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read a good deal about it, and sing about it too; but we cannot imagine, nor hath it entered into the heart of man to conceive, what God hath prepared for all who love Him. I dare say you have all been to the Crystal Palace, and thought what a beautiful place it is; and as you stroll along the gardens you admire the beauties around you; and you could go to thousands of places on our beautiful earth, and admire the splendours which would surround you; but all these splendid places give us a very faint and inadequate idea of that place where
“Around the throne of God in heaven,
Thousands of children stand :
A holy, happy band.” There, we are told, we shall not require the sun nor moon; for God Himself is the light thereof, and the glory of that heavenly mansion. There is Jesus/" the children's Friend"-seated on His celestial throne, interceding for us with His Father. There we shall meet those whom we have loved on earth, and join the happy band who are singing the praises of the Saviour whom they loved and served below.
Now, my dear children, is this not worth trying for? Worth trying for ?—oh yes! Think, then, over the subject we have been talking about ponder it well. Think who you have knocking at your heart, and open that heart to Him now-now, while He is near you. Love Him now serve Him now! So that when you have done your Saviour's will upon earth, you may hear Him saying to you at the last day—“Well done, good and faithful servant, enter ye into the joy of your Lord.”
“Oh what has Jesus dono for mo?
Ho piticd me--my Saviour !
Ho died for mo--my Saviour !
IIe pleads for me---my Saviour !
Thy name is sweet-my Saviour !
J. S. H.
WHY DO I GO TO THE SUNDAY SCHOOL ?
Is a question, fellow-teacher, you might ask yourself many times; but, for want of a suitable gauge merely to try your motives for so honourable a consecration of yourself, you might have been left ignorant to the present time. Permit a fellow-teacher, with the feelings of kindness and Christian love to you and the Sunday School at large, to suggest two or three simple ideas, which may, in some humble way, by God's help, be made of some service in helping you onward, and encouraging you in your blessed and hallowed work.
Do you go to your Sabbath school because you know of no other spot on earth so exactly suited to your tastes and feelings ; so well fitted for the development of that mind of yours, which loves to communicate ? Are you drawn thither, hoping that some stray lamb of Christ's flock will ask you where it can find its Saviour, and how it can love and serve Him ? Have you felt a desire to teach any class which might be given you, hoping that some word might be blessed to some child ignorant of its Saviour? Does your Sabbath school work yield you more satisfaction, peace, and true joy, than the comfortable casy-chair, the bright fire, the cheerful society of home, where heart is bound to heart and God's love enjoyed in your
midst ? Is the Sabbath school preferred to the pleasant Spring walk, where
“ All nature shows, in various ways,
Its great Creator's praise,"
with some cheerful loving companion-perhaps it might be of the fairer sex ? Is your Sabbath school work preferred to earth's joys, which some tell us are rational, right, and proper; such as the ballroom, the race-course, the evening party, and the theatre (with its witty ones, but not wise ones; its happy ones, but not saved ones; its song of silly mirth, but not hymn of sacred praise)? We are told the world passeth away, with the lusts thereof; but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever. Is there no spot on earth where a fuller, purer, or more sacred joy is enjoyed by you? Do you feel satisfied, contented, happy, in no other spot, with no other enjoyment, save the
" Delightful work! young souls to win ;
To turn the rising race
To scck redeeming grace ?" If, fellow-labourer in the vineyard of Christ, this is part of your experience, go on with a cheerful and glad heart; loving more, believing more, working more. A high and a noble prize awaits you. A crown of glory in a kingdom of righteousness is for all those who love God, and consecrate their lives to His service.
C. L., Egham.
THE INFLUENCE OF SUNDAY SCHOOLS.
The influence Sabbath schools have attained, when well conducted, few will gainsay, and I cannot but conclude that they may yet become more extensively useful. God has greatly blessed the labours of teachers, and hence the addition of members to our churches from these (I had almost said, divine) institutions.
Now, without telling upon the present resources of missions, may I suggest, through the medium of your pages, that were the teachers and friends of Sabbath schools more imbued with a spirit of love, love for the souls of their charge, and love for those who know not God amongst the distant nations of the earth,-how small the effort required to send out more missionaries both to India and China, to be supported and sustained by the contributions of teachers and children? When a ship was requested, how soon was the “John Williams," afloat at the disposal of the directors; and when a million Chinese Testaments were wanted for China, how
money flowed in to pay for and send them out. I have great faith in the stability of character, the perseverance, and self-dedication of the teachers in our Sabbath schools ; and if they will urge upon their classes the importance of earnest working for Christ, and for the salvation of souls, the funds for carrying out this noble purpose will, I have no doubt, be punctually forthcoming and as punctually remitted. To commence in a small way, let the superintendents and teachers of all Sabbath schools be determined to raise funds to send out eight additional men; say the Church of England, two; the Baptists, two; the Methodists, two, and the Independents, two, and any other body of Christians according to their means, leaving it with the respective Missionary Societies now in operation to send out such men, and to such places, as they may consider best, and to be altogether unfettered in this respect; but to keep separate and distinct accounts of all monies received to be devoted to and expended in carrying out this special object.
