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its reach, I cannot but think a cheerful, benevolent, unostentatious hospitality should be exercised towards them, in the simple, prayerful hope, that they may be benefited by our society. I know a dishonest mind may make this an excuse for being found in any company, or encouraging any intimacy; but then I am afraid our lamp is left at home ; or is put out for the time, that it may not be disagreeable to our guests. It is one thing to give wholesome refreshment to them that ask it, and another to eat of their unwholesome viands; it is one thing to present the pure draught of water, and another to accept the inebriating cup. And in this sort of intercourse there must be no self-sacrifice : we have no command of God to be generous in spiritual things, putting our own principles to peril in the hope of imparting them. No motive of this kind can justify association that we find to be injurious to us.
The manner of intercourse best calculated to promote our spiritual improvement, is that on which there will be most difference of opinion among those who have but one object; and probably no method is exclusively the best. If my own feeling is perhaps in favour of that near communion of mind to mind, and heart to heart, which takes place when two speak together of the things of God, rather than of more extended conversation : still the latter is very beneficial, where those who know the least may listen and inquire of the more experienced. By no means do I think spiritual improvement confined to conversation on religious topics: the very character of spirituality is to mix religion with every thing; to deal with secular things religiously, to cast the hues of heaven over the things of earth, and let its holy
influence fall insensibly, like the dew drops of which no one marks the coming. Nor do I think that reading or prayer are indispensable even to this best end, however conducive to it in our social meetings. I have but touched my subject : perhaps others will work it out.
G. E. M.
NOTHING is more unwholesome than an illboiled potato, especially to the delicate stomachs of children and invalids.
The potatoes should be, as much as possible, of a size, the large and small ones boiled separately. Let them be washed clean, just before boiling, but neither scraped nor peeled ; the saucepan should be large enough to have an inch or two above the top of the potatos. Set them on in cold water, not quite enough to cover them, as they produce a considerable quantity of fluid themselves. When they boil, throw in a little cold water to check the boiling, and a spoonful of salt. If the patotoes are large, it will be necessary to check them with cold water two or three times, as they come to boil, otherwise the outsides will break, while the inside is not half done. When boiled enough, pour off the water, and again set the vessel over the fire, for a short time, that all the moisture may be carried off by steam, and the potatoes remain perfectly dry.
Late in the season, when potatoes become specky, it is better to pare them before boiling.–Family Book.
KER OF THE RELIGIOUS WORLD.
[Continued from page 359.)
Ir will ever be a matter for felicitation with any writer whose object it is to gain the serious attention of his readers, and whose ultimate end is nothing else than the ascertainment of truth and the establishment of scriptural principles, when his positions or his inferences are controverted with the clearness of statement and temperance of spirit which characterize the communication inserted in the last number of this magazine, under the signature of S. M. Differing wholly from that writer as to the main question in dispute, I will still strive to resemble (him or) her in these desirable qualities.
The point on which we chiefly differ, I apprehend, is this ;-What is the duty of a Christian with reference to that portion of his annual income which remains after he has provided for his own,' that proper and fitting maintenance which they naturally expect from his hands? What ought to be the manner in which he disposes of this surplus ? My opponent seems to advocate the “laying up” such funds; I, on the other hand, have contended, and I must still contend, that it is unlawful thus to bury that talent which was entrusted to us by the great Master, in order to be actively employed in his service.
I must, however, to preserve any correct order in
the argument, take up, in the first place, an observation which is the last in order in the letter of S. M. Not only is saving preferred to giving, but a censure is additionally voluntered on some persons who very blameably spend too little, in order that they may have the more to give! S. M. says,
“ I cannot forbear alluding to a class of persons, not numerous indeed, but occasionally coming under our notice, who regard it as a Christian duty to adopt a mode of living far different from that which their income would justly allow, in order to give up the remaining share to pious and charitable objects. Now, as one of the most essential temporal benefits which wealth can enable its possessor to confer upon his poorer neighbours, is the providing them with employment, and thus enabling them to live upon the fruits of their own industry, is it not an error to dispense with the services of attendants, as well as to refrain from the purchase of many articles, by the manufacture of which industrious families might be supported, with a view to perform a more direct act of charity, viz. almsgiving, which, without the guidance of discretion and judgment, may become a bane, rather than a blessing to the recipient?"
This class of persons is truly said to be “ not numerous." The fact is so, and deeply is it to be lamented. Strange, however, that instead of regret, that the grace of self-denial should be so rare, we should meet with a remark which almost amounts to this,—that self-denial is actually a folly, if not a crime!
The last lines of this passage present an instance of reasoning which is altogether illegitimate. S. M. had no right, just because it helped to round off an argument, to assume that self-denial is practised merely with a view to “ almsgiving, which, without the guidance of discretion and judgment, may become a bane rather than a blessing.”
Under the existing state of things any one who has money to bestow, may do so in a variety of ways without incurring the least risk of making waste or suffering imposition, or of working a bane rather than a blessing.” The latter supposition is wholly gratuitous. The only question is, therefore, whether the 500l. a year which maintains a carriage and horses, and the men employed about them, is really working more good than it would do, if employed in bringing up a dozen orphan children,or supporting two or three additional missionaries abroad, or endowing as many curates or schools at home. Any one who really thinks, on a cool calculation, that the coach-horses and the footmen conduce most to the glory of God and the welfare of the human race, will of course be bound to act upon that conviction.
Thus much for the spending part of the question; let us now come to the remaining and chief point of the assumed duty of saving.
A man, whether in' a profession or in trade, finds that he is realizing an income of 15001. a year, while his expenditure, well considered in all its parts, and neither lavish nor niggardly, does not exceed 1000l. He may be supposed to have some children ;-the practical question, therefore, is, whether he is to be content with the few annual charitable guineas which form part of the above expenditure, and may proceed with a safe conscience to invest the surplus of 5001. in
securities," as a “provision” for his children; -or whether he ought not rather to look upon the