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THE FIRESIDE,

not suit us in our passage to the kingdom. Therefore He draws the cloud above us, not once in a lifetime, but many times. But lest the gloom should appal us, He braids that cloud with sunshine, nay, makes it the object wbich gleams to our eye with the very fairest hues of heaven. Yes. It is not merely light after the darkness has fled away. That we shall one day know. How fully! But it is light in darkness; light beaming out of, nay, produced by, that darkness ! Water from the rock; wells from the sand ; light from the very cloud that darkens; life in the very midst of death! This is the marvel; this is the joy. Peace in trouble, gladness in sorrow; nay, peace and gladness produced by the very tribulation itself; peace and gladness which nothing but that tribulation could have produced! Such is the deep love of God; and such is the way in which He makes all things work together for good to us.—Bonar.

THE MEMORY OF OUR Lost FRIENDS has many solemn and affecting lessons to enjoin upon us. It may whisper to us a kinder treatment of those who are still left us, and entreat us to avoid even a word or look which might inflict undeserved pain on those who are likewise mortal and of uncertain continuance. It will also bid us to prepare to take our place with them in the grave, and so to cherish and imitate all that was good in them, as to be found worthy of joining them beyond the grave, in the mansions of eternal happiness.— Greenwood.

The Fireside.

summers.

BE SOBER." LET me give you some good advice-the best advice I am able. I will if you will let me. I am not a boy or a youth. I am one who has seen more than seventy

I have not gone through the world with my eyes shut. I have seen many evil things done under the sun. But one thing I have observed, and that is, that some men are their own greatest enemies. They might be happier than they are if they would.

I do not believe that a man must be rich before he can be happy. I believe my Master's words when he said, “A man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth."

I will tell you how I think a man who is not rich may be happy notwithstanding.

I shall have to tell you of several different things. But I must tell you of only one thing at a time. For I consider that poor men who work hard are often tired when they have done their work, and cannot keep wide awake to read a great deal, or hear a great deal read, and so I shall do with them as I would if I had to pour water into a bottle with a long neck-I shall pour it gently, and a little at a time.

THE PENNY POST BOX,

Well: I will now give my first piece of advice, and I give it first, because if you do not follow it, it will not be any use my saying any more. BE SOBER, and I give this as my first piece of advice

Because one cannot talk to a muddle-headed man; for he puts an enemy into his mouth to steal away his brains, and makes himself silly. Who can talk to such a man? Even children laugh at bim. How degrading for a grown-up man to let himself down to be a makesport for children! Be sober, if you would be A MAN.

Because what you save by not indulging in intoxicating drink will buy many comfortable things. The price of one pint of ale would whitewash and make sweet and clean the room you sleep in. And so I might say of many other comforts that a man might have in his family, all bought with money saved from ale or gin. Be sober, if you would have COMFORTS.

Because if you are not you will be in great danger. I not only mean that you will be in danger of accidents (and how many have lost their lives when what they had drunk had made them silly and helpless), but you will be in danger of being cheated by designing men when you have not your natural wits about you. But these are not all. You will be in danger of falling into other sins. A drunken man on a ship-mast in a storm, or reeling about on the edge of a high cliff, would make one shudder to look at him. But what I now mean is

far worse than breaking limbs. It is the ruin of the soul! No drunkard can go to heaven. And it is a sad, very sad thing, that such a man puts himself beyond the reach of all instruction. You might as well attempt to teach an idiot or an infant. Be sober, if you would keep out of DANGER.

The sober man can be talked to-he makes the best of what little he has_keeps out of harm's way for body and soul-and is ready for the discharge of any duty for his family, his neighbour, or his Godis healthy and happy here--and if a real Christian, is looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. My first advice, then, is, Be sober.

PAUL PRUDENT.

worse

The Penny Post Box.

season.

ABOUT JESTING. JESTING is not unlawful, if it trespasseth not in quantity, quality, and

So wrote quaint old Thomas Fuller more than two hundred years ago. He also gives eight maxims, equally quaint, on this subject. It will be well for us all to think of them and put them into practice.

1. It is good to make a jest, but not to make a trade of jesting. Some men are always wishing to raise a laugh; and so do nothing without a jest. This is folly : the “crackling of thorns under a pot.” You may be merry-hearted without always cracking jokes.

FACTS, HINTS, GEMS, AND POETRY.

2. Jest not with the two-edged sword of God's word. Never go to the Scriptures for your puns. It is a poor and profane wit that seeks its fun in things sacred; and that will turn and twist sacred words for the sake of an empty laugh. Never do it yourselves, nor listen to it from others without rebuke.

3. Wanton jests make fools laugh, and wise men froun. The Holy Book

says, Fools make a mock at sin." Be pure in your thoughts. Avoid all impure allusions in your speech.

4. Let not thy jests, like the mummy, be made of dead men's flesh. Abuse not those who are dead. Even pagans had a proverb—“Speak of the dead nothing but good."

5. Scoff not at the natural defects of any, which are not in their power to amend. O it is a cruelty to beat the cripple with his own crutches ! Mock not a cobbler for his black thumbs.

6. He that relates another man's wicked jest with delight, adopts it for his own. Do not repeat such jests if you hear them. No man can touch pitch without being defiled.

7. He that will lose his friend for his jest, deserves to die a beggar for his bargain. Check such jesting as would wound any, even though they are not your friends. Wit is not like mustard, useless unless it bite. 8. No time to break jests when the heart-strings are about to be broken.

