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 6 of 16)
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every earnest Christian is, that he has so little
opportunity of doing good ; his infirmities are
such, or his means are so scanty, or he has
such pressing worldly cares, or the state of
people around him is such as to give him little
ability to benefit them. But God has given us
our work to do ; and we can do it, and we can
be useful, and we do not know what good
results will, in the end, follow from our efforts.
We may do wrong to trouble ourselves about


evils we cannot remedy. It may take away
our cheerfulness, courage, and strength to do
the good we might otherwise do. We may
need to caution the young of the affliction that
may await them in the world, and bid them
prepare for the days of darkness, for they will
be many. But faith in God is to be com-
mended too. We may say to those who are
commencing life, ' Trust in the Lord, and do
good ; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and
verily thou shalt be fed. Delight thyself also
in the Lord, and he shall give thee the desires
of thy heart.' If, in brief, you would know
how to be most happy in the world, study, in
the light of divine truth, how to be in every
way useful. Pray that you may be useful.
Resolve that you will, if possible, be useful.
Resolve that, though you have a feeble body
and a feeble mind, though you have a scanty
purse and many labors and cares, resolve that
you will be useful to others besides yourself and
your family, and it may have a wonderful in-
fluence in giving to every thing about you a
more cheerful aspect."

122 grandmother's scrap-book;


Their duty is trying and arduous, and tlieir
influence for good, when their heart is right
towards God, is beyond the power of man
to estimate ; therefore, write for their paper
such articles as will be for the glory of God,
and for the benefit of our fellow-man. Let
your articles be short, and of the best sub-
jects. An editor has no time to dissect a long
article that is of no account. Remember that
Washington's and Franklin's longest speeches
occupied only ten minutes.

If you have never written for the press, com-
mence now, if the first article is but six lines.
" The command is. Run, speak to this young
man." If you cannot do it personally, do it
through the press. You have an inexhaustible
fountain to draw from ; the more you draw,
the more pure, if your heart is right. Make a
•draft from tliat fountain with your pen, and
you will begin to see the mighty power that
God has given you.


" Let US make man in our image.'' Hide
not your talent in a napkin. God holds you
re.sponsible for your stewardship. " Exhort
one another daily." Do this with your pen,
through the press. This is one of the channels
we have to carry the gospel to fallen man ;
and may every editor's heart be filled with the
love of God, and may their valuable papers go
to the four quarters of the globe, and preach
the unsearchable riches of Christ. God is
moving among us in a mysterious way. " He
is doing a quick work on the earth." " What
we do, we must do quickly." " He that knows
his Master's will, and does it not, shall be
beaten with many stripes." " He that knows
to do good, and does it not, to him it is sin."
Sin is among us in its worst form. Our prisons
are filled with prisoners ; they are manufac-
tured at the liquor shops, and we are taxed to
support them, and the liquor law is trampled
upon with impunity. The only way we have
to make known our wants is through the press ;
therefore let no talent be lost, let no paper go

124 grandmother's scrap-book;

to the press without some article on the sub-
jects of Religion, Temperance, and the way to
prevent crime.

A friend suggests to us the following sub-
jects for the press. Let every one contribute
something. God requires it at our hands : —

First. Religion, temperance, and the way to
prevent crime.

Second. Let there be a thorough organized
temperance missionary enterprise. We can
conquer a man by kindness, but cannot drive.

Third. Let no child be left out of the Sab-
bath school.

Fourth. Let parents narrate the Bible his-
tory to their children while young.

Fifth. L(3t a father know that his tears will
reclaim a wayward son quicker than his rod.
Let him take his son into a retired room, with
penitent tears for his own sins, and remember
God's word, " Come, let us reason together;"
and " He that hath ears to hear, let him hear."

