« PreviousContinue »
Envy is one of the meanest of all the passions. It is alike offensive in the sight of God and man. It is not only an unreasonable, but a malignant spirit. It looks with the eye of hatred upon a brother, for no other reason than because he either is, or is supposed to be, a special favorite of Providence. If this hateful passion ever rise in your breast, banish it as one of the worst enemies of your happiness, your character, and your soul.
THE ARCHER AND THE ARROW.
An archer complained of his arrow, because it did not hit the mark. “If you had directed me light,” said the arrow, “I should not have failed.”
By this we learn, that we too often blame others, when the fault is only in ourselves.
A BURTHEN which one chooses, is not felt.
HONESTY THE BEST POLICY.
A NobleMAN travelling in Scotland, about six years ago, was asked for alms in the High street of Edinburgh, by a little ragged boy. He said he had no change; upon which the boy offered to procure it. His lordship, in order to get rid of his importunity, gave him a piece of silver, and the boy conceiving it was to be changed, ran off for that purpose. On his return, not finding his benefactor, whom he had expected to wait, he watched for several days in the place where he had received the money. At length, the nobleman happened again to pass that way; the boy accosted him, and put the change he had procured into his hand, counting it with great exactness. His lordship was so pleased with the boy's honesty, that he had him placed at school, with the assurance of providing for him.
HE is a friend, who scorns the little sphere
Oestinacy is a pertinacious and stubborn perseverance in any opinion, or course of action, we have once adopted, however absurd and destructive in its consequences. This unhappy error often arises from a strong desire of appearing consistent, and a shame of acknowledging ourselves to be wrong. It is one of those vices which misleads us with a semblance of virtue; its common foundation is pride.
Pride and self-sufficiency cheat us through life, and we become dupes to our own blindness, in supposing that others do not see our weakness, because we ourselves refuse to acknowledge it. In short, truth, and nothing but truth, is what we ought obstinately to adhere to ; for if we are obstinately attached to error, as sure as truth and falsehood are different things, our misfortunes in life will be in exact proportion to our obstimacy,
TO A CHILD ON HIS BIRTHDAY.
WHERE sucks the bee now ! Summer is flying,
For love bids it welcome, the love which hath smiled
THE BLIND BOY.
SeveN children gathered around the board of William Halleck; and though poverty lay like a dark mist on his prospects, and sometimes pressed heavily on his heart, yet the hardy and pious farmer toiled patiently along the thorny path he found marked out for him. Death had never entered his doors; but sickness had come often, with fatigue, expense, anxiety, and sorrow in her train; and beneath his roof dwelt one being, at once a living joy and a living sorrow. His fourth child was a bright and beautiful boy; but God had shut out from his mind the perception of all visible loveliness. Henry was born blind. The hearts of the parents were troubled when the terrible suspicion first came upon their minds, that the fair infant on whom they gazed, lay in a world of darkness. Many and various were the experiments they tried to ascertain the truth, and it was long after every friend and neighbor that looked upon the child had expressed his melancholy conviction, ere the father and mother would shut their hearts against all hope. But the boy grew and strengthened; his little limbs became active; he stood by his mother's knee; he grasped her hand, and walked tottering at her side; language came in due season to his tongue, and his artless prattle and happy laugh were the loudest and the liveliest in the house. Yet vision was still wanting, and the earth and all it contained, even the faces of those he best loved, were shut from his gaze. He was born to be a poor, useless, helpless blind boy; and the hearts of his parents sometimes ached to the core as they looked on his blooming cheek and sightless eyes, and thought of the future. But the voice of complaint was a sound unknown beneath the roof of William Halleck, and the hymn of thanksgiving ascended every evening from the lips of his family circle, ere the deep sleep of the weary came on their eyelids. Three winters in succession had a rheumatic fever laid one of the daughters of William Halleck on the bed of sickness; yet she, too, like the rest of that humble household, was industrious, contented, and pious. She was two years older than Henry; and the mutual sense of infirmity had knit the bonds of a brother's and a sister's love most closely between them. When the invalid first rose from the weary bed of pain, and went forth under the blue sky of spring, it was the strengthening arm of Henry that supported her; and when the blind boy asked of things that were shut up from none but him, it was the soft voice of Mary that answered his questions, and poured into his mind the delight of new ideas. It was Henry who sat by Mary's bedside in her hours of suffering, and ministered to her wants. He knew by her breathing when she slept, and remained still and silent in his darkness till she woke. He knew by the very tones of her voice when she was better, and when she was worse, and though he stole about her room with the bent head and outstretched