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A LETTER FOR A DEAD CHILD.
EVENING PRAYER. row the light has gone away, - Saviour, listen while I pray, Asking Thee to watch and keep, And to send me quiet sleep. Jesus, Saviour, wash away, All that has been wrong to-day, Help me every day to be Good and gentle, more like Thee. Let my near and dear ones be Always near and dear to Thee; Oh bring me and all I love To Thy happy home above. Now my evening praise I give; Thou didst die that I might live; All my blessings come from Thee, Oh, how good Thou art to me! Thou my best and kindest Friend; Thou wilt love me to the end ; Let me love Thee more and more, Always better than before.
A LETTER FOR A DEAD GIRL. THE other morning I found my letters
I as usual upon the breakfast table; some from Australia, some from the South Seas, some from friends nearer home. Among them was one addressed in a hand that was strange to me. On opening it, I found that the envelope served merely as the cover to another letter addressed to a favourite daughter who was sleeping in a quiet country churchyard many miles away. Did any of you ever receive a letter addressed to one who had left this world so many years ago? A strange feeling came over me-a feeling at first of solemn awe, then one of gentlest affection, as the image of her who had gone before passed across my mind.
Six years ago, in an excellent magazine for the young, published in London, the editor had offered a prize for the best essay upon a prescribed subject. The little girl, only some ten years of age, thought she would try for it, and her image is before me, as she sat in the long winter evenings thinking it out; the slate, the busy pencil, the smile of pleasure as sentence after sentence was written. Then, the mystery about it, for no one was to know it but myself; the anxious moment when the envelope was to be addressed to the great man in London. Then came an interval of suspense; many an anxious look for the postman, many a wonder if the precious letter had miscarried, and at last the conclusion that nothing would come of it!A vision of hurried steps upon the stair, of gleaming eyes radiant with joy, and of a letter held aloft with the glad tidings that the child's effort had been crowned with success. Following close upon the letter came the prize itself. O the joy of that spring morning, and the glad surprise of all in the house that darling A-had won.'
Three years passed after that, and a gentle voice whispered in my ear one Sabbath morning, I am going homehome, to be with Jesus;' and ere night came, she was safely folded in the arms of the Good Shepherd. Dear child! she had
FRANCES RIDLEY HAVERGAL.
gained a nobler, better prize-THE CROWN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS.
A lady in England, knowing nothing of all this, and making an effort to present the Editor of the magazine with a well merited token of esteem, writes to the young people who had been prize takers, asking them to help, and among the rest, all unwitting, she addresses a note to my child, who is among the white-robed. Thus it was that a letter came for a dead girl, and stirred to the inmost depths the memories of the past. Well, well, it is but a little while; I shall go to her, she will not come to me.
ROSES ON THE MOUNTAINS. TAR up on the rugged Scotch hills
: among the crags and the heather, you will come upon sudden beds of delicate pure white roses. Far up and alone among the twisted heath, and the dim bog-myrtle, and the lichens and the rocks, they bloom as finely and sweetly as a rose in the queen's garden, and fill the lonely air with the scent of their pale leaves.
And surely these lonely flowers have a gentle thought in their breath: it is this, that no place in the world is too unkindly for love to charm-too rough to be made beautiful by tenderness, patience, and faith.
IX.-God a Spirit. 33 How many Gods are there? There is none other God but one. (1 Cor. 8. 4.)
34 Can we see God? No man hath soon God at any time. (John 1. 18.)
35 Why cannot we see God? God is a Spirit. (John 4. 24.) . 36 Does God see us ? The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good. (Prov. 15. 3.)
X.-The Christian's Death. 37 Will God forsake the Christian in Death? Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil : for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me. (Psa. 23. 4.)
38 Is it a loss for the Christian to die? What did Paul say? To me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. (Philip. 1. 21.)
39 What did the voice from heaven say to John? Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they, may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them. (Rev. 14. 13.)
40 What was even the wicked Balaam constrained to cry? Let mo die the death of the righteous, and let my last end be liko his ! (Num. 23. 10.)
XI.-The Holy Spirit. 41 When Christ went up to heaven, what did He promise to do? I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth. (John 14. 16-17.)
42 What did Christ say the Spirit would teach us? He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. (John 14. 26.)
