She did not remain with the children to hear them as they talked together, but a few days afterwards she asked Eddie what Mary told him about Jesus. He repeated the history of his birth, of the cruel persecution of Herod, of his blameless life, and his death upon the cross.
Eddie is too young to realize much about the great love of Christ, and how much he has done for us that we may be happy, but he is not too young to love him.
I hope he will never forget the sweet story Mary told him. Jesus loves little children. He is their best friend, always ready to forgive them when they are sorry for doing wrong, and to help them when they try to do what is right.
Even now, as I am writing, I hear children singing
“There is a happy land
Far far away.”
The sound grows fainter and fainter—eyelids are drooping—sleep is near—the voices are hushed—the little ones are slumbering. May “holy angels guard their bed.”
“How happy I am to-night! I love you so much I want to be with you all the time,” said Willie to his mother, as he followed her from the dining-room to the nursery, one stormy evening.
What made Willie so happy? It was not because the day had been pleasant, and he had been permitted to enjoy himself out of doors, for a chilling snow had been falling, and Willie had been obliged to remain in the house. It was not because he was well, for many hours of the day he had been lying on the bed too ill to sit up all the time. It was not because he had received a handsome present, for none had been given him.
There had been nothing unusual to make him so happy, excepting a thought hidden in the secret recesses of his heart. Shall I tell you what that thought was, that made his face so bright and sunny, that made his eyes sparkle, and wreathed his lips with smiles? I will tell you in his own words, and I hope you will treasure it in your heart. If you do, your face, too, will be cheerful and smiling, and your friends will love to look upon you.
When Willie told his mother how happy he was, she put her arm around him, and drew him lovingly to her side. “What makes you so happy?” she inquired.
“I suppose it is because I have been trying to be good,” he answered.
“That always makes people happy,” his mother replied.
Willie is generally a good boy, but he sometimes does wrong, and wrong-doing always makes him sad. It was a great pleasure to him that he had tried to be good, and had been enabled to overcome temptation.
All children are sometimes tempted to do wrong, and it often requires a severe struggle to decide to do right. But every child who overcomes evil feels a conscious happiness and self-respect in so doing. I hope you will “try to be good.” If you do, and look to Christ for strength, he will aid you, and through his grace you will be able to become conqueror over the sins that “so easily beset you.”