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rare, let not thy glory be turned into shame. Has Providence, O woman, wounded thee there where thy sensibility is greatest, in the fruit of thy womb? Be of good comfort, he in whom thou trustest, on whoin thou hast believed, saith, “ Behold I make all things wew." Then “the eye of the blind shall be opened, and the ear of the deaf unstopped, then the lame man shall leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing." “ The vile body shall be changed and fashioned like to Christ's glorious body.” Then the soul which scarcely awoke to reason, shall discern judgment, and the wandering spirit shall be brought back to composure and tranquillity. Young man, young woman, hast thou received from the bountiful hand of nature, a sound mind in a sound and well-proportioned body? Defile not, destroy not that fair temple; let it be " an habitation of God through the spirit ;" let the image of the divine inhabitant shine serenely on that forehead, beam benevolence from that eye, distil in accents of kindness from those lips. Force not upon the beholder the humiliating contrast between a lovely form and a bateful disposition ; be all of a piece.
Observe, secondly, The work of education, the in. fluence of virtuous babits and example. Samuel not only grew on but grew gracious, grew in favor. There is naturally a prejudice, in the first instance, in favor of youth and beauty, independent of other qualities; but that prejudice quickly dies away, where personal come. liness is unsupported by corresponding goodness. But if it be found disfigured by vice, not only is the favorable impression effaced, but exchanged for a counter impression of detestation and contempt. As, on the contrary, the prejudice against ordinary looks is also momentary, when we find them allied to sense and ta: lents, piety and modesty; and our esteem and venera-, tion of the character are bighly increased from our ex.. pecting less.
Poor indeed is that virtue which lives only in the en
dice qulced by, by Vicechang
timation of the world, which aims only at the approba: tion and praise of men; but, on the other hand, true virtue will always be concerned to preserve reputation, will ever prefer a good name to great riches, and unaffectedly rejoice in the esteem of the wise and good, as part of its reward. What a motive was it to a youth like Samuel to persevere in well doing, to grow in grace, to have his decency of behavior, his filial affection, bis docility and submission to Eli, his unassuming piety, his growing wiscom, bis expanding faculties, observed and commended by all who came to attend the service of the tabernacle! This is not pride, it is the honest consciousness of a worthy mind, loving and seeking what is good, not for the sake of fame, but its own; yet rejoicing in fame as one of the fruits of goodness. That boy, that youth, that man, that woman, is lost, who is, or who professes to be, indifferent about the opinion of the world. The love of reputation is one of the trees of nature's planting, and none of her plants are easily rooted up; it often survives the hope of life itself, and the man discovers an earnest concern about his memory after he has resigned his head to the executioner, and his body to the grave.
I recommend not to you, my young friend, that servility of deportment, that fawningness of submission and compliance which aims at the applause of every one alike, which is continually fearful of giving offence, which shrinks from doing good, lest by some it might be construed; but that steadiness and perseverance in rectitude, which looks, and goes, straight on, which neither courts nor shuns the public eye, which can rejoice in the addition of the praise of men to the testimony of a good conscience, but trembles to think of purchasing the one with the loss of the other. It generally happens, in this case, as it did to Solomon in another. Young men who pursue virtue on its own account, and I wisdom of God in the first place, certainly obtain
hey seek and pray for, and they also obtain what
they neither asked nor sought; the love of their fellowcreatures: the favor of man, comes unsolicited to him, while he was pursuing a much higher object, peace with God, and peace with bimself; while he who aimed at the inferior object alone, misses even that liitlt', and thus becomes poor indeed. The foundation of Samuel's future eminence and usefulness, was thus laid in the early and tender care of a wise and pious moilier. The youth had never been respected in the temple, had never been the object of general favor abroad, had the child learned to be froward, petulant or peevish in his father's house. Owoman, would you have the world to think of your darling son as you do, put yourself betimes in the place of an unconcerned spectator, view him as an entire stranger would do, and let discretion regulate the overflowings of your heart. Ah, had Hannah favored ber child more, Israel had favored him less! How ample and how sweet, even in this world, are the rewards of self-government, of self-denia!, of moderation ! Men literally, in many instances, enjoy what they reject, and lose what they gain. He who leudeth to the Lord, lays out his property on the best security, and to the greatest advantage. Samuel is infinitely more his mother's at Shiloh than at Ramah; his worth is multiplied in proportion as it is com. municated, and enriches the public fund without impoverishing the private stock. The eyes of a whole people are already to him, the expectation of man keeps pace with the destination of Providence; and the child ministering in a linen ephod, becomes more gracious, from comparison with the polluted ministra. tions of uigracious and ungodly men.
