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hole in the ground. Whether he thanked me or not, I cannot say, not knowing the way in which such creatures express their thanks; but I felt quite certain, whether I had increased his happiness or not, I had added some little to my own.
Now in Hastings there are human beetles on their backs, or, in other words, cases of distress which need assistance. Gentle reader, let me beseech you to act upon my suggestion. I wish neither to apportion the stream of your benevolence, nor to direct the express channel through which it should flow, but only to urge you to do something, be it much or little, of a useful or charitable character; not ostentatiously, but modestly; and if your name remain unknown, so much the better. Should you be at a loss how to proceed, not knowing suitable objects for your sympathy, ministers of the gospel, as well as the conductors of newspapers, with other influential and well-known benevolent persons, would most, if not all of them, doubtless, willingly and faithfully assist in the disposal of your bounty.
While we offer to God thanksgiving for our abundant harvest, and pray that the sword may be scabbarded and the pestilence stayed, let us be neither unmindful of our own particular blessings, nor ungrateful for them. In penning this paper, I have three objects in view. First, kindly to reprove a spirit of repining in which too many indulge; next, to call out thankfulness in the heart; and lastly, to move the hand to gentle deeds of charity.
Having just forged a fable in my mental smithy, on the subject of discontent, I will with it close my present remarks :
A well-shaped horseshoe, as it hung against the wall in a blacksmith's shop, bitterly complained of the ill-usage to which it had been subjected. “No one," said the shoe, in a whining tone, "has endured the fiery trials through which I have passed, without any respite being allowed me. The hardhearted sledge-hammer and anvil were my enemies, and between the two I was cruelly treated, and found no pity. I was beaten by them unmercifully, and the blows I received at their hands would have killed an ox; as I said before, no one has endured the fiery trials through which I have passed.”
“Hold your foolish tongue," said a ploughshare, which had been sent to be repaired, “unless you can talk more wisely. Both you and I have been greatly benefited by the ordeal through which we have passed, and are valued highly by those who once might have despised us. Once, we were useless pieces of iron, but now you are a useful horseshoe and I am a respectable ploughshare."
Thus seasonably admonished, the horseshoe became silent, and was never afterwards heard to complain.
We seldom commit a greater error than that of repining at our trials and afflictions, for our Heavenly Father often renders these the medium of his greatest mercies. “No chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous : nevertheless, afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.” The complaining horseshoe, though a fiction in the fable, is a fact when applied to mankind; for multitudes of repiners have become dumb when experience has proved the value of their bitterest trials. Fear the Lord, love him, and trust him, and then
If properly improved, thy grief, and pains, And heaviest losses, all will turn to gains; Hope, peace, and joy, from trouble will arise, To bless thee, and prepare thee for the skies.
When in the night I sleepless lie,
The season of night is a season of quiet, tranquillity, and peace. The labourer has ceased his work, and the tradesman his traffic. The turmoil of the day is terminated, and the hubbub is over. No more is seen the smoking chimney and the hurrying throng. No longer is heard the clicking loom and the clanging hammer. The workshop, the counting-house, and the exchange, are closed. The stars light up the sky, the moon walks forth in her majesty, and man retires to his repose.
The night-season pours its oil and balm into the wounds that we daily receive in the battle of life. The disappointed spirit becomes more reconciled, the ruffled temper is soothed, the angry fires that glow within us expire for want of fuel, and sleep robs us of our cherished animosities. These are among the manifold blessings that night bestows.
The night-season is a necessary and pleasant break into the daily routine of our lives. It gives relief to the screwed-up energies of enterprise, and removes from the mind the weight of its responsibilities. It affords an interval of repose, an opportunity for thoughtfulness, a pause for preparation, and a breathing time in our wrestling with the world.
The night-season is a season of mercy, conferred upon us by a merciful God for a merciful purpose. Then gentle sleep falls upon us, refreshing our wearied bodies, and effectually restoring the disturbed tranquillity of our minds. Then exhausted nature sinks into oblivious forgetfulness of pain and care, and gains strength for its future exertions. Gently do we lie down, and sweetly do we take our rest, for the Lord sustaineth us.
Who is there that in his commerce with the world falls not into errors ? The sleepless hours of night are often profitably employed in a calm revision of the occurrences of the day. Haply we have spoken hasty words, done unkind deeds, failed in paying due respect, and neglected those who have a claim on our attention. With our heads on our pillows, and darkness around us, we can rectify our mistakes, recall our angry epithets, determine to pay respect to all, and resolve to make restitution.
In the day we are exposed to many temptations from which in the night we are free. We retire, as it were, into our own hearts. We have no fawners to deceive us; no flatterers to praise us and make us think more highly of ourselves than