A wise man will so act that
whatever he does may rather seem
voluntary and of his own free will than done by compulsion, however
much he may be compelled by necessity.
Wherefore I saw that there
is nothing better, than that a man should
rejoice in his works; for that is his portion: for who shall bring
him back to see what shall be after him?
—Ecclesiastes 3. 22.
Lord God, may I not forget that it is in the light, and not the darkness, that my work is revealed. I beseech thee to pour in thy light as I plan my life, and open my heart and mind for the reception of thy truth. Amen.
Andrea del Sarto born 1486.
Sir Joshua Reynolds born 1723.
Margaret Fuller Ossoli perished at sea 1850.
Reverence the highest, have patience with the lowest. Let this day’s performance of the meanest duty be thy religion. Are the stars too distant? Pick up the pebble that lies at thy feet and from it learn all.
The situation that has not its Duty, its Ideal, was never yet occupied by man. Yet, here is this miserable, despicable Actual, wherein thou standest—here or nowhere is thy Ideal! Work it out therefrom!
And whosoever shall give to
drink unto one of these little ones a
cup of cold water only, in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto
you he shall in no wise lose his reward.
—Matthew 10. 42.
Great God, may I begin this day bearing in mind that the things which I think and do are my life. I pray that thou wilt keep me from making great efforts for that which is valueless, and thus waste my life. May I watch my pride and indolence that they may not cause me to lose the best. Amen.
Dr. Isaac Watts born 1674.
Charlotte Corday guillotined 1793.
Paul Delaroche born 1797.
J.A. McNeil Whistler died 1903.
So frail is the youth and
beauty of men,
Though they bloom and look gay like the rose;
But all our fond cares to preserve them is vain,
Time kills them as fast as he goes.
Then I’ll not be proud
of my youth nor my beauty,
Since both of them wither and fade;
But gain a good name by well doing my duty;
For this will scent like the rose when I’m dead.
Onward, onward may we press
Through the path of duty;
Virtue is true happiness,
Excellence true beauty;
Minds are of supernal birth,
Let us make a heaven of earth.