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dren-those who are only young in age, children of four and five years old-for blessed are those who begin in their earliest years to keep
II. But I would speak to you as children in understanding.- For many of you may not be able to make out the meaning of all I have been saying. Your minds have not followed
Your attention has been wearied. Now I do not wish to tire you ; but let me ask you a question or two. If you cannot understand all I have said, can you understand that Jesus Christ died to save sinners ? Can you understand that you must be made good children before you can go to heaven? Can you understand, that all wickedness makes God angry with you? Can you understand that you must read your Bibles, say your prayers, leave off what is sinful, and take care against being drawn into temptation ? Now something of this you may easily make out. You can understand the little histories of Scripture, and our Saviour's parables. And if you follow God's will so far as you know it, your path shall be as the shining light of the sun, which shineth more and more unto the full mid-day. The great thing is to be willing. If there is a will, there is a way. And when children really wish to serve Jesus Christ, they can understand quite
enough to be put into the way to heaven; and as they grow up, they shall know more and more of every thing really good for them.
· III. I would speak to you as children in grace. For it is the grace of God which alone can help you to do all I have been saying to you. And every one who really desires, God's blessed Spirit to change his heart, and who prays to him for it, is a child of grace. Such an one shall grow in wisdom as well as in stature. The grace of God is like a grain of mustard seed, which is the least of all seeds, but when it groweth, it is the greatest of herbs. Do not then be discouraged, my dear children, at your weakness, and the little progress you make. Go on in serving Christ Jesus, and you shall get stronger and stronger. I would comfort and encourage every child before me who is seeking God's favour, though only faintly. If there are any good desires after Jesus Christ in your heart, follow those desires, and pray for more of them. Children in the grace of God are like young trees planted in a garden. At first, young trees are weak and sickly; but by degrees they get stronger, their roots become fixed in the ground, the trunk is covered with bark, the branches spread around and are covered with leaves, and they can stand against the most violent storms. Thus you are now young and tender in religion, but you shall grow stronger by little and little. Your knowledge, and faith, and love, and obedience, shall be increased and confirmed; and in hearkening to Christ's word you shall have such a solid blessedness given you, as to carry you through life, and make you a conqueror over death, and bring you in holy triumph to heaven.