The Bible Echo



January 1, 1894

Home Education


The mother's work begins with the babe in her arms. I have often seen the little one throw itself and scream if its will was crossed in any way. This is the time to restrain evil tendencies, and to stimulate the mind in favour of the right. The child should be taught self-control, and encouraged in every effort to govern itself. BEcho January 1, 1894, par. 1

Regularity should be the rule in all the habits of children. Mothers make a great mistake in permitting them to eat between meals. The stomach becomes deranged by this practice, and the foundation is laid for future suffering. Their fretfulness may have been caused by unwholesome food, still undigested; but the mother feels that she cannot spend time to reason on the matter and correct her injurious management. Neither can she stop to soothe their impatient worrying. She gives the little sufferers a piece of cake of some other dainty to quiet them, but this only increases the evil. Some mothers, in their anxiety to do a great amount of work, get wrought up into such nervous haste that they are more irritable than the children, and by scolding, and even blows, they try to terrify the little ones into quietness. BEcho January 1, 1894, par. 2

Parents should provide employment for their children. Nothing will be a more sure source of evil than indolence. Physical labour, that brings healthful weariness to the muscles, will give an appetite for simple, wholesome food. BEcho January 1, 1894, par. 3

As a rule, the labour of the day should not be prolonged into the evening. If all the hours of the day are well improved, the work extended into the evening is so much extra, and the over-taxed system will suffer from the burden imposed upon it. Let parents devote the evening to their families. Lay off care and perplexity with the labours of the day, and let the evening be spent as happily as possible. Let home be a place where cheerfulness, courtesy, and love rule. This will make it attractive to the children. If the parents are continually borrowing trouble, are irritable and fault-finding, the children partake of the same spirit of dissatisfaction and contention, and home becomes the most miserable place in the world. The children find more pleasure among strangers or in the streets than at home. All this might be avoided if temperance in all things were practiced. Self-control on the part of all the members of the family will make home almost a paradise. BEcho January 1, 1894, par. 4

Make your rooms as cheerful as possible. Let the children find home the most attractive place on earth. Throw about them such influences that they will not seek for street companions, nor think of the haunts of vice except with horror. If the home life is what it should be, the habits formed there will be a strong defence against the assaults of temptation when the young shall leave the shelter of home for the world. BEcho January 1, 1894, par. 5

In devoting time and money to the outward adorning and the gratification of perverted appetite, parents are cultivating vanity, selfishness, and lust in the children. Mothers complain of being so burdened with care and labour that they cannot take time patiently to instruct their little ones, and to sympathize with them in their disappointments and trials. Young hearts yearn for sympathy and tenderness, and if they do not obtain it from their parents, they will seek it from sources that may endanger both minds and morals. I have heard mothers refuse their children some innocent pleasure, for lack of time and thought, while their busy fingers and weary eyes were diligently engaged on some useless piece of adornment, something which could serve only to encourage vanity and extravagance in the children. Every act of the parents tells on the future of the children. “As the twig is bent, the tree is inclined.” And so as the children approach manhood and womanhood, these lessons bear fruit in pride and moral worthlessness. The parents deplore the children's faults, but are blind to the fact that they are but reaping the crop from seed of their own planting. BEcho January 1, 1894, par. 6

Do not send your little ones away to school too early. The mother should be careful how she trusts the moulding of the infant mind to other hands. Parents ought to be the best teachers of their children till they have reached eight or ten years of age. Their schoolroom should be the open air, amid the flowers and birds, and their text-book the treasures of nature. As fast as their minds can comprehend it, the parents should open before them God's great book of nature. These lessons, given amid such surroundings, will not soon be forgotten. BEcho January 1, 1894, par. 7

The mother's position in God's sight is most exalted; for she is dealing with character, she is fashioning minds. The mothers of the present day are making the society of the future. Iniquity abounds on every hand, and if the children are saved, earnest, persevering effort must be put forth. Christ has said, “I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified.” He wanted his disciples to be sanctified, and He made Himself their example, that they might follow Him. What if fathers and mothers should take this same position, saying, “I want my children to have steadfast principles, and I will give them an example of this in my life.” BEcho January 1, 1894, par. 8

In whatever else we may fail, let us be thorough in the work for our children. If they go forth from the home training pure and virtuous, if they fill the least and lowest place in God's great plan of good for the world, our life-work can never be called a failure. BEcho January 1, 1894, par. 9