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her mamma, who was at work by the fire, looked at her, and saw that she was crying: the tears ran down her cheeks and fell upon her book. Then Mrs. Fairchild called Lucy to her, and said, “My dear child, you are crying : can you tell
what makes you unhappy ?"
Nothing, Mamma,” answered Lucy: “ I am not unhappy.”
People do not cry when they are pleased and happy, my dear,” said Mrs. Fairchild.
Lucy stood silent.
"I am your mamma, my dear,” said Mrs. Fairchild, “and I love you very much: if any thing vexes you, who should you tell it to but to your own mamma?" Then Mrs. Fairchild kissed her, and put her arms round her.
Lucy began to cry more : « Oh ! Mamma, Mamma, dear Mamma !” she said, " I don't know what vexes me, or why I have been crying.'
“Are you speaking the truth?” said Mrs. Fairchild : " do not hide any thing from me. I love you, my child: notwithstanding which, I know that you have a wicked heart, and that your wicked heart will often make you'unhappy wben there is nothing else to make you so. Whilst you are a little child, you must tell your sins to me, and I will shew
you the way by which only you may hope to overcome them : when you are bigger, and I and your papa are removed from you, then you must tell all your sins to God. Is there any thing in your wicked heart, my dear child, do you think, which makes you unhappy now?”
“ Indeed, Mamma," said Lucy, “I think there is. I am sorry that Emily has got that pretty doll. Pray do not hate me for it, Mamma: I know it is wicked in me to be sorry that Emily is happy ; but I feel that I cannot belp it.” “My dear child," said Mrs. Fairchild, “I am glad
you have confessed the truth to me. Now I will tell you why you feel this wicked sorrow; and I will tell you where to seek a cure for it. You know, my dear child, that God made man's heart pure and holy; and that, when Adam and Eve ate the for: bidden fruit, their hearts became corrupt, and those of all their children also became corrupt. The difference between a holy heart and a corrupt heart is this: a holy heart is full of " love, joy, and peace;" but corrupt hearts are full of " adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revelings, and such like.” To those who are without sin--such as the holy angels in heaven, and the spirits of just men made perfect - there is no difficulty in doing well, for they have no wicked passions driving them on to sin ; but we, who are in the world, are constantly tempted to do wickedly by our own bad hearts. Even when we wish to do well, we cannot. The wicked passion you now feel, my dear, is what is called Envy. Envy makes persons unhappy when they see others happier or better than themselves. Envy is in every man's heart by nature. Some people can hide it more than others, and others have been enabled by God's grace to overcome it in a great degree; but, as I said before, it is in the natural heart of all mankind ; and it is also felt by devils. Little children feel envious about dolls and playthings, and men and women feel envious about greater things.”
you ever feel envious, Mamma?” said Lucy. “I never saw you unhappy because other people had better things than you had.”
My heart, my dear child," answered Mrs. Fairchild, “is no better than yours. It is written in the Bible, “ As the face answereth to face, so the heart of man to man. There was a time when
I was very ényious.. When I was first married, I had no children for seven or eight years: I wishedvery much to have a baby, as you wished just now for Emily's dolk, and whenever I saw a woman with a pretty baby in her arms, I was ready to cry for vexation."
“ That was just like me, Mamma,” said Lucy; " for I was very much grieved indeed when I saw Emily's doll. But how were you cared of this wicked passion, Mamma??
Mrs. Fairchild.: " Why, my dear, I was led to confess my sin to my God; and that not once or twice, but again and again and again. I was made to know that the Lord Jesus Christ had died, not only to procure forgiveness for my sins, but to set me free from the power of sin, and to enable me, through the help of the Spirit of God, to overcome my wicked passions of all kinds."
" And did the Lord Jesus Christ hear your prayers, Mamma?” said Lucy.
Yes, my child, in his good time he did hear me," answered Mrs. Fairchild.
• Do you never feel any envy now, Mamma?”
“ I cannot say that I never feel it, my dear; but I bless God that this wicked passion has not the power over me which it used to have : I am delivered from the slavery and bondage of it, in so much so that it does not overcome me, and make me miserable, as it used to do; and I know, that, through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, I shall when I die be quite set free from this, as well as every other wicked passion."
“Oh! Mamma, Mamma !” said Lucy, unhappy wickedness makes us! I have been very miserable this morning; and what for? only because of the sin of my heart; for I have had nothing else to make me miserable."
Alas! my child," said Mrs. Fairchild, “ what would
you have more to make you wretched ! Sin itself, when it has full power over us, would make a hell without the help of fire or brimstone."
Then Mrs. Fairchild took Lucy by the hand, and went into her closet ; where they prayed that the Lord the Spirit would take the wicked passion of envy out of Lucy's heart: and as they prayed in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, who died upon the cross to deliver us from the power of sin, they did not doubt but that God would bear. their prayer: and indeed he did, for from that day Lucy never felt envious of Emily's doll, but helped Emily to take care of it and make its clothes, and was happy to have it laid on her bed, betwixt herself and sister.
I shall put down the prayer which Mrs. Fairchild used, as it may perhaps be useful to you at any time when you may feel envious of any thing your play-fellow may have.
Prayer against Envy. O Lord God, holy Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, blessed and glorious Trinity, I confess unto Thee my great wickedness. My heart is full of envy. I cannot see any body whom I think handsomer, or cleverer, or in any way better than myself, or having any thing which I should like to possess, but I am immediately troubled with envy, and my heart is filled with hatred and sorrow; as Satan was troubled when he saw Adam and Eve happy in the garden of Eden.
O Holy Spirit, I thank thee for having made me to know this my great sin. By thy help I was brought to this knowledge. I might have been envious and spiteful all my life, if thou hadst not shewn me this my great sin. O thou that searchest the heart, finish the great work which thou hast
begun, and take envy out of my heart, that I may be like the angels of heaven, who rejoice in each other's happiness, and delight in each other's glory. Give me a heart to rejoice in the happiness of my brothers and sisters, and of my school-fellows and my play-fellows; and if they are prettier than I am, or cleverer than I am, teach me not to be envious; or if they have better clothes or nicer playthings, still help me not to be envious.
O Holy Spirit, come into my heart, and make it clean from every wicked passion; that I may live in peace in this world, and at the last day enter into glory. I have no right to ask the blessing in my own name; but I ask it in the name of my dear Saviour, who his own self bare my sins in his own body on the tree, that I, being dead in sins, should live unto righteousness; by whose stripes I am healed. (1 Peter ii. 24.)
And now, O holy Father, blessed Lord Jesus, and thou Holy Spirit, pardon the imperfect prayers, of a wicked child.
« Our Father,” &c. &c.
In smiling crowds draw near;
A Saviour's voice to hear.
Stoops to converse with you
Your friendship to pursue :--
“ Is sure my love to gain ;
6 Sball never seek in vain."
If once compar'd with thee !