Sidor som bilder


After success comes temptation. The very success causes temptation. The temptation is near, intimate, hidden, under the same roof. The tempter is unsuspected, wily, persevering, tempting day by day. To sin is safe, to refuse to sin dangerous. But there is no hesitation on Joseph's part. There is no dallying with sin. Nothing but unhesitating refusal. When refusal is of no avail there is sudden flight. And remark, the sin against a human being is not so much thought about as the sin against GOD. Many think that they may sin safely if they neither betray a trust nor bring others into trouble. They forget the sin against God, but this was the sin in Joseph's mind.


Do I ever listen to the tempters of this world? Do I ever encourage idolatry of the world or of self, which is spiritual impurity? When asked to do anything which lowers the Christian standard, do I dally with it? Do I make excuses? Do I find out reasons of expediency? I must boldly refuse to sin against GOD. If pressed I must depart. Never mind appearances. GOD knows the truth.


O LORD! I pray Thee not to allow me to be tempted more than I am able to bear, but when I am tempted make a way for me to escape: let me not be taken captive by the world with its promises, but enable me by Thy grace to keep undefiled my body and my soul.


To fly at once from those who would decoy me from my duty.


'Escape for thy life. Look not behin thee.'

Joseph Falsely Accused.

First Prelude.-Picture: Joseph before his angry master.

Second Prelude.-Prayer: 'O LORD! I beseech thee to enlighten my mind and to in

flame my will that I may learn from this meditation meekness, silence, and trust in Thee.' CONSIDERATION.

The trusted steward is accused of acting the part of the basest traitor. How great his grief at the accusation How fearful to be thought the betrayer of the master who had trusted and honoured him! But he answers not. He does not defend himself. He accuses no one. How different from the spirit of the world! The spirit of the world. would have counselled a noisy defence: the spirit of CHRIST counsels silence. CHRIST before Pilate answered not a word. Those who have committed their cause to GoD are not anxious clamorously to assert their innocence before men.


What do I do when I am falsely accused? -when my motives are misunderstood? Do I justify myself clamorously? Do I accuse someone else? The good opinion of good men is indeed precious, but when appearances are against us we must suffer in silence and commit our cause to GOD. Let not the sin of another cause me to sin. What we are in GOD's sight, that we are in realitynothing more and nothing less.


O holy LORD JESUS CHRIST! silent and lamb-like before Thine accusers, grant me silence when I am falsely accused, meekness towards my accusers, and an unwavering trust in Thee.


To bear to be thought less well of than I fancy I deserve.

THOUGHT. 'Having a conscience void of offence.'

Joseph in Prison.

First Prelude. - Picture Bars and chains. Second Prelude.-Prayer: 'O LORD! I beseech Thee to enlighten my mind and inflame my will, that I may learn from this meditation to persevere in welldoing.


Joseph is in prison, but still waiting upon GOD. Diligent persevering service is still his aim. The diligence that followed his brethren to Dothan, the diligence that ruled Potiphar's house so well, is now employed in the service of GOD in the prison. There is no disgust at a lowlier lot. There is no dislike of the prison duties. And yet we know he suffered, for we are told that the iron entered into his soul.' The secret of his diligence and his cheerfulness was his constant communion with GOD. All he did was 'not with eye-service as men pleasers,' but 'fervent in spirit, serving the LORD.' APPLICATION.

If trouble befalls me, do I keep my trust in GOD? Am I content to work on in a lower place? Or, do I mourn over my degradation, my isolation? Do I remember that all my work is God's work, and that it ought to be entirely immaterial to me where He sends me, or what He gives me to do, so long as I am doing His Holy Will? A menial in a prison may be as great in God's sight as the steward of a nobleman's palace— far greater if in that prison he be doing GOD's work. May I do what I have to do well, and never mind how lowly the task may be.


O dear LORD JESUS! instead of murmuring that my work is not grand enough, may I strive to realise what a privilege it is to be allowed to work for Thee at all. I thank Thee for each little lowly task Thou hast given me, and I pray Thee to give me grace that I may perform it well.


Wherever I am, to look round and see what I can do for GOD.

THOUGHT. 'In all labour there is profit.'

Joseph as Enterpreter.

First Prelude.-Picture: Joseph serving the chief butler and chief baker.

Second Prelude.-Prayer: 'O LORD! I beseech Thee to enlighten my mind and to

inflame my will, that I may learn that spiritual insight is only to be obtained by waiting upon GOD.' CONSIDERATION.

Joseph cannot be kept down. He is made the servant of servants; he has to wait upon two of Pharaoh's chief officers, and yet his gifts cause him to rise up far beyond the level of anyone in the prison. And what is the secret of this? Doing his best. He is full of observation; he is full of kindliness. 'Wherefore look ye so sadly to-day?' he says to the prisoners he has charge of. He does not do his office merely as a matter of routine. He puts his heart into it; he observes and is sorry for the sufferings of others. And when he hears their trouble, he says, 'Do not interpretations belong to GOD?' Here is love to man and trust in GoD, and this is the secret of spiritual insight. APPLICATION.