MATTHEW MERRY-AND-W18E.

Facts, Hints, Gems, and poetry.

prove this.

facts.

The method by which that purpose is

to be carried out is of God's devising. THE BIBLE.

“ It is of God that showeth mercy," THE Bible is not of man. Many facts through Jesus Christ our Lord.

The revelations of men's hearts are Its views of the character of God such as only He could make who knew are not such as man could invent. all hearts. As we see our faces reOne page of the Bible contains more flected in a glass, so in the glass of true light on the character of our God's word we see our characters and Father in heaven than whole libraries our hearts. of books by pagan philosophers. The descriptions of the future

The Spirit of the Bible is not of world are not from men, but from man, The stream cannot rise above God. He sees the end from the bethe spring; and man, evil and full of ginning. He has foretold us what sin, could not of himself describe a unspeakable joy they shall have who morality so pure and a goodness so love Him; and it is the same love divine.

which has warned us of the woe and The purpose of the Bible is not one misery of those who “will not retain that man could invent. It is to bring God in all their thoughts.” men back to their Father in heaven; Love the Bible. It can make you to take away all their sin, and make “ wise upto salvation, through faith in them holy and pure.

Christ Jesus."

FACTS, HINTS, GEMS, AND POETRY.

his eyes.

Wints.

very boasting shows they are begging

for commendation. POETRY, is music in words; music, GOD HATH MADE “a time for every. is poetry in sound. Both are excel. thing under the sun," save only for lent sauce; but they have lived and that which we do at all times-sin. died poor that have made them their MODERATION is a silken thread run. meat.

ning through the pearl-chain of all WITHOUT HISTORY a man's soul is the virtues. purblind, seeing only the things which SORROWS, by being communicated, almost touch his eye.

grow less; and joys, greater. HE WHO WOULD CLEANSE BLURS CHRIST is not only a light to see by, with blotted fingers makes the blurs but a light to see with. bigger. So is one who speaketh well DIVINE WISDOM shows us heights and liveth ill.

that scorn the reach of our prospects, IT IS AS ILL to turn back favours as and depths in which the tallest reason to disobey commands.

will never touch the bottom. AIR is a dish one feeds on every THE BEST SACRIFICE to a crucified minute, and therefore it need be good. Saviour is a crucified lust, a bleeding

TO BE ANGRY FOR EVERY TRIFLE, de- heart, and a dying corruption. bases the worth of thy anger; for he THE SUN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, Jesus who will be angry for anything, will Christ, is always rising, and never sets. be angry for nothing.

Let that light shine into your heart. SAMSON'S HAIR GREW AGAIN, but not Time may restore some

Poetic Selections. losses, others are never to be repaired. Therefore do not in an instant what

ONWARD! ONWARD! an age cannot recompense.

ONWARD! is the march of mind, WORLDLY RICHES, like nuts, tear Onward ! is the path of man: many clothes in getting them, spoil All for progress is combined; many teeth in cracking them, and fill Progress is the Almighty plan. no stomach with eating them.

Onward! onward, rolling ever; EVERY MAN IS A SMITH who must Onward ! rivulet and river, beat out his own fortune; but God

Nought in heaven's arched hemisphere, first doth give him coals, iron, and

Nought in earth's long history, anvil, before he can set up his trade.

Nought in all the things that were, IF IT WERE POSSIBLE to put a young

Nought in all that is to be, man's eye into an old man's head, he

Shows a backward way or will; would see as plainly and clearly as

All is onward, onward still. the other.

Upward all the loveliest things,
Gems.

Upward all the holiest tend,

When the skylark loudest sings, God sends his servants to bed when When the sweetest odours blend, they have done their work.

Upward unseen angels bear HE THAT SINS against his conscience Piety, and praise, and prayer. sins with a witness.

All is onward, upward flight, TOMBS are the clothes of the dead.

Soaring more and more above, A grave is but a plain suit, and a rich

Through long vistas tracked in light, monument is one embroidered.

Opening into realms of love, THOSE WHO BOAST most of content.

Light and life still brightening on ment have often the least of it. Their

To their own effulgent throne.

THE CHILDREN'S CORNER.

The Children's Corner.

A COUNTRYMAN AND HIS WAGGON.
“ Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord."

A COUNTRYMAN his loaded Wain
While driving through a miry lane,
Was much impeded in his way
By rough mud banks and clods of clay.
And now his heavy wheels stick fast,
The sky above has looks downcast;
The horses to a stand-still come,
A weary way from hearth and home.
Down drops the driver on his knees,
Beseeching Heaven his way to ease ;
Depending on its aid, alone,
No effort making of his own.
“Great Hercules !” he cries, “befriend,
Thy strong support and succour lend;
Assist my horses with their load,
And help them up this billy road.”
“My son,” the fabled god replies,
“ Before I listen to your cries,

shoulder to the wheel ;
The idler makes a vain appeal."
My readers, seek a truth divine,
Lock'd up within a heathen shrine;
And in the mythologic creed,
A Bible lesson strive to read.
Learn, then, for help, in vain you pray,
To hold your goings in the way,
Unless, by efforts of your own,
Your confidence in Heaven is shewn.
Together labour then with God,
As homeward in your path you plod;
Then life's rough places shall be plain,
And crooked paths made straight again.

-E. Roberts.

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