Изображения страниц
PDF

*

granted vocally to pray for the deliverance of such as are oppressed by the darkness which is so prevalent in that meeting, and afterwards to express a few words of encouragement to an exercised, and tried remnant. Second day evening a portion of comfort was administered, in a solemn opportunity with a large company at the house of my beloved friend George Fisher; and on third day I was enabled by close exercise to gain some relief in the meeting at Bristol. It was a season laborious both to body and mind, but one that affords satisfaction in the retrospect; and indeed this little visit altogether has been particularly satisfactory; with some it has felt like a final parting, and the recollection of having onee more met will, I believe, afford mutual comfort."

The apprehension just mentioned proved correct, this being the last visit my dear mother paid to her native city, and several of her dear and long known friends were pretty soon afterwards removed by death.

From Bristol she crossed the New-passage into Wales, and attended meetings in the way to Milford, whence she sailed for Ireland; and was favored to reach her own abode in safety near the end of the 11th mo. though in a very broken state of health, aud*under considerable depression of mind, from a settled belief that some heavy trials were impending. This view soon became painfully realized, and her affectionate feelings were keenly wounded by the death of several near relatives occurring in quick succession, so that the few first months of 1803 were signally marked by sorrow and bereavements.

The summer was chiefly passed under the pressure of bodily suffering, which was at times so severe as to induce the apprehension that the season of full deliverance was at hand; while at others her mind was still so exercised for the advancement of truth and righteousness, that it felt as though further labor would be allotted her; and in the depths of affliction she was given not only to behold «fields white unto harvest,' but afresh to surrender herself, when the Lord might utter His command, to enter into these and work; being favored with resignation to the will of her divine Master whether as to life or death.

In the second month, 1804, she went to Waterford, in order to perform some religious service, which she had long had a prospect of, both among Friends and others within those borders: the following extracts from her letters contain an account of this visit.

"I have cause to be humbly thankful for the meeting yesterday; the covering of solemnity was sensibly prevalent over the assembly, and there were many serious seeking minds present, who I trust were not discouraged; while relief was afforded to my exercised spirit, though I believe its struggles respecting this service are not

at an end; for I apprehended from the first feeling about coming here, that the line of my duty would be as much towards others, as the members of our own Society; and my view respecting families is rather confined to those lately married, new settlers, and young people in large families.

"The meeting this day was exercising but solemn; several who attended yesterday were there; a late fashionable but now thoughtfully concerned person, and her daughter like minded, who are rich in this world, were at both meetings, and called at my lodgings after. For those who may be termed ' other sheep,' I feel deeply, and am sensible of life being raised by the addition of such panting souls to our assemblies: these, whether of us, or under whatever name, will be cared for, they will be led to rivers of refreshing water, and nourished up unto everlasting life.

"This has been like the others a laborious week; but I desire to take every step manifested as the line of duty; and though run down in strength, am wonderfully supported: memorable is the Lord's goodness to my exercised mind. I never remember a more proving season to me in this line of service, nor is the labor attended with much hope, save that an increase of peace is humbly hoped for, and perhaps a little addition of strength to sustain future trials may be mercifully bestowed."

(To be continued.)

PRACTICAL RELIGION.

Practical religion confers upon its possessor a glorious triumph amidst the sorrows of life. Suppose poverty comes with its train of calamities; or suppose detraction points its barbed arrows against a blameless character; or suppose bereavement casts a withering shade upon the best earthly hopes and joys; or suppose disease, which mocks the highest efforts both of friendship and of skill, impresses itself upon the countenance and makes its lodgment in the very seat of life;—or suppose, if you please, that this whole tribe of evils come marching in fearful array to assail an individual at once, I am sure that I do not say too much for practical religion, when I deelare to you that it will enable its possessor to meet them all in serenity and triumph. To do this must require a high effert ef faith, I acknowledge; but only such an effort as has been exemplified in the experience of thousands: Oh! when I have stood amidst such scenes, and witnessed the sweet aspirations of hope, and seen the bright beams of joy irridate the countenance over which sorrow had thrown her deepest shades, just as the bow casts its brilliant hues upon the dark cloud in the going down of the sun, I have looked upon religion as a bright angel come down from heaven to exercise a sovereign influence over human calamity; and if I have formed a wish or offered a prayer in respect to you at such a moment, is has been that this good angel may be your constant attendant through this vale of tears.—Spragut.

