Light On the Child's Path
By Wm. A. Bixler
Jesus said, "Suffer little children, and forbid them not to come unto me; for of such is the kingdom of heaven." —Matt. 19:14.
THE WARNER PRESS Anderson, Indiana
Copyright, 1918 by Gospel Trumpet Co.
Printed In U.S.A.
Our Best Friend 11
The Good Book 16
What God Made 18
In the Garden of Eden 20
Our Heavenly Home 22
The Day and Night 23
The Rain and the Snow 25
Winter's Blessings (poem) 29
Planting Seeds 34
Flowers of Springtime 36
A Walk in the Woods 38
Our Feathered Friends 41
A Bird of the Night 44
Our Tame Birds 47
Wee Pretty Kitty (poem) 50
Creatures of the Water 51
Our Tame Animals 52
Little Foxes 56
The Squirrels 58
The Shepherds 60
Jesus as a Child 62
The Good Shepherd 64
Parable of the Sower 70
Parable of the Leaven 71
Laborers in the Vineyard 72
The Wicked Husbandmen 74
The Wheat and Tares 76
The King's Marriage-Feast 78
A Lesson on Forgiveness 80
Jesus Loves the Children 82
Jesus Heals the Sick 84
Jesus Nearing Jerusalem 86
Jesus Changed 88
Feeding the Multitude 90
The Death of Jesus 93
Jesus Our Savior 94
Moments of Prayer 96
Morning Praise (poem) 98
Evening Prayer (poem) 99
Asking Blessing (poem) 101
Visit the Sick 102
Do a Kindness (poem) 104
The Blind Girl 106
The Little Cripple (poem) 108
Country Children 110
The Country Boy (poem) 113
God Sees All Things 114
Be Kind to the Aged 117
God's Garden (poem) 120
A Baby for a Nickel 121
We All Must Die 122
The Path of God (poem) 125
Our Best Friend
In a log cabin in the mountains lived a little boy. He often played near the house, but did not go far away. Near the house were many trees and rocks and among these wild animals stayed.
One day the boy missed his mama and thought he would try to find her. He went down the path toward the spring, where he had often gone after water. He went on and on. Finally he wished to return, but did not know the way. Poor boy, he was lost.
He started toward what he thought was home, and walked and walked. Becoming very tired, he sat down to rest and soon fell asleep.
His mama missed her boy and hunted everywhere for him. Night came on, but she did not give up her search. She hunted and called, but no answer came. She feared the wild beasts would get him, but prayed to God to protect her child. She hunted all night and in the morning found him safe and still asleep.
The best friend we have on earth is a good mother. She thinks of her children at all times. She loves them and lives for them. She seems to know all about our little cares and trials. When we are willing to help her, it shows that we think of her and love her, too.
Have you ever thought how she toils and cares for you? She works for you every day—gets your meals, breakfast, dinner, and supper; washes and mends your clothes and stockings; and at night makes your pillow nice and soft for you so you can sleep well.
She seems to know just what to do if we happen to get hurt.
Mother is watching after her little ones all the day long, and when she puts her hand upon our heads at night as we bow at her knee in prayer, she seems to say, "God bless and keep my darling child." When she tucks the covers tight about us and sits by our bedside, we think that Mama is the best friend we have. Don't we?
Now I will tell you of another friend. This friend lives in heaven. His name is God. We can not see God, but he looks down from heaven and sees us. He sees everything we do, and hears everything we say. He knows all things.
It was God who made this earth where we live, and everything that has life. We pray to God, and he hears us and answers our prayers.
Now I lay me down to sleep; I pray Thee, Lord, my soul to keep. Thy love be with me through the night, And bless me with the morning light.
The Good Book
The Bible is a good book. In it we read about God, and about his making the earth, sun, moon, stars, trees, flowers, rocks, water, birds, fishes, animals, and man.
We read of Adam and Eve, the first man and woman; of their beautiful home, the Garden of Eden; and also of their children and their children's children.
In it there are many, many stories about how God helped people in times of trial.
We also read about Jesus, the Son of God, who came down from heaven and died for us, that we might have eternal life.
Good men wrote the Bible long, long ago, and the contents have been kept, until now we all have Bibles. The Bible is called Holy Bible because it is God's Word, and is a record of God's work and God's words.
If we live now as the Bible teaches, after we die we shall receive a crown of life in heaven.
What God Made
Our God is a very great God. He made all things. He made this earth where we now live.
It seems strange that there was a time, many, many years ago, when this earth was nowhere to be found; but that is so.
When men make things, they must have tools to work with. They have to make things little by little, working at them a long time before they are done.
It was not so with God when he made this earth. "He spake, and it was done." At first all was dark. He then said, "Let there be light," and it was light. He called the light day, and the darkness he called night. This, the Good Book says, took place on the first day.
On the second day God made the air we breathe, and in which the birds fly.
On the third day he made the land, sea, and rivers, and the grass, flowers, and trees.
On the fourth day he made the sun, moon, and stars, to give light to the earth by day and night.
On the fifth day he made the fish that swim in the water and the birds that fly in the air.
On the sixth day he made all the animals, and at last he made man. He gave them for food the grain of the fields, the fruits of the trees, and the vegetables of the garden.
