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CULTIVATION OF THE AFFECTIONS.
kindness to her younger brothers and sisters, which elicit tenderness? Alas! no; her time is tasked to the utmost; she has always lessons to commit to memory at home. Peevishness and ill humor are excused, because “ the poor thing has to study so hard.” She is languid, and unwilling to make the slightest exertion to promote the comfort of those about her. Delicate health is pleaded as an apology. The confined air of the school room, and too little exercise, are the cause of this feebleness of constitution. Years
pass on; she is at length released from the drudgery of the school-room, but music, drawing, French, Italian, &c. occupy all her time. Her mother is ill. The piano is stopped, because it is an annoyance; but where is the daughter? Watching by that fond mother's bedside, with anxious solicitude, anticipating
A hired nurse administers to her necessities, The young lady is in the room occasionally, but she sits with a book in her hand, or looking out of the window. Is this the “ministering angel, when pain and sickness wring the brow”? Mistaken mother! your daughter is intelligent and accomplished; she is very intellectual; but would not her sympathy sweetly soothe your sorrow? Would not her assiduous tenderness diffuse a living fragrance around your pillow? Her affections have not been cultivated. She would gladly do something for you, but she plainly does not know how. Mothers may say that the softening influence of religion will effect all that is necessary; and for this they constantly labor and pray. Hard and barren indeed will be the soil in which the heavenly seed must take root. You would not cast out a beautiful exotic to put forth its tender and delicate leaves upon the beaten highway." The fruits of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, &c.” Mother! it is your task to prepare the soil for these precious fruits.
The physician who discovers and describes the symptoms of a disease, has but half performed his office, till he points out the remedy. With much diffidence would I suggest the following brief hints on the subject of the cultivation of the affections.
Begin right. Remember the end and object of your daughter's education, namely, to fit her for time, and for ETERNITY!
Begin early. Your sweet babe is not given for the gratification of your own pride. Let her dress always be neat and plain, her diet simple and wholesome. Call forth her affections as soon as possible by the kind of reward which you offer for good behavior. As soon as a little girl can be taught any thing, it should be the law of kindness. A mother may say, “Mary has been a good child ; she may fold up little brother's clothes to-night;" or, “ If Mary behaves well in the nursery, she may come into the parlor and see her father this evening.” Such associations are very powerful.
Punishments should be of the same kind. The deprivation of some customary act of kindness from a mother, will often do niore good than a much severer infliction. Even the denial of the kiss of affection is often most keenly felt.
It is very injudicious to deprive a child of cake and sweetmeats, or its necessary food, by way of punishment. A volume might be written on this part of the subject, but I must forbear.
THE MOTHER'S EARLY LESSON.
When your daughter is old enough to show decided mental superiorily, do not manifest too much pleasure on that subject. When she practices self-denial for the good of others, or active benevolence, prove to her, by your decided approbation, that you set an equal value upon these attainments. That Being whose wisdom is infinite, does not characterize himself as a God of knowledge; but “ God is love.” The most prominent point in our blessed Saviour's character on earth was his “doing good.” Make your daughter feel that all her intellectual acquirements and her accomplishments are designed to increase her power of conferring happiness.
Be careful that her sensibility is not expended upon fictitious subjects. The true feelings of the heart are often thus foolishly and wickedly wasted. The passive emotions are all weakened by frequent excitement. On the contrary the active emotions are increased by exercise. Many a bright eye, which has wept itself dim over scenes of fictitious sorrow, would turn away in disgust from real distress. Act efficiently and promptly, and the revolting circumstances which often attend suffering will be unheeded.
When your daughter is old enough for your companion and friend, allow her to participate in your cares and duties. It is the affectionate daughter and kind sister, who will make the self-denying wife, and devoted mother. A woman may be of the gifted few in talents; she may be accomplished and beautiful ; she may be even pious in principle ; but without affections strong and active, she is like an iceberg glittering in the moonbeams; none may dream of communion with its frozen sterility.
T. C. L.
For the Mother's Magazine.
THE MOTHER'S OR SABBATH SCHOOL TEACHER'S
EARLY LESSON. My dear Madam—I have frequently been requested to send, for publication, some account of the fruits of instruction given years since to a class in a Sabbath school. If you think proper to insert it in the Mother's Magazine, I shall hope that those who read it may be induced to adopt a similar method, to impress on the youthful mind this important truth.
