PLENTY OF WORK AND SCARCITY OF HANDS.
WANTED, From January, 1825, to the end of the world.
A vast number of active young men and women, of “a right spirit” who are not afraid to work; sober, watchful, diligent, and preserving, not slothful in business, but fervent in spirit. In character, meek, patient, and humble, studying to show themselves approved unto God, such as need not be ashamed of their work, “apt to teach,” in meekness instructing the blind, and ignorant, till they through repentance, shall acknowledge the truth. No idlers, no sluggards, none that “putting their hand to the plough will look back,” but such as will find it “meat and drink to do their Master’s will.” Plenty of work!
Powerful enemies to subdue; great opposition and difficulties to encounter—sin and its attendant wretchedness gaining ground daily with alarming strides. Thousands of Children In The Sunday Schools perishing for lack of wisdom, many eager to hear and learn the words of eternal life! In some places fifty or sixty collected together, and none to teach them!
Hark! The groans of deep distress from the wretched abodes of poverty and want! See pale sickness stretched languishing on the humble couch of miserable straw. See the death-struck sinner—alarmed at the approach of the king of terrors—with pallid countenance he stretches his nerveless arm, and calls for the soft hand of humanity and Christian love to wipe off the tear of anguish, and point to realms of endless life and bliss. From your lethargy, ye lazy Christians, arouse, and come to work.
Let none say, “I pray thee have me excused; I cannot come.” Such as thus plead, let them call to mind their divine instructions. “To do good and to communicate forget not,” “for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.” Such as cannot give, may lend, their time, their money, or their talents of wisdom; and they shall be repaid, receiving fourfold, “good measure meted unto them, pressed down, and running over.”
If not a talent of gold, give a talent of silver; or, as the poor widow, bestow thy two mites, into the treasury of the Lord. Something must be done; the foundation is laid on “the precious corner-stone,” and the building must be raised for the master calls, crying, ” Do thy work quickly, for the night cometh!” Come ye who would make an offering to the Lord and sacrifice present comforts for future blessings and eternal good” enduring the Cross and despising the shame, for the joy set before you.” Leave all and follow us—now is the accepted time.
Our Prince goeth to a far country, and says, “Occupy till I come.” Hark! He speaks to thee from heaven “has no man hired thee?” Enter into my vineyard, ye that “are ready to halt” “of little faith” ” doubting” it is the Eleventh Hour. “Forget the things which are behind” and press forward; for it is “a high calling,” and the reward is sure; for it is of grace and mercy bestowed “He will give thee thy wages”—“An inheritance”—”a kingdom”—”a crown!” Peace and joy “in this present evil life,”—” and in the world to come Life everlasting.”
And this commendation before his Father’s face and the angels, “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.” Such are the terms: for further particulars inquire within your own hearts, and knock at the door of conscience, and for engagement, apply at “the House of Bread in Jerusalem” or in the highways and hedges to the shed of the widow and fatherless, to the house of poverty and ignorance. No time to be lost. We work for ETERNITY!
John Carroll Power The Rise and Progress of Sunday Schools: A Biography of Robert Raikes and William Fox (New York: Sheldon & Company, 1863), p. 280-2.