it off. I have made true and real as the steel traps and several attempts, but it only takes the spring guns, you will find them quite stronger hold of me for any occa- as efficacious; and, instead of running sional resistance, and I really think into temptation, and hugging evil to it is of no use to try.” “Ah," said your heart, with a pretence that you my uncle,
“when I was a boy, there cannot get rid of it, like Joe Sharp, lived in the village a man, named Joe you will not only no longer find yourSharp, who was so fond of fruit, that self under any necessity of climbing the it was said of him he could not pass a wall, and snatching the forbidden fruit, tree loaded with ripe apples or plums, but you will turn away your eyes from but he must climb it and get a taste. beholding vanity; you will not enter A lawyer, who lived in the neighbour- | into the way of temptation, but will hood, had more than once had his gar- avoid it, turn from it, and pass away,” den robbed, and suspicion had fallen Prov. iv. 15. on Joe Sharp. · The next year,
when the “It is impossible to preserve peace,” fruit was ripening, a board was exhi- said a member of a family, remarkable bited, bearing a notice that steel traps for disgraceful broils. " Father is so and spring guns were placed in those passionate, and mother so fretful, and gardens. The board was fixed in a John so selfish, and Mary so touchy, tree, loaded with fine jargonel pears; I and Jane so mischief-making. I lead
life among them all : we are complish it ! A similar sentiment may, always quarrelling; I should be glad and ought to be applied to every ento keep peace, but it is of no use to terprise, however arduous, every duty, try. “ No doubt there is some dif- however difficult, for which we can proficulty," said my uncle, “in maintain- duce a clear command from the King of ing harmony among persons of different kings. Now God has commanded all patempers and dispositions. This is im- rents to rule well their own households; plied in the very phraseology in which to train up their children in the nurture we are exhorted to strive after it. Seek and admonition of the Lord; to command peace,' as that which is easily lost, and their children and households after them pursue it,' as that which is apt to run to keep the way of the Lord. See Gen. away, Psa. xxxiv. 14; but while you xviii. 19; Eph. vi. 4. Those parents, who say that it is of no use to try, you sincerely endeavour to do this, depending give an infallible evidence that some- upon Him who has given the command thing is wanting on your own part, and to give the ability to fulfil it, will find that you are by no means free from heavenly wisdom given to direct them the charge of contributing to family in their perplexities, power from on discord. Go home, my young friend, high to sustain them in their feeblewith a determination in the strength of ness, and an efficacious blessing to crown Divine grace, to watch over and cor- their feeble efforts; but those who neirect your own spirit ; and I am very ther strive nor pray, have no right to much mistaken, if you do not find it complain that their duties are above is of great use to try. Endeavour to their own strength. remove from
occasion “And is it not equally unreasonable of provocation ; be more gentle and and inconsistent, when persons attempt soothing in your deportment to your to excuse themselves in remaining in mother; let John see in you an ex- an unconverted state, by saying, that ample of generosity; and Mary, one of they cannot change their own hearts, conciliation and forbearance ; and en- that conversion is the work of God deavour to engage Jane in such con- alone; and that till he bestows his versation as is good to the use of edi- special grace, it is in vain for them to fying. If you sincerely and steadily try? If there were a sincere desire strive to do this, I think that peace will after conversion, the sinner would not be a much more frequent visitant, if not stay to speculate ; but would, by a sort a constant resident in your family, and of spiritual instinct, make an effort, and I am sure that you will find it a lovely at the same time earnestly implore the inmate in your own bosom, diffusing aid of sovereign mercy ; but he who there a tranquillity and happiness, which makes inability his excuse does neither; outward commotions cannot disturb." and is justly condemned, not because he
“I know that I ought to keep my cannot, but because he will not come children under proper subjection, and to Christ that he may have life.” restrain them from evil ; but I cannot “I have so many duties pressing upon do as many people can, I find it im- me,” is sometimes the language of a possible to maintain order and discipline wearied, burdened Christian, " it is imin my family: my children are unruly possible for me to fulfil them all; and it and disobedient, I cannot keep them in is of no use to try." This is like some order, and it is of no use to try." of the hasty words spoken by good men “That,” said my uncle, “can never of old, which they invariably corrected be; you own it is your duty to do it, with shame and regret for their misand what God, by his commands has take. You perplex yourself," said made your duty, can never