Sixth. Take extracts from Christ's Sermon
on tlie Mount. Let this interesting part of the


Bible be searched daily, for it is the corner-
stone of our salvation. If you have not time
to prepare an article for the press, take ex-
tracts from this sermon, and other prominent
texts that take hold of the heart, and send
them to the editors ; and let no paper go to
the press without some Bible truth ; so that
the traveller, who has no Bible with him, can
find in some corner of every paper he takes
up a leaf from the Bible to feed his dying
soul. Pin a piece of writing paper on the
blank leaf of each Bible and Testament in the
house, and always have a pencil with you, and
when you read the Bible and find a text that
takes hold of the heart and conscience, record
it ; and when you have no time to write for the
paper, here will be a portion of the Bible
always ready for the paper. Sometimes one
text preaches louder than a sermon ; in this
way thousands will read the word of God that
never attend church, or think of reading the
Bible. " He that knows to do good, and does
it not, to him it is sin."

126 grandmother's scrap-book;

"Mr. Editor, I am an executor of a will.
What will you ask me to occupy four columns
in your paper ? " " Twenty dollars." " Was
not that space occupied last week with a fool-
ish story ? " " Yes, and it cost me five dollars
to set up the type." " Would it not be better
for your readers to have that space occupied
with fifty short pieces that have some sense ? "
" Undoubtedly, and they would have them, if
I had the grace of God that I wish I had."
" Can you not have it by asking ? " " Yes,
and I think I shall, when I have a convenient
season." " And are you going to feed your-
readers with chaff while you are making up
your mind ? " " Thai; is a hard question." " If
you should find yourself in heaven, and Christ
should present you with a crown of rejoicing,
and you should see thousands there through the
influence of your paper, would it not increase
your happiness ? " " Undoubtedly." " Are
you not commanded to work in Christ's vine-
yard ? and, as a public writer, are you not sway-
ing the minds of thousands ? " "I admit all


you have said. God giving me grace, my
readers shall have as good reading as can be
found in any religious journal."

The most beautiful Hand. — Two charm-
ing women were discussing one day what it is
which constitutes beauty in the hand. They
differed in opinion as much as in the shape of
the beautiful member whose merits they were
discussing. A gentleman friend presented him-
self, and, by common consent, the question was
referred to him. It was a delicate matter. He
thought of Paris and the three goddesses.
Glancing from one to the other of the beauti-
ful white hands presented to him, — w^hich, by
the way, he had the cunning to hold for some
time in his own for the purpose of examina-
tion, — he replied at last, "I give it up; the
question is too hard for me. But ask the
poor, and they will tell you that the most
beautiful hand in the world is the hand that



Two students, after graduating from col-
lege, wrote to Mr. Adams to know what he
considered the best books for, them to read.^
His answer was, " The Bible. There you will
find history, human nature, and God's revela-
tion to man. There are many other valuable
books, but let this be your principal reading.
Search it daily, as for hidden treasures. When
it is properly studied, it becomes the most in-
teresting of all books ; it unfolds the great
mystery of godliness, and the object of this
life ; it prepares the heart for every day's life,
and for eternal happiness with God; it will
give you prudence, wisdom, and discretion in
all your business transactions. My practice
has been to rise early, build my own fire, take
my Bible, and offer up the effectual, fervent
prayer that the Holy Spirit may ouide mo
through all truth while reading this holy Book.


In seeking God's blessing in the morning, he
encamps about me through the day, and the
heart is prepared for every duty. I expect to
meet him in heaven, when he will unfold to
me the great mystery of godhness. If you
expect to sing the new song in heaven, you
must follow the example of Christ."

A Sister's Value. — Have you a sister?
Then love and cherish her with all that pure
and holy friendship which renders a brother so
worthy and noble. He who has never known
a sister's kind ministration, nor felt his heart
warming beneath her endearing smile and
love-beaming eye, has been unfortunate indeed.
It is not to be wondered at if the fountain of
pure feeling flow in his bosom but sluggishly,
or if the gentle emotions of his nature be lost
in the sterner attributes of mankind.

Good resolutions may often fail, and yet
grow gradually into good habits.

130 grandmother's scrap-book ;


Happy is he who daily finds
Something to engage his mind
"Worthy of his life's pursuit,
Yielding rich rewards in fruit.
Something that the mind improves,
And the part that virtue loves,
While the work, besides his fee,
Benefits humanity !
Oft a deed that seems but small,
Causes grateful tears to fall
From the brightening eyes of those
Who both want and sorrow know !
Often, too, a word or deed
Of kindness, in the hour of need,
Fills the widow's heart with cheer,
And dries the orphan^ s hriny tear !
Actively thy course pursue,
Ever seek for something new, —
Some new work, that in the end
Clustering beauties bright will blend.
Let no opportunity
To do good be lost by thee ;
Life, you know, is but a span,
O, improve it xoJiile you can !