Observe, tbirdiy, Youth's highest praise, the most glorious reward of goodness, the happiest effect of good education, Samuel was “ in favor with God.” To obtain this most honorable distinction, much more, was requisite than a regular and modest deportment, mucka more than promising talents, and childish innocence, and the other qualities which attract and captivate the eyes of men. The love of God bas been betimes shed abroad in that heart; Hannah has been mindful of ber vow, and taught her son to remember bis Creator in the days of his youth; and how grateful is early piety to Him who saith, “ My son, give me thine heart !” Lo, God has impressed his own image on that tender mind, and sees, and loves, and approves his own work. The great Jehovab has designed this wonderful child for high things, from the very womb, has raised him up to be the “ rising again of many in Israel,” to purify a polluted church, to save a sinking state, and is fitting bim, from the cradle, for his bigh destination.
The eye of the Lord observes with delight the progress of this plant of renown. He is bastening his own work in righteousness, is ready to perfect, by heavenly visions, the instructions of a pious mother, is preparing to crown the gracious with more grace. The favor of man is frequently the child of ignorance or caprice. They love and hate they know not why. Sometimes they hate where they ought to love, and love where they ought to bate; but the favor of God is ever founded in knowledge, is undirected by partial affection or personal regards, is the result of reason, the applause which perfect wisdom bestows on distinguished excellence. Samuel must have merited praise, else this praise had not been conferred on him. And singular must that merit have been, which could unite judgments so different, interests which so. frequently clash. He who makes it his study to please man, can hardly be the servant of God; and to aim at pleasing God, is not always the road to the favor of men. Nothing but genuine, unaffected goodness could have procured this joint approbation of God and man; and there is a charm in true goodness, which is irresistible. It may be overlooked for a season, it may be borne down, it may be obscured, it may be be misrepresented, it may be hated
and opposed; but it will prevail at length, will force itself into notice, will rise and shine, will command respect, silence, envy, triumph over opposition ; rejoice the wise and good, and keep the wicked in awe.
What mode of address shall I employ, to engage, for a moment, the attention of young ones; and to impress upon their hearts the importance of my subject ? Would to God I could again become a little child, that, with the lessons of experiencce, I might regulate my own future conduct, and be an useful monitor to the simple and inexperienced. I would in that case say, My little friend, God and nature have made you lovely. The candor and frankness, and benevolence of your heart shine upon your counte: nance. Every day discloses some new grace. You are increasing in stature: you are growing in favor with all who behold you. Every one thinks well, speaks well, hopes well of you. Grow on, preserve that amiable simplicity. Let it be the charm of advancing years, of expanding faculties. Let that blooming face be still raised to Heaven with modest confidence; and those gracious eyes still beam goodwill to men. May I never see that open forehead clouded and contracted. What, shall the horrid traces of vice disfigure that form ? Sball every one tbat pas seth by be constrained to turn away with loathing and aversion? Shall the mother who bare 'tbee, have her face covered with a blush when thou art named ? Must she be made to mourn the day which was once her joy? Angels will behold your progress with delight; they will rejoice in ministering unto you: they are ready to receive you into their number, when your course is finished. God himself regards you with smiles of complacency; he is ever ready to assist, to counsel, to protect, to receive you. Let there be joy in heaven concerning you. Now, now is the season for laying the foundation of useful life, respectable age, comfortable death.