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school-fellows had made him a great favourite ; and there were many of the boys who tried to imitate his good practices. Richard was also a very prudent and considerate boy; he never threw away his money on idle trifles, but tried to take care of it, or to spend it in something useful; and he never could be persuaded, on any account, to play for money at "" pitch and toss,” or any other game, " for," he said, " he never saw any good come of it ; it made boys cross and angry, and taught them the beginning of gambling, whieh he had always been told would end in misery.” Richard's good example was a very great benefit to the school: -and children must not think that their behaviour is of no consequence to others;--for one good boy is often of very great use in leading others to be good ; and one bad boy will lead many to their ruin.
Richard was once an example to boys, and now he is an example to men. His prudent and careful ways enabled him to save the money which was given him when he was a boy; and he had once the happiness of being a great help to his poor father when he was sick and could not work; and he is now enabled to live as comfortably as any labourer in the parish. He seems always happy and contented, his family always look cleanly and well clothed, and his cottage is as neat within as it is cheerful without, From his constant attendance at church, and from his behaviour there, and from the excellent way in which he brings up his family, and from his industry, and from his soberness and uprightness and honesty, I take Richard Morgan to be what I consider the best of all characters--a true Christian man.
Remarks on the 31st Verse of the 13th Chapter of
St. Matthew. OUR Lord compares the spreading of his Gospel kingdom " to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field," which indeed is the smallest of all seeds; but, when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof. Now this comparison does not at first sight appear to have all that propriety which it really has. In this country we do not understand why the mustard seed can be said to produce a plant of such a size that the birds of the air can lodge in its branches. But we ought to recollect that these words were spoken to persons in Judea ; and, in those Eastern countries, the mustard which is spoken of, though from so small a seed, does grow to such a size, that the comparison would be well understood by those who first heard it.
Dr. Doddridge, in a note on this passage, says, (The Talmud mentions a mustard tree so large that a man might easily sit in it; and another, one whose branches covered a tent. And it is certain we shall be much mistaken if we judge of vegetables or animals in the Eastern and Southern countries. merely by what those of the same species are among us. The meaning of this parable is, that the Gospel of Christ, at its first appearing, seemed mean and contemptible, was received only by a few, and those of low condition, but that, in time, it should spread over the whole earth, so as to afford weary souls a grateful and secure retreat. Let us remember that the growth of piety in the heart is like that of vegetables in the earth. The seed of the word may, for a while, seem lost; or when the fruit appears it may advance and ripen slowly. The Gospel gained but little ground urider the personal
ministry of Christ, but when he took to himself his power and reigned, then it ran
and was glorified in the hands of the Apostles. The grain of mustard seed shot up and branched forth into a spreading tree. Let us pray that the triumphant progress of Christ's kingdom may come.” In the mean time, let it be our desire that the principles of the Gospel may take deep root in our hearts, and bring forth abundant “ fruit unto holiness," and that our “end may be everlasting life.”
Dependance on God:-Use of certain Expressions. A CORRESPONDENT, in our January Number (page 58) gave some useful remarks on the reverence due to the Almighty's name, and on the necessity of looking to the Divine assistance in every thing we undertake. In addition to the Scriptural authority there quoted, the following passage (1 Cor. xvi. 7.) may be brought forward as shewing the feeling of the Apostle Paul on this subject, “I trust to tarry a while with you by the way, if the Lord permit. ” Upon this passage. Dr. Macknight says, “ This manner of speaking, concerning their actions, the Apostles recommended. (James iv. 15.) and the first Christians practised, because it expressed how deeply they were affected with a sense that all events are directed by God.” It is indeed true that when once a sense of the importance of religion possesses the mind, then there comes along with it a habitual sense of the presence and of the power of God; and whatever therefore a devout Christian undertakes, he does it according to what he believes to be his Maker's will, and in humble dependance on his blessing. This sense of the divine presence, is not only a proof of religion in the mind, but it affords a great check to all that is
wrong, and a great encouragement to all that is right. St. James, in the passage alluded to both by Macknight and your Correspondent, points to the uncertainty of all human events, and from thence shews us how wrong it is to calculate upon any thing here as certain : and the Apostle exactly describes the sinful confidence with which thoughtless persons set about their undertakings, and lay their plans for worldly gain.
« Go to now, ye that say, to-day, or to-morrow we shall
into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain. Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. Ye ought to say, if the Lord will, we shall live, and do this or that." А true Christian will always calculate and act upon this advice of the Apostle, whether he expresses this feeling in words or not. There are indeed many persons who use religious expressions, such as
please God,”-“God knows,'--"God forbid," and others of the same sort, without, at the same tiine, having any real feeling of religious depend
These expressions make a part of their conmon discourse, and are used without thought
In this case the expressions are no better than profane words, and the use of them is only taking God's name in vain. An expression, used by a devout mind, has a very different meaning from the same words used by a profane and care less one. We ought never to use such expressions, unless they are the devout feeling of a mind fully impressed with their real meaning and importance.
SWALLOWS. There are several sorts of birds which come under the general name of the Swallow. They all ay
very swiftly, and seldom walk. They have a wide mouth, by means of which, they easily catch flies and insects in the air, or on the surface of the water;-and on these they live. These birds do not stay with us all the year round; but to what place they go, or what becomes of them, is a subject on which the opinions of naturalists have long been very different, and on which nothing yet seems positively known.
The Hon. Daines Barrington, and several other writers, have supposed that Swallows do not leave this
country, but that, during winter, they lie concealed, and in a torpid state, under water that the Martins lie concealed, during the same time, in the crevices of rocks, and other lurking places above ground: that the Sand Martins remain in the holes where they form their nests : and that the Swifts continue all winter in their holes, in churches, and old buildings.
It cannot however reasonably be denied that the Swallows do migrate, (or leave the country) for navigators have seen large flights of them at sea, and these birds have often rested themselves on ships during their toilsome journey.
The common sort, called the House or Chimney Swallow, generally builds its nest in chimnies. It lays four or five eggs, and has two broods in the year.
It is a pleasing sight to observe the anxious mother feeding her little ones. As soon as they are able to come out of the nest, they sit on the chimney top, and they are fed there for a day or two. Then the mother leads them to the dead branch of some neighbouring tree, where they sit in a row, and are attended by their parent with the tenderest care. In a day or two after this, they are able to fly, but they cannot yet catch their own food : they therefore play about the place where the parents are watching for flies, and when a mouthful,