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So in these “Thoughts,” I do not wish to lead you to compare one post with another. Rather let us look at all of them from this highest point of view. In the work of our hands we can bring honour to God, no matter how the world may estimate our occupation.
Now with this feeling in our hearts, let us give a little thought to the peculiar advantages and disadvantages which attend such a position as we have spoken of—the position of young women in business. We will take the advan
I do not think there is much doubt that most
may be summed up in the one word of which we English people think so much, and so often make mistakes about-the word "liberty," or in other words, “ freedom to do pretty much as I like," which words sound very enchanting to most young ears.
And this freedom or liberty extends to a good many things—to coming and going—to dress
to the dwelling-place—to the Sundays—and to the leisure time generally.
Now about coming and going.
We know that young women in service give their time and ability to the master and mistress who engage their services. They will want an opportunity to go abroad now and then either for business or pleasure, but necessarily their own convenience must give way before that of the family they serve.
Young women in business, especially those who work at their own homes, have much more freedom of action on this point. Out of business hours their time is their own, and they come and go as they please. They give or accept invitations, and altogether see more of the world and its ways and doings than those "shut up in a situation.
Then about dress.
A servant is encouraged to be scrupulously clean and neat in her attire, but she knows
” it would be out of place if she sought to display in her apparel, under the eyes of her employers or elsewhere, every change or freak of fashion.
Now young women in business have no let or hindrance in such things. It is true that while they are in the shop or workroom there is almost always some restrictions, yet their own taste or the prevailing mode are the only guides they submit to at all other times. And you are at liberty respecting the friends
A master or mistress may object to acquaintances of a certain kind, or a par
a ticular class. In business, you choose your companions without any interference.
Well, all these things are advantages. It is nice to be able to have some time all your own, and to exhibit your taste in your dress, and to call whom you please “ friend.”
And, besides, very often a young woman in business can live at home. We should belie
our natures, if the parents and brothers and sisters who belong to us were not very dear to us indeed. You are old enough now to understand and sympathise with the general family care, which presses on the elder members of your family, and you are young enough to enter very heartily into all the joys and pleasures of the younger ones. If you were to be separated from them you know how much you would be missed, what a gap would be made for them, and how it would try the warm loving heart in your own bosom; so you feel that to be able to stay with them all, to join your income to theirs, and thus help to stablish and strengthen the family roof tree, to be with them in times of sorrow or gladness, to feel with the lady who ministered to Elisha's comforts, the sweetness of dwelling “among my own people,” is worth to you more than you can express.
And if on either side there is delicate health; if the mother is failing or the father weak; if
You feel your
there is one especial darling who is afflicted, who loves you most, who fancies that no one
so minister to their ease and comfort as you can do, then the advantage of " being in business »
is great indeed. home ties and duties to be very precious to you, and you count it a great blessing that you are able in any measure to sustain or serve those so dear. In choosing your work, you know, and the knowledge is sweet, that “myself” and “my own advantage” was not the only considerations which influenced you.
And then the Sundays. Here surely is one very great boon. How very much can be done with a “Sunday to one's self.” You can spend it at rest among your friends. You can decide for yourself which church you will attend, and with which body of Christians you will worship.
We very often forget that almost every privilege brings us also a corresponding responsibility, or perhaps danger. It is no easy matter to draw a