Dora (Dorothy) Greenwell.

Grandmother's scrap-book, or, The way to do good. Designed to encourage the highest religious attainments within the power of man .. online

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Online LibraryDora (Dorothy) GreenwellGrandmother's scrap-book, or, The way to do good. Designed to encourage the highest religious attainments within the power of man .. → online text (page 3 of 16)
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ginning, do not think the work done. Call not
a commencement the completion. " Let not
him that girdeth on his harness boast himself,
as he that putteth it off." Have " long pa-
tience," and you shall have " precious fruits.'*

Be impartial. Never favor one good cause
or object of charity to the prejudice of another.
It was a shame for the early Christians to


wrangle about the comparative merits of Paul,
Apollos, and Cephas. They all had excellent
gifts and more excellent graces. 'Tis a mark
of folly, yea, it is a sin, to undervalue objects
merely because we are not engaged in promot-
ing them. Therefore, encourage whatever
promises substantial good.

Defer not. To assign to the future what
God assigns to the present is very hazardous.
One would not give any, until he could give a
large sum ; when he had a large part of the
desirable sum, he lost it by fire. Another de-
ferred for one hour a warning which he intend-
ed to give an unconverted friend ; at the end
of the hour the unconverted man was in eter-
nity. " Say not unto thy neighbor. Go, and
come again, and to-morrow I will give, when
thou hast it by thee." To-morrow is not thine.

Act from principle. What you do, do not
from persuasion, or fancy, or ostentation, or to
avoid importunity. You have a rational soul.
Make use of it. Be fully persuaded and firmly
established in good principles.

44 grandmother's scrap-book;

Live by rule. Be systematic in your chari-
ties and efforts. If there be irregularity in
your life, let it come from the overflowing of
your benevolence breaking over a well-con-
structed system of usefulness.

Be hearty in all your labors. Let not your
head, and hands, and tongue be busy, and your
heart idle. Results, by their greatness, will
surprise the truly engaged, while the double
minded will wonder that so little good is done.
When the walls of Jerusalem went up rapidly,
it was because " the people had a mind to
build." " The sluggard desireth, and hath

Enlist others. " Iron sharpeneth iron, so a
man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend."
" Two are better than one. Woe to him who
is alone when he falleth. A threefold cord is
not quickly broken. One shall chase a thou-
sand, and two shall put ten thousand to fliglit."
Despise not the services of any in their appro-
priate sphere. A little captive maid knew
more about the man of God in Palestine than


did the king of Israel, and was the means of
saving her master Naaman.

Be not unmindful of little things. Nothing is
of little importance which possesses, even in its
results, the attributes of eternity. Despise not
the day of small things. " Sands form the
mountains ; minutes make the year."

Spare not thyself. The greatest good is only
accomplished by the greatest pains. " He that
soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly ; he
that soweth bountifully shall reap also bounti-

Maintain cheerfulness. The demon of mel-
ancholy unnerves religious effort. Be joyful
in the Lord, for the joy of the Lord is strength.
Rarely will you find a better motto than this :
''''Serve God, and be cheerfuV

Be of good courage. In the Christian course,
cowardice alone is the loss of nearly every
victory. It is needless ; it is wicked. " The
voice that rolls the stars along spake all the
' Be not faithless. Have faith in God. The

46 grandmother's scrap-book;

greatest good is generally done in the face of
the greatest discouragements. It was a saying
of Andrew Fuller, " Only let us have faith in
God, and we shall not lack the means of doing
good." " Lord, increase our faith," is perhaps
the best prayer the disciple offered during
Christ's ministry on earth.

Hope against hope. Nothing is too hard for
God. Eliot used to say, " Prayer and pains,
through faith in Jesus Christ, can accomplish
any purpose." Paul said, " I can do all things
through Christ which strengtheneth me."

Let your charily abound. Be it your meat
and your drink to do good.

*« Wouldst thou from sorrow find a sweet relief?

Or is thy heart oppressed with woes untold ?
Balm wouldst thou gather for corroding grief ?

Pour blessings round thee like a shower of gold.
'Tis when the rose is wrapped in many a fold,

Close to his heart, the worm is wasting there
Its life and beauty ; not when all unrolled,

Leaf after leaf, its bosom rich and fair,
Breathes freely its perfumes throughout the ambient air."

