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According to a proverb, the labors of love are light
In reality, also, this is often the case, and a good illustration is the story told by Kate Douglas Wiggin. She met, it seems, a little girl in the East Side of New York carrying a huge bundle wrapped up in a shawl.
She spoke to the child, and said:
“My dear, where are you going? May I not help you to carry your bundle ? It looks too heavy for you."
The child looked up, and with wonder in her eyes, exclaimed: “Why, it's not heavy! It's my brother!”
O Father, we thank Thee for the sweet burden of love. Dost Thou not carry all Thy children in Thy bosom because Thou lovest them? Does not the mother with infinite patience nurse her child forgetting all pain and weariness of her own for the same divine reason ? By the divine alchemy of love are all burdens made light. Help us, our Father, through love to transform even drudgery into glad and happy service. So shall we sing while we work, because first we have loved, and love turns service into
Amen. GEORGE L. PERIN.
Dear little bird on wind-tossed bough,
Singing away through the pelting rain,
When storms assail you ne'er complain.
Who taught thee thus to sing, and sing?
Dear little bird with rain-wet wing.
When skies are bright, or skies are gray,
Oh, tell me, if thou canst, I pray.
Art thou a messenger that's sent
By some dear friend now far away,
Alice D. O. GREENWOOD.
Father of Grace, Who knowest the sparrow's fall, and Who callest the lark to its morning song, teach us that our own failures and strivings lack not Thy love. If any of Thy creatures can make melody in rain and storm, why may not we outsing the woes of life? Thou shalt give us the courage of Thine own fearless heart, and the victory that comes by confidence in goodness and in God. Are there not, O Lord, winged messengers who come to us from the presence of loved friends afar? May the thoughts they breathe be life-giving and full of peace, and thus may we too be enabled to bring light into darkness, and rest to troubled souls. Amen.
FREDERICK DELAND LEETE.
The sun, and the sea, and the wind,
The wave, and the wind, and the sky,
My heart, and my soul, and I;
And mountains of misery lie.
My heart, and my soul, and I.
O islands and mountains of youth,
O land that lies gleaming before,
We will weep o'er the past no more.
Before, are the sea and the sky,
O for the hope and courage of eternal youth, that looks forward and not backward! To-day, O Spirit of health and force, may we fling off fears and weights, and run our race with zest. Charge our souls with the aspiration for great adventure, and cause us to realize our alliance with all heroic and effectual endeavorers the world around and the ages through. Ours as theirs to dare, to strain, perhaps to bleed, but also to win. Give us of Thy life, O Fount of Life, that we may go forth conquering and to conquer.
C. ELLWOOD NASH.
I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by a conscious endeavour. It is something to be able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue, and so to make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look, which morally we can do. To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts. Every man is tasked to make his life, even in its details, worthy of the contemplation of his most elevated and critical hour. If we refused, or rather used up, such paltry information as we get, the oracles would distinctly inform us how this might be done.
Henry D. THOREAU.
O God, our Heavenly Father, grant unto us a spirit of thanksgiving because Thou hast left so much for us to do in this world in order that Thy creation may be attained: the seed must be sown, the growing fields cultivated and the harvest gathered by the work of human hands. Yet, Thou, O God, art the giver of all gifts. Bestow upon us, O God, a rejoicing heart that we may work in our own lives for the perfection of Thy plan concerning us. May we know, O God, that Thou art working in us, too, so that we may not have the sense of loneliness. Amen.
FRANK M. KERR.
A rosebush grew by a crumbling wall
At the end of a lonely lane,
Withered for lack of rain.
'Twas enough for the rose that the sun shone bright
And the dew fell soft and warm.
And strength from the buffeting storm.
JAMES N. HATCH.
O Lord of all! Thy sunbeams fall a hundred million miles to paint a rose. Thou dost show Thy care for the flowers by baptizing them every night with Thy healing dews. How safe we are in such Almighty and Constant Hands. Thou hast nothing to do but grow a rose where a rose grows; and where our poor little lives grow Thou hast only one object for Thy power and grace. We hold up our little lives, tossed by wind and wilted with the dust and touch of the world, almost as mutely as the rose opens to light and dews; and Thou wilt not pass us by. We are as sure of Thee as petal is of sunshine and dew. Thou art no respecter of persons. Thy grace is warm as sunshine and refreshing as dew. Amen.
WILLIAM O. SHEPARD.