MEMOIR OF JAMES COCKBURN.

In recurring to the known origin of my family, there is nothing presenting claims of particular distinction; but much in the practice and example of my immediate predecessors to inspire renewed respect and filial gratitude. The most ancient of my known ancestors was an officer in Cromwell's army, who appears to have come from England and settled in Scotland, after the return of the Parliamentary forces from over-running that country. He married a brother officer's daughter, a native of the Highlands, of the name of Melville. Among their descendants of the third or fourth generation, was William Cockburn, my father. He was born in the year 1735, in the parish of Wymes, in Fifeshire, about twenty miles north-east from Edinburgh. Having formed a predilection for a sea-faring life, he served his apprenticeship to that profession; and when of age, married Mary, daughter of Alexander Grigg, a respectable freeholder in the parish of Kennoway. Soon after his marriage, he was impressed and conveyed on board a king's ship, during what is called in history "j£he Seven Years' War;" where he remained three years without ever being permitted to touch land. Upon being discharged at the close of the war, he settled with his wife and one daughter in the village of Kennoway, where he purchased some real estate ; and, turning his attention to agriculture, rented some lands in the vicinity. His wife Mary, having had six children, died; and after a suitable time he entered again into the married state with Jenat Heard, my mother. She was the daughter of George Heard, an old residenter and freeholder in the same village.

My parents were married in 1772; and I, being their second son, was born in the 9th month, 1770, in the aforesaid village of Kennoway ; where 1 received the common education of reading, writing and arithmetic, as then taught in the parish school. The manner of my education was calculated to make a deep-and fixed impression on my mind. My parents were passing the middle stage of life; and, being in limited circumstances, were industrious and sober, requiring the aid of their children in the application of their agricultural labors. Being members of that religious denomination who had seceded from the church of Scotland, under the name of Burghers, they were strict in their morals, regular in their deportment, and exemplary in the observance of public and family worship, according to the Westminster confession of faith.

Morning and evening the family and children

were regularly collected ; a short prayer was uttered, extempore; then eight lines of the psalms of David in metre were sung, going regularly through; a chapter of scripture was next read in the same regular manner, every one having a Bible in hand in order to follow the reading; concluding with extempore prayer, according to the feelings of the heart. This exercise was of great advantage to the youth, in keeping alive on their minds what they had learned, and making them acquainted with the scriptures, besides impressing them with a solemn gravity. Also before and after meat, a short prayer was offered up to the Giver of all good. On first-days, after attending public worship twice, and sometimes three times, the family had to read in a class, and then be catechised; first from the Shorter Catechism, and such questious as naturally arose from them : to which much weighty counsel was often added, to the tendering of the heart, and evidently reaching the Divine witness in us.

This religious observance may seem formal; but it certainly tended to induce habits of attention and discipline in the minds of the children, and familiarized their memory with scripture history and testimony. The influence of family devotion operating insensibly on the minds of the children, did also inspire'great respect and affection for their parents.

I mention these things, not to recommend a a dry, barren form, but because I believe they were the means of my instruction and improvement ; and because I believe sincere obedience to what we are fully convinced to be duty, is the most acceptable sacrifice before the Searcher of hearts. I have often been thankful that L was under the care of sober parents, who labored for the instruction and welfare of their children, I believe with a single eye to their good, and in accordance with what they thought right: though I now see that the brightness of the gospel day was not then fully revealed in them.

Thus situated as it were in a garden inclosed, my infantile days were spent in a good degree of innocence, compared with many others. There was a native tenderness in my heart, by which I was preserved from the company of rude children. My nature shrunk from the exercise of cruelty towards animals of every kind; and when I could not prevail on my companions to desist from it, I had to flee from the scene of distress. Rough or profane words so shocked the gravity and sensibility of my mind that I was preserved from swearing or obscene language.