Be humble. " When you have done all, ac-


knowledge that you are nothing, that you de-
serve nothing, and that God has a right to do
with you as seems good to him." If you at-
tain or accomplish any thing, say, " It was not
I, but the grace of God."

Never forget the judgment-day. Keep it al-
ways in view. Frame every action in reference
to its unchanging decisions.

And now, may you be blessed of God, who
" is able to make all grace abound towards you,
that you always having all sufficiency in all
things may abound to every good work ; being
enriched in every thing to all bountifulness,
which causeth," through the saints, " thanks-
giving to God." Thus shall you make the
most of life.

Lost Hours. Lost wealth may be restored
by industry, and the wreck of health regained
by temperance ; but who ever again looked
upon his vanished hours, or recalled his
slighted years ?

48 grandmother's scrap-book ;


In rounding Cape Horn, a few months ago,
a vessel, whose passengers and crew amounted
to fifty persons, was brought into circumstances
of extreme peril. An irresistible gale, which
had been blowing for some days, was driving
them along the shore, and at eight o'clock in
the evening, the captain's computations assur-
ing him that about three in the morning the
ship would strike, and all aboard descend into
the watery grave, he thought it right to inform
the passengers of their danger. His own heart
was heavy, too ; he had beloved relatives in
England, of whom he thought with emotion,
while all on board was silence, and the wind
continued to blow with unabated fury. " Never
shall I forget the scene," he writes, " when at
night Mrs. A., one of the cabin passengers,
kissed her children before they were put to
bed, then turning to me, with tears in her eyes,
said, ' Captain, shall I ever kiss those dear


children again ? '" He had no words of en-
couragement to ofifer ; the prospect of speedy
death for all on board seemed certain ; but the
language of the Psalmist occurred to his mind :
" Though I walk through the valley of the
shadow of death, I will fear no evil ; for thou
art with me ; thy rod and thy staff they com-
fort me." Entering his cabin, he sat down
and wrote as follows : —

" Shall I fear when I am dying ?

Shall I shrink from death's cold tide ?
Hark ! an angel- voice replying,
* Jesus Christ is at thy side.
Evil from thy path shall flee ;
He is here to comfort thee ! '

** In my heart his love I'll cherish,
Sinking in the swelling sea ;
Father, shall thy children perish.
Who have put their trust in thee ?
No ; thy Son has crossed the flood,
And will bring them home to God.

" Still my hope, my strength shall rally.
When I yield my farewell breath.
Through the gloom of that dim valley,
Darkened by the shade of death.


50 grandmother's scrap-book;

Nothing shall my heart then fear ;
Christ, my Lord, is ever near."

At about eleven o'clock, however, the gale
broke ; the wind shifted, and now the exertion
made to avoid the shore was successful, and
gratitude succeeded to fear. *' Next morning,"
says the captain, " when I saw the lines I had
written the night before, I was led to shed tears
over them. I found the Lord had indeed been
with me, and had answered my prayers."

Happiness depends not so much on means
and opportunities, as on the capacity of using
them. And this depends so much on experi-
ence and self-control, that the probability of
happiness in old age is as great, to say the
least, as it is in youth.

Young men, in general, little conceive how
much their reputation is affected in the public
view by the company they keep.



A LIFE of earnest consecration to the Sav-
iour is a precious gift to the Christian church,
especially when displaying the efficiency of
one devoted to the highest of all themes,
and the noblest of purposes. Such a one,
even under seemingly unpropitious circum-
stances, will exert an influence stimulating all
who witness it to increased faithfulness and

Among the band of praying soldiers in the
English army during the late war in the Cri-
mea, was Captain Hedley Vicars, whose short
but active career in the service of his Master
was full of usefulness and promise.

