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VHE December number of the blest duties offerings to him, dwell in
Leares comes to us with words the very zenith of its brightness.
full of comfort and encourage. Every duty, poor and inconsequent ment, and, with a dear sister, we feel as it may seem at the time, when perlike exclaiming,
formed to the best of one's ability, is Autumn Leaves grow better with done for Christ, and thus it becomes each number! But is it only this? a holy and a precious work, a work Or is it also that our lives are blend- for him, the giver of all good. And ing more harmoniously with the teach- it is this faith in God, which causes ings of Christ, thus fitting us to us to believe he will accept and cherappreciate them wherever and when- ish these humble offerings. That ever found? We trust and believe glorifies them. this is true.
Faith whispers to us the sweet mes. Our faith in God and his promise to sage, too, that death is not the end of the Saints is just as strong as it was our existence, that the tomb is not our the day it led our feet into the waters final abode. It tells us of a life beof baptism. How can it waver or yond the valley of death, of an eternal grow dim, when we reflect upon the home on the other side of the grave! many blessings it has brought us? Ah! what blessed assurances, what
Of late we have been thinking a bright pictures does it hold up to our great deal about the gifts of the gos- view! pel and their importance in our daily Dear friends, pause for a moment to warfare. If one only could be granted view and fully comprehend them. an individual, which should he choose, not the great difference between our which would be most desirable?
conditions here and those which will To us it seems that faith, more than surround us there, very apparent to others, would bring joy and happiness, all? We have here the heartaches, as it is the foundation for all the but there we shall have the pulses of promises and blessings of God. Paul joy; here, the prayers and the longsays it is the substance of things ings, there the praise and content; hoped for, the evidence of things not here, the stumblings and the tears, seen. As such it is the foundation of but there, the path clearly shown and erery hope or desire in this life and in from the lips ascend glad songs of the life to come.
victory. Being, as it is, the embodiment of Where now it seems so drear, lookhumility and love, without it, this ing, as we do, but through a glass gracious gift of faith, the promises of darkly, then all will be bright; we God avail us nothing: for he has made shall see as we are seen and know as it the primary condition upon the ex- we are known. ercise of which hang the blessings “We see, but never reach the height, assured us.
That lies forever in the light," With its help we are enabled to en- may be true of our condition here, but ilure, to battle successfully with the then regrets will be unknown. We host of difficulties to be encountered shall stand firmly upon heights of in this Christian warfare.
purity now seemingly unattainable. This principle of faith is one which Then what has greater power to dwells to a greater or less degree in bless and comfort our lives than faith? erery heart, and which will, in the It hovers near the infant, walks hand same proportion, be cherished as long in hand with the child. Yes, it keeps as life shall last.
step with more mature and firmer Those who bring into their daily tread. service of God a goodly measure of If we would but listen, we could this gift and let it glorify their every hear all through the journey of life, its act and thought, making of the hum- many whispered words of hope and
cheer, when all else seems drear and would live up to the knowledge they waste.
possess.” And when we near the goal, the Ah, if we would but live up to the close of our earthly pilgrimage, we
standard we have raised! If we would find it is still our companion in our
but let others see by our daily actions silent walk to the grave.
that we appreciate the light we have
received. We cross the river of death and it stands upon the opposite shore to bid
But we realize that many times we us welcome, to whisper again that God
do not come up to the mark we have
have set for others to reach. lives, and as he lives, we shall live also; that we shall be like him, that
But the gospel is unchangeable, and we shall see him as he is.
the fact that we stand or fall, "come
up higher," or sink into misery cannot In correspondence with a lady, ear
alter the truth of this latter-day work. nestly investigating our doctrine, she
Let us one and all strive earnestly once wrote that which impressed me
for the faith as delivered to the Saints strongly:-
of ancient days. Then we shall be “I am very favorably_impressed able to overcome all obstacles and inwith the teachings of the Latter Day deed be as a light set upon a hill Saints. I know of none better, if they which cannot be hid.
