“Yes, dear, it is. No girl should ever be married while she is so young.”
ANSWERS TO PRAYER.
During the summer Bessie’s cousin John and a boy friend came to visit her. They spent many pleasant hours on the lake. One day while they were about two miles from home, a fierce storm arose. They noticed the sky growing dark and tried very hard to reach home; but, when still some distance from the shore, they could see that instead of making any headway they were drifting before the wind.
It was a serious moment. As the great waves dashed up over them, each adding to the amount of water in the boat, Bessie looked first at her cousin toiling away at the oars, the great drops of perspiration coursing down his face, then at their friend nearly wild with terror, and then at the western sky. “John,” said she to her cousin, “I believe that’s rain coming toward us.” Until then the boy, who was a little older than Bessie, had been brave; but as he turned to look, his face blanched with terror, and he said, “Bessie, if that is rain, it will certainly sink our boat; for, see, it is nearly half full of water now.”
The situation was certainly critical, but Bessie felt that it was not the time to despair. She remembered that in olden times Jesus had calmed the sea. Believing that he could still do the same, she prayed for help from heaven. Then, encouraging her cousin to do his best, she, assisted by their friend, began to bale out the water as rapidly as they could. In a few moments the great drops of rain were dashing down upon them. Without speaking, all kept at their work for what seemed to them an hour, but which was really but a short time. Suddenly it ceased raining; and, looking about them, they saw that the lake was perfectly quiet—not a ripple could be seen. With trembling voice Bessie said, “John, God must have sent the rain to quiet the water, for I asked him to help us.” It was a very wet but thankful crowd that reached home that night.
In the spring that Bessie was fourteen years old, her father sold the beautiful home where she had spent so many happy days, and bought a tract of land in a dense wood farther up the lake. On account of the dense forest, the place appeared very dismal. As the purchaser of their old home wanted possession as soon as possible, Mr. Worthington had time to build only a barn before removing his family. In this building they lived during the first summer. Though these circumstances were discouraging, the Worthingtons tried hard to be brave. By fall a house was ready for them.
Many good things were lacking in this new forest home; but God knew this, and he put it into the hearts of friends and neighbors to supply the family with fruit and vegetables and also chickens. So generously were these supplied that there was no lack.
During the winter following much wood was cut, hauled, and piled out along the roadside in front of the house; but still there was standing timber nearly everywhere one might look, and to the south and west it extended for many miles.