For seven years after his connection with
the army, though of religious parentage, he
had led a life of recklessness and excess, in
which from his buoyant and impulsive nature
he was ever a leader. One November day, in
1851, while his regiment, the 97th, was sta-

62 grand3iother's scrap-book ;

tioned at Halifax, as he was idly turning over
the leaves of a Bible, his attention was arrested
by the words, " The blood of Jesus Christ his
Son cleanseth us from all sin." On reading it,
he exclaimed, " If this be true for me, hence-
forth I will live, by the grace of God, as a man
should live who has been washed in the blood
of Jesus Christ." After a sleepless and pray-
erful niglit he arose, saying, " The past, then,
is blotted out. What I have to do is to go for-
ward. I cannot return to the sins from which
my Saviour has cleansed me with his own

And he did go forward from that time with
an undeviating purpose of honoring the Saviour
by his life and example. The next day he
bought a large Bible, and placed it open on
the table of his sitting-room, and notwithstand-
ing the surprise, opposition, and fiery persecu-
tion of his late companions in sin, declared that
an open Bible should henceforth be " his
colors." He immediately began his personal
labors, which were unintermitted while he


lived ; and soon several of the soldiers, with
some of his brother officers, were inquiring
what they must do to be savjed.

The name of Jesus was on his lips and in liis
heart, and love to him and his cause seemed
the all-absorbing passion of his soul. In what
he did, or said, or wrote, the engrossing object
of his thoughts was apparent. His letters, even
from the most interesting lands, and in the
midst of the most exciting scenes, are filled with
the great theme which was the burden of his
thoughts. " I would willingly part with every
other pleasure for life," said he, " for one hour's
communion with Jesus every day."

When the war with Russia broke out, his
regiment was ordered to the Crimea, wliere,
during the trying scenes of the bitter winter of
1854-55, in the midst of toil and privation, he
labored nnremittingly with an intensity of in-
terest for the undying souls about him. He
denied himself every luxury and even comfort
for the necessities of his poor soldiers, and
though greatly fatigued by his labors in the

54 grandmother's scrap-book ;

trenches, he would, before he rested, seek the
hospital-tent to talk to his " sick comrades and
fellow-sinners of Jesus."

At the close of the national day of humilia-
tion which he had desired, and which he ob-
served with great solemnity, leading the public
services with remarkable fervor, he wrote that
he had derived much comfort from communion
with his Saviour, and adds, " I spent the even-
ing with Lieutenant C . We walked to-
gether during the day, and exchanged our
thoughts about Jesus." " Thus, the last word
he ever wrote," says his biographer, " was the
name he loved best." The next night he was
with that Friend in glory, being mortally
wounded while repelling a night attack of the

Thus passed from earth, at the early age of
28 years, one who ripened rapidly for heaven
in a profession peculiarly exposed to temptation,
and unfavorable to the growth of grace. Such
a life as that of Captain Yicars, marked with
such entire consecration to his Master's ser-


vice, and crowned with so many precious fruits,
more precious than the conqueror's laurels,
strikingly illustrates the transforming grace of
God, and proves to each humble follower of
Christ that he too, notwithstanding the " foe
within " and the " foe without," may so live as
to meet death with the all-prevailing Name on
his lips, and the song of victory, " I liave fought
a good fight, I have finished my course, I have
kept the faith ; henceforth there is laid up for
me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord,
the righteous Judge, shall give me at that

When a man is successful, people are apt to
forget his difficulties, and to talk about his
favorable circumstances ; but circumstances
are always favorable to those who can make
them so.

The chief difficulty of imparting instruction
often consists in awakening the wish to re-
ceive it.

66 grandmother's scrap-book ;


" What shall you do when you have read
your Bible through ? " asked a little child, as
she looked curiously at the marks in her moth-
er's Bible. " What will you do when you have
come to the end ? " " Why, begin to read it
again," replied the mother. " But will you
not know it all ? When you have read other
books, you put them away and read something
else. Why do you read the Bible so many
times ? " " Because," answered the mother,
" the Bible is always new ; if we study it all
our lives, we shall not exhaust it. It is like a
rich mine of gold ; you may dig and dig in it,
but still the gold is not gone. Hundreds of
years ago men began to dig in this Bible mine,
but there is enough left for us, and for h\l that
shall come after us. No, the Bible never grows
old. So long as the world lasts, its books will
be still new and living, and - able to save to the
uttermost' all who believe in them."