On the seventh day God rested "from all the work which he had made." "And God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good."
In the Garden of Eden
When the Garden of Eden was planted with all the beautiful flowers and trees, God gave it to Adam for a home. He told him to take good care of it. Adam was glad to work in the garden and use it as he chose; but he had no one to enjoy the things that he enjoyed, no one to help him to be just what God wished him to be, no one to love.
God said, "It is not good that the man should be alone: I will make him an help meet for him." So he made a woman and Adam called her Eve.
Eve was very much like Adam in some ways, yet unlike him in other ways. Man has some gifts that woman does not have; one is helpful to the other.
Adam's heart must have been glad to see the woman whom God had made for him. He now had some one to enjoy the home with him. Adam and Eve were happy in Eden as long as they loved God more than they loved to have their own way. He knew better than they did what was good for them and what would make them happy, and they were glad to obey him.
But by and by their own way seemed better than God's way, and they did things that God had said they should not do. When we do things that God says we should not do, we sin. So Adam and Eve sinned, and were ashamed to see God, and when he came into the garden, they hid among the trees.
Our Heavenly Home
God loves men too well to leave them in sin and sorrow. And though we have sinned, he will forgive us if we are sorry for our sins and ask his pardon. He will give us good thoughts, and help us to love him and to love one another.
We shall all die, but we shall live again; and if we serve God in this life and are Christians, we shall live with him in heaven. There we shall never sin and never die. We shall never be sick or sad; we shall be happy forever. There we shall see God. Jesus will be there, and so will all the good people who have ever lived.
God saw that the people he had made were doing wrong, and he had pity on the whole world of sinners. So he sent his only Son to this earth as the Savior of the world. You will find somewhere in this book how God's Son came to this world.
The Day and Night
God made the sun to give light by day. The sun not only gives us light, but also makes the earth warm and causes everything to grow.
Sometimes when the sun rises in the morning, it looks very close, but it is really far away—away off in the sky. When the sun goes down in the evening, darkness comes all around us. This is called night.
We do not want all daytime, in which to work and play; neither do we want all nighttime, in which to sleep; but we enjoy both the day and the night as God made them.
Also, we see the moon and the stars. When the moon is full and round, how large and pretty it looks! God made the moon and stars to shine at night. Have you ever noticed the stars twinkle at night? How pretty they are! There are so many of them that we could never count them all. At one time some shepherds saw a beautiful large star; it was a sign that the Savior of the world was born.
The Rain and the Snow
Patter, little drops of rain, Patter on the window-pane. How I love to watch them pass In their races down the glass! Soon the shower will be o'er, Then the sun will shine once more. But I love to hear the rain Beat against the window-pane. Soft and gentle April showers Will bring May-time's pretty flowers.
I think it is pleasant to sit by the window and watch the rain as it falls, sometimes in tiny drops and sometimes in large ones.
The warm showers make the grass, trees, and flowers grow. After the shower is over, the grass looks fresh and green.
The birds also seem to be glad for the rain. They chirp among the trees when the shower is over.
We see the pretty clouds in the sky. The wind moves them about. Sometimes a storm comes, and then we see the lightning and hear the thunder.
When winter-time comes, it gets cold, and the ground is all covered with pure-white crystals of snow. Everything looks so clean and pretty with its white coat on. We see the little snowbirds flying around, and they are so happy picking up seeds for food.
Then we love to get on our mittens and warm coats, and go out in the snow, too. People hitch horses to sleighs and enjoy rides. They put bells on the horses, and these jingle merrily when the horses go fast.
In the far north it gets very cold, and when the people go anywhere, they hitch dogs to sleds.
In the Bible we read that the Lord will make our hearts white as snow if we confess our sins and take him for our Savior.
Beautiful snow, so soft and so white, Sparkling like gems in the sunshine bright, Robing the earth and decking the trees, Sent by the Lord, the children to please.
Pretty little snowflakes Falling to the ground; Here is one, there is one, Ev'rywhere they're found.
See them fall so gently Through the frosty air; Every little snowflake Has its beauties rare.
Soon the ground is covered, With the pretty snow; Then we see the snowbirds Flying to and fro.
Do you think the snowbirds Like the wintry day? Do you think they're happy As they chirp and play?
Happy little creatures— Do not reap or sow, Yet the Master feeds them, Even in the snow.
Jesus made the birdies Blessings to enjoy; Then, oh, do not harm them, Little girl or boy.
In the pleasant evenings, Then the rabbits go Through the woods and bushes, Playing in the snow.
All the night they ramble, But at break of day They must hunt a refuge, There to hide away.
So these little creatures Love the fallen snow; Should not we enjoy it, Who God's blessings know?
Should we ever murmur, Should we e'er complain, When God sendeth blessings, As the snow and rain?
No; we ought to thank him, Yes, for everything; And we ought his praises Daily to him sing.
He is love and kindness To us all below; On the just and unjust, Sendeth rain and snow.
Let us e'er be thankful For his love to us; He's so kind and faithful, Giving blessings thus.
Let us ask the Savior, As we kneel to pray, "Help us to be thankful, More and more each day.