GOD will not let me learn much about spiritual things if I take no delight in conversing with Him, to know His hidden things requires a heart right with GOD and man. A self-occupied, morbid, morose disposition will never open my mind to heavenly things; if I wish to learn about them, I must have great power of sympathy and great communings with GOD. Is it nothing to me when my fellow-travellers look sad? Do I point them to their Heavenly Father in their sadness? If I look up to Him, if I look round upon them, I shall have no time to consider my own sorrows. Do I realise this? And what shall I do in the future? AFFECTION.

O Mighty Saviour! Give me Thy heavenly power of sympathy that I may divine the sorrows of others and direct them to the true Comforter. Give me spiritual insight that I may help them to understand the dangers and the deliverances which are near them.


To think of GOD and my neighbour in preference to self.

THOUGHT. 'In Thy light shall we see light.’

Stray boughts on Raith, Life, and Work.

AN any one be said really to 'follow CHRIST' whose religion consists mainly in sitting at ease in a luxurious home, reading devotional books, and thinking what a comfortable and beautiful thing piety is, and how truly it has the promise not only of the life which is to come, but of that which now is? Or, who believe that no more is required of them than to attend ornate services at some favourite church, to run after renowned preachers, and 'assist' at meetings for the furtherance of Church objects?

No: HE went about doing good.' wrested a world of sinners from Satan. was weary, and hungry, and footsore in His search after souls. And if we are to follow Him and to co-operate with Him in saving souls from eternal death and damnation, it must be done by suffering and self-denial, by hard toil, by tears and prayers, and sweat of brow, and heart, and brain. Ay, and at times by sweat of blood itself.



I am no disparager of either public or private worship-GOD forbid! And there is no one that enjoys a beautiful Service and reverent Ritual more than I do. But really, to see the utter selfishness which some people dignify with the name of religion would make some of the old saints stare.

'Take this class of rough factory-lads; try to civilise them and save them from ruin,' urges a Mission priest.

'With the greatest pleasure; but you see So-and-so is preaching a course of sermons, and I shouldn't like to miss one of them.'

'Coine along, old fellow, and help me with my out-door service in the slums next Sunday morning,' begs a young lay-reader of his muscular friend.

'What! miss the beautiful Service at S.'s!' the latter exclaims in horror.

Well! this was not the way the Church was planted during the first three centuries! The heathen were not turned from their idols to the Truth after such a fashion. And when we reflect, that taking into consideration the increased population of the globe-there are probably quite as many Christless souls to be won as there were in the days of S. Paul or S. John, we cannot forbear crying out, Who is on the LORD's side? Who will deny himself, take up His cross, and save some of these poor souls at some sacrifice of his own ease and enjoyment? I don't think he will find it a beflowered cross such as one sees upon an Easter card. It will be a cross like the Master's-a rugged, heavy cross of sweat and suffering, of blood and anguish.

Still I believe there are many, even in this self-indulgent age, who do devote themselves in real earnest to GoD and to the service of the Church and the poor. Not theirs to look out for wealth or fame-'to plant and build,' and yield themselves to the enjoyment of domestic bliss and social amusement !

'LORD JESUS!' they cry, 'take all there is of me. Take my poor heart, brain, strength, money-all that I have, all that I am. Only let me live to Thy glory and the good of others, and die in Thy favour.'

These are the disciples whom JESUS loves. He takes them in His arms, and lays them upon His breast. Through them He can work great wonders and miracles of grace. They suffer and toil with Him now, but they shall rest and rejoice with Him throughout eternity.

Who will take up the cross, and join this faithful pilgrim band?

There is a phrase of modern scepticism which recognises a certain amount of good in Christianity; which indulges, for instance, in rapturous eulogy of the precepts of the Gospel and Christian morality, and extols the beauty of character of our Divine Redeemer.

[blocks in formation]

Yet the result cannot be separated from the cause which produced that result; and nothing can be more flagrantly unjust-more opposed to common sense-than the fierce invectives which infidels, who cry up the Christian virtues, hurl at the Church through which Christian morals have been diffused throughout the world.

As well revile the sun while rejoicing in the light and warmth diffused by that great luminary. As well rage against the clouds, while our hearts are filled with thankfulness that the thirsty ground is drinking in those raindrops which will secure us the fruits of the earth in their season!

Monthly Botes.

E have several times remarked in the pages of this journal that the site secured and paid for at Broadstairs could hardly be better. It comprises six acres of excellent freehold land, situated upon an open breezy cliff close to the North Foreland. It is well out of the little town of Broadstairs, and, standing high, commands a sea view which stretches far away to the South Foreland, and the ill-famed Goodwin Sands. It seems, indeed, a spot where-if anywhere-health and vigour must return to the most feeble, the most diseased of earth's children.