Think how many need thine aid,

On the couch of sickness laid ; —

Leave not thou the humble Poor

To weep, when thou canst smiles procure !

Some new act of love, each day

Performed, will render sweet life's way, —

"Will heal the broken heart, and bring

To thee a grateful offering I

Act thy part each day, as though

It were your last one here below,

That when comes the last deep knell,

All may with your soul be well !

Thus, when life with you is o'er,

And your face is seen no more,

Your name may with the worthy stand,

A friend to Virtue and to Man.

A GOOD NAME is not inherited from parents ;
it is not created by external advantages ; it
is no necessary appendage of birth, wealth,
talents, or station, but is the result of one's
own endeavors ; the fruit and reward of good
principles, manifested in a course of virtuous
and honorable intercourse with his fellow-

132 grandmother's scrap-book ;


All through the month of July the interest
at the Fulton Street Union Prayer Meeting has
been very much on the increase. This appears
in the numbers who attend, in the earnestness
of prayer, in the subjects presented for prayer,
and last, not least, in the spirit of humble, be-
lieving faith and confidence in God, that he
will and does hear and answer prayer. It ap-
pears, too, in the willingness of Christians to
labor and make unusual efforts and sacrifices
to bring sinners to Christ ; to use means in
humble dependence upon the divine blessing.
All the power belongs to God. He must con-
vert, or there would be no conversion. Yet he
works by means. This is felt and realized
more and more. There is, withal, a delightful
confidence in God ; an inward persuasion that
he hears and answers prayer speedily. We
have never seen in any former revival so much
of this before. And we have never witnessed


such signal answers to prayer as now. Before
they call, God answers, and while they are yet
speaking, God hears. His people expect this,
and they realize their expectations. So that in
many cases they scarcely begin to pray before
the blessing comes. The answers to prayer are
so wonderful that God's people are themselves
overwhelmed with the sublimity of the divine
power in the fulfilment of his promises. The
church has never seen any thing like this be-
fore. It is amazing grace ! It is wonderful
love and mercy ! What a history could be writ-
ten of the Fulton Street Prayer Meeting for the
last ten months ! We are now in the eleventh
month of the meeting, and at no period has the
interest been higher, wider, deeper than it is at
this very hour. The fullest persuasion is felt
that we are to see such an outpouring of God's
Holy Spirit and grace as we have never seen
in all the past and present, far surpassing in
depth and power any thing the world has ever
seen, to pervade not our city and other cities
only, but our land and all lands. This heart-

134 grandmother's scrap-book ;

felt and united confidence is the great feature
of this " great awakening." Come and pray
with us, and you will feel it too. Come to the
Union Prayer Meeting, and see if the conviction
does not settle down deep into your soul that
we are on the eve of such a revival as never yet
has been witnessed. This work is all of God.
He uses the instrumentality of the church to
accomplish his great designs. The spirit of
grace and supplication is poured upon the
church — upon all who love our Lord and Sav-
iour Jesus Christ — as never before since the
church was established.

Come to the prayer meeting ! you from the
city, you from the country, come to the place
of prayer, whether Fulton Street, John Street,
or any other place of prayer, and you will feel
all we feel, that the spirit of revival is advan-
cing. This is true all over these two great cities
of New York and Brooklyn. The morning
meetings are fuller — also the noonday and
evening meetings. Christians arc crying to
God. He bends down his ear and waits for


their request. They are beginning to learn
what the Scripture means : " Open thy mouth
wide and I will fill it." The spiritual heavens
are overcast. The cloud of mercy widens and
deepens. There is a sound of an abundance
of rain. Our eyes are to the heavenly hills,
whence cometh our help. We have just a word
to add. Let all who read this feel the impor-
tance of instant, earnest, constant prayer.
Whether in city or country, in business or at
leisure, pray ! 0, pray ! Pray for a spirit of
prayer, and pray with a spirit of prayer, and
pray in faith ^ nothing doubting^ and you shall
see and feel in your own soul, that notwith-
standing all God has done, we shall " see
greater things than these." All you in the
city come to the place of prayer ; all you from
the country coming into the city, come to the
prayer meeting ; all you who dwell in the
country, have a place of united prayer, from
day to day, or time to time. Let all unite to
implore such an outpouring of the Holy Spirit
as we need.

