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HOW TO GET THINGS. DURING the last summer, it was often a source of great enjoyment to me, as I sat at my work, to listen to the merry shouts of a few light-hearted children, whose favourite playground is just beneath my window. One morning I sat watching their earnest and persevering endeavours to bring down a ball from its lofty resting: place amid the topmost branches of a large elm tree. Wearied at length with their fruitless toil, they paused, and “ resolved themselves into a committee of the whole," to devise «
ways and means " for the accomplishment of their purpose. At this mmoent; a little boy, the youngest of the group, whom I had never seen before, suddenly exclaimed, “I know how I get things.” “Ah, Franky!" said an older lad, “how do you get things ?” “I ask God for them,” he replied, with a gesture of reverence. “ And does God always give you all you ask for ?" said the other, in a subdued and gentle tone. “'Most always He does, and when He don't, ma says, it's 'cause He don't think it best for me to have it." Suppose you ask God to help us to get our ball p” said one of the boys ; "I don't see as we're likely to get it in any other way." With the utmost simplicity, and in a tone of confident reliance on his heavenly Father's aid, the little boy replied, “I have asked Him.” “And you think He'll get it for you?" said another, with a slight sneer. “I think He will," replied Franky, “ if we wait a little while.” At that moment a young man passed along the street, and seeing the anxious glances directed to the tree-top, he exclaimed, “Hollo, boys ! What's the matter now?" “ Oh, George," said one of them, “I'm so glad you're come! We can't get our ball down. Can't you get it?" “I think so," was the pleasant reply. “Some of you
HOW TO GET THINGS.
come and help me to get a ladder, and then we'll see what
can do." The ladder was soon brought ; George mounted to the top of it, and with a long pole soon dislodged the refractory ball. Franky sprang to catch it as it fell, but failing in this, he danced and shouted for joy, exclaiming, “I thought we should get it.” “Yes," replied the one who had sneered at his simple faith, "yes we've got it, but God didn't get it. 'Twas only George Blank after all."
For an instant Franky gazed at him with grief and surprise, and then timidly said, “Ma says that God don't come down from the sky to help folks with his own. hands, but He makes somebody willing to do it. I think He made George willing to get the ball.” “Oh! George is a good fellow,” replied the young sceptic ; "he always does what we want him to do.” “But," persisted Franky, “ he wouldn't be a good fellow if God didn't make him, would he?" “Oh! I don't know," replied the other, carelessly ; “I suppose he's good because he likes to be ; but come, boys, we'll have one more game before school-time.”
Happy child! thought I, as I again resumed my work, thou art young in years, but, if I mistake not, older in wisdom than many a hoary head. The good seed of the word hath been scattered with careful hand in thy infant mind, and even now is bearing fruit unto eternal life. Let me learn a lesson of thee, precious one, for thou art not living in vain, or spending thy strength for nougbt. Oh! had I had every professed Christian-but a tithe of thy faith, what could we not accomplish! But a few days since, I heard one say, Why have I no enjoyment in religion, and why are my prayers unanswered ?" Ah, yes! Why is it? Why these restless, unsatisfied desires
108 GOD HEARS THE PRAYERS OF CHILDREN.
-these futile resolves—these half-formed purposes—these cold and lifeless prayers that never reach half-way to the eternal throne, and if they did, would be unheeded there?
And whence this life of worldliness and inconsistency? These anxious doubts and fears-whence come they, if not from thine own criminal unbelief? That child's faith would soar on ready wing above all thy doubts and difficulties, while thou, in thy unbelief, art afraid to trust the promise of thy God. His confiding soul would surmount every trial, and shout with triumphant joy the key-notes of the victor's song, whilst thou, in thy feebleness, art preparing to make an effort.
GOD HEARS THE PRAYERS OF
A whisper He can hear;
But what we wish or fear.
And bids us seek His face;
When children ask His grace.
And words of prayer to say ;
Or else we do not pray.
Thy grace to us impart ;
And serve thee with the heart.
HOW SHOULD CHILDREN PRAY P I WILL answer this question in the language of some as young as you. A little boy-one of the Sunday-school children in Jamaica--called upon the missionary, and stated that he had been very ill, and in his sickness often wished the minister had been present to pray for him.
“But, Thomas," said the missionary, "I hope you prayed for yourself.”
"Oh, yes, sir."
A child of six years old in a Sunday-school said :“When me kneel down in a Sunday School to pray it seems as if my heart talked to God.”
A little girl, about four years of age, being asked, “Why do you pray to God P” replied, “Because ỉ know He hear me, and I love to pray to Him."
But how do you know He hears you ?” Putting her little hand to her heart, she said, “I know He does, because there is something here that tells me
Ah! children, you never fully know the power and usefulness of prayer until you find yourselves in trouble and in sorrow; then you will love the Mercy-seat better than any other place on earth. But see to it that you never approach God in prayer, even now, unless you are sincere and in earnest ; for, to ask for what you do not want would only be mocking the great Jehovah. Do you remember those little verses of the hymn ;
“I often say my prayers,
Suggest the words I say?
And worship gods of stone,
A prayer of words alone,”
ADVICE BY A YOUNG SAILOR. DURING the late revivals in America, prayer-meetings have been held daily in many places. One of the first and largest of these is in Fulton Street, New York. At one of these meetings, lately, a young sailor rose and spoke, He was evidently a Scotchman by birth. All could see that he deeply felt it a solemn moment; it might be the birth-place some souls. To the unsaved he said :-“Will you take a sailor's advice—a stranger sailor-you who are now deciding that at some future time you will be a Christian ; will you take a sailor's advice and pot delay your choice another hour, but come now and be on the Lord's side? You cannot possibly magnify the danger of delay. You cannot believe it to be half as great as it is.” And then he spoke of his dreadful experiences of the effects of procrastination. He related the following as coming under his own observation :
“I remember," said he, “ when in Panama, one of my brother sailors was taken very sick. I had previously, on many occasions, urged him to take Jesus as his guide, counsellor, and friend. But his answer had ever been, « Time enough yet.' That fearful putting off, that delivering himself up to the power of Satan, who was constantly whispering in his ear, "Time enough yet,' reached its fearful crisis at last. As he lay sick upon his mattress, his writhings and contortions denoted the fever and pain that were within. But the fever of his soul was causing much more anguish than all his bodily ailments.
“I said to him, 'You need a Saviour now.' 'Oh,' said he, 'I have put off seeking Jesus too long. I earnestly begged him to look at the cross of Christ, and there learn what Jesus had done and suffered, that a poor sinner like him might not perish, but have everlasting life. But he