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yet let me hope that being happily placed under my paternal care, I shall persuade you at once, and earnestly, to seek the cultivation of those dispositions and habits that will render you impervious to the attacks of evil, and give you to enjoy a peaceful conscience, the best companion through life. “The wicked are like the troubled sea when it cannot rest, casting up mire and dirt.” It would not be proper on this occasion to enlarge upon the difficulties and dangers you will have to contend with in your progress through life, and thereby discourage your youthful ardour at its first onset; nor to forbid a friendly and social intercourse with youths of your own age; but it is my desire to suggest such advice as shall excite an elevation of mind, whereby those trying circumstances are more easily surmounted, and a wise choice made of companions who will preserve you from the influence of vicious examples, from which you cannot be wholly secluded. As a traveller who has frequently passed through the length and breadth of a country, is qualified to describe its scenery, and give directions to those who contemplate the like journey for their safety and comfort; so, as an affectionate father who is intimately conversant with those scenes which are now opening with a dazzling splendour upon your view, I am desirous of imparting the benefit of my experience, that your journey through life may be alike honorable to yourself, and satisfactory to your parents, who are tremblingly alive to your future welfare.
1. I would, in the first place, direct your attention to the foundation of all virtue and happiness, which is piety towards God-a daily communion with, and dependence upon Him, kept alive by secret prayer : this will bring you into an habitual feeling that He is at all times about your path, and is acquainted with all, even your most secret ways. If you are persuaded of his Omniscience, you will be kept from doing any thing to incur His displeasure, and experience that there is a great reward in keeping His commands. A belief in His Omnipresence will be also à source of much comfort: if you can go no where where He is not, what encouragement is afforded to persevere in virtue, since His aid will be always ready to assist in repelling the evil desires of a corrupt nature. Commit your way unto the Lord, and He will assuredly direct your steps. Let His Holy Word · be your constant lamp; it will safely guide you through life, to the mansions of immortal joy. Reverence the Scriptures, the house of God, and its ministers: the Sabbath, and let the people of God be high in your esteem as the excellent of the earth; count those your enemies who would in the least divert you from these ways, who dare to laugh at these awful and momentous subjects.
2. Pay a reverent regard to your parents. This may be enforced by stating the express commands of Jehovah, and the obligations you owe them as the authors of your being; who cherished you in infancy, and sustained you to the present time, amidst the frowardness of childhood, and thoughtlessness of more advanced years ; endured, in frequent midnight watchings, much anxiety, fatigue, and privation of comfort; and who could, for your sake, pass through, without repining, such pain. ful scenes again. Wherefore a prompt obedience to their wishes is your especial duty; and if constantly fulfilled, will yield a most grateful reflection to your mind at that period when you shall be called to receive their last blessing, and conscience brings in review all your conduct towards them. Although you cannot now at all times understand the reasonableness of their requests, and their behaviour may at some seasons appear severe, yet be assured that they have no other' aim but your welfare; and when you possess a more matured judgment you will acquiesce in the affection and propriety of those measures they adopted to form your character. And here let me entreat you to shun the society of those who have been rebellious children; stubborn and selfwilled; daringly opposed to the authority of their parents, sensual and selfish in their pleasures; who have no taste for intellectual enjoyments and rational amusements, and cannot rise above the low vulgarity of the lowest grade in society. The curse of the Most High is pointedly revealed against such in the scriptures :--beware, lest through the inexperience of youth you may mistake their ribaldry and noise for a lively pleasant temper, and be seduced by their apparent friendship to contemn your parents' advice, and fall into their sins.
3. Invariably show an affectionate attachment to your brothers and sisters. David well expressed the happiness of unity in a family, by comparing it to the odoriferous ointment with which
the High Priest was anointed, on his consecration to the sacred office. It is a source of much gratification to the parents, and of incalculable benefit to the children themselves : it preserves them from doing any thing designedly to hurt the feelings, but takes pleasure in promoting each other's comfort. Love will banish selfishness, and impart those gratifying sensations which generous minds experience. Petulant tempers may now and then cause discord to look in at the window, but he will not be able to obtain admittance; the ugly visage will soon reconcile hasty differences, and reason, with affection, speedily allay the transient animosity. Unity is strength: and will be of importance to repel attacks upon your mutual rights, whereas strife and division will render you an easy prey to your enemies. “A house divided against itself cannot stand: but a three-fold cord is not easily broken.” St. Paul beautifully shows the natural disposition of love with its fruits. “Love suffereth long and is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself; is not puffed up; doth not behave itself unseemly; seeketh not her own; is not easily provoked; thinketh no evil; rejoiceth not in iniquity; but rejoiceth in the truth ; beareth all things; believeth all things; hopeth all things; endureth all things ;-love never faileth.”