be impos- my uncle, to one of these, “with far sible. It was a noble sentiment, which too many things at once, and so disable a British officer expressed, when point-yourself for attending to any. ing to an enemy's vessel, of superior son has more than one duty to perform force to that which he commanded, he at one time, and for every duty there said to his brother officers, • To-morrow is an allotted moment. Do not loiter, we must carry that vessel into port.' do not confuse yourself by attempting The other officers replied that it was too much at once; but quietly fill up impossible. "Impossible !' rejoined the every moment with its own duty, and captain, don't tell me so, when I hold in the evening of every day, and at the in my hand his Majesty's order to ac- ! close of life, while you will find deep
cause for self-humiliation, you will still, happy and unlooked-for results attended in some humble degree, enjoy the satis- the effort of faith and obedience. faction of a consciousness, that you have In whatever good and lawful enterfinished the work that was given you to do." prise we are engaged, we are warranted,
“And the troubles and perplexities in humility and faith, to ask and hope of life, how they rise one after another ! for the Divine assistance and blessing ; I shall never be able to surmount this and, above all, in those which have for difficulty ; I can never bear up under their object the salvation of souls, we are this stroke; and it is of no use to try. invited and encouraged to attempt great “ Courage, my fellow pilgrim," said my things, and ask great things, and expect good uncle, your circumstances are great things. "Open thy mouth wide, very trying ; but the darkest day, and I will fill it," Psa. lxxxi. 10.
C. "Wait till to-morrow, will have passed away.' Look upward; dark as the night may be, a gleam of light will still appear from The next morning, I was awoke very above; or if you cannot discern any, still early by my man to let me know that trust in the Lord, and stay yourself upon the officer of the watch had sent him to your God; while you do this, you will inform me that Etna was in sight, if renew your strength; and of those very I wished to look at it: you may be sure troubles that now so grievously distress I did, and went on deck before sunrise. you, you will have to say, It was good | I cannot describe to you the magnificent for me to be afflicted.”
object the mountain presented at the I sum up all in a few of my uncle's distance of forty miles. It seemed to remarks at different times, on the com- rise so much higher into the air than mon expression, “ It is of no use to try." any land I had ever seen, that I thought
It is almost always an evidence of it must be an optical delusion. As it want of sincere desire to try.
became illuminated with the rays of the No one knows what he can do till rising sun, it began to display its mighty he tries.
contour, with an outline as distinct as if It is worth while trying to do what I was only a mile from it, and its three is right, whether you succeed or not. regions were very traceable. The lower The very effort will be useful, strength was clothed with wood, and spots which is increased by exercise.
appeared like scattered villages. The Indolence and despondency enfeeble next was the regio deserta, striping the the powers. If you hold a limb in one middle of the mountain like a black belt. position, and fancy you cannot move it, | Above all was the vast summit of snow, it will become so numbed and cramped dazzling white, and strongly reflecting that in time you really cannot.
the glittering sunbeams. The whole If you try to do what is right and was crowned with a conical brown cap, do not succeed, try again and again, without snow, from which there issued till you do succeed. Many a good ef- occasionally wreaths of white smoke; fort is lost for want of perseverance. curling round the point of the cone in Remember the woman of Canaan, and the most graceful and beautiful manner. let her success encourage to persever. This was the great crater; but, either ance in the face of discouragements, in consequence of the heat no snow Matt. xv. 28.
would lie on it, or it was covered by a The Divine blessing is afforded to recent eruption of ashes. honest endeavours ; but we have no The astonishing distinctness with which right whatever to expect it but in con- every part of this mighty mountain was nexion with them. How easily might seen at our present distance, made me the woman of Sarepta have said, “It a convert to Brydon's assertion, of which is of no use to try," when commanded I had been rather incredulous. He affirms to make bread for the prophet, and her that it could be clearly discerned at Malta, self, and her child, with a handful of distant two hundred Italian miles; and meal, 1 Kings xvii.; or for the ser- that during some eruptions the island vants, when told to fill the vessels with was illuminated by its light. Though water, to supply the lack of wine, John I was not so fortunate as to see these ii.; or for the man, when commanded things myself from the same place, I yet to stretch forth his withered hand, Mark now think them very possible.-Dr. iii. 5 : but, in every instance, see what | Walsh.