"Thankful in the morning, Thankful noon and night; Thankful for the rain-drops, Thankful for the light."
Birds are singing, clear and sweet; Flowers are springing neath our feet; Spring at last has come to stay. How we welcome lovely May! Lovely May, O lovely May! Oh, how glad we are to say, Lovely May!
Winter days were cold and long, But we waited for thy song— Songs of birds and humming bees, And the fresh and lovely breeze. Lovely May, O lovely May! Oh, how glad we are today, Lovely May!
You may have helped your papa or mama plant seeds in the garden or in the flowerbed. The warm sun and the rain make them grow rapidly.
We do not plant weed-seeds, but in some way they get into the ground, and come up along with the garden-plants. If the weeds are not cut out, they will crowd out the good plants.
When we do little acts of kindness, it is like planting good seed. When we are not kind, and say bad words, it is like letting the weeds crowd out the good plants.
If you are good and kind to papa and mama, brother or sister, today, you will find it easy to be kind to them tomorrow. It makes you happy to be good to those around you.
If you are cross and say bad words, you may want to say them again. You can not feel happy when you have said and done bad things.
God can help you sow good seed. He will help you to be good. He will help you to love all around you.
Flowers of Springtime
How pretty and sweet are the apple, peach, pear, plum, cherry, and orange blossoms! How good God was to make all these things for us to see and smell! We can enjoy the blossoms. Also, we can see the little apples or other fruit grow until they become large, juicy, ripe fruit. Then we can eat them, and oh, how good they will taste! God is very good to us.
Not a leaf nor a blade of grass could grow if God's hand did not care for it. He causes the warm sun to shine and the gentle rains to fall so that everything can grow. Things could not grow without the warm sun and the rain.
God has caused the wild flowers to grow along the road-side and in the woods and meadows so we can enjoy them. How glad we should be that we have such a good God to worship! When we kneel to pray, we can say, "O Lord, I thank thee for all the pretty things I see each day." The pretty things are some of the blessings that he daily gives us.
A Walk in the Woods
Have you ever taken a walk through the woods by the brook on a warm day? How cool and pleasant the water looked as it ran along over the rocks! Did it not make a pleasing sound?
It is delightful to go through the woods where you can see the beautiful trees. You can nearly always find some flowers growing along the edge of the brook. Besides, the little birds fly among the trees and sing so sweetly. Almost any child would enjoy a walk through the woods. But there are many children in large cities who never have the pleasure of going to the woods.
How pleasant it is to sit down in a cool, shady place, and think of the lovely things that God has given us to enjoy. As we look around us, we can see so many blessings that God has given us.
Even the little birds and flowers seem to be telling us that Jesus loves us. God has made many beautiful things for us to enjoy. It makes us happy to see the beautiful flowers, and to hear the little birds sing so sweetly.
Our Feathered Friends
When all the trees and bushes and grass are green in the spring, we see the little birds and hear their sweet songs.
How happy they seem as they fly about from tree to tree, and scratch in the ground to find little seeds and insects to eat!
Sometimes we find a bird's nest in the bushes or on the ground. God teaches the little birds how to build their nests with small sticks, leaves, and feathers.
This is the bird's house. We sometimes see tiny eggs in the nest. The little eggs hatch, and then there are little birdies in the nest in place of the eggs. The mother bird hunts worms and bugs to feed the little ones.
Did you ever see a nest of young birds? How they open their little mouths when you come near! They think you have something for them to eat.
Once a little boy found a meadow-lark's nest with young birds in it. As they opened their little mouths, he thought he could feed them better than the mother bird. He decided to raise them for pets, and so carried them home. He fed them bread; but as the little birds were not used to that kind of food, they did not thrive on it; and when one day the boy forgot to feed them, they died. How sad he felt! And how sad the mother bird must have felt when she could not find her babies!
God made the birds to enjoy the woods and fields. We must not destroy their nests, for that would be wrong.
The Bible says, "Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them."
A Bird of the Night
Did you ever see an owl? Owls fly around at night, as they can see better after dark than in the daytime. They stay in some dark and quiet spot all day, unless disturbed, but at night they hunt around for something to eat. They eat some kinds of birds, rats, mice, fish, reptiles, and insects.
The nest of the owl is made of sticks and twigs, and is oftentimes built in rocks or ruins or old houses.
Some owls are as white as snow, and their feathers are as soft as cotton. Some are brown, and others are gray.
Sometimes in the night we hear their noise, which sounds much as if they were saying, "Who? who? who?"
The owl can not turn his eyes about as we can; so when he wants to look around, he must turn his head.
In the cold countries where snow stays upon the ground most of the time, there are owls with pure-white feathers. They are very large, too; yet they can hardly be seen, since they look so much like the snow.
Our Tame Birds
Chickens and ducks and geese are birds, too. But they are tame and stay where people do. They do not fly like the little birds, but they stay around the barnyard and lay eggs for us to eat.
Ducks and geese love to swim in the water. Both the big and the little ones can swim, but chickens can not.
The old mother hen sometimes has many little chicks running around her. They stay pretty close, because they are afraid that something might harm them.
