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M. Now what has such a little girl as you to do with this text ?
H. Why, mother, instead of spending all my pocket money on myself, or hoarding it up, to give it to those who want it more than I do.
M. Now, Hannah, let me have the last verse of your lesson ?
h. “And now, Lord, what wait I for? my hope is in thee.”
M. You told me what you thought would make you happy all the year round; but you see David feels his happiness would con. sist in very different things. David could even ask God to search his heart, and see whether he was " walking in a vain shew," whether he was “heaping up riches.” For David knew well that God saw his happi. ness was only in his favour.
H. But, mother, is it not too hard for a little girl like me, to be waiting for God and hoping in him, more than nany thing else ?
M. My love, it is not only hard for a little girl, but it is hard for a grown-up person : nay, it is impossible to do this, except God enables you ; but he says “my people shall be willing in the day of my power :" and little Samuel waited for the Lord, and hoped in him; and why should not you ?
H. Oh! mother, it would make me very happy, if I could be like Samuel, or Josiah, or any of those children who feared the Lord from their youth.
M. Well then, dear, if you do feel this would make you happy, begin this new year to serve the Lord as you never have done. Go by yourself, and try to think over the way you have spent the last year. See if you have acted, as if you felt that your days might soon be brought to an end ; and on your knees beg God's pardon for your sinful, useless life. Ask him to give you STRENGTH, for never forget you are FRAIL in yourself.
H. Do you think, mother, I shall have more pleasure at the end of next year, if I do so, when I come to reflect, than I have now ?
M. Yes, Hannah, far more; for there is nothing here worth setting your heart upon ; but if, like David, you can say you wait for God's favour--you wait to know his will you wait for the hour of death to take you home to him; then you will be able to add with rejoicing, whether you are poor or rich, sick or well, old or young, “my hope is in thee.”
H. But, mother, may I not love my play, and my doll, and my pictures ?
M. Certainly, Hannah ; you must not think God a hard task-master; no, his name is love, all he wants is, for you to love him better than your play or playthings, and ne.
ver to let thoughts of them keep you from higher duties, or creep into your mind at prayer.
H. But, mother, there is little Mary Yates not much older than I am, who very seldom plays with her doll, but says that since her sister died, she likes best to spend her play hours in making things for the poor.
M. When Mary Yates lost her sister, she lost her only playfellow; and her mother told me that when Mary saw her dear sis.
ter in her coffin, she said, “ Oh ! mama, how short dear Lucy's time has been in this world ; I will try and make better use of my time.”
H. But, mother, Mary told me that af. ter her sister died, she was always thinking of that text, “ walk while ye have the light, les darkness come upon you." I think
she said, she heard some clergymán preach a sermon on that text.
M. But Mary Yates has good spirits, and plays with you ?
H. Oh yes, she can run much faster than I can, and she can be very merry; but when we have played together some time, she often says; “Come, Hannah ! let us work and read a little ; for I want to finish my little frock, or cap, or something. But tben Mary has a drawer full of poor people
things, all cut out, and she buys a great many with her pocket money; and all her pleasure is to fill another drawer with ready made things to give away.
M. Now, Hannah, would not you like to do so too ?
H. I do not think I should work so hard as Mary; I do though work sometimes for my doll
M. But Hannah, suppose you begin the new year with this new plan; how much money have you in your purse ?
H. Grandmama gave me half a crown on my birthday, and I have one shilling and three pence halfpenny besides.
M. Here then is my new year's gift five shillings.* Put on your bonnet and pelisse, and I will walk with you to the shop, where I will shew you what to buy; and you may spend as much as you please.
H. But, mother, I cannot cut them out.
M. No, but I will give up this afternoon to you, and then give you some lessons and a few patterns, that you may be able to cut out for yourself in future.
* See Frontispiece.