Page images
[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors]

"You speak kindly, my son," replied the pleased father; your love to me does me more good than my food; and those eyes of yours remind me of your dear mother who has left us, who told you to love me as she used to do. And indeed, my boy, you have been a great strength and comfort to me; but, now that I have eaten the first morsel to please you, it is your turn to eat."

“Thank you, father; but break this piece in two, and take you a little more, for you see the loaf is not large, and you require much more than I do."

"I shall divide the loaf for you, my boy, but eat it I shall not. I have abundance; and let us thank God for His great goodness in giving us what is better still-cheerful and contented hearts. He Who gave us the Living Bread from heaven, to nourish our immortal souls, how shall He not give us all other food which is necessary to support our mortal bodies?"

The father and son thanked God, and then began to cut the loaf in pieces, to begin their frugal meal. But as they were cutting one portion, there fell out several large coins of gold of great value. The little boy gave a shout of joy, and was springing forward to grasp the unexpected treasure, when he was pulled back by his father.

[ocr errors]

'My son, my son!" he cried, "do not touch the money; it is not ours.

[ocr errors]

"But whose is it, father, if it is not ours?"

"I know not yet to whom it belongs; but probably it was put there by the baker through some mistake. We must inquire."

[ocr errors]

But, father," interrupted the boy, "you are poor and needy, and you have bought the loaf, and then the baker may not tell you the truth, and-"

"I will not listen to you, my boy; I bought the loaf, but I did not buy the gold in it. If the baker sold it to me in ignorance, I shall not be so dishonest as to take advantage of him; remember who told us to do to others as we would have others do to us. The baker may possibly cheat us. I am poor, indeed, but that is no sin. If we share the poverty of Jesus, God's own Son, O! let us imitate His goodness, and His trust in God. We may never be rich, but we may always be honest. We may die of starvation, but God's will be done, should we die in doing it! Yes, my son, trust God, and walk in His ways, and you shall never be put to shame. Now, run for the baker, and bring him here, and I will take care of the gold until he comes." So the boy ran for the baker.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

plaining. I am glad we have saved this man from losing his money."

The baker had been gazing first upon the honest father and his eager boy, and then upon the gold which lay glittering upon the green turf.

Thou art, indeed, an honest fellow," said the baker, "and my neighbour David, the flaxdresser, spoke but the truth when he said thou wert the honestest man in our town. Now, I will tell thee about the gold. A stranger came to my shop three days ago, and gave me that loaf, and told me to sell it cheaply, or give it away, to the honestest poor man whom I knew in the city. I told David to send thee to me, as a customer, this morning; as thou wouldst not take the loaf for nothing, I sold it to thee, as thou knowest, for the last pence in thy purse; and the loaf, with all its treasure,-and certainly it is not small,-is thine; and God grant thee a blessing with it!"

The father bent his head to the ground, while the tears fell from his eyes. His boy ran and put his hand about his neck, and said, "I shall always act like you, my father,―trust God, and do what is right; for I am

[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

"No, you can't see them; but we have them for all that." 66 'If we can't see them or use them, I don't see what good they are."

"We are using them all the while," said Mrs. L-. "Did

you never hear of the wings of thought?"

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

O! that's what you mean." "Yes, dear. Now, don't you remember what I said to you yesterday, when I talked about birds and beasts and all things that God has made?"

"You told me they were all created for man."

"Yes; and I said that there was a likeness in man to all visible things in nature. He is bold and fearless like the lion, cunning as a fox, innocent as a lamb, cruel as the tiger or vulture, timid as the hare; his thought is winged as the eagle, and can fly swiftly here and there, now resting in a pleasant valley, and now sweeping over seas and mountains." "Our thoughts wings?"

[ocr errors]

are our

Yes; and our minds can fly with these wings higher and farther than any bird can go. If I read to you about a volcano in Italy, off you go on the wings of imagination and look down into the fiery crater. If I tell you of

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

radishes, peas, strawberries, potatoes, grow there. It supplies the family with vegetables, besides some for the market. If anybody wants flowers, that garden furnishes the sweetest roses, pinks, and "all sorts" without number. The soil, we used to think, was poor and rocky, besides being exposed to the north wind; and the owner is at his business all day, yet he never hires any one to dig or weed for him. "How do you make so much out of your little garden?" he was once asked. "I give my mornings to it," he answered; "and I don't know which is the most benefited by my work, my garden or I."

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]
[blocks in formation]

But when his neighbours found that he had won without their aid,

They gather'd round in angry mood, and wrathful words they said.

The conqueror in silence heard,

then gave a mild reply,— "I've done but little, you've done much; you're better far than I."

Then, though the men were

quarrelsome, their anger was subdued;

The praises were accepted, and the

strife was not renew'd.

When Ammon ruled o'er Israel, and fill'd their hearts with dread,

A man of courage, once despised,

was chosen as their head. A mighty victory he gain'd; this raised his neighbours' ire— "Why didst thou not call us?" they said; "we'll burn thy house with fire."

The conqueror in anger heard, then to them fiercely said, "I and my people were in need,

you offer'd us no aid." These angry men prepared to fight,

no one spake kindly then; That quarrel cost the lives of more than forty thousand men.


xxv. Cloudy

mornings often bring clear evenings. XXVI. It is hard for an empty bag to stand upright.

XXVII. As well do nothing, as do to no purpose.

XXVIII. Take heed will surely speed. XXIX. A good conscience is the best law.

Xxx. Temperance is the best physic.

XXXI. Say what is well, and do what is better.

XXXII. Think to-day and speak to-morrow.

XxxIII. Be not a figure among ciphers.

XXXIV. Make not your sail too large for your ship.

xxxv. A rich fool is a wise man's


XXXVI. One ill asketh another.

« PreviousContinue »