Chicks are sometimes caught by hawks, which fly around watching for them. In the picture we see a dog driving a hawk away from the old hen and chickens. Don't you think he is a good dog?
A farmer had a dog whose name was Ring. Even though he was asleep, if a chicken gave the note of alarm, he would jump up and bark at once. Then he would run after the hawk and drive it away.
When lying quiet it was amusing to see how quickly he would jump up and bark when any one would say, "Hawk!"
Wee Pretty Kitty
"Wee pretty kitty, With nothing to do, Only to take Little naps in a shoe. You look very nice While lying in there, With never a thought Of sorrow or care. Yet I am so glad That I am not you, For I can love Jesus, Which you can not do."
Creatures of the Water
Fishes are queer creatures that live in water. Men catch them with hooks and lines or nets and use them for food.
Some fish are very large. We read in the Bible of a man named Jonah. He was trying to run away from the Lord, who had called him to a work. While on a ship, during a storm he was thrown into the water. But he did not drown, for a great fish swallowed him, and carried him ashore. He then knew that God meant what he said, and so did as God had commanded.
There are hundreds of different kinds of fishes, and many, many men earn their living by catching and selling them for food.
Some of Christ's disciples were fishermen when he called them. He told them that he would make them fishers of men. This meant that he would prepare them to help other people to become Christians.
Our Tame Animals
There are some kinds of animals that are tame, as the sheep, hog, cow, horse, dog, and cat.
The horse is a faithful beast and does much work for man. He draws the heavy loads on the road and works in the fields. We hitch him to a wagon or a carriage and enjoy a ride, or we can put a saddle upon his back and ride there also.
The cow gives us milk for our food, and from the milk we get cream, butter, and cheese.
The flesh of the hog is valuable for food.
The dogs are useful to guard our homes, and cats catch mice and rats. Both dogs and cats make good pets.
Sheep have long wool all over their bodies, and men cut it off and use it to make clothes to keep us warm.
Young sheep are called lambs. They like to run and play very much. In the picture we see a lamb that has fallen into the water. The mother sheep stands close by and watches the man trying to pull the lamb out.
I suppose the man had missed these two from the flock. He was in search of the lost ones, and seeing the mother standing near the water, he came and found the lamb nearly drowned. The mother would not leave her babe, but waited a long time until help came.
Lambs are innocent-looking animals, and do not make a noise when hurt. Jesus said that children are his lambs.
Foxes are wild animals. They live in the woods and swamps, in places where not many people live.
They are very cunning and sly, and catch young chickens, ducks, turkeys, and geese whenever they can.
Night is the time when they slip around and catch these barnyard fowls. They carry the fowls off to their holes in the ground, and eat them there.
Little foxes are very destructive, and often spoil grape-vines. In the Bible we read that it is the little foxes that spoil the vines.
This also means that our little unkind words and actions spoil the peace in our lives and make us feel bad.
Let us be careful that our words and deeds do not make ourselves or others unhappy. If we live to please God, we shall please God's people, and we shall not have to feel sorry on account of some bad words said or deeds done.
When the frosts have colored the leaves of the trees of the woods with many hues, and the nuts have ripened and fallen to the ground, it is then that the squirrels gather a good supply of the different kinds of nuts and acorns into their little homes in the hollow trees, to be eaten during the many long days of winter.
Have you ever seen a squirrel? They love to play in the woods, and run among the branches of the trees, and jump from one limb to another.
God made the squirrels to enjoy the woods, and he has provided the nuts for them to eat.
A shepherd is a man who takes care of sheep. During the day he watches them while they are eating grass, and in the evening he takes them to their fold or barn.
Now, we read in the Bible that an angel of the Lord appeared to some shepherds in the night. The shepherds were very much afraid, but the angel said to them:
"Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling-clothes, lying in a manger."
"And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace, good will toward men."
The babe's name was Jesus, who came as a Savior to all the world.
Jesus As a Child
God, who is in heaven, was full of pity for the unhappy people of earth. He loved them so much that he sent his Son to the earth in the form of a child, a baby in his mother's arms. He came to earth to show us how to obey God—how to live so as to do good in this life and be happy both in this life and in the life to come.
He came as a child, so as to show children how to live. He came like other children, and grew up as other children do, only better and wiser.
When God sent his Son to the earth, he gave him into the care of two good people who lived in a small town called Nazareth.
When Jesus came to them, they were in Bethlehem. They had gone there on a journey. There was no room for them in the inn; so they had to stay in a place made for cattle. God was not ashamed to place his Son in the care of poor people. He was not ashamed to have him born in a stable and cradled in a manger.
A bright star appeared over the place where the young child lay, and by this sign the wise men that came from the east seeking him were enabled to find him.
The Good Shepherd
Jesus once lived on this very same earth on which we live. He walked through grain-fields. He climbed mountains. He noticed the birds and flowers, and watched the fishermen and farmers and shepherds. He used the things he saw to teach lessons to his disciples and others who came to hear him.
In the land of Palestine, where he lived, sheep-raising was very common. He said at one time: "I am the good Shepherd, and know my sheep. My sheep hear my voice, and they follow me."
