W1102 ESSAY BY MARGARETTE BARKER LERNED [MCQUESTEN]
Sep 1 1824
From: [Adams Female Academy, Londonderry, New Hampshire] 1
How can females, at the present day use their exertions for promoting the cause of Christ?
The female sex at the present day are privileged to use various exertions for promoting the cause of Christ's Kingdom. And it is in no way more observable, than by imitating the divine example set before us. Christ's precepts which are holy and calculated to inspire feelings superior to those of a worldly, such as are founded on the basis of True Religion. Humility is also essential in making these exertions, that we may be meek and lowly, not high minded not captivated by the allurements of this world but to believe in Christ, show ourselves to be his followers, manifesting to the world that we are of him and know that the Lord is gracious.
Secondly--By our exertions we can promote the cause of Christ's kingdom, in the various ways he has prescribed to his true followers, and those who live after his example and obey his precepts. First by being charitable to the poor and needy and the giving of alms to those who are destitute of the comforts and enjoyments of life, that a blessing may rest on us and the affliction of the poor be sanctified to them: while dispensing food and raiment necessary for the support of the body, we must dispense to them that spiritual food, of which if a man eat, he shall never hunger again.
Thirdly--Our exertions for promoting the cause of Christ are manifest not only as it respects ourselves and our immediate neighbors, but also as using our feeble aid in propagating knowledge of the true Messiah. Neither in obedience to his precepts alone but, that all nations who know not God nor our Lord Jesus Christ, may become acquainted with his gospel, that the heathen may enjoy him for their inheritance and that the uttermost parts of the earth may have him for their possessions. By thus diffusing knowledge, we not only grow rich in grace ourselves, by performing good works, but bring others going astray unto the "Shepherd and Bishop of their souls."
Fourthly--However feeble our exertions may be, in promoting the Redeemer's cause, or poor our prospects of success in any undertaking, yet there is a duty we owe to our fellow mortals, those who are pilgrims and sojourners with us, that whatever aid we can offer them, or for the promotion of the glory of Christ and his kingdom, it will not only be our duty but it will be pleasing and acceptable in the sight of God, who judgeth not by outward appearances but judgeth the heart. It is unto him we are to look for mercy, through the intercession of Jesus Christ, then let us not dissemble by outward ceremony, but give ourselves with humility and charity, continuing fervent in spirit, serving the Lord, for Christ himself says, the poor woman who casts two mites into the treasury exceeded the wealthy and noble in their splendid oblations.
Fifthly--We may add, we can promote the cause of Christ by aiding those who incessantly toil in his vineyard, encouraging their hands and strengthening their hearts by our feeble endeavors that their ministry prove successful to the salvation of souls bringing thousands to the fold of Christ.2
1 For a note on Adams Female Academy, and on Margarette Barker Lerned, see W1100.
2 This essay is unsigned but the handwriting is consistent with the many essays by Margarette Lerned (W1100 to W1165), many of which are presented on this site. Compare Margarette's essay on "Woman," W1116.