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which it is my duty to do. Were your conduct unhappily to render it necessary, there is no pain I would not give you--no punishment, provided it were a right and proper punishment, which I would not consent to inflict, in the hope of, with God's blessing, curing you of your faults, now that you are young, and thus saving you from a great deal of future misery. I do not fear, girls, to tell you this. I do not think you love me the less because
know this to be the case. Some persons think that the young do not love those who are very strict and particular about their conduct. They cannot know the young as well as I do, or they would surely have a better opinion of them. Children have far more wisdom in this subject than many people give them credit for ; and if those who think in this way were to come amongst us here, we could prove to them that we “ love one another.” I feel assured that those girls who have no rewards would say, and say it too with all their hearts, “I love my Teachers and my school ;” and, what is more, I have not the smallest doubt but that they will prove their love in a way which is always far more satisfactory than mere words. You rernember the way
in which our Lord Jesus Christ told his disciples to prove their love; "If ye love me, keep my commandments.” I may very humbly take up those gracious words of our blessed Lord, and use the argument with you: “If you love me, if you love your Teachers and your school, try to behave well, and to do what is right. Let your conduct be such as to reflect credit on yourselves, and on our dear little school. You are now starting afresh. The old marks are destroyed, and there is a new class-book. Let it be free, quite free of bad conduct marks.” When I give you the next quarterly cards, if we live that long, let the first words I say to you be, “Every girl has a good conduct mark.” Only think how happy we should all be ! How delighted we should all feel! I was going to say I think it will come to pass; but I will not say that-I have said it before, and have been disappointed. I dare say, if I could get into your
hearts at this moment—that part within you which thinks—I should find every one of you, from the
eldest to the youngest, thinking within yourselves, "No, you shall not be disappointed again : I will have a good conduct mark.” And that is a right and good résolu. tion; and if
have it, be thankful for it; but, remember, there is only one way of keeping it. You must not cease to pray for God's help. Your own strength—the strength of the best man, woman, or child in the world is perfect weakness. Remember this, and do not think you can ever be good, really and sincerely good, without the help of God's Holy Spirit. You may put on an outward appearance of goodness—you may be diligent, attentive, and well-behaved here in the school-roomand all the while, notwithstanding this shew of goodness, you may be proud and selfish, untruthful and unkind, ill-tempered and quarrelsome. We all know this is not real goodness. It is not the goodness which God requires, and it must not be the goodness which we require. We wish you to be good—not to only seem good. We wish you, of course, to behave well in the school-room; but we desire to feel thai you will also behave well out of the school-room-at all times and in all places- not in our presence only, but also in our absence. We are very anxious that you should learn to be kind, gentle, and obliging in your whole manner and behaviour; we wish to believe that if others should act so wrongly as to try to teaze, vex, and be spiteful to you, that you would not act wrongly also, and be cross and unkind in return; but that you would forgive them, and be very kind to them, and do them all the good in your power, like the little Christian child who gave some of her beautiful fruit to a girl who often pushed her off her seat at school, “because,” as she said, “she thought it would shew her that she wished to be kind to her.” And this was doing what God commands to be done. • Do good to them that hate you,” was a command of Jesus himself; and we must take care that we do not refuse to obey when God commands.
We have no excuse for disobedience, because, though our own sinful hearts would never of themselves be willing to shew all the lovely tempers and dispositions which shone so brightly in the character of our Lord
Jesus Christ, when he appeared in the form of a man here on our earth, we must remember that God has promised to help us, if we only earnestly and sincerely ask him to do so. It is not God that will not hear; it is our reluctant hearts that will not pray. I should like even the youngest amongst you to understand this thoroughly; and I think I might make it clear to you by supposing a case, which has come into my mind at this moment. Suppose a girl to whom one of these cards is given, finds, on looking at it, that she has a No. 1 reward. The rewards are in the next room; and it is required that each girl should go there, and shew her card; in fact, that she should ask for the promised reward. Now, suppose, instead of gladly and obediently doing as she was directed, she were to remain in this room, look, ing at the other girls going for their rewards, but refusing herself to move from her seat, would you not say that it would be her own fault if she were to lose it altogether? When you saw her acting not only so foclishly, but so wrongly also, you would most likely go to her, and try to persuade her to take a better course, and would advise her to do as she was told, and go into the next room, and she would have the reward which had been promised. Thus it is with God. He has graciously promised his assistance to all who earnestly desire it; and if we refuse to follow his directions, we need not surely be surprised, if we fail to obtain his blessing: You remember the beautiful text which proves that I am telling you what is right; those pretty, simple words, which a young child can understand as well as a grown, up man or woman :
Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find ; knock, and it shall be opened unto you."