It only remains for me now to offer a few general observations to regulate your conduct in the business to which you have this day been bound as an apprentice.
1. Information. Be desirous to become well acquainted with your calling in its different branches: much will depend upon yourself in making good use of your eyes and ears: the one must be diligent to observe—the other eager to receive instruction. It is a great failing in young people to be ashamed of receiving advice; they often profess to understand what is being told them, when they do not, through fear of being thought stupid. This is very wrong, and the sure way to remain ignorant. It is no disgrace to be ignorant of that in which you have received no previous instruction.
2. Punctuality. It is the life of business; and in none is it of greater importance than the mercantile one you have chosen
-the tide will not wait for you. There is often a fixed time in which orders must be executed, or it will be too late for the vessel, and occasion a serious loss to the merchants.
3. Industry. Industry, and a readiness to do what is required, will obtain you much favor. Occasions will arise when the directions given you may appear unnecessary, and the services hard; but experience will convince you that this arises from the perplexing nature of your business, and not from the unkindness of those over you.
4. Honesty.- Especially let integrity predominate in all your behaviour. Take not, touch not, any goods entrusted to your care; a habit of picking and stealing is more easily obtained than got rid of. It betrays a mean and covetous mind, and is disgraceful; nay, it is positive robbery to take even the smallest quantity, without the approbation of those to whom the property belongs. As a son it becomes you to be very circumspect in your conduct, that your father's servants may have no excuse to depart from an upright and just behaviour.
5. Temper.-It is of great importance that you acquire a firm command over your temper. Many circumstances will constantly arise to provoke it to anger; in a few you may justly show a severe temper; in none a passionate one. An irritable disposition will cause you to utter falsehoods, judge rashly and erroneously, and quarrel with those events which neither prudence could foresee, nor skill avert; on the other side, a cool and dispassionate judgment will prompt you patiently to submít to that which was unavoidable; enable you more skilfully to arrange your plans, and save you from many tumultuous passions which disquiet and torment the mind.
6. Civility.-Be courteous to all; without servility to those above your station in life, or contemptuous to the poor: to them, especially, be kind and benevolent, according to your ability. They have many opportunities of rendering you a service, and you will find you cannot have too many friends. Let the golden rule of our Saviour Jesus Christ be always acted upon by you, and you will assuredly build on a good foundation for present comfort and future felicity :-" Do unto others as ye would that they should, in like circumstances, do unto you."
7. Recreation.—Let the leisure from business be wisely employed—not spent in trifling amusements, but in rational pleasures ; always aiming at the improvement of the mind. Cultivate a friendship only with those who would stimulate you to virtuous
actions : pleasant, cheerful companions, in whose society you could profitably pass your spare time, and be of mutual advantage. In conclusion, I entreat my dear Henry to peruse this letter frequently, and with sincere prayer to Almighty God that it may prove a blessing to him. It will afford me unspeakable happiness to witness him growing up into life, with his expanding mind gradually unfolding the amiable and holy principles here inculcated, happy in his own reflections, and a comfort to those around him.
FINALLY. “Whatsoever things are true; whatsoever things are venerable; whatsoever things are just; whatsoever things are pure; whatsoever things are lovely; whatsoever things are of good report: if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” “ Those things which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do, and the God of Peace shall be with you.”—AMEN.
Your affectionate father,
THE INFLUENCE OF WORDS. MR. M. was a great free-thinker, and as free a speaker of his free thoughts. At his own table, the lady of his house, who was a staunch advocate for her husband's opinions, would often, in the warmth of argument, say, “ Sir, we, Deists,” &c. The lecture upon the non-credenda of the free-thinkers was repeated so often, and urged with so much earnestness, that the inferior domestics became soon as able disputants as the heads of the family. The fellow who waited at table, having naturally inferred, from his master's conversation, that for any of his misdeeds, he should have no after account to render, was resolved to profit by the doctrine, and made off with many things of value, par. ticularly the plate.
Luckily, he was so closely pursued, that he was brought back with his prey to his master's house, who examined him before some select friends. At first the man was obstinate, and would answer no questions, but being urged to give a reason for his infamous behaviour, he resolutely said, “I had heard you so often talk of the impossibility of a future state, and say so con