The little girls in my class were eight in number, from ten to thirteen years old, all belonging to poor families in a large city. One Sabbath I said to them, “My dear children, there is one lesson I wish you always to remember; it is this: Thou God seest me.' This is a truth thät we all know, but we are apt to forget it; I wish you therefore to try to remember it. It will greatly help you to remember it, if you ask yourself, every hour, when you hear the clock strike, have I remembered the lesson my teacher gave me? Then repeat it to yourself: Thou God seest me. If you remember it every hour, you will be likely to think of it much oftener; and if you think that God is looking at you, it will make you afraid to do wrong, lest you should offend God, and it will make you try to do right, that you may please God." They all promised they would attend to the lesson. The Sabbath after, I inquired, “Have you
MOTTO FOR YOUTH.
169 thought of the lesson your teacher gave you last Sabbath ?" One and all answered, “ Yes, yes.” “Now, my dear children, can you tell me if it has done you any good to remember that God sees you at all times ?” Several of them replied that it had. “What good has it done you?" One held down her head, and began to weep, probably at the thought of confessing a fault; but perhaps she did not know that to be willing to acknowledge a fault is a most lovely trait in any character. I told her I was her friend, and she need not be afraid to tell me. She then said that her mother wished her to go of an errand, and she was unwilling to go, and even said she would not go. Then she thought of the lesson, “ Thou God seest me,” and she went immediately. Another little girl said, with tears, “My mother told me not to visit my cousin; but when she went to the country to spend a few days, I thought, now I will go and visit my cousin. So I laid on my hat and shawl, and went as far as the gate ; but there I remembered Thou God seest me,' and I returned to the house, and gave up my visit.”
Thus, in these two instances, the recollection of this truth produced obedience, the very fruit which was desired. I related these circumstances to another class in a Sabbath school, several years after, and requested their attention to the same text, which had the same happy effect in the case of one of them, who told me that “ her mother had a kid of figs, and she went to take one of them; but thinking of the lesson, • Thou God seest me,' she did not take the fig, and felt much happier than if she had.”
Lately I endeavored to impress on the minds of pupils, at an infant Sabbath school, this truth, and induced them to repeat it with one voice, and told them that it would keep them from doing wrong, and induce them to do right, &c. The next Sabbath, I had the pleasure to hear one sweet little boy, six years old, say, " he went to take an apple from his mother's basket, without permis. sion, when he remembered the text, • Thou God seest me,' and did not touch it, but went and asked his mother if he might have one, and obtained permis. sion, and enjoyed it very much. Two of the little girls were contending for the head of the seat, and her teacher could not for some time persuade either of them to relinquish what she considered her right; but at last this teacher said she feared they had forgotten the instruction given to them by Mrs. T. the Sabbath before, and immediately one of them moved down and gave her seat to the other, while the other looked ashamed of her conduct, and will probably be restrained in future by the fact that God's eye is always upon her. Many other cases might be named; but enough have been related to encourage every parent and teacher to enforce this truth.
Very respectfully, SALINA, Oct. 1, 1833.
Yours, L. B. F..
It is with pleasure that we insert a second piece under the title of “Motto for Youth,” and for the sake of the example we mention that they were first inserted in a “Family Gazette," prepared every week by the children of a friend's family, which was read every Saturday evening, after the family had assembled for their evening devotions.
It was the custom of the children, who were old enough, to furnish a piece every week for the Gazette. The three eldest alternately assumed the respon. sibility of editorship. For the encouragement and benefit of the children, their parents occasionally prepared a piece. By a little skill in managing, the faults and peculiarities of each child, either by delicate allusion or by voluntary confession, was pointed out and happily corrected. We recommend the adoption of a similar plan to every family where it may be practicable; and we hesitate not to
that all the advantages which might result from such a journal, may not at first view be conceived.
MOTTO FOR YOUTH. No. II.
It was the first command and counsel to my youth, always to do what my conscience told me to be my duty, and to leave the consequences to God.
Carelessness was a fault of mine, which my affectionate mother took unwearied pains to correct. Like most children, I did not view its consequences as serious as she represented them to be; yet when she spoke to me of them, I felt as if I would try to do better, if it were only to please her.