136 grandmother's scrap-book


" A FATHER," said one of the speakers, " had
three sons in distant and different parts of the
country, all unconverted. He brought them to
the meeting as subjects of prayer. They were
prayed for as only those who believe can pray.
What has been the consequence ? Three letters
have been received from these three sons, who
have not communicated with each other, each
giving an account of his own conversion." An-
other father requested prayer for a son at sea.
He was away in the distant Pacific. His case
was made the subject of earnest prayer. He
has just returned to port. He was converted
in mid-ocean, and just about the time he was
made the subject of prayer. " I thought," said
the father, " I would put down the date of that
prayer meeting, and the date of that prayer. I
have no reason to doubt that the prayers of
God's people were answered. It is wonderful.
Away at that distance God called up his atten-


tion to religion, convinced him of his guilt, led
him to Christ, and the very first thing he had
to tell me on landing was, what the Lord had
done for his soul. He knew nothing of our
prayer meetings ; he did not know that he had
been made the subject of special prayer, and
yet the Lord has made him the subject of spe-
cial grace." One of the most affecting objects
of prayer was this : A father brought into one
of our meetings a sealed letter to a son in South
America, and laid it upon the desk, and re-
quested the prayers of Christians that the
Spirit and blessing of God might go with that
letter, and make it the means of the conversion
of that distant and much-beloved son. The
letter was an earnest entreaty that he might
become reconciled to God.

Thousands and thousands of instances,
doubtless, have transpired within the last few
months of wonderful and speedy answers to
prayer. They are coming to our knowledge
every day. " Only believe ! " " Only believe ! "
This is the voice of God's providence, and
grace, and spirit.

138 grandmother's scrap-book;


The weakness of the church is unbelief. It
sadly disables Christians, and hinders the tri-
umphs of the gospel. We are told in the Gos-
pels of a father who brought his afflicted son
to the disciples in the absence of Jesus, that
they might cast out the unclean spirit which
possessed him. They doubtless supposed that
they could do it. But they were baffled and
disappointed. Subsequently they inquired of
Jesus why they had been unable to cast out
the foul spirit. He replied, '' Because of your
unbelief,'''* The s^me explanation may often
be applied to the failures of Christians. They
fail to lead holy lives. Their prayers are not
answered. Tlieir children and the impenitent
around them remain unconverted. When they
ask, " Why is it so ? '' the answer is obvious, —
" Because of your unbelief."

For instance ; it is unbelief which prevents
Christians generally from realizing the infinite


value of a soul, and the guilty and perishing
condition of sinners. They leave it out of sight.
What is the process by which we come under
this form of unbelief? Often it is the product
of personal sympathy, partiality for sinners.
We have dealings with them, and friendly inter-
course. We see their amiable qualities, and
love them, as Jesus saw the young ruler, and
" loved him," though he was a votary of the
world. The amiable traits which they have
engage our interest in them, and we stop here
with a partial and sympathetic impression of
their condition. We come to feel as if they
were pretty good and safe, and as if they had
about all that is necessary to secure for them
treasure in heaven. What can Christians do
rightly towards the conversion of sinners, un-
der the influence of this superficial judgment ?
Can they pray for them effectually ? They
have lost sight of the deep and dreadful deprav-
ity and guilt of ungodly and unconverted sin-
ners. This is unbelief, distrusting God's Word.
We need to take the representations of the

140 grandmother's scrap-book;

Word of God oif this subject, and think of
them, and bnng them near as realities. Then
we should see that they are justly liable to de-
struction every moment, — that they are ex-
posed by their own guilt to fall into hell, and
that there is no reason why they are held up
this moment, but the mere pleasure of a long-
suffering God, whom they are provoking by
their continued disobedience. " Their feet
shall slide in due time." Christians need to
view this truth in the light of God's Word, till
unbelief vanishes. Christian, it was your own
condition by nature. You were convinced of
it before you attempted to flee from the wrath
to come. Why should not the thought possess
you, and affect you, that others are still in the
same guilty and miserable condition by nature ?
When Christians shake off their unbelief on
this point, it is one thing which is likely to
lead to the awakening of sinners ; it is one
means which the Holy Spirit is wont to employ
to " convince the world of sin, because they be-
lieve not" on Christ.


