Page images

meaning, but again acknowledges that she cannot; saying, here is only an extensive plain covered with numerous flocks." "If you look more attentively," said her sister, "you will see Jacob busily employed among them, peeling the rods of different trees, and making white strakes in them. Look how he places them in the watering troughs, and drives the flocks to the gutters; the sheep approach them with timidity, looking at, and frightened with the appearance of the rods, but Jacob will not let them turn away. See how they frisk about, jump over both troughs and rods, but becoming more used to them, they drink without alarm."

"Thank you," said the exhibitor, "I hope, Miss, that you not only discover the allusion of this scene, but learn from the history which it represents, that whatever the Lord promises to bestow, industry must be used to obtain, and also that the most evident interpositions of providence, will neither silence the objections, nor satisfy the desires of a covetous and discontented mind. This the displeasure of Laban and his sons, at the increasing wealth of Jacob, sufficiently evinces: the Lord observing their conduct, commanded him to return to the land of his kindred.

On the scene being suddenly changed, Amelia said, "I perceive,

Sir, that he is already on his way thither, for Jacob is now surrounded by his wives, his children, and his herdmen; he is giving them directions, and sending them away in different parties with presents, intending thereby to appease the wrath of Esau, whom his messengers informed him, was coming armed to meet him.

He is left alone, appears in deep meditation, he prays, seems earnestly engaged; now rises from his knees with a countenance expressive of perfect composure. "You are very correct," said the exhibitor; "dependance upon God produces composure, when all other means entirely fail." With pleasing admiration, Amelia now

noticed the meeting of the brothers; saying, How gracefully Jacob bows to Esau! How affectionately they embrace! I am much obliged, Sir, this is a most interesting scene.

"It is also truly instructive," replied the exhibitor; "the historic fact which it displays, proves the power of prayer, and is a striking instance of the Lord's constant attention to his obedient servants."

Amelia, on looking again into the Camera, observed that it contained a different scene. "Introduced on purpose," added the exhibitor, "to represent the close of this Patriarch's journey."

True, Sir, for I now see a tent,

and just before it an altar, at which Jacob is represented offering praise to his Almighty protector, for the deliverance which he had lately experienced.

In representing this part of the life of Jacob, I cannot help noticing, said the exhibitor to Mrs. Neville, that the example of pious parents produces effects on succeeding generations. The progeny of the father of the faithful, furnishes several pleasing proofs of the truth of this observation. Abraham was a man of prayer, wheresoever he pitched his tent, his first concern was to erect an altar to the Lord. was a man of prayer, as he journeyed from place to place, his family altar


« PreviousContinue »