Father, Forgive.

A TRUE saying, and often exemplified, is the statement, "Small beginnings often have great endings." How often God takes up the weak things, and those that are despised, to accomplish His great purposes.
Some time ago a little Sunday school scholar had received a New Testament as a prize. Returning home, she diligently set herself to read it.
She was young, and a poor reader, so that anything beyond the simplest words had to be spelled out.
One Lord's Day her father, whose eyes and heart were for the world, sat near the window diligently perusing a Sunday newspaper.
She was reading the story of the cross, and on reaching those touching words which fell from the lips of the blessed Lord, when the world had done its worst, and hell triumphed as it thought, "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do," the child spelled F-a-t-h-e-r—Father.
“Why, father," she cried, in her artless way, "here is you; here is your name. Jesus is speaking to you here!”
“Nonsense," he said, " nonsense; go on reading to yourself, child, and don't make so much noise," and he reverted to his paper; but his ear was caught, and he listened in spite of himself.
“Father, f-o-r-g-i-v-e— forgive; Father, forgive him.”
“No, child, that is wrong; it is not ME—I mean it's not him, it's forgive them.' There! now, don't interrupt me again.” But the child persisted in repeating the words, "Father—forgive—Father—forgive" —and apparently stuck at the word "them,” until her father was quite in a tumult of rage and mingled alarm and shame.
He folded up his paper hurriedly, and almost snatched the Testament from her hand, told her peremptorily what the verse was, and then went into the yard. But the arrow of conviction was rankling in his bosom: “Father, forgive him, for he knows not what he does.”
“It's me," he cried;" I have wickedly provoked God, and yet Jesus interceded for me!”
“Forgive them—Forgive ME.”
“My God," he prayed," forgive my sins.”
Could such a cry go unheeded? Has God ever turned away from a broken-hearted sinner? Ah! no, even a reviling thief was pardoned and blessed, exchanging the malefactor's gibbet for the courts of glory.
Are you forgiven? If not, let the language of another sinner, one who had grievously sinned against God and his neighbor, be yours:
“I have sinned.”
“He looketh upon men, and if any say, I have sinned, and perverted that which was right, and it profiteth me not; He will deliver his soul from going into the pit, and his life shall see the light." (Job 33:27, 28.)
J. W. H. N.