But-as has once before been remarkedthough our site can boast such great natural advantages, it stands sorely in need of artificial improvement. For, with the exception

of one gift of trees and shrubs made by a very kind friend last autumn, it is as bare as possible-not even a bush breaks the level line of short turf and clover which form its sole vegetation.

Now another benefactor has come forward and promised us the generous donation of 10% to help in stocking 'the estate.' He has also proposed that an experienced gardener should begin planting his present the second week in May, and suggests that we should make this known in Our Work, as it would be a good opportunity for others, who might be thinking of helping us in the same manner, to send their contributions. Will some of our numerous supporters think kindly of this suggestion?

It would be a great advantage if the beautifying and laying out of the ground could be effected at one and the same time, under the direction of an able and skilled manager. Also every month is a gain for the growth of the evergreens and flowering trees, &c., which we hope will afford shelter from the sun, and cheerful green even in the midst of winter.

Should the plan meet with acceptance, this satisfactory result will be obtained-that, when the beautiful structure which forms our frontispiece is actually built and completed, it will stand forth upon no bare or barren piece of soil, but will find itself surrounded by lawns, and shrubberies, and recreation grounds, which will be a profit and pleasure to our sick children little short of the Home itself.

Contributions, either in the shape of young trees, plants and shrubs, or the money wherewith to purchase the same, should be sent as early in May as possible to Miss E. Paget, 5 Wrotham Crescent, Broadstairs, Ramsgate.


A suggestion was kindly made by a lady a few weeks ago, that fifty persons should each give a 57. note towards the Broadstairs Building Fund. Thus, she said, 250%. would be raised towards this great undertaking 'without much difficulty.'

And, not content with merely suggesting,

she gave a practical proof of her goodwill by promising to head the subscription list with the first 5%.

A friend, hearing of the plan, immediately seconded her, and we report with much gratitude that several persons have followed this good example, and that nearly half of the total sum is already guaranteed.

It would not surprise us if the whole amount of 250l. were paid in before the close of May.

It will then be for those of our readers who are anxious for the success of our enterprise to start something fresh. This large and spacious Home-so much needed-can only be built by a strong and united effort; and should any plan suggest itself to any of our friends for raising the needful funds, we hope and trust that they will act upon it promptly and bravely. The cause should be as dear to all who have loving and pitiful hearts as it is to us.

Let us incite ourselves to vigorous and persevering action by the thought of the thousands of little ones who will profit by our efforts, and who in after years will rise up and bless the kind benefactors who saved them from life-long weakness and misery, and were instrumental in bestowing upon them the most precious of earthly blessings -Good Health.


We are glad to be able to announce that the proposal to establish a Free Banner Fund' has been favourably received in several quarters, and we can already show a list of persons who have either given a donation, or promised an annual subscription.

Gladly should we see this list lengthened, for during the past month we have received entreaties from several clergy and Mission workers to sell at a reduced rate, out of compassion for the necessities of their parishes.

But we have already made this concession in favour of one navvy missioner, and some others similarly circumstanced, and as The Banner of Faith barely covers its own expenses when sold at the full price, we dare

not extend this liberality to others, unless we are enabled to do so by the sympathising help of outsiders. This, we doubt not, will be forthcoming in due time.

'If you can find a lady to join me in adopting one of your orphans, I shall be very happy to pay half the sum usually contributed by an adopter.' These words reached us just too late for insertion in our April number; but we assured our correspondent that her kind intention should be made known at the first opportunity, and that, we doubted not, a partner for the good work would soon present herself.

This lady does not mention whether she wishes her child to be quite a little girl, or one of what we term 'the industrial class'; that is, orphans grown sufficiently strong to help in the household work, which they generally begin after they have entered their twelfth year. But we have little orphans and big ones ready for 'a lady.'

Let it, however, be always remembered that this 127. is not a payment made to render a child eligible for admission to the Orphanage. It is a voluntary offering made to a perfectly free institution, which receives poor children from any part, upon the sole condition that they are friendless and destitute; it is a kindly and thoughtful effort to lighten the burden. of those who have accepted the tremendous responsibility of feeding, clothing, and educating a family which now numbers 160 members; it is an ingenious plan for giving each child the additional stimulus of an outside friend who loves her, and who shows an interest in her welfare and her conduct. Good, earnest, sensible fellow-workers many of these adopters prove themselves to be, and we most gratefully acknowledge the untold benefits resulting from their co-operation.

We have to thank some good friends for timely gifts of blankets and old and new clothing, forwarded to the Convalescent Home at Broadstairs. Great was the delight both of the Sister in charge and the children at the arrival of these useful parcels, which

« FöregåendeFortsätt »