It is not to be expected at the present time that denominational differences can be so far merged, or why not mingle all the best qualities of our hearts, and let our hearts devise liberal things, and on the ruins of all our “isms," and the sepulchre of all our divisions, let us erect a Sunday school Mission House, and at once commence a Sunday school Missionary Society not to interfere with existing claims or institutions, but to place the Sabbath schools of England in a more prominent, commanding, and life-restoring position, that whilst they are doing good at home their influence will be extended even to benefit nations steeped in ignorance, and to bless generations yet unborn.
I would say, Go prudently to work, appoint treasurers and secretaries, appeal to the hearts and sympathies of our teachers, and at the end of twelve months it will appear whether the response will justify the step now proposed; or, if two Missionaries cannot be supported upon the funds raised, there may be ample for, and warrant the sending out of one.
I hope the best things, and trust that Christians of all sects will come forward and assist in a project fraught with incalculable good, and trust that the blessing of the Lord God may rest upon all our teachers, on all our schools, and on all who sustain and support them; and that this additional effort will redound to the Glory of God, in saving souls from death, and promote the temporal and spiritual welfare of all who give their time or money to diffuse the Gospel, that all nations, kindreds, tongues and people, "may serve and worship the one living and true God."
I trust all connected with the Sunday School Union of England will ponder, will approve, will act and prove, their love to the Saviour by endeavouring to unite all sections of the Christian Church to more united exertions in this field of labour; then there will be indeed, a union of our Sunday schools. Stockport.
ON IIAVING A MIND TO WORK,
By WALTER LIGHTLY.
OLD Testament story contains a brief record of the Life and Times of Nehemiah, who was raised up at a critical period of his people's history, to perform a special work. Endowed with a strong mind, and possessing great fortitude and courage, he surrendered himself with untiring energy to the great business before him. Wise and skilful in directing and governing others, he placed before them a noble example, furnishing to his own, and all succeeding ages, a beautiful and potent illustration of the spirit in which every good cause should be undertaken and carried out. We cannot look at the people with whom he was surrounded without seeing that he exercised over them a powerful influence, and imparted to them a large share of his own indomitable spirit. There is no attempt in the narrative to demonstrate this, but the fact is stated, that in co-operating with Nehemiah, in carrying out his patriotic designs, " the people had a mind to work.” Brave and worthy followers of a noble-minded and persevering leader! Well does the contemplation of your untiring activity reprove the cold and calculating indolence of subsequent ages. Surely we should have a better state of things if every leader of a good cause did but walk in the steps of the energetic Nehemiah; and if every laborer did but possess, like the men whom he commanded, a “ Mind to Work,”
The Sunday School is a great and a good cause, and well deserves the carnest thought and ceaseless efforts of all its friends. But is thcre not a lack of that genuine devotedness and self-denying zeal, which the exalted character of the work should everywhere call into exercise? I love to see thoughtful young persons go into the service of the Sunday school, and be so employed that the conclusion is satisfactory—these teachers really have a mind to work. There is a great deal concentrated in a body of teachers having a “mind to work,” and there are many good and sound reasons why all that is involved in it should be realized in the Sunday school. There was something noble and patriotic in Nehemiah and his compeers resolving to reconstruct the prostrate walls of their much-loved city. But laudable as their undertaking was, it dwindles into insignificance when contrasted with the high and holy purposes of the Sunday school. We applaud the plodding industry of the men who kept their enemies at bay with one hand, and plied the implements of labor with the other; but how much more should we honor those, who in the midst of obstacles and discouragements, are carnestly striving to instruct and elevate our rising youth. For my own part I cannot think too highly of the work itself, nor too honorably of those who are earnestly engaged in its promotion. I say carnestly, for I have seen some teachers (and there are, it is to be feared, many like them), wlo, so far from deserving that distinction, can hardly be supposed to know what is meant by “having a mind to work.” This class of teachers, happily fast diminishing, are singularly influenced by the erroneous supposition that their duty is a very easy one, and you see them act accordingly. Possessing a remarkable attachment to the school, they as frequently show their fondness to it by stopping away as by attending; and avowing withal a lively interest in their scholars, they are strangely addicted, when seated with them, to a habit of gazing vacantly over their heads. These characteristics, with some others by which they are known, are certainly unmistakable indications of a partial and meagre acquaintance with their position and its weighty obligations. We have another class of teachers more numerous than the last mentioned, and constantly increasing, which forms our chief staple in supplying the best and most useful laborers in the field. I mean our young friends, who begin the work simultaneously with an early and unreserved dedication of themselves to the service of Christ. They are earnestly attached to the highest objects of the school; and full of devout and growing zeal they surrender themselves to the undertaking with a settled decision, and a persevering ardour which silently reproves the indolent and uninterested around them. If they