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ANECDOTES AND SELECTIONS.
as our Physician giving the bitter cup, and assuring us there is a needs-be for all our sufferings. Not one pain too many. Not a stroke too heavy. Some have experienced the sympathies of Jesus most when the heat of the furnace is greatest. But why this heat? It is the dross to consume; the gold to refine. How bright the pure gold comes out. And some of God's children after afflictions, how they shine forth when the dross of worldliness is consumed. In the valley of humiliation they thrive and grow in grace. How many can say with David, "Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now have I kept Thy word." Why, then, should we murmur at the chastening of our Father's hand when it is for our soul's good and God's glory.
AN APPROPRIATE BENEDICTION.-We rather hold to the opinion that Pius IX. is partly indebted for his longevity to the love of the humourous that is one of his prominent characteristics. The good man was seventy-eight at the time of the Ecumenical Council, but even the weighty matters that pressed upon him during the sessions of the Council did not prevent his thorough enjoyment of the passing good things. It was said that the most superb-looking members of the Council were the Oriental prelates, but that they were not much given to ablution-in fact, they were dirty. One of these unclean functionaries was invited to an interview with his Holiness. The Oriental bishop could not speak a word of Italian, French, or English-nothing but a curious Latin, Arabic, and Chaldee. The interpreter carried on the conversation. Before going he asked, as usual, the Papal benediction. Now be it remembered that his Holiness is one of the cleanest, neatest old men in the world. He takes a cold sponge-bath every morning; and when you see him in his nice white clothes, notice his fresh, healthy face, handsome hands, and thoroughly well-kept appearance, you cannot help thinking of a hearty fat baby just out of the morning nursery toilet; for the white skull-cap and silvery hair add to this illusion. Imagine, then, what such a clean old man must have felt while breathing the odour of this Oriental species of prelatical sanctity. When asked for his benediction, the Pope turned to those who surrounded him, and said, with an expression peculiarly Roman-for these Romans are the most witty, sarcastic people in the world-" Are you very sure this bishop does not understand Italian?" "Very sure, Holy Father." 66 Well, then," said his Holiness, in Italian, drawing himself up before the kneeling, unclean man, "Dirty and ugly as thou art, I bless thee," etc., etc.
A GLORIOUS CHANGE.-Conversion is the most glorious work of God. The creation of the sun is a very glorious work-when God first rolled him flaming along the sky, scattering out golden blessings on every shore. The change in spring is very wonderful-when God makes the faded grass revive, the dead trees put on green leaves, and the flowers appear on the earth. But far more glorious and wonderful is the conversion of the soul! It is the creation of a sun that is to shine for eternity; it is the spring of the soul that is to know no winter-the planting of a tree that shall bloom with eternal beauty in the paradise of God.-M'Cheyne.
ANECDOTES AND SELECTIONS.
WEIGHING THE MEMBERS.-In his twentieth anniversary sermon, as pastor of the Clinton Avenue Congregational Church, Brooklyn, the Rev. Dr. Buddington, after recounting the growth of the communion, said: "But numbers tell little of the power of a church. The members must be weighed, not numbered. A large part of the history of every church is unwritten and unknown, save on high." "No power can exceed that of a church honestly convinced that its principles are those of the gospel of Christ, and determined to maintain them. I covet nothing but to teach Christ. I ask no other reward than the unbought love of a Christian congregation." These are the golden sentences of a large-minded and large-hearted Christian pastor. "The members must be weighed, not numbered." Some congregations are nothing but audiences, which never crystallize into solid, substantial churches. They gather and they vanish with the breath of the preacher's lips. Many churches have large lists of communicants, but they only fill places in the enumeration tables. They are weighed in the balances and found wanting." Others are few in numbers, but strong in spirit, "full of the Holy Ghost and of power." In devotedness, in work, in beneficence, in Christian character, in practical religion, they outweigh churches of far greater size. These are the churches whose unwritten history is their best commendation. They are neither boastful nor ashamed of their principles, but they “stand fast in the faith." They sound no trumpet before them when they give and work and pray, but they are known by their fruits. They count by weight, not by units, in a column of figures. Such churches generally flourish under long and faithful pastorates; and they live for generations by faith and works and by the grace of God.
WASTED POWER.-It sometimes happens in a mill that a piece of shafting which has done its work so perfectly as to attract no attention becomes bent or broken, or has a bearing displaced. Then, all at once, there is a great manifestation of power. The building shakes, machinery breaks or spoils its product, while the defective shafting, entirely unfit to do its proper work, makes more noise, attracts more attention, and, to an unpractical observer, manifests more power than ever before. There is a certain class of men who remind one of the broken or bent shaft. There is noise, and a running together of a curious multitude, who shout, "See what wonderful power!" while it is plain enough that the apparent power comes from a want of ability to do efficient labour in harmony with others. To refer to the mill again for illustration, the shafting is bent, or the bearings are out of place, so that all the force is spent in noise—a mere shaking of the mill, and breaking of machinery or spoiling of products.