"It was late in mild October, and the long amid the waves and braids of her
autumnal rain Had left the summer harvest fields all green
smooth, soft hair and imprinted the with grass again:
shadow of the clinging vine on the The first sharp frosts had fallen, leaving all carpet at her feet. Presently she the woodlands gay
turned to young girl sitting With the hues of summer's rainbow, or the
farther back in the room busy with meadow flowers of May."
her needle, saying.Fit had been the identical day Mabel "Amy, the day is just perfect. I was then enjoying upon which the have literally been absorbing it into
poet had looked forth, he could my being for the last hour. Come, have given no more accurate descrip- lay down your work and let us go for tion of it. It was late in October, but a walk. We may not have another while the air held the mellow autumn- such a day in a long, long time." nal haze so peculiar to the Indian "No, perhaps, before another ausummer time, the sun shone bright tumn comes," answered Amy," and if and clear, pouring down upon the you will wait just a few moments I earth a flood of warmth and light will have finished this work and we which was rapidly ripening the golden can go by and leave it at Aunt Marears of corn in the fields. The frost tha's." had opened the shell of the hazel and **What is it you are doing?” asked hickory nuts and from the boughs of Mabel, now for the first time noticing the forest trees waved many a banner the garment on which Amy had all the of crimson and gold.
afternoon been busily sewing. Upon this beauty of field, wood, and “I am just finishing a dress I have autumn coloring Mabel Grant was been making for Cousin Anna,” she looking forth as the day waned and answered. “Aunt Martha has not the sun sank towards the west. It been well this fall and I found this was so quiet, calm, and peaceful that in her work basket when I was there it harmonized most perfectly with her yesterday and brought it home with dreamy mood. The sun found way me. There, the last stitch is taken for his parting beams to enter be- and I am so glad, for I have been longtween the leaves and they lingered ing for a walk all this afternoon."
“Longing for a walk!" exclaimed of the homes they passed. A silence Mabel. Why did you not let the at last fell between them, and their sewing wait until a rainy day? We steps grew slower, moved perhaps by might have had such a lovely time.” an indefinite feeling that the steps
"But Cousin Anna needs the dress retarded would prolong the hour. to wear to school, and then, you know, Crossing a rustic bridge where, at the present is the golden moment. seasons of the year when rain was Each rainy day will bring its own plentiful, a stream rushed along, inwork, be sure of that,” said Amy as: stinctively they paused leaning over she folded up the dress, and putting the railing and taking in the full on her hat joined Mabel at the gate. beauty of the scene. The borders of
Never was an evening in autumn the dry bed of the stream, the banks more perfect and seemingly the en- and for some yards back where the joyment of Mabel and Amy was fields had not been cultivated, were perfect. But could
anyone have one perfect tangle of purple and white penetrated the most secret thoughts asters growing in rich luxuriance, and feelings of each heart, they would while the wild sunflowers mingling have discovered a difference, of which with the golden-rod, touched here and perhaps the girls themselves were not there by the rays of the sun, made aware. Mabel enjoyed it with a sense them fairly resplendent with dazzling of the pleasure she took in all things color and beauty. beautiful, but added to this there was **How perfectly lovely!" said Mabel. in Amy's enjoyment a keen sense of "It must have been a scene like this having first earned the pleasure. Nor that inspired the poet when he called was this all. Her walk was not aim- October the “carnival month' and less, but while she took in every wrote the beautiful description of it I beauty of nature and counted every was reading just this morning. Do step, almost every respiration of the you remember it, Amy?" pure crisp air a delight, there was the “No, I do not think I ever read it. consciousness of a kind act done, and Perhaps you can repeat it?" answered she felt the ready gratitude with
her cousin. which Aunt Martha would receive it. "I will try, though I am not sure
Withal she was very quiet, and few that I remember it all,” said Mabel, would have judged her to be the hap- and then with a well-cultured voice pier of the two. Mabel chatted as
and in modulated accents she repeated they walked along. revealing by her the stanza:words the various fancies of her im
The month of carnival of all the year. agination, her love of the beautiful When nature lets the wild earth go its way. and finally her aspirations to be useful And spend whole seasons on a single day.
