Page:Letters to Mothers (1839).djvu/27

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PRIVILEGES OF THE MOTHER.

incipient ruler should be, "how to obey." The degree of her diligence in preparing her children to be good subjects of a just government, will be the true measure of her patriotism. While she labours, to pour a pure and heavenly spirit into the hearts that open around her, she knows not but she may be appointed to rear some future statesman, for her nation's helm, or priest for the temple of Jehovah.

But a loftier ambition will inspire the christian mother, that of preparing "fellow citizens for the saints in glory." All other hopes should be held secondary, all other distinctions counted adventitious and fleeting. That she may be enabled to fulfil a mission so sacred, Heaven has given her priority and power, and that she may learn the nature of the soul which she is ordained to modify, has permitted her to be the first to look into it, as into the cup of some opening flower, fresh from the Forming Hand. The dignity of her office admits of no substitute. It is hers to labour day and night, with patience, and in joyful hope. It is hers to lead forth the affections in healthful beauty, and prompt their heavenward aspirings. It is hers to foster tenderness of conscience, and so to regulate its balance that it swerve not amid the temptations of untried life. It is hers so to rivet principle, that it may retain its integrity, both "beneath the cloud, and under the sea." And as she labours for God, so she labours for her country, since whatever tends to prepare for citizenship