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“ WHOSOEVER SHALL GIVE TO DRINK ... A CUP OF COLD WATER ONLY... SHALL
IN NO WISE LOSE HIS REWARD.”
SPECIES of benefaction there is, so minute, so quiet, so unobtrusive in its character, as to escape the notice of mul
titudes who talk loudly of reform, philanthropy, and liberality to the poor, and who are really and eagerly desirous of distributing the blessings of a kind Providence to the needy and suffering. It is the sweet influence of a glad, cheerful spirit. The person who maintains a uniform serenity of temper, who ever wears a smile, who is courteous in manner, gentle in voice, persuasive in tone, and truly Christianly benevolent in heart, carries with him a power in life which all others fail to possess. Such a spirit is to all within its sphere like a balmy, genial atmosphere, which soothes and harmonizes the whole being, while it vivifies, strengthens, and stimulates to a right and beautiful growth. Like the bright sunshine of spring, it thaws away the ice of selfishness, warms the heartsoil, welcomes and draws out the humble buds of love and goodness, struggling hitherto in vain for light and air; it colors the sod, presently clothes the earth in beauty, and makes all nature redolent of fragrance, and resonant with joy; it makes perpetual summer; it creates happiness; it opens a present heaven; it attunes the world to celestial harmonies, and invites the heavenly inhabitants to visit and abide with men.
BE A SUNBEAM.
What great and glorious changes would be wrought in this world of ours if only sunshine and smiles were worn on every countenance! In such an atmosphere, where unkind thoughts and uncivil actions were alike unknown, virtue would thrive, and vice would wither and perish. Then would our homes become assimilated, in goodness and purity, to the home once found in Eden, - faint but fitting types of the perfect homes of the blessed.
There are sunbeams all around us. Ours is a world of light and joy. Every tree, that by its spring-time budding, its luxuriant summer foliage, or its brilliant autumn robings, gives beauty to the landscape, is a sunbeam. Every tiny flower that smiles and blushes, and wafts its perfume as incense on the air, is a sunbeam.
The mountain towering skyward, and the rainbow-tinted cloud floating in the azure above it, are beautiful sunbeams; while, since "there was light” at God's command, the glorious sun, from its rising to its setting, has never for a moment wearied of being the center of beamings, or sending its rays as bearers of cheer and gladness, of life and beauty. Be a sunbeam on earth. Cast a radiance, a joy, all
Wear the smiles that all hearts are craving. Let clouds be only coverings to beautiful linings. So will you be more fully prepared, when your Father shall call you, to shine as an angel in the presence of the Source of light; to dwell for ever in that bright and glorious home "where there is no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God doth lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof."
“Go away from there, you old beggar-boy! you've no right to be looking at our flowers !” shouted a little fellow from the garden where he was standing. The poor boy, who was pale, dirty, and ragged, was leaning against the fence, admiring the splendid show of roses and tulips within. His face reddened with anger at the rude language; and he was about to answer defiantly, when a little girl sprang out from an arbor near, and, looking at both, said to her brother, “How could you speak so, Herbert? I'm sure his looking at the flowers don't hurt us.” And then, to soothe the wounded feelings of the stranger, she added, “ Little boy, I'll pick you some flowers if you'll wait a moment;” and she immediately gathered a pretty bouquet, and handed it through the fence. His face brightened with surprise and pleasure, and he earnestly thanked her. Twelve years after this occurrence, the girl had grown to woman. One bright afternoon she was walking with her husband in the garden, when she observed a young man in workman's dress leaning over the fence, and looking attentively at her and at the flowers. Turning to her husband, she said, “It does me good to see people admiring the garden ; I'll give that young man some of the flowers;” and, approaching him, she said, —