He was trying to show the people that he was just as anxious to help people live right and to keep them from danger as the kind shepherds who watched over their flocks upon the hills of Palestine were anxious to keep their sheep from harm at all times.
At another time Jesus spoke of the lambs and compared them to children.
Jesus went into meeting-houses and taught the people. Many times he brought joy to the hearts of fathers and mothers by healing their sick children. He did good wherever he went. He was always trying to help those in trouble. He was the best and greatest man who has ever lived.
Reading and studying about him will help us to stand for the right and to do good, kind deeds.
We are his sheep if we are Christians, and the way we follow Jesus now is by reading the Bible and living a Christian life.
Jesus gave his life for his sheep while he was here on earth. Now he is up in heaven, but he loves the people who follow him, and is still our Good Shepherd.
Parable of the Sower
Jesus taught many spiritual lessons by parables, that is, by stories about the common things people could understand.
One day as he sat by the sea of Galilee, he told the people the parable of the Sower. The sower cast some seed by the wayside, that is, along the edge of the field or road-side. Some seed fell upon stony ground, some among thorns, and some on good ground.
The people did not know what he meant till he explained the lesson to them.
The great sower is Jesus, but all Christians are sowers under him. The seed is the Word of God. People's hearts are the four kinds of soil.
Parable of the Leaven
Among the stories that Jesus told was the parable of the leaven.
A woman put leaven in the flour as a baker puts yeast in his bread dough. The leaven kept working until it affected all the dough and made it rise and become light.
As the yeast or leaven goes through all the dough, so the gospel of Jesus will go to all the nations in the world.
Each one who believes on Jesus enters the kingdom of God. The kingdom of God is righteousness, peace, and joy, which we get when we become Christians.
Laborers in the Vineyard
Jesus told another parable, a story of the laborers in the vineyard. You can turn in your Testament to Matthew 20:1-16, and read about the man who hired laborers to work in his vineyard.
He had agreed to pay the laborers a penny a day. The men who worked all day thought they should receive more than those hired later in the day, but the master paid them all alike. Just so those of us who have been Christians only a short time will receive the same heavenly reward as those who have lived a Christian life for years. Salvation is just the same to all—it takes sin out of our hearts and fills them with the love of God.
We must not put off getting saved; for Jesus said, "Watch, for ye know not the hour when your Lord doth come." This means that we are liable to die without a warning, and we should always be ready.
The Wicked Husbandmen
Another parable is about a man who had a vineyard and let it out to husbandmen. When the time for gathering grapes came, he sent his servants to the husbandmen that they might receive the fruit. But the husbandmen took his servants and beat one and killed another. He sent other servants, and they were treated in the same way.
Last of all he sent his son, thinking they would honor him, but they caught him and killed him.
Jesus spoke this parable to the wicked people about himself at that time. Christ himself had been sent to the Jews, who had been the people of God for ages past, but who had wandered into sin. From time to time God had sent good prophets to warn the Jews, but often the prophets were persecuted.
At last God sent Jesus, his only Son, and him they killed.
The Wheat and the Tares
Christ told another parable. It was of a man who sowed good seed in his field; but while the servants slept, an enemy came and sowed tares, or weeds, and then went away so that the servants knew nothing of it.
When the wheat grew, the tares also grew. When the servants noticed the tares, they asked the owner what it meant, as they sowed only good seed. He answered that an enemy had sown the tares. But he said that they should let both grow till the harvest, and that then the tares would be gathered and burned, but the wheat gathered into the barn.
Jesus explained this: The field, he said, means the world; the owner means Jesus himself; the wheat means the persons who become Christians; the tares are sowed by Satan; and the weeds are wicked men.
The wicked men and Christians are together here in this world, but at the judgment-day the righteous will go to heaven and the wicked will be punished.
The King's Marriage-Feast
Another parable was of a king's marriage-feast.
The king invited certain ones to the feast, but they would not come; so he made an open invitation and sent his servants into the highways to invite as many as they could find, and these people came.
God sent Jesus to the world, and he invited the Jews to accept the kingdom of God, but they would not. Though some Jews accepted Jesus, yet as a nation they did not, and God was displeased with them for it. When the Jews would not accept Jesus, God extended the invitation to the Gentiles, or all other people.
God now has the feast prepared. He invites people to come to Jesus and have their hearts made pure and enjoy the rich blessings of the kingdom—righteousness, joy, and peace. He extends the invitation to all.
If we will not give heed to his invitation to accept Jesus, we shall be left out of the kingdom, and others will take our place.
A Lesson on Forgiveness
The man kneeling in the picture owed the king hundreds and hundreds of dollars. He had no money to pay the king. The king said that this man and his wife and children must be sold and the money used to pay the debt. The man begged the king to wait a while, promising that by and by he would give him the money. The king then felt sorry for the poor man and said the man would not need to pay him any money. The man arose and walked away.
Soon he met a friend who owed him a little money. He spoke harshly to the friend and told him to pay the money. The friend did not have any money. He kneeled down before the man and said, "Wait a while, and by and by I will give you the money." But the man seemed to have forgotten that the king had been kind to him. He had the friend put in jail. When the king heard about this, he did not like it, and he punished the hard-hearted man.
