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could not remove; raised up friends in quarters how unexpected ; brought us back from the gates of death ; protected us on the mighty deep, and preserved our numerous family. Therefore let us love and reverence him all our days, and do what in us lies to bring our dear children to make the surrender of their hearts to God, to choose him for the guide of their youth, as the best method of securing his arm to be the staff of their old age.
“As our children have increased in number and in wants, God's bounty hath graciously kept pace. From quarters unlikely have our supplies come, and in a manner so gentle and so kind as to double the benefit. How much do I owe to my dear people! May the Lord reward their goodness a hundred fold into their own bosoms! I pray God to give me a renewal of health and spirits to serve them. Give the children some token of their father's love and welfare, and cause Thomas to read the 48th chapter of Genesis."
In a postscript he says:
" Tell that I shall bring him a curious purse, made in Greenland, of seal-skin, if he continues to be kind to you, and a quiet and good boy. I have been gathering some beautiful pebbles for him, which is all the beach affords.”
To those who love to trace the workings of a father's heart, such little notices will not appear insignificant; nor can we conceive any thing more happily adapted to teach children to mingle pious gratitude with the pleasurable feelings which make religion lovely, than to tell them that a parent wishes them to lift up their hearts to the God that makes him happy, and that it will delight him when fancy brings to his ear the voice of their psalms.
His conduct as a father next claims our attention; and he possessed qualifications of no ordinary cast for forming his children to intellectual and moral excellence. He who explained the principles, and inculcated the feelings and duties of religion from the pulpit with so much perspicuity and affectionate earnestness, did not fail to employ the same mode in his own dwelling. Persuasion was his plan in both. His great object was to make religion appear amiable to his children; and while he endeavoured to teach them the great articles of our faith, as they were able to bear it, he never failed to associate with them the dispositions they require, and the obedience they should animate. That beautiful passage descriptive of Jehovah's conduct to Israel was most applicable to his domestic tuition,~" When Israel was a child, then I loved him. I taught Ephraim also to go, taking them by their arms; I drew them with cords of a man, with bands of love."
There are some parents who, in their eagerness to make doctrinal points plain to children, debase them by vulgar phrases and familiar allusions; but this he never did : and while some by excessive softness encourage children to trifle with their religious exercises, and to deem it of little consequence how they acquit themselves to them in such a task, there was no point of parental duty to which he was more strictly attentive; well knowing that piety to God is the only soil in which the social virtues can be securely planted in the human heart. He was partial to the Catechisms of his native country, for the soundness of
their sentiments, and for the conciseness and accuracy of their expressions, and because they recalled so tenderly to his mind the period when he used to repeat them, standing beside his father's knee, and when his mother drew from them the counsels by which she laboured to make him wise unto salvation. In his work of catechising and instructing his children, he never suffered any thing to interfere. An hour every Saturday evening was devoted to this purpose; and amidst all the multiplicity of his public avocations, the incessant calls on his time by private applicants, and his preparations for the ministerial services of the ensuing Sabbath, this duty was never neglected.
His letters to them are fraught with excellent counsels, and expressed in a most pleasing and affectionate style. Nothing so powerfully impressed us in reading them as the minuteness of his anxiety about his family. How triumphantly do they refute any charge that may be brought against him of having lost his parental character in that of the public servant! No minutiæ of their schooling, their finances, their dress, their tempers, are forgotten, and these form the subjects of letters written during the anxiety and hurry of his missionary journeys. We do not remember one -even a hurried note of four or five lines—without some spiritual counsel. This is an undoubted evidence of how he had attained to setting the Lord always before him. We shall furnish various extracts. To one of his daughters he thus writes:
“ We welcomed your letter with much gratitude to God, and joy of heart. Cherish ever in your mind a deep sense of your obligations to Divine Providence in all instances of its favour and kindness to you. Gratitude, especially to God, is a lovely virtue, and particularly amiable in the bosom of a young person. People of the first character for good sense and religion have taken pains to mark down and to preserve the memory of particular providences, by the review of which afterwards their hearts have been cheered and comforted.
“On Monday afternoon I sprained my foot, in suddenly trying to get out of the way of an unmanageable horse, in Oxford Street. He rushed on the foot pavement, and at last fell, with his rider, over a poor old barrowwoman. I expected nothing but death to them both; but, though much bruised, their lives were preserved. To how many dangers are we every moment exposed, from which God's unseen and merciful arm protects us! How much is it our duty to consecrate the lives thus spared, and the health he bestows upon us, to his honour! How awful will be the sudden death of persons, young or old, who have not surrendered their hearts to Jesus Christ, to be cleansed from sin, and, by the introduction of good and virtuous tempers, to be prepared for the future greatness and felicity of our nature!
“ Be studious to please your friends; but, above all, study to please God, by keeping a constant guard over your thoughts, words, and actions, by bowing your knees devoutly morning and evening before his throne, and pouring out not words, but your heart before him. Mind, wherever you are, that God is present, and that we must all appear at last before the judgment-seat of Christ. Devote your young heart to the Son of God, to be purified from all sinful inclinations, and to be adorned with piety, truth, and meekness.
“ My health becomes an object of concern to me, on your account, and that of your brothers and sisters. I wish to live, that I may tell you of the Saviour who died for you, and teach you to walk in him. Ever associate with being a Christian every thing that is honourable, pure, and kind. It is no easy matter to be a Christian. Strive to enter in at the strait gate; for many are they who are going in the broad way down to hell, with a mere profession of religion in their countenance. You are now, my dear, arrived at a time of life when you should take a decided part in the great concern of your salvation. Look up to God for divine direction, and beware of putting off till to-morrow the duty of to-day. It is of vast moment that we attend to the great concerns of immortality, before the cares of this life and the broken state of our health throw impediments in our way.
“ To-morrow is the day on which the Son of God rose from the dead. His Father, in raising him, gave a public testimony of the acceptance of his sacrifice on the cross, and thereby authorises us to lean with entire confidence on it for the remission of our sins. If united to him, we shall live to God; and you cannot begin to do that too soon ;-we shall be secured from the sting of death ; and how many a youthful heart hath it pierced! We are the disciples of Christ just as we are influenced by his Spirit. That Spirit, by the word of God dwelling in us, and coming into immediate contact with our faculties, enlightens what is dark, purifies what is foul, heals what is morally diseased, and invigorates what is feeble in our souls. Study, in reading the Bible, to remember that it is Christ who is speaking to you through John, and Paul, and Peter. In prayer, pour out not suitable words only, but your very heart and soul to your father in heaven. While you lean for heaven solely on the worth of Christ, put forth all your strength in the ways of religion, as if all depended on your own labour.
“ Take a deep interest in the spread and success of the Gospel, and let not your heart be cold to an object so dear to your father's. Your little friend at M— , a