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Gathering Jewels The Secret of a Beautiful Life: In Memoriam of Mr. & Mrs. James Knowles. Selected from Their Diaries.   By: (1811-1886)

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[Illustration: THE LITTLE ORPHAN'S PRAYER When only eight years old and left an orphan, at her father's death, she went to the corner of the house and asked God to be a father and a mother to her Page 85]



The Secret of a Beautiful Life.

In Memoriam of Mr. & Mrs. James Knowles.

Selected from Their Diaries.

"They shall be Mine in that day when I come to make up My Jewels."

Edited by Rev. Duncan Mcneill Young.

New York: William Knowles, 104 East Thirteenth Street. 1887.

Copyright, 1887. By Wm. Knowles


The present volume is a purely pastoral attempt, emanating from a fraternal affection for two of God's honored saints, and an increasingly growing desire for the glory of God in the salvation of souls.

In presenting the following pages to the friends, acquaintances, and co laborers of our departed brother and sister I desire to record my appreciation of the good achieved by two whose example among us was as beneficial as that of the angel at the pool of Siloam, stirring up the sluggish waters to fresh life and utility, and teaching us that

Beyond this vale of tears There is a life above, Unmeasured by the flight of years; And all that life is love.

While a proper and very natural sentiment demands that the memoirs of the beloved ones should not appear until some time has passed away, it is also proper that their publication should not be put off till all trace of the facts recorded and the impressions there from made have been forgotten. During the preparation of these memoirs nothing has been more clearly manifest to me than the steady recurrence, throughout their lives, of a deep and earnest unison of feeling between man and wife, in such unfailing sweetness as to find its way at once to our hearts and clothe it with the freshness of a living, loving presence.

The subjects whose earthly career we are about to delineate, were whole souled enough to elicit the respect of all who knew them, hence they made lasting friends, whilst to their own immediate family their loss is irreparable, and it is hard to realize that they are no more; for who is there among us who does not know what it is to be united by a fond and passionate affection to those who are no longer with us ever to think of the beloved ones, and to feel ourselves constantly under the influence of the vanished presence?

It cannot be claimed for James Knowles that he was a great man, a learned scholar, or one possessed of extraordinary intellectual culture above his fellows, but, as Hamerton says: "It is not erudition that makes the intellectual man, but a sort of virtue which delights in vigorous and beautiful thinking, just as moral virtue delights in vigorous and beautiful conduct." So it was with our brother, he made the most of the talents God endowed him with, and whatever he undertook to do, he did with might and main; hence his success in any undertaking, or any cause he espoused, for he seemed to realize that success in a good cause is undoubtedly better than failure, while the result in any case is not to be regarded so much as the aim and effort, and the striving with which worthy objects are pursued. Although the Elder may have been less than a Huss, a Calvin, or a Knox in public fame, he had emulated them in self contemplation and humility.

As for Matilda Knowles, our missionary, she was more than a Dorcas, and equally vigorous in spirit with a Lydia; hence we speak of her in the sphere in which it pleased God for her to labor. Those who will carefully read the chapters devoted to her work, will at once perceive that little is left for me to speak of in words of praise.

Let our Bible women study the pages of this book containing the record of her toil in the vineyard, and note the fruits thereof for over a quarter of a century; for no work purely imaginative in its character ever outrivalled it in intensity of interest, especially to those who have the salvation of the unregenerate at heart... Continue reading book >>

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