My father possessed considerable information, with clearness of understanding and firmness of judgment, to which was added great natural and acquired moral fortitude. My mother was constitutionally amiable. Her meek, retiring disposition was well adapted for the fulfilment of domestic duties and the enjoyment of domestic happiness. If her understanding was not extensively enlightened, her piety was practical,' unobtrusive, and sincere. She had six children; making twelve to my father by both wives. The conversational maxims and habitual example of such parents, naturally tended to impress the minds of their children with a feeling of conscious moral strictness and integrity, while it produced habits of great reverence for religious dogmas and observances, liable however to slide into superstitious fastidiousness.

When about seven or eight years old, I was put to tend the cattle in the fields ; and used to take religious books with me to read, and was often much affected in reading the accounts of the sufferings of Christ, and the final-rewards of the righteous and the wicked. These often made me weep, sometimes with fear, and at others with joy; which worked together for my good, by preserving me from the evils that are in the world, and keeping me in the path of religious awe and care, whereby I increased in the knowledge of good.

In the winters, I was put to school under the care of an attentive master, who taught me writing and the first principles of arithmetic; in which I never made much proficiency; for the inclination and powers of my mind seemed to flow in another channel. Reflection and internal exercise of the mental faculties were more congenial to my disposition; and I suppose were heightened by my being so early and so much confined to a solitary situation in the fields. My mind became fond of romantic ideas, which soon awakened the powers of imagination. I would suppose such and such things would take place, and then raise a visionary fabric of illusive conseqnences. But this indulgence of fancy retarded my progress in the Divine life, and kept me under the dominion of selfish propensities.

This arrangement, in connexion with the domestic circumstances to which I have already alluded, probably formed the basis of my individual character, which has cost me so much solioitude to meliorate under the progress of long experience.

Alas ! how deceitful is the human heart rendered by the transforming influences of darkness. Though remote from the world and the gross evils that are in it, my heart slid into the paths of deception : not supposing that I could sin in thought, I gave a free reception to every illusive imagination that would amuse the time. This doubtless tended to wean me from purity of feeling, and to strengthen the natural propensities which live in the regions of darkness.

This has been one of the most powerful enemies of my mind, and had well nigh carried me away in bondage to Babylon. But Divine Goodness interposed in the ministrations of bis providence, and recalled me in measure from the path of destruction, to return to that from which 1 had so widely deviated.

How profitable would it be for children and young people to watch the emotions of their hearts, and shut their thoughts agaitiRt the indulgence of vain imaginations, even though they may be supposed to be innocent. By parleying with idle, romantic, or visionary wanderings of the mind, in early life, many have been so wounded as to go halting all the rest of their days.

The local position of my pastoral service, was eminently calculated to awaken those emotions and romantic feelings which are supposed to be the evidences of a poetic temperament. It is probable that my rural solitude, in connexion with the extensive and varied scenery around me, gave an impulse to the powers of imagination wbich almost through life has maintained an influence over my mind. Hence, my little inclination for what is termed the sociabilities of life ; hence, the retiredness and seclusiou of my habits ; and hence, my deficiency in conversational intercourse, especially in mixed company. Although though my poetic temperament never produced much in writing, it proved the means of exciting and cherishing a high tone of mental sensibility which "grew with my growth and strengthened with my strength," absorbing as aliment whatever awakened pity, or induced tenderness.

(To be continued.)

For Friends' Intelligencer.
FOR THE CHILDREN.
The History of Moses.
[Continued from page 598.]