This is one manifestation of unbelief. An-
other form of it, which disables Christians and
weakens the church, is when they trust in their
own efforts, and lose sight of their dependence
on God. We must draw our encouragement,
not from one another, but from God. We are
too apt to be influenced to unbelief by one an-
other. We say, " The brethren are backward
and cold. The church is asleep. 0, there is
little encouragement." We ought to feel that
our encouragement is in God. The power is
his. The promise is his, that he will answer
prayer. His will be the glory.

What is "Virtue ? — To a student, who put
this question to the late Dr. Archibald Alex-
ander, his simple and admirable reply was,
" Virtue consists of doing our duty in the sev-
eral relations that we sustain in respect to our-
selves, to our fellow-men, and to God, as
known from reason, conscience, and revela-

142 grandmother's scrap-book ;


'' I DWELL with him that is of a contrite and
humble spirit." — Isa. Ivii. 15.

" The humble spirit and contrite,
Is an abode of my delight." — Watts.

" HumiHty is not a disposition naturally ex-
isting in the human heart." — Pike.

" The humble spirit is that child-like, Christ-
like temper, which is exclusively the effect of
the almighty power of God upon the heart."
— G. Spring ^ D. D.

" From a humble spirit springs all our
peace." — Young.

" Humility, though it expose us to contempt
in the world, yet it recommends us to the favor
of God, qualifies us for his gracious visits,
prepares us for glory, secures us from many
temptations, and preserves the quiet and re-
pose of our souls." — Henry.

"Before honor is humility." — Prov. xv. 33.


" Humility is the softening shadow before
the statue of excellence." — Tapper.

" Richard Baxter, being reminded, on his
death-bed, of the good done by his preaching
and writings, replied, ' I was but a pen in the
hand of God ; what praise is due to a pen ? ' "
— Pikers Guide.

" The greatest endowments are usually con-
nected with, the most simple and child-like hu-
mility." — Barnes.

" Sense shines with a double lustre when it
is set in humility. An able and yet humble
man is a jewel worth a kingdom." — Penn,

" True wisdom is attended with humility ;
which prepares the heart for the exercise of
every Christian temper, the practice of every
duty, and the honorable performance of every
useful undertaking." — Scott.

" Blessed arc the poor in spirit, for theirs is
the kingdom of heaven." — Matt. v. 3.

" Heaven's gates are not so highly arched
As princes' palaces ; they that enter there
Must go upon their knees." — /. Webster.

144 grandmother's scrap-book;


Yes, in this time of religious awakening,
when the Spirit of God is moving upon all class-
es in the community, and so many are turning
to the Lord, let not the children be forgotten.
You are a parent. God has given you sons
and daughters, who are exceedingly dear to
you. You love them with a love which none
but a parent can know. But are these dear
objects of your affection Christians ? Do they
know the happiness of those who love the Sav-
iour ? If not, 0, pray for them, and talk with
them, and seek noiu to lead them into the king-
dom. The present is certainly a mo^t remark-
able time, and if it passes away, leaving the
children in Christian households still in their
sins, when can we hope to see them numbered
among the disciples ? With them this should
be regarded as peculiarly the accepted time.



Truth will not accommodate itself to us, my
son, but we must conform ourself to truth.

Hold yourself too good to do evil.

What you can see, look at with your own eyes.

Fear no man so much as yourself.

Learn gladly of others ; and whenever they
talk of wisdom, honor, happiness, light, freedom,
virtue, listen attentively. But do not believe at
once all that you hear. Words are only words,
and when they drive along so very easily and
swiftly, be on your guard ; for horses that draw

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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 6 of 16)