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the experience pictured by the Apostle in Romans vii., and wrings

human heart the cry, in some shape or form, “O miserable man that I am, who shall deliver me from the body of this death ? ”—it is not lightened, it is made more intense and burdensome by the knowledge of the mercy it has repelled, the love it has wounded, the grace it has outraged, the Father it has wronged and defied. Conviction, then, has something within the being to work upon and to work with, which draws the sinful child to the God who can help, and heal, and save him. There is the memory of the Father's home following the prodigal to the wilderness, and wooing him, even in the sty of swine, to tread, with tears and prayers, the backward path; there is a hold established from the first on the young child of a sinful race, by which the Father draws him, even in his most distant and reckless wanderings, and by which, far as he may roam, intensely as he may suffer, He will bring him in at last

“It is meet that we should make merry; for this, my son, was dead, but he is alive again, and was lost, but is found.”

Remember that the first, the fundamental principle of a Christian education, is the surrounding the young spirit, in the very cradle of its higher life, with the witness that it is born into the Father's home, and has a right, in all its struggles, all its sufferings, all its sins, to claim the Father's pity, to cry for the Father's help, to rest in the Father's will and power to save.

I had intended to have dwelt at some length on the second great principle of Christian culture which the Church has failed to grasp and to wield as a power, but my space compels me to compress. Christ bids us remember-next to the revelation of the Father, it is the great theme of His teaching—that men have to be trained here for the universe and for eternity; and the training must begin in the home, if it is to bear any blessed and bountiful fruit. The meaning of a man's life is the first great lesson, next to the meaning of Father and the wealth of the Divine love. "A man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth," said the Master. How much of our Christian culture is built on the conception of a man's life, its true dignity, its true joy, which was before the Saviour when He spoke those words? The beginning of all true, noble, fruitful life, is the fair unfolding and culture of the faculties of the being in the sunlight of the Divine love. How


much of our Christian culture, our education of our children, of Christ's children—" of such is the kingdom of heaven"—in our homes, has respect absolutely and exclusively to the question, What kind of training will most largely and swiftly pay-pay, not to the man as an immortal being with eternity before him to work out the great plan of his existence, but pay in the base sense, the sense which Christ branded with His scorn, pay to the man as a creature of circumstance, living for the day, and dreaming that “ bread alone" can be the nourishment of his life?

God sends His children forth into our homes with a rich endowment of faculty, richly varied as well as rich in quality, distributing to each according to His good pleasure—that is, according to a scheme of universal being too grand and far-reaching for us to measure. In this we too have a high part to play, in developing the faculty with which God has endowed us to the utmost, and seeing that His children grow up in our homes large-hearted, noble, generous, unselfish, earnest, cultivated, capable servants of their generation, according to the Divine will—that is, according to the special faculties with which God has endowed them, and the work which He has given them to do. Oh, the misery which abounds on earth through the mismatching of men and women with their conditions and vocations, and which begins in the selfish, narrow, and worldly policy of parents! Remember, the use, the free play of the faculties is the source of the noblest power, and the purest joy of life; the pelf which they can win is but as dust, as dirt, in comparison ; while the range and the force of cultivated and developed faculty is the true wealth, which is worth reckoning for time as well as for eternity.

I cannot dwell on this more largely. I just touch it and close. Train your

children from the first to take true measure of life, its grand possibilities, its glorious destinies. Lay up wealth in them in rich abundance ; send them forth full-armed and trained to work and to suffer, and to make their lives a blessing to their fellow-men. And then think often of the day when you will meet them, when life's brief, stormy passage is over, with the boundless universe and endless ages stretching out before them, through which they will reap the fruit of the seed with joy unspeakable which your hand first sowed in their young being, as they enter with you for ever into the joy and the glory of the Lord.