ORIGIN OF SOME PHRASES.-The origin of the term, sub-rosa, or "under the rose," is said to be the following: Cupid gave a rose to Hippocrates, and from this legend arose the practice of suspending a rose over the table while eating, when it was intended that the conversation must be kept secret. The explanation of the origin of "by hook or by crook," is that in the old time persons entitled to get firewood in the king's forest were limited to such dead branches as they
THE FIRESIDE.-THE PENNY POST BOX.
could tear down with a "hook or a crook, without hurt to his Majesty's tree." "In spite of his teeth" originated thus: King John of England once demanded of a Jew the sum of ten thousand marks, and on being refused, ordered that the Israelite should have one of his teeth drawn every day until he gave his consent. The Jew submitted to the loss of seven, and then paid the required sum, and hence the expression "In spite of his teeth."
How much lies in laughter, the cipher-key, wherewith we decipher the whole man! Some men wear an everlasting barren simper; in the smile of others lies a cold glitter as of ice; the fewest are able to laugh what can be called laughing, but only sniff and titter and snigger from the throat outwards, or at best, produce some whiffling, husky cachinnation, as if they were laughing through wool: of none comes good. The man who cannot laugh is not only fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils, but his whole life is already a treason and a stratagem.
The Penny Post Box.
EVERYBODY knows of Mr. Muller, and the remarkable work he carries on, relying wholly on voluntary contributions. The year just closed has been very prosperous. He has received the last year, from all sources, over £50,000. He has six public institutions complete in all their parts. Each of the six establishments is perfect in itself. Each one was completed, paid for, and occupied before another was begun. Mr. Muller has been forty years in his field of rescuing and educating the orphan children of England. Since 1839, when he gathered his six children into a small cottage in Bristol, till the present hour, he has received as voluntary offerings and expended over £600,000. He has refused to preach in London, though he has been assured of a donation of £10,000, quietly saying: "If the Lord wishes me to have that money, He will send it to me." He has refused to have his likeness taken, though assured that millions of copies would be sold for the benefit of his Mission. His answer was, "That is not the way the Master would have me carry on His work." Mr. Muller is over sixty years of age. He is of medium size, slightly built, erect as a soldier, hair fleecy white, but cut close to the head, modest, unassuming, but magnetic. He assumes no superiority over his brethren and associates. His prayers are like familiar conversations with a very intimate friend. His speech is broken English, as—“ De Lord will provide."
FACTS, HINTS, GEMS, AND POETRY.
Facts, Hints, Gems, and Poetry.
The order in which the subjects of the British Empire rank religiously, fixed by their relative numerical strength, is as follows:-1, Pagan; 2, Mohammedans; 3, Protestants; 4, Roman Catholics. The Queen rules more Catholics than the Pope, more Mohammedans than the Sultan, and more pagans than there are in the whole continent of Africa.
greatness. Many men and women have died of dignity.
Never be ashamed to confess your ignorance, for the wisest of men are ignorant in many things, insomuch as what they know is but little compared with what they do not know. There is no greater folly than to suppose you know everything.
The Bible Society of England has Those who do not recognize God in issued 10,101 Hebrew New Testa- the pages of Scripture will seldom ments for Poland, 89,413 Irish New acknowledge godliness in the persons Testaments, 1,627,517 Welsh Bibles, of men. 98,224 Arabic, 369,526 Spanish, 4,383,527 French, and 1,175,118 Swedish.
There is now a respectable evangelical church in Nazareth, and several villages in the vicinity have evangelical schools. The number of children taught in Protestant schools in all Palestine is estimated at 1,400.
A monster bell, which the Emperor William is to present to the Cathedral at Cologne, has just been cast at Frankenthal out of the spoils of war lately in the form of French guns captured in 1870. The bell is the largest in the empire, being twelve feet in height and seventeen in diameter, and weighing over fifty thousand pounds. It will take thirty pairs of hands to use the clapper.
Nothing is more disgraceful than an old man should have nothing to produce as a proof that he has lived long but his years.
A sound philosopher once said: "He that thinks any innocent pastime foolish has either to grow wiser, or is past the ability to do so;" and I have always counted it an impudent fiction that playfulness is inconsistent with
The most effectual security against evil is trust in God.
There are many elements of life that never grow sweet and beautiful till sorrow touches them.
The door-sill of home is the threshold of heaven.
Keep thy heart, and then it will be easy for thee to keep thy tongue.
Intercourse with those who are insincere begets insincerity in ourselves.
YE captains of a heavenly host,
Ye princes of a heavenly hall,
Lights rising o'er a wintry night,
Captains-but not of spear and shield,
Nought but the lowly cross of shame.
Whose yoke alone is liberty.
To distant lands His heralds fleet,
To Father, Son, and Holy Ghost
-From the Latin.
NONE LIKE JESUS.
NONE can be compared with Jesus,
He is "altogether lovely;"
Grace and truth in Him we find.
When the willing slaves of Satan,
Would have thus for sinners died?
The Childrens' Corner.
DOING IT FOR MAMMA.
ONE morning I found little Dora busy at the ironing table smoothing the towels and stockings.
"Isn't it hard work for the little arms ?" I asked.
A look like sunshine came into her face as she glanced toward her mother, who was rocking the baby.
"It isn't hard when I do it for mamma,” she said, softly.
How true it is that love makes labour sweet. So, if we love the blessed Saviour, we shall not find it hard to work for Him. It is love
that makes His yoke easy and His burden light. If we love God, we shall always be happy and contented with our lot.