The Springtime holds her white and purple dear; in the world.
October, lavish, flaunts them far and near. "I wonder,” she said at last, as if The Summer charily her reds doth lay
Like jewels on her costliest array: giving expression to a thought which
October, scornful, burns them on a bier. had been troubling her. I wonder The Winter hoards his pearls of fros in sign why it is that, while I often desire to
Of kingdom: whiter pearls than Winter knew,
Or empress wore in Egypt's ancient line. be useful, I never seem to remember October, feasting 'neath her dome of blue. in time. I might have helped you
Drinks at a single draught, slow filtered through
Sunshiny air, as in a tingling wine!" with that work this afternoon," she said half doubtfully, "and then our . It is very fine." said Amy. walk would have been longer.”
“Yes," answered Mabei, and it has Let us enjoy more heartily what set me to studying seriously as to why we have time for,” said Amy, too it is so, for the poem is true to the happy herself to reproach her com- scene before us. What profusion, panion even in her thoughts." And what magnificence of coloring nature so they wended their way along the has bestowed just as the leaves are village street, occasionally stopping ready to fall, and how exquisite in to exchange kind words with a friend, color as well as abundant the last or pausing to admire the autumn flowers flowers of the year. Just a little while still blooming upon the lawns of some and the frost will blacken them with
his touch and leave the earth bare." cousins, left them with a cheerful
It is the richness of the coloring good-bye and started on her way as well as the profusion which im- home. The sun had set, the air was presses me most," said Amy. “Oc- growing cool, and the ruddy glow tober may burn them in scornful from Aunt Martha's old-fashioned fire mood, but memory will hold this pic. place looked very attractive as she ture forever What a wonderful stepped out into the fast gathering faculty, and how much it adds to the twilight, but with a brisk step she sum of happiness in each life!"
commenced her homeward walk, and "Yes, and of unhappiness as well," not once thinking of the temptation of Mabel answered, her voice uncon- a warm supper and pleasant company sciously revealing the shade of her home, she pursued her way and found thoughts, for against her own inclina- her reward more than ample in the tion she was contrasting the fruitage grateful look her mother gave her as and bloom lavished everywhere around with willing, helpful hands she laid her to the good works which should, the table, lit the lamps, and helped to in the autumn of life, crown that life put all things in readiness before with a glory equal to the splendor of her father came to supper. this October day, and of a character Later in the evening when Mabel, infinitely higher than this of the accompanied by one of her cousins, vegetable kingdom.
came home, she was busily engaged From the bridge the girls walked a piece of work intended as a on in silence until the home of Aunt Christmas gift for her betrothed lover. Martha was reached. It was a plain, “I had such a pleasant time with neat dwelling, and a cheerful voice Aunt Martha," said Mabel, “but we welcomed them as the door opened to were sorry you couid not have staid. admit them.
You should have seen how pleased “You have come just in time, girls,” she was when she found the dress you said Aunt Martha. "Supper is ready, had made. She thought she would so take off your wraps and enjoy it do a little work while entertaining me, with us.”
and, going to her basket, she found “Thank you, Aunt Martha,” said the dress. She seemed to know at Amy, but I must hasten home and once who had done it. Are you alhelp mamma to get our own ready. ways doing such things, Cousin Amy?" She is not strong and needs my help. Not always," Amy answered as a Mabel can stay,” she added, though blush of pleasure crept over her face, at the same time she cast a question: "and there was a time when I found ing look at her cousin behind which it very hard not only to do a kind act lurked the thought that it would be for another, but to do the simple pleasanter to have her company home. things which duty requires each one Mabel did not read this thought in to do for himself. Not that my heart Amy's face, or if she did, she did not was not willing, but I had unconrespond to it. Aunt Martha's invita- sciously acquired the habit of being tion was cordial, the sitting room was very unfaithful in my appointments cheerful, and from beyond came the with myself, and this was leading me appetizing odor of the already served to unfaithfulness in the same way supper. Their walk and the pure air with others." had sharpened her appetite, so that,
•What do you mean by appointalthough she had fully intended to re- ments with yourself?" asked Mabel. turn with Amy and help her with the •The resolutions which I was conevening work, she forgot her good stantly making of doing good to resolutions and yielded to the enjoy- others. I would waste hours of time ment of the present.