We are like the man in the picture. We ask God to be good to us and forgive us when we do wrong. Then, maybe, we are not good to our little friends when they do wrong to us. If they do a bad thing to us, we want to pay them back. We should not do this way. Jesus said that if we would not forgive others, God would not forgive us. To forgive our friends means to be just as good to them when they do wrong to us as when they do good to us.
Jesus Loves the Children
At one time when Jesus was teaching the people, some women brought their children to him for a blessing. The disciples thought the women should not do this, and thought Jesus did not wish to be bothered with the children.
Jesus said, "Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me; for of such is the kingdom of heaven." He loved them and held them upon his lap and blessed them.
At another time he said that unless people become converted and become as little children, they can not enter the kingdom of heaven. This means that it is necessary for them to have their sins forgiven and to be pure and innocent and free from sin in order to be in God's church in this world and to go to heaven after they die.
Jesus Heals the Sick
Jesus spent his whole life doing good. He always helped those who were in trouble. He seemed to know of the sick and suffering of the land and was always anxious to heal them.
At one time he went into the meeting-place of the Jews and saw a man there who had a hand so withered that he could not open it or stretch it out. Now, there was a Jewish law that said no work should be done on the Sabbath. The wicked people watched Jesus to see if he would heal this man on the Sabbath-day.
Jesus knew their thoughts, and so he asked the people, "If any of you had a sheep which should fall into a pit on the Sabbath, would you not help it out?" Then he said that if it was right to help a sheep, it was much more so to be good to man.
After that he said to the man, "Stretch out your hand," and he stretched it out.
Jesus Nearing Jerusalem
One day Jesus and his disciples were on their way to a great city. This city was Jerusalem. Jesus told them that there many cruel things would be done to him and that he would be killed.
The disciples did not think this would happen to Jesus. They thought he would be a great king and sit on a throne. Two of these men were James and John. They came with their mother and bowed before Jesus as you see in the picture. James and John wanted to be great. They asked Jesus to let one of them sit on the right side and the other on the left of his throne. Jesus told them that the way to be great was to do good, kind deeds.
Jesus was the greatest person who has ever lived, and he spent all his life doing good to those who were in need of help.
As Jesus and his men went toward the city, many people went with him. Two blind men were sitting by the road. They heard the crowd coming. When they knew that Jesus was coming, they asked him to open their eyes. Jesus was always ready to help those who were in trouble. He opened the eyes of the two blind men so they could see.
Many little boys and girls kneel down at mama's knee or by the bed in the evening and pray to God. Often Jesus went up on a high hill to pray. In the picture Jesus is on a hill-top. He went there to pray. He took three of his disciples with him. They were Peter, James, and John.
See the two men by the side of Jesus, and see how bright Jesus looks. The two men came from heaven to talk with Jesus. Peter, James, and John had never seen Jesus look so beautiful before. The Bible says that his face shone like the sun and that his clothes looked bright like snow when the sun shines upon it.
The three disciples heard God's voice. The voice said, "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him." When they heard it, they fell on their faces, for they were afraid.
Soon the two men went away, and Jesus looked as he did before. He touched his disciples and told them not to be afraid.
Then they went down the hill. They found many people. They saw a poor boy who was sick, and Jesus made him well.
Feeding the Multitude
When Jesus was here on earth, he preached to the people, and many listened to his words. He went from place to place talking of God, healing the sick and lame, and doing much good everywhere he went.
At one time when he had been preaching to about five thousand people for a long time, they all became hungry. There was no food for the people to eat, except five small loaves of bread and two small fishes.
But Jesus blessed the bread and broke it and gave it to the people. They all had all they wanted, and there was a good portion left.
Jesus was the Son of God, and anything he said would be done. So it was with the bread. He multiplied it, so that the people were all satisfied.
In the Bible we read: "Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever." This means that he has just as much power today and can do as much for us as he did when he was here upon earth.
The Death of Jesus
Many were the good deeds done by Jesus while he was here on earth, and many people believed on him and followed him.
Some very wicked men did not like Jesus and abused him whenever they could. Just before they killed him, they put a crown of thorns on his head, and the sharp points pierced his brow and were very painful.
He was nailed to a large cross, and was left there until he died. Some good men buried him in a stone tomb, but in three days he arose and afterwards he went up to heaven.
He died for our sins, so that we can be saved from our sins in this life and go to live with him when we die.
Jesus Our Savior
Our Savior is Jesus. He died to save us from our sins in this world, and to save us from eternal death when we die.
Suppose that a girl should be out on the water in a boat and should fall out of it into the water, and some men close by with a large boat would get to her right away; they would save her life, would they not? Yes.
Just so Jesus came to save us. We were lost because we all have sinned and disobeyed God, but we can be saved from our sins if we ask Jesus to forgive us. He will forgive our sins and will not hold them against us any more.
When our sins are forgiven, we are Christians, and Jesus will help us to live right from that time on.
We shall not have a desire to do the bad things which so many boys and girls do, but we shall want to live right and be good.
He can keep us from sin every day and hour if we trust him. So Jesus is our Savior.
Moments of Prayer
How good it is that all can pray! The Lord is always waiting to hear and answer our prayers. When we pray, we talk with God; we must listen closely when he talks to us and do whatever he says.