43 What is the fruit of the Spirit? The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance. (Gal. 5. 22-23.)
44 To whom will Ġod give the Holy Spirit? To them that ask Him. (Luke 11. 13.)
XII.--Work. 45 What does the Bible tell us to be in our daily duties? Not slothful in business ; fervent in Spirit; serving the Lord. (Rom. 12. 11.)
46 Have we long time for this work of life? Behold, Thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before Thee. (Psa. 39. 5.)
47 What then did Jesus say about His work? I must work the works of Him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh when no man can work. (John 9. 4.)
48 Should we do the same? Christ also guffered for us, leaving us an example, that yo should follow His steps. (1 Pet. 2. 21.)
PIONEER QUESTIONS PREPARED FOR THE CHILDREN'S SERVICE.'
BY REV. DAVID MACRAE. SERIES A.-SCRIPTURE QUARTETTS.
VIII.-Creation. 29 Who made the world? In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (Gen. 1. 1.)
30 How did He make it? He spake, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast. (Psa. 33. 9.)
31 To whom then does all belong? The earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. (Psa. 24. 1.)
32 What is due to God as Creator? Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for Thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. (Rev. 4. 11.)
"You don't know why I've got on my brown
frock,' she said, looking down complacently TT was an autumn day, and Sandy and Rose as she spoke on her own little, pretty person. I were in the fir wood.
'No, why?' asked Rose, and your beads, Sandy, on a swaying fir branch, far up and and your good hat?' half hid in the green, was plucking all the Because I was at Mrs Graham's with Mary, unripe cones he could reach, and throwing changing eggs. I wanted to come and get them down to Rose to make her basket fuller. you too, but Mary said we hadn't time. And,
But Rose watched him fearfully, and with O Rose, do you know what we saw.' every handful she received, entreated :
No. O come down, Sandy, O do come down!'. Such an awful looking man,' said Maggie, • Are you frightened ? asked Sandy, spring. coming closer to Rose as she spoke, "if you ing across to a higher branch.
had just seen! Mary said it was a mercy I Yes, O do come!
wasn't taking the eggs alone, that he was just Frightened !' laughed Sandy, resting and a gangrel, and he might have done something; bending down that Rose might hear him well he wouldn't touch us when we were with enough, 'this is how men travel in America, Mary, you know. If you had just seen his miles without once coming down, they can't coat; it was all torn, and he was sitting at the get along the ground for the snakes and things; side of the hedge and talking to himself. and it was how Park crossed Africa, I'm Mary says that it's only bad people talk to sure - pausing to remember if his book themselves, that it's an awful bad sign. He memory were at fault.
stopped talking when he saw us; Mary says "Well, I don't care what Park did,' shouted he would be saying something bad, that he up Rose, and I wish you would never read a didn't want us to hear. I'm glad it wasn't thing if it makes you go on like that.'
you and me was going alone, Rose. You "That's just the good of reading, it makes a would have been awful frightened.' fellow know what men can do.'
"O!' exclaimed Rose, and will he be there But you're not a man.' • All the better. A man couldn't stand | No, for Mary looked behind and she saw here,' said Sandy, bending the branch with him rising.' his foot; but I would like to try these 'I wonder where he would go.' American forests, wouldn't it be fine crossing "I don't know; Mary told Mrs Graham, the country like a squirrel or a monkey in the and she says it's because it's harvest, there's trees.'
such a lot of these gangrels going about the I don't think it would be fine at all,' said country.' Rose, “I wish you had never heard about Rose said nothing for a minute, then she America,'
said, “Maybe he was poor.' Rose! Rose!' then Rose looked round, she “Yes,' said Maggie shaking her head. knew 'twas their sister was calling.
Then when she looked at Rose and saw Rose,' she shouted again.
there was something in her eye, not quite a “Yes, I'm coming, Maggie. O Sandy, come tear, but nearly one, she laughed and shook a down!'
long daisy chain, and held it up before her. Come, Rose, come quick, we're to bring See, it was me made this, Rose, me and home Molly. Is that Sandy up there?
Mary. “Yes, I wish he would come down.'
What a long one.' How frightened you are! do you think 'It can go round my neck, and round my Sandy can't climb ?'
waist, and round my arms; but we've to be "Yes, but-' hesitated Rose, a little ashamed quick, mind, for it's time that Molly was of her unbelief, and still looking fearfully up home.' through the dark, swaying tree.