How comes it that this little volume, com-
posed by liumble men in a rude age, when art
and science were but in their childhood, has
exerted more influence on the human mind
and on the social system than all the other
books put together ? Whence comes it that
this Book has achieved such marvellous changes
in the opinions of mankind, has banished
idol-worship, has abolished infanticide, has
put down polygamy and divorce, exalted the
condition of woman, raised the standard of
public morality, created for families that
blessed thing, a Christian home, and caused
its other triumphs, by causing benevolent insti-
tutions, open and expansive, to spring up as
with the wand of enchantment ? What sort
of a book is this, that even the wind and waves
of human passion obey it ? What other engine
of social improvement has operated so long,
and yet lost none of its virtue? Since it ap-

58 grandmother's scrap-book ;

peared, many boasted plans of amelioration
have been tried a;id failed ; many codes of ju-
risprudence have arisen, and run their course,
and expired. Empire after empire has been
launched on the tide of time, and gone down,
leaving no trace on the waters. But this Book
is still going about doing good — leavening so-
ciety with its holy principles, cheering the
sorrowful with its consolations, strengthening
the tempted, encouraging the penitent, calm-
ing the troubled spirit, and smoothing the
pillow of death. Can such a book be the
offspring of human genius ? Does not the vast-
ness of its effects demonstrate the excellency
of the power to be of God ?

As the relations of things often extend far-
ther than we are aware, change may produce
unexpected results ; so that the longer we live,
the more disposed we become to "let well



At the late anniversary of the Vermont Sab-
bath School Society, a very wonderful example
of Bible reading was mentioned. There is a
man in that State, now ninety years old, who
in fifty years read the Bible through sixty-six
times. After that, in nine years and three
months he read the whole Bible through
eighty-six times, making the whole number of
times which he has read the whole Scriptures
one hundred and fifty-two. And he says lie
finds something new every time he reads the
blessed Book. This aged Christian united with
the Sabbath school when he was sixty-eight
years of age, and has attended ever since.

We admire the good man's devotion to the
Word of God, but we must strive to be doers
of the word, as well as readers, if we would
derive spiritual good Trom it.

60 grandmother's scrap-book;


A PASTOR was pressing on his people the ne-
cessity of immediate repentance and faith in
Christ for salvation. Burning words issued
from his lips as he proclaimed Christ the sin-
ner's "friend, and besought all to become recon-
ciled to him. The sermon was nearly ended.
Pausing for a moment, he cast his eye anx-
iously over the congregation, hoping to see in
some a determination to seek Christ without
delay. No one, to his view, was ready to ac-
cept the offer. Saddened by the conviction, he
closed the Bible, and fervently poured out his
soul in prayer. " Thou knowest they icill per-
ish — must it be so ? then give me this desire,
' Christ in me ' forever." The benediction fol-
lowed, and the congregation dispersed to their

With a heavy heart the pastor returned to
his home, entered his closet, and there before
God wept out his desires. The night was a


long, anxious one to that young pastor's heart.
He felt that he must have his desire granted in
the conversion of some precious souls.

The next morning, while seated at the break-
fast table, the door-bell rung. " That is for
me," said he to his wife ; and rising from his
seat, he met at the door an aged man, who,
without waiting for a word of welcome, ex-
tended his trembling hand, and in a faltering
voice said, '' Sir, I have come to ask you what
I shall do for my soul." The pastor led him
in, and found him struggling under deep con-
viction of sin, needing only to be led to Christ
as the sinner's ransom for guilt. Before tlie
interview was concluded another came. It
was a lady, who for many years had resisted
the Spirit's strivings, and till now refused to
give her heart to Christ. The pastor welcomed
her in, and such a season of refreshing to his
spirit followed, in leading these distressed souls
to Jesus, as he had never known.

Said the lady to him, " I shall never forget
your last prayer on the Sabbath. It aroused

62 grandmother's scrap-book ;

my sleeping soul. ^ Christ in me' I knew
Christ was not in me ; and if it was necessary
for you to utter that prayer, how mucli more
for me. I could not rest till I had sought the
Lord Jesus." Both had been led by that sim-
ple petition to see their need of Christ, and to
believe in him to the saving of the soul.

Six years have passed since that interview.
The aged man has gone to his rest. Fresh in
the memory of those he left behind are his dy-
ing words : " Christ in me — my stay, my all."
The lady still adorns her profession by a con-
sistent and devoted life. Others were led to
see their lost condition out of Christ, and ac-
cept of him as their dear Redeemer. That
day's labor proved to be the beginning of a
precious revival, and many were brought into
the kingdom of Christ. " Christ in we," the
sinner's need, the saint's reward.