I recollect that when between ten and eleven years of age, she one day gave me a shilling to purchase some trifling article for her, and as I ran out of the door, she followed me. “Carlos,” said she, “you had better put it into your pocket-book, or you may lose it.” “Oh! mother,” said I, in my haste, “I sha'nt lose it;" so on I ran with it in my hand. Some music in the street attracted my attention, so that I did not go immediately; and when ready to go, my money was missing. I looked up and down the street, but it was nowhere to be found. “What shall I do?” thought I; for I knew that my mother would have just cause for being displeased with me. Just then it occurred to me that I had a shilling of my own, which my father had given me to buy marbles with. My first thought was to replace it with this, and conceal from mother the loss. I drew my handkerchief from my pocket to get my money, and out fell a card, with something neatly written on it. It was my motto. My dear mother had, as she afterwards told me, been for several weeks apprehensive that I was forgetting my motto, and had, the morning before, unknown to me, put the card into my pocket. I took it up and read it; tears of affection and contrition bedewed it. I turned round and walked slowly home, resolving to tell my mother all. I told her, and offered to replace her lost money with
She permitted me to do it, that I might experience in my own wants the inconvenience of carelessness.
She gently reproved me for my carelessness, and inattention to her requests; but said she could confide in me for my candor. “My dear Carlos," said she, “always comply with the most trifling requests of your parents, when conscience does not interfere. If, in doing as they wish you to, the result is not altogether satisfactory, you have this to console you, that you were fulfilling your duty as an obedient child, and honoring your father who is in heaven.
If, as in the present case, you do as you like, all the blame rests on yourself. Go, now, my dear child, and may I never conduct so towards you, nor you be so hardened, that you will wish to conceal your faults from me.” I went away happy
in her confidence, and thankful, I trust, for the blessing of such a mother. A fortnight after, I received from my mother the note which follows, and with it a neat and valuable little volume:
My dear Son-Buy with the enclosed shilling some marbles for yourself, and accept the little volume accompanying this, as a token of my entire approbation of your conduct for the two past weeks. Keep your motto near you, and read it daily. Be assured, my son, that the ingenuousness you displayed in the incident which occurred a fortnight since, has given me true pleasure ; and, believe me, that no child who has not the confidence of his parents, will long have that of others. Your affectionate mother,
C. S. EL
For the Mother's Magazine.
THE INFIDEL HUSBAND.
“BUT SHE THAT IS MARRIED CARETH FOR THE THINGS OF THE WORLD, HOW SHE MAY
PLEASE HER HUSBAND,” 1 Cor. 7: 34.
A few days since, I was invited to attend the funeral solemnities of a deceased relative. I looked upon her lifeless clay with feelings of no common character.
Mrs. K. was united in early youth to one who was then considered a sober, honest, respectable man; and in truth he was so, having no outward besetting sin. In a few years after their marriage, they removed from Connecticut to New York, where Mr. K. purchased a farm, built him a fine house, and was at length settled to his entiro satisfaction. Having no children, he adopted his nephew, a young lad, as a son. Mr. K. who was destitute of religious principles, (for he was an infidel,) was induced to do this, that he might have an heir to his possessions, and a support in his declining age.
But Providence ordered it otherwise. In consequence of the infidelity of the uncle, the nephew, as might have been expected, imbibed the same corrupt principles, was ultimately ruined for this world, and we have reason to fear for eternity! In the mean time, Mrs. K. a perfect model of devotedness to her husband, saw him a man much “looked up to” in society, filling the office of magistrate for many years, a perfectly temperate man, a good neighbor, friend, and husband, and was therefore inclined to think his principles were not, after all, so very bad ; perhaps what he advocated might be true.
The “still small voice,” however, would not be entirely hushed. Conscience whispered, the Bible
be a revelation from God. But where, she would inquire, is the evidence that it is so? In itself, in your own soul, would reason and conscience answer; and many times was she “almost persuaded to be a Christian.” In this way she lived, entirely unsettled in her religious principles, believing and disbelieving for nearly half a century.
At length death came, and found her, alas ! I hardly dare say an infidel; but what is the difference? She was an unbeliever; and when I looked upon her cold inanimate body, I could not but exclaim, in the bitterness of my grief, Oh! husband! husband ! her blood will be found in thy skirts! Ye wives,