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rished the precious seeds of virtue and religion which he has sown in their hearts; and who have a rich harvest of good deeds performed, a harvest of peace, contentedness and faith to sustain them, not only to the end of this life, but for ever and ever. On the other hand, those who have not sown in the spring must not expect to reap in the autumn. They who in youth give all their thoughts to the passing enjoyments of the coming summer, as they will neither hear the word nor receive it now, so neither can it be expected that they shall bring forth fruit hereafter. The promise of a produce of thirty fold, of sixty fold, and even of a hundred fold is not to them.




"Thou hast set all the borders of the earth: thou hast made summer and winter.-Psalm lxxiv. 17.

WE are now come to the closing scene, the winter of the year, or the old age of man.

There is something mournful in the appearance put on by external nature at this dreary season. The hopes of the spring, the gaiety of the summer, the richness of the autumn, are over, and all seems dull and spiritless; the trees are bare and leafless; the clouds are heavy and dark; the cold blast, the drenching rain, the biting frost, have each their turn. But in the midst of this dreary season, the earth and the vegetable kingdom are in a state of repose. The plants lay up in winter a store of juices and of sap, which will enable them to put on a renewed beauty in the coming year; and the earth, after the exhaustion of the summer and autumn, is

renovated to fresh productiveness, by the rains, and the snows, and the frosts of winter.

Thus each season has its own appointed service to perform, and is fraught with its own benefits. Each season, I may add, is fraught with its own enjoyments also. Even winter, cold, and dark, and stormy as it is, has its pleasures and advantages. Of its pleasures I need say little. The Christmas meetings, the family reunions, the cheerful fire-sides, are doubtless fresh in all your memories. One advantage of this season is that it reminds the rich of the necessities of the poor, whom in winter we often see suffering at once from inclemency of weather, and want of employment. Another advantage is that the kindnesses now shown to the poor tend commonly to produce a kind feeling in them in return. All real kindness tends to bind together in love the hearts both of those who bestow the benefit, and of those who receive it; and also to raise the thoughts of mortal man towards the great and eternal Benefactor of us all. While, on the other hand, "he

who loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how shall he love God whom he hath not seen?"

These are the words of our Saviour himself; and no words can show more forcibly how much it is our duty to join with our thankfulness to God for his bounty to us, the desire of "peace on earth, and of good-will towards men." Even children, though they have not the means of giving much to the poor, may yet often give them a little; and they may always cherish the feelings of kindness and compassion to all who are in any sort of necessity, and may show attention both to their feelings and their wants. You have heard of the Roman emperor, who considered every day as lost in which he had not performed a good action. And so, even you, my dear young friends, may perform some kind action almost every day. Scarcely a day can pass without your having some opportunity of showing attention to people's feelings, to the feelings of the poor, as well as to those of the rich. And this sort of attention, you may be assured, is of even more

consequence both to their happiness, and to your own, than the conferring the greatest and most essential benefits proudly or negligently.

On the particular duties required of the aged, or of those who are themselves in the winter of life, I shall not attempt to say anything to you, from whom that period is as yet so far distant, and is indeed a period which many of you may not live to reach. I will rather urge you to consider how you should conduct yourselves towards the aged.

Now the period of old age, though, to those who are in the strength of their prime, it may appear to be a dull and cheerless time, and a time of sorrow, is not, I trust, a time of sorrow to all. It seldom, I hope, can be a time of sorrow to those who can look back upon a well-spent life. The old enjoy also many comforts and satisfactions, which the young know not how to appreciate. They enjoy the comforts of rest and tranquillity, the feeling that they have finished their work, and are ready to go to their better country. And death, which seems so formidable to the

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