A Brief Narrative Of Suffering

ABOUT thirty years ago, Mr. E., then

residing in Western New York, having occasion

to visit Mass., hired his passage on one of

the boats running on the Erie canal. Most of

the passengers, as is generally the case on such

boats, were rude, thoughtless and wicked. But

there were at least two exceptions. There were

two passengers who could not participate in

their sinful recreations, for grief was deeply

rooted in their hearts. One of these was a man

who appeared to be about forty-five years of

age, whose pale, sickly countenance indicated

the deep anxiety and sorrow of his heart. The

other, his daughter, about nine years of age.

The father had been living in the State of Ohio,

where one after another of his family were

stricken down with the yellow fever, and soon

with a heavy heart he was called to follow them

to the grave. He was now returning with his

only remaining child, who was then suffering

with the same fever. They were going to

Rochester, N. Y. The last night had arrived

that they were to stay on the boat. What a

night of suffering was it to this poor child!

The passengers had all retired to rest and left

her alone. Her father was sick in another

part of the cabin. There she lay with a burning

fever, with no light in her room, crying

and begging for water. But she plead in vain.

The unfeeling woman who it appears had the

care of her, told her to be still, she had had

water enough. "0 dear, I shall die," said the

little sufferer, and soon after her voice was

hushed. Before morning some one got up,

took a light and went to the place where she

lay. She was dead. The next morning the

father was seen gazing at the cold and lifeless

form of his darling child. The boat stopped at

Rochester, where she was taken to be buried.

As we review the short narrative of this lonely

one, our hearts are filled with the deepest

sympathy. We see her in our mind the happy

inmate of a happy family, surrounded by kind

friends, brothers and sisters, and what is dearer

than all, a tender mother, who watched over

her in sickness and in health. We follow her

till they are all one by one taken from her, and

she left among strangers to suffer and die. And

this is not a solitary case. While the rich have

many friends, the poor are often despised, 

forsaken and uncared for. But they who have

the Spirit of him who wept with the two sisters

at the grave of Lazarus, will not act thus.

What Christian mother would not have craved

the privilege of watching over this dear child

in her last moments, of bathing her feverish

brow, lifting the cooling water to her parched

lips, kneeling by her side in earnest prayer,

and pointing her to him who once said, Suffer

little children to come unto me ?

Dear children, you who have parents, brothers

and sisters, learn to prize them as you

ought. Thank God that you have not been

deprived of them as was this little girl. Be

sure never to speak one unkind word to your

brothers or sisters. See that you do nothing

to mar the peace of your tender mother. Be

kind to your father. Fear God and keep his

commandments, and soon with all the redeemed

you may share that home where sorrow can

never come.