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and make the numbers of the coming year greater blessings than any which have preceded them!
But while we earnestly pursue our work, we must again ask the assistance of mothers and Sabbath-school teachers. Sure we are that our issue might be doubled, if all those who take an interest in our pages, and look for comfort and direction from them, would but recommend it in their circle, and really and earnestly seek to obtain subscribers.
Indeed, those who thus value it are under a moral obligation to see that others enjoy the same blessings; and having themselves tasted that the Lord is gracious, they must—they will be anxious to bring others acquainted with the same Saviour ; thus we shall be fellow-workers, and sharers in the great reward.
"Last night died its day; and the deeds thereof were judged. To-day is thy watch, 0 sentinel ! to-day thy reprieve; O captive ! What more ?-to-day is the golden chance wherewith to snatch
When we commenced our seventh volume, how little did . we imagine that many who were treading life's pathway with us, would now be living in thạt world of which we had often talked with them, and tried to realise its happiness; but so it is. The common diseases incident to all have taken some away; and the direful pestilence has made many homes desolate, leaving parents and children weeping over the dead. And now, alas ! thousands of our countrymen are in the sanguinary battle-field. Who among them will return to tell the tales of horror enacted there, none can say, Mothers ! do you pray for our soldiers and sailors ?-Do you?
We lately attended a Maternal Meeting where many a soldier's wife and mother assembled with us. mother, with a countenance full of deep anxiety, sat there, with an infant in her arms, who seemed to partake of its mother's gloom. She asked us, with great earnestness,
WHAT SHALL HAPPEN THIS YEAR ?
“Do you think the war will soon end ?” · Have
you some friends at the seat of war?” we asked. With a look of anguish she replied, “Oh yes, m&am, my beloved husband is there, and I fear he will never return to me and this dear boy. The only hope we have is, that the prayers of those at home will be heard for him." What British mother's heart does not beat more quickly when she hears the words, "Intelligence from the seat of war?”
We commence our volume this year with unusual solemnity. The ordinary quiet of our native land is suspended. On every side resounds the disturbances arising from “horrid war.' Fearful scenes are enacting, in which our countrymen are compelled to take a prominent part. Hearths and homes, once so peaceful, are scenes of woe and desolation. The widow and the fatherless sit mourning over their sad deprivations, while multitudes watch with intense agony the published missives from the battle-field. Can the “Mothers' Friend” remain unmoved ? Our great concern is to help the anxious mother, and to minister to minds diseased. We humbly hope the volume we now commence may, beneath the Divine blessing, tend to soothe and guide the minds of those so deeply concerned in the present struggle. While the flower of our countrymen are standing before the cruel enemy, and many of them falling like the leaves of autumn, is it not a time to send up petitions to the God of battles, that our fathers, brothers, and sons may be shielded by Him? Yes; and that those who are daily falling may be meetened for heaven. Mothers ! fellow-teachers! with renewed determination let us train the young spirits comunitted to our care, to serve under the banner of the Cross, telling them often of Him who would that men should live and love as brethren, learning war no more, but doing the will of Him who is in truth the Prince of Peace. So let us commence the New Year.
NEW YEAR'S DAY.
Where are they?" “Come to this seat, dear Lucy, at my right hand; and Edward, my boy, come opposite to your mother.” As the speaker waved his hand, a tall, slender figure advanced, clad in the sable robes of a widow. She tried to look cheerful, but as she took her 'seat at the right hand of her father-in-law, a venerable man with silver locks and a melancholy countenance, a close observer might have discovered a tear streaming down the widow's cheek.
Lucy Angus had not been accustomed to fill the seat now assigned to her at the dinner-table on New Year's Days. It had been filled for ten years by her husband, the eldest son of this large family, who was now in a world where time is not measured. Lucy felt the kindness of Mr. Angus in requesting her to fill his seat to-day, and her little son to fill the one she had been wont to have. She knew it was that she might not see another in the chair her husband called his own; and that she might remember, while looking on the face of her boy, that she had still something to live for. Every little delicate attention is felt by a widow's desolate heart. The dinner passed in comparative silence; all that group were sorrowful in the recollection of the events of the past year. One member of the family had been suddenly removed to an eternal world, and two others had gone to distant lands.
As soon as possible, poor Lucy made her escape to her little dressing-room, for she found it very difficult to keep up a conversation with a heart swelling up almost into her throat. She threw herself into an arm-chair by the cheerful fire, and bursting into a flood of tears she exclaimed
“A widow, and desolate!” The soft hand of a fair young sister was gently pressed on her shoulder. Lucy started -she had imagined herself alone. She is gone to her room, to weep there," said her father, as she left the room, and Emily hastily followed her, entering the room in time to hear her bitter exclamation. "No-no, Lucy dear, not so desolate as many, after all.” Yes-yes, very-very desolate! “Well, dear, let us look at our mercies,” rejoined the young Christian, drawing a chair close to her widowed sister. “You have two lovely boys- a comfortable home the means of keeping it good health, kind friends, and above all, a good hope of a mansion in a better and a
“Oh, yes! I know and feel all this; but when I think of the loss I have sustained, and the sad way in which my poor Edward met his death, I am utterly overwhelmed. Only think, to be thrown from his horse, coming from such a place, and never to speak again--not even to utter the publican's prayer. Oh, while I read, • Without holiness no man shall see the Lord,' and remember all the past, I am afraid my reason will give way.” “Well, dear; we all feel this deeply. Indeed, I fear, dear papa will never recover the shock. But you have the satisfaction of remembering that you did all you could to reclaim him from early habits.” “Yes--yes, dear,” interrupted Lucy : " but don't you see that I made a mistake from the beginning. I trusted too much to what his love for me would incline him to do ; and he used to tell me, religion could not be of so very much importance as I seemed to make it, or I should not have consented to marry one whose views were so different to my
Oh! I cannot breathe, even to you, dear Emily, the oppressive burden of my heart. I am, at times, almost distracted--my poor, dear Edward !” “Yet, dear Lucy, for the sake of your dear children, for the honour of religion, and for your own sake, you must try to rest your troubled-spirit upon Him who careth for you, and who has