And now, a very few words more I must say, and then I will read the cards. I should like to remind you; and I should like to remind ourselves, that we must have no proud feelings on this day. God resists the proud, whether they be Teachers or whether they be children. There is not one Bible for us, and another for you. "Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord”-every one, whether young or old. We must
remember this especially on this day, when most of you are receiving marks of approval. If we have taught you well, and if you have learned well, it is God who has enabled us to do both the one and the other. It is be who works in us both to will and to do of his good pleasure; and if you have been enabled to do what is right-if good feelings and good desires have been given to you-take care that you do not harbour the thought of the Pharisee : God, I thank thee that I am not as other men are.' That was not an accepted prayer before God. It was a proud heart that caused the lips to utter those words; and God, as I said before, resists the proud. You know the spirit which God requires—the lowly, humble spirit of the publican—"God be merciful to me a sinner.”
I want to speak very seriously to you on this subject, because I know how apt we are to be too much elated, too much set up at being commended, and because we have outwardly appeared to advantage, to think we are very good, and better than many other people. I want to warn you against giving way to such a feeling. There is much in you which we admire, approve, and love. There is also much which ought to be very different from what it is. I do not mean faults, which we can see; I mean sins, which perhaps no one but God knows of-proud, angry feelings- bad thoughts of many kinds within your hearts, while in appearance you were gentle and good. Sometimes you may even have given way to these bad thoughts so far as to be unkind, spiteful, and unforgiving-speaking evil one of anotherinstead of humbly obeying the command, “Be kindly affectioned one to another, with brotherly love.”
My dear children, instead of thinking too much about your goodness, let me advise you to remember fulness, and then I am sure that, with God's grace, you will be humble, and will be in a fair way to go on im. proving, not in mind only, but in heart and disposition. Should we live a few years longer, how delighted we should be to see you grown-up young women, and to hear of your being good daughters, good sisters, and good servants, if you were to go out to service! How we
should rejoice to feel that the girls who had belonged to our school when they were children, were grown-up young women, who kept holy the Sabbath-day, went regularly to the house of God, and prayed to be enabled to do their duty in that state of life unto which God had been pleased to call them! I trust, dear children, that it will be thus; and then both you and we shall have cause to rejoice and be thankful that we have been permitted to meet together in this school-room.
NOTICE OF BOOKS. Nine Sermons on the Covenant of Grace. By the Rev.
S. WALKER, of Truro. With Letters to Candidates for Ordination. London: Baynes. 24mo. pp. 141. It is a refreshment to turn to the sound scriptural divinity of former days, amidst all the controversy and dissension which now prevail
. All Mr. Walker's works are valuable; and this little work is specially suitable for school libraries.
BIBLE SOCIETY. From Mr. E. Corderoy, Secretary of the Southwark Auxiliary.
March 3, 1845. OUR esteemed treasurer, Mr. Thornton, having had the pleasure to pay you £500 as a “Christmas and New Year's Juvenile Offering,' from the Southwark Auxiliary Bible Society, I take the liberty to acquaint you with some particulars concerning this offering, as I have reason to believe it is the first attempt to enlist very young persons, extensively and systematically, as supporters of the Bible Society.
The want of success in some of our associations, and symptoms of declining zeal in others, induced our Auxiliary Committee recently to invite the officers of our Associations and the ministers of our district, to meet them in friendly conference. About fifty gentlemen took tea together ; and several valuable suggestions were offered. It was found necessary to adjourn the meeting; and at the second conference the suggestion was made which led to our successful employment of a juvenile agency.