When we get ready for bed in the evening, we should not forget to pray. We should remember that the Lord has been good to us all the day long. He has kept us from all harm, and given us food and clothes. We should also thank him for a home and parents and friends. Even the air we breathe comes from him.
Then in the morning we should again kneel down, and thank God for his care through the night. The Lord loves to hear children pray.
After we pray, we should try hard to be good. The Lord will surely help us if we ask him. Then, do not forget to pray.
Father dear, I humbly bow By my little bedside now. Thou hast kept me through the night, Till the morning, clear and bright; Thou hast given rest and sleep; Thou dost e'er a vigil keep Through the silent hours of night While the stars and moon are bright. Blessed Father, through the storm Thou hast kept me from all harm; And thy loving hand is near, Guarding me from harm and fear. Help me now, I ask of thee, That my daily walk may be Like a little Christian true, In my words, and actions too; Keep me from all harm again As thou didst last night. Amen.
Father dear, I humbly bow At thy feet and ask thee now: Keep me through this dreary night, Wake me with the morning's light; Let no danger hover near, Let no sorrow, sigh, or fear Break my slumber; but on thee Let my thoughts and dreamings be. Father bless, and may I prove That I've tasted of thy love. Keep my tongue and let me talk Of thy goodness. Help me walk As a Christian every day; Keep me ever true, I pray. Let no harm or sickness come Near our happy little home. In thy hands my all I lay; May I never from thee stray. Keep me, Lord, I ask again. Praise the blessed Lord! Amen.
O Lord, I bow My little head To thank thee for My daily bread. I pray thee bless This daily food; I pray thee bless It to my good.
Oh, may my soul This day be giv'n The Bread of Life, Sent down from heav'n. Oh, keep me now This day from sin, From harm and sickness Free. Amen.
Visit the Sick
Do you not know some one who is sick? Some little boy or girl may be in bed with a fever, and would be so glad to see you come into the room with a bunch of flowers or some other little gift. How happy the sick one would be!
Are you not glad to see your friends when you are sick? It makes you forget some of your pain for a time, does it not?
When we give a bunch of flowers to a friend, a teacher, or some one who is sick, it is the same as saving, "I love you."
Can you not get a good book and show the sick ones some pictures, or read to them? You can read about Jesus, who had pity on all the sick and healed them.
Jesus was very kind, and was glad to take away the aches and pains when the people came to him.
He had great power to heal all kinds of sickness, and in several places in the Bible we read that "he healed all the sick" that came to him.
He can heal us now if we trust him and ask for his healing power. Jesus can do all things.
He can do many things for us if we live true to him, and ask him for the things that we need as we would ask mama for a piece of bread or cake. Jesus never fails to supply our needs if we are his true children and live for him. Let us have faith in God.
Do a Kindness
"Do a kindness, do it well; Angels will the story tell.
"Do a kindness, tell it not; Angels' hands will mark the spot.
"Do a kindness, though 'tis small; Angel voices sing it all.
"Do a kindness, never mind! What you lose the angels find.
"Do a kindness, do it now; Angels know it all, somehow.
"Do a kindness any time; Angels weave it into rhyme.
"Do a kindness, it will pay; Angels will rejoice that day.
"Kindly deeds and thoughts and words Bless the world like songs of birds."
The Blind Girl
Blind persons can not see anything. They can not tell what any person looks like. They can not see the sun, moon, trees, birds, flowers, or any of the pretty things that we see.
They can not read as we do, but they read by feeling with the ends of their fingers. There are books with raised letters or dots on the pages for the blind, and by feeling the shape of them they can read.
See the poor blind girl reading the book. Poor girl! she can hear the birds sing, and can smell the pretty flowers, but she can not see how lovely they are.
When Jesus was here on earth, he healed the blind who came to him. He is still just as able to heal the blind eyes so people can see as he was while here on earth. But it takes faith in God, who is all-powerful.
The Little Cripple
I am sitting by my window In my lonely little room; Every little boy seems happy, While my life is filled with gloom. Yonder see the children running, Hear them laugh in childish play; Like the butterflies and birdies, Playing all the live-long day.
Once I ran as other children; Now I'm but a cripple-boy. As I watch them through my window, How their games they do enjoy! How I'd love to hear their footsteps Coming to my open door! It would make me feel as cheerful As in happy days of yore.
Yet I'm thankful for dear mother, Who so gently smooths my brow, Tells me pleasant little stories Of her childhood days, and how She once wandered in the meadow, With the cattle and the sheep, Picking buttercups and daisies Till the stars began to peep.
Then she tells me of the Savior, How upon this earth he trod, How he came to us from heaven— Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Now his home is up in glory With the happy angel band; But he comes and blesses children And protects them by his hand.
Then she kneels down by my bedside, As the twilight shadows fall, And we ask the Lord to kindly Guide and keep us one and all; Then he makes us very happy, Gives us blessings rich and true, And I know with all the children, Jesus loves the cripples too.
Children love to play on the bridge over the creek, or sit down in the tall grass on the banks and pick wild flowers.