While Aunt when I should have been busily emMartha was busy carrying away ployed with my own work, in dreamMabel's wraps, Amy quietly and un- ing and planning out the good I would observed slipped the dress she had do, but when opportunities came I was made into the sewing basket and, never ready to meet them. Either after a few words exchanged with her they seemed better suited to some one else, or my own neglected work came like a upas tree, was already beginbetween me and the good I might ning to overshadow my life. have done.”
*Upon one occasion when more “I cannot realize this as ever having than usually tried with some of my been true of you," said Mabel, with a
failures, mother said to me, look of strong increduilty in her eyes. 'Who learns and learns, and acts not what he “Yes, but it is true, and many un
knows, happy moments I have suffered in con
Is one who plows and plows but never sows.' sequence of it."
There was now a powerful incentive “How did you finally overcome it,
urging me to act. I felt that never Amy, for surely it is not like your
before had so much been staked upon present self?"
the chances of victory or defeat, and. "I knew my failing, and when at times being thus thoroughly aroused, conI had been more than usually unmind- quest became comparatively easy. ful of duty I suffered keen mental re
The present was eagerly seized by me gret and would resolve to mend my
as the golden opportunity, and I never ways; but this would not last, and the
resolved upon doing anything for the habit was becoming fixed. At times
good of myself or another, without I felt that my usefulness for life was
carrying my resolve into execution as being impaired, but, while I regarded speedily as possible.” it as a fault, I did not then look upon
It is to love, then, after all,” said it as a sin. During this time I became Mabel, “that you are indebted for acquainted with Herbert, and upon victory.” one occasion when he was talking “Love and the influence of strong with father I heard him say, 'Of convictions honestly expressed. How course, Mr. Arnold, there may be many times since that day, while palliating circumstances in his case, thinking over the habit into which I but I am persuaded that Emerson was had fallen, I have felt my cheeks right when he said, "I could never burn with conscious shame as I realthink well of a man's intellectual or ized the want of moral rectitude in my moral character, if he was habitually conduct. We have really no more unfaithful to his appointments.
right to deal unjustly with ourselves They had been discussing the mer- than with others, and God never inits of promptness in meeting engage. tended us to form for eternity such ments, and father had mentioned a
dwarfed and misshapen characters as mutual friend whom he esteemed to these. I came to realize in its fullest be in other respects, an exemplary scope that this dreamy anodyne of man. I cannot tell you how this sen- lofty purpose and sentiments which tence of Herbert's affected me. Once never takes shape and form in acts is or twice already during the then short one of the most dangerous delusions period of our acquaintance I had which the soul can cherish. failed in promptness in meeting my “Of course I did not escape later engagements with him, and now it temptations, but instead of weakly was not only the chidings of my con- yielding to them as one turns upon science that troubled me, but a fear his pillow for a few more moments of crept into my heart that I had been sleep when the day is abroad and all weighed in the balance of his strict nature is awake and active, I set the sense of honor and had been found full force of my will against them and wanting. The thought came to me silently asked God to help me in overwith emotions which were doubly coming." painful, for at the same time that my "I cannot yet fully realize" said fears were awakened, I discovered the Mabel, “that you ever were so tempted nature of my feelings for him.
in this direction." That night my head pressed a “Yes, but I was, Cousin Mabel, sleepless pillow, but before I arose I and, as I have told you, I still need to had resolved that with God's help I be constantly upon my guard,” and would uproot the evil habit which, while she spoke she rose and folded