Nothing but sin separates between us and



Skepticism is the mother of credulity ; the
abandonment of sober, rational truth to the
embrace and indulgence of unnumbered extrav-
agant absurdities ; the loosing of a frail bark
from its moorings in the tempest-tried harbor
of safety to the perilous dangers and storms of
the billowy ocean of uncertainty, where doubt
after doubt, like rolling surges, bears it far
away from the light-house of reason, and pass-
ing the last lingering glimmer of eternal truth,
is soon lost in the maelstrom of perdition.

If we could but lift the covers of men's
heads, as a cook lifts the covers of the pots over
the fire, to look at the contents, what a stewing
and boiling we should see going on there, and
what a variety of things bobbing up and

64 grandmother's scrap-book ;


A LADY who, though an invalid, was able to
converse with her friends, and who cherished a
strong desire for their conversion, was sitting
in her room at the close of the day, after having
spent nearly all her strength in personally
warning those whom she had seen to give at-
tention to the things which make for their
peace. Whilst thus endeavoring to obtain rest,
a young lad entered the room. She felt as if
she ought to speak to him concerning his spir-
itual interest. But then the thought occurred
to her, " It is only a lad. He will probably
have other opportunities to be warned and ex-
horted to flee to the Saviour." Then another
thought flashed upon her mind, as though it
was a voice from the spirit world, " Perhaps
before we meet again he or I may be in eter-
nity ; I must address him now ! " She imme-
diately spoke to him, and urged upon him the


importance of walking in the ways of wisdom.
He listened with fixed attention ; his counte-
nance was solemn ; his mind was impressed ;
the tears freely coursed their way down his
cheeks as he hearkened to her affectionate,
moving appeal. He left her and went his way.
What the result would be she knew not. She
had endeavored to do what she felt was her
duty, and was willing to leave the result with
Him who has said, " Cast thy bread upon the
waters, and thou shalt find it after many days."
A number of years rolled by when, on a cer-
tain Sabbath, that lady entered a church in
Providence to listen to the glorious gospel of
the blessed God. Imagine, if you can, what
must have been her surprise and pleasure
when, as the first hymn was announced, she
discovered that the preacher was that very
young lad upon whom, years before, she had
urged the claims of the Saviour. Her sur-
prise and pleasure were increased at the appro-
priateness or coincidence of the text with
what her feelings were in the last intercourse

6Q grandmother's scrap-book ;

with that young man. The last words were,
" Quench not the Spirit." Bat even this was
not the last link in the chain of the interesting
associations of that occasion.

The young preacher, in the illustration of
his subject, referred to the manner of his own
conversion, and then narrated the circum-
stances which have just been related, stating,
that if that lady had quenched the promptings
of the Spirit on that occasion, and had not
spoken to him, he might still have been in
" the gall of bitterness and the bonds of ini-
quity." Then added, " That lady I now see
before me." Little did she imagine, when she
entered that sanctuary, that she was going to
pluck fruit from seed of her own planting, or
receive consolation from one in whose heart
she had instrumentally fixed arrows of convic-

Waiting on God brings us to our journey's
end faster than our feet.



A GODLY man, " whose praise is in all tlie
churches " (the late Rev. Dr. Bedell, of Phil-
adelphia), was alarmed to find that so many
of the people of his charge returned home,
after their summer excursions, without any
increase of heavenly-mindedness, and having
effected little or nothing for the cause of their
Saviour ; he therefore prepared the following,
which we trust will be read and reflected
upon by all those who travel this summer.


If residing in the country :

1. Never neglect your accustomed private
duties of reading, meditation, self-examina-
tion, and prayer.

2. Never fail to attend some place of wor-
ship on the Lord's day, unless prevented by

68 grandmother's scrap-book;

such circumstances as you are sure will excuse
you in the eye of God.

3. Never entertain invited company on the
Lord's -day, and pay no visits, unless to the
sick and needy as acts of benevolence.

4. Never engage in any thing, either on the
Lord's, or on any secular day, which will com-
promise your Christian consistency.

5. Seek to do good to the souls of your
family, and all others within your reach.

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Online LibraryDora (Dorothy) GreenwellGrandmother's scrap-book, or, The way to do good. Designed to encourage the highest religious attainments within the power of man .. → online text (page 3 of 16)