So they ran down the barley field and came Sandy!' with a last call.
to the grass park where the well-loved Molly "Yes.'
spent her lazy, pleasant days. “We're going for Molly,' cried Maggie in a But Molly wasn't waiting at the gate as voice that rang through the wood, and she was her wont. “Stupid thing! she's forgotten,' drew Rose out into the sunny field, holding said Maggie, 'O there she is at the gate at the by her cotton dress.
And there to be sure was Molly against the nor after they footed the daisies as then. It five-barred gate, with her lazy face turned seemed that the barley field gate took nearly towards them waiting patiently; but Rose and an age to open. What the cry could mean Maggie suddenly stopped, for they heard they did not dare to ask, for it was a troubled behind the hedge, a low, hoarse sound.
cry, and Sandy was up in the trees. They That's him," said Maggie, in a frightened did not speak a word; but unspoken in both whisper, and throwing as she spoke her arm young hearts there lingered the hoarse words, round Rose's waist, come, we'll run away;
His mercy endureth for ever.' Mary will come for Molly.'
In less than half a minute they were in the But Rose stood still; she was peering fir wood, looking up with white faces through through the hedge.
one of the great trees. For high, high up, on "That's the man we saw, I'm sure of it,' the very furthest end of a breaking, creaking said Maggie again, her lips close to Rose's branch, sat Sandy, their own Sandy, and they ear. “Rose, I thought you would be far could not reach him nor help him. frighteneder than me-you would be if you 'Is there nobody near?' asked Sandy in a saw him.'
strange sort of still voice, the branch is Hush! listen!' said Rose, clasping her breaking, I can't hold on much longer.' hands suddenly.
Then he held his lips close, as if their very For a little wind had risen, wafting to them motion might loosen his tottering support; the low, hoarse sounds, and Rose had caught and looked down with a face as pale as that of a word which made her eyes grow soft.
Rose or Maggie on the soft, green, mossy The wind, with a long sigh, came through ground so far, far below. For round him the the sycamore. It died; but very low came swaying trees offered never a branch for aid. still the voice of the wayfaring man:
Sometimes they bent so near he could touch ""To him that by wisdom made the heavens: the moving spines, but these only came off for his mercy endureth for ever.
in his hands; he could grasp nothing that was "To him that stretched out the earth above strong. the waters : for his mercy endureth for ever. With a quick, dreary glance, his sister's
“To him that made great lights: for his eyes swept the field, but no one could be seen; mercy endureth for ever:
the reapers had all gone home, and the house “The sun to rule by day: for his mercy was a mile away, and the branch was slowly endureth for ever:
breaking “The moon and stars to rule by night: for Suddenly Rose's eyes brightened with a his mercy endureth for ever.
gleam of hope. “To him that smote Egypt in their first Hold on, Sandy,' she cried, 'I'll get help born: for his mercy endureth for ever:
in a minute.' “And brought out Israel from among them: And before the words were quite spoken, for his mercy endureth for ever:
she was in the barley field, running as fast as “With a strong hand, and with a stretched she could towards the five-barred gate. out arm: for his mercy endureth for ever.
What if he should be away?'-'His mercy “To him which led his people through the endureth for ever,' these were the thoughts wilderness : for his mercy endureth for ever. I that were chiming together through poor
“Who remembered us in our low estate: Rose's heart as she ran. She did not know for his mercy endureth for ever.”
how, indeed, the gangrel could help Sandy; Here the voice trembled and paused, and but she trusted him in some instinctive way, repeated the words again with a deep, hoarse, because she thought surely this poor man mournful fervour, which brought tears to trusted God. Rose's eyes.
Rose climbed up on the gate, and looked out "“Who remembered us in our low estate : with a beating, fearful heart, just as the man for his mercy endureth for ever:
rose wearily with his stick and bundle to go. “And hath redeemed us from our enemies : “Man, man,' pleaded Rose, stretching out for his mercy endureth for ever.”'
both hands in her eagerness, 'come and save
Sandy, come quick, quick.' 'Rose! Maggie! Maggie! Rose!'
'Ay, ay, whaur?' asked the man with but Rose and Maggie never forgot that cry, one glance at her face, for in that face he read never as long as they lived. Never before | her truth and her despair.