Home as God intended it is built upon the corner-stone of virtue and prayer. It makes no difference how beautiful the house nor how grand its contents, if the mother is a woman who does not care for God or virtue, the corner-stone of that home is lacking. Such a home can not stand when trial and temptation enter.
A stream never rises above its source, nor a home above the ideals of its founders. No matter how humble the home, do not belittle its possibilities. Anything so sacred as home can command heaven's choicest and best blessings. The humblest cabin may contain that element which makes home the shrine of happiness and the temple of peace, and will cause it to send forth saints and heroes.
Oh that parents, especially mothers, could realize their influence in the home, their power to direct the young minds around them into the proper channel! Let us so educate and train the children that they will be able to get the greatest good from their natural endowment and that they may use it in such a manner as will bring the most glory to God. So train them and so live before them in the home that in after-years they will say with pleasure: |This precept was always taught me by my parents. Father and Mother's holy example has been a priceless birthright to me.|
This is true parenthood. It should be the ideal in every home. By this I mean parents who realize their responsibility and have their children's best interest at heart; parents who will sacrifice any pleasure of their own for the benefit and happiness of their little ones; parents who will not only bid their children a hearty welcome into the world, but will care for their future from that moment, and who have the love and respect of their entire household.
You may say that parents like these are few and hard to find. True, but it is equally so that, with proper knowledge and understanding, many would approach this standard. Perhaps some have allowed years to slip carelessly by and their darlings to pass seemingly beyond their control. To such I would say, It is never too late to pray.
Observe the wayward boy whose chief inheritance is a wild, wilful nature. He is nearing his fourteenth birthday. Having been allowed to have his own way while small, he has cultivated an ungovernable desire to do as he pleases. Let the mother of that boy cease her old habit of saying, |I don't know what will become of that boy! I don't understand how he can treat me so rudely. I've done all I can, and he just grows worse,| and take a more rational method. Have you gone to that boy and told him the sweet, simple story of Jesus and why he came from his beautiful home; that a part of his mission was to teach you how to make your home after the pattern of his heavenly home; that his heart is touched with compassion when he beholds any one in trouble; that he is grieved because you have made a mistake; but that you are sorry and are decided to do your duty? Have you told the boy all that? Have you knelt beside his bed at night with your tear-dimmed eyes pressed upon his hand, and told him the great dangers that are before him, even surrounding him, and informed him how to avoid them? Have you told him that he is at the most critical time in his life, that a mistake now will mean a life of suffering for both him and you, and that he can with you begin over and remove some of his past mistakes? Have you talked thus to your boy? If not, why not? It is your privilege as well as your duty.