Sometimes the dog swims in the water after a stick and brings it ashore. Dogs can swim in the water; but if the children should get into deep water, they could not get out, and would drown if some one did not come to help them out.
There are many, many children living in the cities who do not have the chance to play in the green grass or pick wild flowers like the children who live in the country. How much they would enjoy doing so!
God made the water and land, the grass and flowers, and intended that the children and all people should enjoy them.
Jesus once said, "Consider the lilies, how they grow; they toil not, they spin not; ... if then God so clothe the grass which is today in the field, ... how much more will he clothe you, O ye of little faith?"
God takes care of the flowers, the grass, and the trees, and he can care for us.
The Country Boy
I love to see the country boy, With body large and strong. He sings while he is doing chores, And whistles all day long.
He drives the cows down to the lane, And feeds the chickens, too. He carries wood for mama dear, Who has so much to do.
He goes to school and studies hard His lessons day by day; He's always ready at recess, To romp and jump and play.
God bless the boys! the country boys! They soon will be our men. We know not then what they may do With deed or thought or pen.
But other boys as well as he, Can study, learn, and do, Can live a grand and noble life, To right and God be true.
God Sees All Things
One time a little boy was sent by his papa to plant some beans. He worked a while, then he sat down to play. While he was playing, he spilled part of his beans. At once he began to pick them up.
There were so many beans that he became tired. Then he thought he could cover them up with dirt. He thought no one would ever know he had spilled them. At last he got the rest of the beans planted and went home.
He often thought of the beans he had spilled. But he did not tell his papa. Some time after this his papa went to the patch. He wanted to see how the beans were growing. He found that all of them had come up—even those that the boy had spilled and had not picked up. The boy did not need to tell his papa then what he had done. For his papa knew it all.
So it is with some bad things you may have done. You may think that no one will ever know of them. But the secret will come out some time. Even if no person should ever find it out, God sees all you do. You can not hide anything from him.
Be Kind to the Aged
One fine spring day six children went to the woods to gather wild flowers. Oh, how they enjoyed the warm sunshine while they filled their little baskets with violets, buttercups, and spring beauties! And the air was filled with the sweet perfume.
The flowers were so pretty and there were so many that the children could hardly stop when the baskets were filled. Soon they started for home. "Let's give some flowers to the old people," said one. "Yes, let's do," said the rest, and off they went, and many were the smiles from the old people that day.
Let us be kind to the aged. When we meet any one who is old, let us speak to them kindly and give them a smile.
The old people did much for us when we were too small to care for ourselves. Let us not forget their kindness.
Little thoughts of kindness, Little deeds of love, Lead you from the wrong way To the heaven above.
"My heart is God's little garden, And the fruits that grow each day Are the things that he sees me doing, And the words that he hears me say.
"The flowers in God's little garden Are 'joy' and 'truth' and 'love'; And the seed by the Master planted Is raised in the garden above.
"There's a spring in God's little garden, Whose waters, so sweet and clear, Flow out into other gardens Which God plants very near.
"I must tend to God's little garden, Lest the weeds and the sharp thorns grow; If the flowers should droop and wither, His heart would be sad, I know."
A Baby for a Nickel
A man told a little girl that he would sell his baby for a nickel. She liked babies well and thought that was very cheap. She ran home quickly to get the money. Her mama was very busy. She gave her the nickel and did not stop to listen to what the little girl wanted.
The little girl ran back to the man to get the baby. Of course, the man would not give up his baby. He did not mean what he had said. This made the little girl cry very hard.
Her mama always told the truth. She thought others meant what they said, just like her mama.
It was wrong for the man not to tell the truth. We often make others feel very bad when we say things that we do not mean.
We All Must Die
Some people are very wicked. This means that they do many bad things and do not love God. Some men swear and lie and steal and also do other sinful things.
To tell a lie is to say things that are not true, and to steal is to take something that belongs to some one else.
Now, it is very wrong to swear, lie, or steal. God does not want us to do any such things. All who do wicked things will some day be punished.
Some day we shall die, for all of us must die. If a man should be going some place through the deep snow and should get lost and the cold should freeze him, it would kill him. He would not live any longer, but would be dead.
If we love God and live for him, he will give us a home in heaven after we die; but if we are wicked, we shall be lost and punished for our wicked ways after we die.
We should think about our life here and see that we live to please God.
If we do not, when we come to die we may be like the man in the boat. At one time he could have been saved—while he was floating on the smooth waters. But he has let it go too far, and can only look forward to his doom.
Let us love God and live for him on earth, so we can live with him in heaven after we die. When Christ was here on earth he said: "I go to prepare a place for you, ... that where I am, there ye may be also."
The Path of God
The path of God That Jesus trod Is just the path for me; I'll walk each day The narrow way, Where all is victory.
Oh, let us fight For truth and right, And Satan e'er defeat; God giveth grace In every place And victory complete.
Our life we give, And e'er we'll live For Christ, and tell his love To fallen man Where'er we can; At last be crowned above.
The frontispiece illustration has been moved to follow the title page. Other illustrations have been moved, where necessary, so that they do not fall in the middle of a paragraph or verse.
The page number in the Table of Contents for Be Kind to the Aged has been amended from 118 to 117.