The Israelites grew weary of the manna which continued to fall as dew upon their camp at night, and the mixed multitude wept at the remembrance of the " fish, the cucumbers, melons, onions and garlic," of which they ate freely in Egypt. Moses heard their cry and was sorely distressed, and he said, Lord wherefore hast thou afflicted thy servant, and wherefore have I not found favor in thy sight, that thou layest the burden of all this people upon me? Why should I carry them in my bosom as a father carrieth a child, unto the land which thou hast promised? Whence should I have flesh to give so many, for they weep and say give us flesh that we may eat. L am not able to bear all this people alone, because it is too heavy for me. If thou deal thus with me, kill me at once, if I have found favor in thy sight, that I may be relieved of my wretohedness. And the Lord told Moses to gather seventy men, whom he knew to be the elders of the people, and he would take of the spirit which was upon him and put it upon them, and they should share the burden with him; and he also promised him that the people should have flesh to eat not only for one or two days, but for a month. But said Moses, "the people among whom I am, are six hundred thousand footmen, shall the flocks be slain for them to suffice them, or shall all the fish of the sea be gathered together for them V He was answered, Is the Lord's hand waxed short? thou shall see now whether my word shall come to pass unto thee or not. Then Moses went out and told the people what he had heard, and he gathered the seventy elders and set them round about the tabernacle; and as they were seated, the Lord gave them of the same spirit that was upon Moses, and when the spirit rested upon them they prophesied. Eldad and Mcdad did not go out to the tabernacle but remained in the camp, aud the spirit rested upon them also, and they prophesied there. A young man, the son of Nun, and a Bervant of Moses, named Joshua, wished Moses to forbid them, but Moses replied, enviest thou for my sake? would that all the Lord's people were prophets, and that He would put his spirit upon them. And there went forth a wind and brought quails from the sea and let them fall on either side round about the camp, as it were a day's journey, and they were about two cubits high upon the face of the earth. And the people stood up all that day, and all that night, and all the next day, and gathered quails. Now it is said that Moses was a " very meek" man; and when Aaron and Miriam spake against him because he married an Ethiopian woman, he prayed that Miriam might be healed of the leprosy which had come upon her, because of the wrong she had committed. Mark, young friends, the instructive lesson contained in this circumstance. Moses not only forgave Miriam himself, but besought his Heavenly Father to forgive her also. May we be able to act the same noble part toward those who may offend us. Moses was now commanded to send some of the heads of the tribes to search the land of Canaan and see what it was, whether the people who dwelt there were many or few, and whether they were strong or weak, whether they lived in cities or in tents or in strong holds, whether the land was fat or lean, and whether there was wood upon it or not; and if they found fruit, they were to bring some to Moses. So they went up and searched, and when they came to the brook of Eschol they cut a branch with one cluster of grapes and bore it between two men upon a statf. They brought also some pomegranates and figs; they returned in forty days, and told Moses, that surely the land unto which they were sent flowed with milk and honey, and this was the fruit of it. Nevertheless the people were strong that dwelt there, and the cities were walled, and very great, and. moreover they saw the children of Anak there. The Amalekites were at the South, and the Hittitcs, the Jebusites and Amorites were in the mountains, and the Canaanites dwelt by the sea and by the coast of JorJan. Caleb proposed that'

they should go up at once and possess the land, but others who had been with him in the search, said that the sons of Anak were giants, before whom they were but as grasshoppers, and all the people that they saw were men of great stature. By this evil report of the land which had been promised them as a rich inheritance, the people were discouraged, and wept all night, and said one to another, let us make a captain and return into Egypt. Then Moses and Aaron fell on their faces before all the assembly, and Joshua, the son of Nun, and Caleb, the son of Jephunneh, rent their clothes, and told the people that the land they passed through was " an exceeding good land," and if the Lord delighted in them, that is, if they pleased him by obeying his commandments, he would bring them into it. Only rebel not, said they, against him. The congregation would not listen to them, but would have stoned them. Because of their rebellion, the people were told they would not bo permitted to enter the land of Canaan. "Ten times they had tempted" the Lord by doubting his preserving power, and they had refused to hearken to his voice ; but their little ones, whom they said would fall a prey to their enemies in the wilderness, and their children who knew not good from evil, these should go in thither and possess it. Caleb and Joshua, who were of a different spirit, and who followed the Lord " wholly," should also inhabit it. When Moses told them " these sayings," they mourned greatly; and in the morning they rose up early aud went up to the top of the mountain aud said, " Lo we be here, and icill go up unto the place which the Lord hath promised;" but Moses said, wherefore now do ye transgress the commandment of the Lord? It shall not prosper; go not up, for the Lord is not among you, that ye be not smitten before your enemies, and fall by the sword of the Amalekites. But they " presumed to go," and it happened unto them as Moses had told them. The trials of Moses were many and various, and had it not been for his faith in the power of Him who had appointed him to the great work, we might suppose he would have abandoned it in despair; but it appears that he continued in daily communication with the divine Spirit, and was shewn what to do in every emergency. Miriam, who you may remember was one who suffered because she spoke against Moses, died at Kadesh and was buried there. There being no water to be found at this place, the people " chode with Moses," and said, wherefore have ye made us to come up out of Egypt to bring us iu unto this evil place? it is no place of seed, or figs, or of vines, or of pomegranates; neither is there any water to drink." Then Moses and Aaron went out from their presence and prostrated themselves before the Lord, when his glory appeared unto them, and he told Moses to take the rod and assemble the congregation before the rock, and he and Aaron should speak unto the rock before them, and the water should flow out of it, and Moses should bring forth to them water out of the rock, so that they and their beasts should drink. Moses took the rod as he was commanded, and Aaron and he gathered the assembly; but upon this occasion it would seem that he lost his selfpossession and became impatient, for instead of speaking as he had been instructed, he lifted up his hand and smote the rock twice, saying, hear now, ye rebels, must we fetch you water out of this rock t" Although the water flowed abundantly, and the people and the cattle were satisfied, yet because Moses and Aaron did not believe, and did not according to the word of the Lord, they were told they should not bring the congregation into the promised land; and this water was called the water of Meribah, signifying the disobedience of the children of Israel. From Kadesh the Israelites would have gone through the country of Edoin, but the king would not allow them to do so, so they turned aside and came to Mount IIor. Upon the top of this mount Aaron died, and all the house of Israel mourned for him thirty days. His age was one hundred and twenty-three years. Aaron had four sons, Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Johamar. Eleazar succeeded his father as priest in Israel.

