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JOSEPH PARKER
English writer and divine
(1830 - 1902)

Never throw mud. You may miss your mark; but you must have dirty hands.
      - [Evil]

The dew waits for no voice to call it to the sun.
      - [Dew]

Were we more anxious about the children we would do more work of a Christian kind. The old man seems to be beyond our reach, but the little child seems to be made for Christ. It would seem--do not let us shrink from the term--natural for every little child to put out his arms to cling to the Child of Bethlehem. Save the children and you will purify society; expend your solicitude upon the young, opening, tender life, and you shall see the result of your concern after many days. Services should be constituted for children; the old people have had the sanctuary too long; their ears are sated with eloquence; their minds are stored with names that never turn into inspirations; churches might be built for children, and preachers trained to speak to them alone. We have reversed all things and thus have gone astray. * * * A poet says he was nearer heaven in his childhood than he ever was in after days, and he sweetly prayed that he might return through his yesterdays and through his childhood back to God. That is chronologically impossible--locally and physically not to be done, and yet that is the very miracle which is to be performed in the soul--in the spirit; we must be "born again."
      - [Children's Day]

When children ask you questions about gray hairs, and wrinkles in the face, and sighs that have no words, and smiles too bright to be carved upon the radiant face by the hands of hypocrisy--when they ask you about kneeling at the altar, speaking into the vacant air, and uttering words to an unseen and in an invisible Presence--when they interrogate you about your great psalms, and hymns, and anthem-bursts of thankfulness, what is your reply to these? Do not be ashamed of the history. Keep steadily along the line of fact. Say what happened to you, and magnify God in the hearing of the inquirer.
      - [Children's Day]


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