"ROM yonder eastern throne of crimson gold

F rolled

In utter darkness; but from thence one ray
Sped like a fiery steed, and chased away
The shadows in its path. It pierced the gloom,
And brought the light of day to one lone room,
Where, on a lowly couch, a dark-haired boy
Was sleeping peacefully. His transient joy
Lived but in dreams, which with the morning's light
Fled !—fled as fly the shadows of the night;
And that which made the earth look bright-to him-
Made his young life : his earth : his hopes grow dim.
A melancholy face he had, yet fraught
With shrouded beauty, and reflective thought.
As he awoke a tear bedewed his eye,
Which he dashed off, and with a long-drawn sigh
Rose from his couch, bestowing brief caress
Upon a dog, then donned his simple dress.

The room was large and dreary; all around,
Upon the walls, and scattered on the ground,
Were painters' trophies, and the tools which Art
Wields with majestic freedom, to impart
Its soul on canvas.

Now the boy with haste
Gathered the scattered implements, and placed
Each in its proper nook. Easels he drew
Into their own recesses, and he threw
Covers o'er each, and swept the littered floor;
And, having finished, listened at the door
As if in fear; then from behind a screen
He drew a tracing forth, with look so keen
And full of fire, that his small form appeared
To grow in majesty. His features cleared

And lost their woful aspect, and his eye
Revealed the yearning of a smothered sigh.
His glance was poetry! And, gazing now,
The light of genius flashed across his brow,
And held his soul in transport. Could it be
He was a slave ?-Ay, yet by nature free
He stood unfettered !

See ! his trembling hand
Moves o'er the canvas, and at his command
The colours blend; whilst from a complex strife
His youthful vision slowly dawns to life.

boy worked on, enrapt as by a spell And governed by its promptings, till there fell A footstep on his ear: then with a start, He hastily, and with a throbbing heart, Secreted his dear picture ; and there came A master in the Sacred Art, whose fame Time hath not dimmed. It was Murillo, who Here taught his pupils; but he little knew His slave-boy's soul imbibed his words, and caught The spirit of their meaning, and in thought Outsoared them all.

He was a willing lad, Though he at times was gloomy, silent, sad; For was he not a slave ?—yet one whose soul No bonds could fetter, and no will control.

The hours passed by; but, ere that day was o'er,
His picture was discovered! Oft before
Rough sketches had been found, revealing skill
And progress in the Art ; but here was skill
And bright conception mingled, and so blent
That it entranced the eye !

With looks intent
The pupils called Murillo ; and amazed,
With keen yet pleasing wonderment, he gazed

Upon the picture, yet unfinished ; and
Questioned each gazer in the youthful band;
But none in all the group could claim the prize,
Which looked upon them with expressive eyes
Brimful with love!

It was the Virgin's head !
Long did Murillo gaze; at length he said-
“ 'Tis marvellous !—Sebastian, come thou here !
What, shrinking boy! Why, what hast thou to fear?
Ay, thou dost tremble! Now methinks I guess
The mystery. Some one hath gained access
And painted this. Now answer truly, say,
Who hath obtained admission here? I pay
Falsehood with lashes; thou had'st better own
Than hide the truth-speak! hast thou watched alone?”
“ Yes, truly, Señor!” quickly he replied,
And as he spoke a look of honest pride
Flashed o'er his face. Murillo broke his speech
And answered sternly—“We must surely teach
Thee greater watchfulness; and if to-night
Thou dost not learn the secret, with the light
The lash shall wring it from thee; have a care,
Thou know'st I keep my word, boy, so beware!

Night came at length, and through the casement gleamed Cynthia's calm rays-Sebastian sweetly dreamed; For o'er his features light alternate spread, Mingled with pensive shades: his little head, Upraised to heaven, rested upon his hands As if in intercourse. His mortal bands Were loosened, and his spirit revelled where No shackles bound him : all was bright and fair In that far realm beyond the earth,--above The shining stars. There two eyes darted love Into his upturned face. O blissful trance ! He saw, and knew it was the Virgin's glance, And started up in transport; but to find 'Twas but a transient vision of the mind :

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