[To be continued. ]

Communicated for Friends' Intelligencer.

Departed this life on tho,'16th of 11th month, in Baltimore, Gilbert Cassard, Sr., in the 75th year of his age.

He went to his store in the morning of that day apparently in good health, and after pleasantly discoursing with those present, he suddenly expired. He had had some symptoms that induced him to apprehend that his departure was approaching, under the influence of which he had requested that after his death his body should be placed in Friends' vault, and the burying conducted according to the custom of Friends. His request was strictly complied with by his family, which was numerous, but none of them in profession with Friends. The funeral was attended by a large company, among whom was a number of ministers not of our Society.

The deceased was a native of the Island of St. Domingo. At the time of the revolution in that island he was about fifteen years old, and with all the whites had to flee from the country. He had a number of brothers and sisters, some of whom he never saw afterwards. Himself and a brother were brought up in Baltimore, serving an apprenticeship to the coopering trade, and sustaining excellent characters to the close of their lives.

Gilbert having predilections favorable to the

Catholic religion, soon after he became of age went to confession, according to the requirements of that society, but, as he told the writer, he never went to confession but once. He felt so much condemned and ashamed for having knelt to a man, that he could do so no more. He afterwards joined the Methodist society, of which he was a constant and sincere-hearted member for many years. But for about the last twenty-five years of his life he was a member of Friends' society, and although not prominently active among them, he always took a lively interest in their concerns, and for a number of years filled with propriety the station of overseer. He was of a generous and confiding disposition, his friendships not being at all confined to those of his own profession, but he was a well-wisher and friend to all with whom he had personal intercourse, and is no doubt gone "where the wicked cease from troubling and the weary are at rest." J. M.

TUE COMPASS.

The first man who made the discovery that there is an iron stone—the magnet—which attracts other iron, may have wondered not a little at this quality in an unsightly stone. As the animal seizes the food, so the magnet seizes the iron, but it does not consume it, it converts it into its like; for if a steel needle (a common sewing needle,) remains for a space of time in union with the magnet, then after it is withdrawn, it is not only attracted more powerfully by the magnet, but it now also attracts other needles or small particles of iron. With an iron needle, thus become magnetic, the experiment was probably made in the first instance merely by way of amusement, by letting it float, like our little artificial magnetic fishes, in a dish of water on a little chip of wood or cork, or by suspending it by a thread, in order the more easily to observe the readiness with which it followed the magnet In this case it must have been remarked that the magnetic needle with its two ends constantly stood when at rest in the same direction. In some way of this sort, the compass was invented, which, in its earliest form, was a simple magnetic needle, suspended by a thread or floating upon some light substance in water, which by its constant position, north and south, even under the cloudiest skies, pointed out the situation of countries, and thus, especially when a better and more convenient form was given to it, became a sure guide to travellers by land and sea.

VIRTUE.

Virtue is the daughter of Heaven; happy those who cultivate it from their infancy; they

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »