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gotten that these rules are to find their application and do their helpful work before the interested party is committed either in word or in feeling. Love always blindfolds that he may lead captive. These rules are given not chiefly for those who most need them, but for those who may need them hereafter.
1. Seek each other's happiness. A selfish marriage that seeks only its own happiness defeats itself. Happiness is a fire that will not burn long on one stick.
2. Give your best judgment full authority. Wedlock is not an impulse, but a life. Like Christianity, it may be miraculously started, but it must depend upon arguments and works of righteousness for its prosperous continuance.
3. Do not marry suddenly. It can always be done till it is done, if it is a proper thing to do.
4. Marry in your own grade in society. It is painful to be always apologiz ing for any one. It is more painful to be apologized for.
5. Do not marry downward. It is hard enough to advance in the quality of life, without being loaded by clay heavier than your own. It will be sufficiently difficult to keep your children up to your best level without having to correct a bias in their blood.
6. Do not sell yourself. It matters not whether the price be money or position.
7. Do not throw yourself away. You will not receive too much even if you are paid full price.
8. "Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers." Argument cannot add to the authority of this rule.
9. Seek the advice of your parents. Your parents are your best friends. They will make more sacrifice for you than any other mortals. They are elevated above selfishness concerning you. If they differ from you concerning your choice it is because they must.
10. Do not marry to please any third party. You must do the living and enduring.
11. Do not marry to spite any body. It would add wickedness to folly.
12. Do not marry because some one else may seek the same hand. One glove may not fit all hands equally well.
13. Do not marry to get rid of any body. The coward who shot himself to escape from being drafted was insane.
14. Do not marry merely for the impulse love. Love is a principle as well as an emotion. So far as it is a sentiment it is a blind guide. It does not wait to test the presence of exalted character in its object before breaking out into a flame. Shavings make a hot fire, but hard coal is better for the winter.
15. Do not marry without love. A body without a soul soon becomes offensive.
16. Do not regard marrying as absolutely necessary. While it is the general order of Providence that people should marry, yet Providence may have some other plan for you.
17. Beware of spiritual impressions concerning this subject. Four young preachers consulted their Presiding Elder concerning marrying. he felt called of God to marry one certain lady.
18. Remember that love does not long survive respect.
19. Beware of mere magnetism.
20. Test carefully the effect of protracted association. If familiarity breeds contempt before marriage, it will afterward.
21. Test carefully the effect of protracted separation. True love will defy both time and space.
22. Consider carefully the right of your children under the laws of heredity. It is doubtful whether you have a right to increase the number of invalids and cripples.
23. Do not marry simply because you have promised to do so. If a seam opens between you now it will widen into a gulf. It is less offensive to retract a mistaken promise than to perjure your soul before the altar. intended has a right to absolute integrity.
24. Avoid long engagements. Touching off a shell with a fuse two or three years long is an uncertain experiment.
25. Marry character. It is not so much what one has as what one is.
26. Do not marry the wrong object. Themistocles said he would rather marry his daughter to a man without money, than to money without a man. It is well to have both. It is fatal to have neither.
27. Demand a just return. You give virtue and purity, and gentleness and integrity. You have a right to demand the same in return. Duty requires it. 28. Accept nothing in the place of integrity. Any person who can deliberately lie will do any thing else under favorable circumstances. There is no foundation to character when integrity is wanting.
29 Require brains. Culture is good, but will not be transmitted. Brainpower may be.
30. Remember that health precedes success.
31. See where the candidate is going. The mother of Dr. Henry, the commentator, was told by her father when her hand was sought, "We do not know whence this man came." She replied, "I know whither he is going, and I want to go with him."
32. Study past relationships. The good daughter and sister makes a good wife. The good son and brother makes a good husband.
33. Never marry as a missionary deed. If one needs saving from bad habits he is not suitable for you.
34. Beware of one who has been intemperate. The risk is too great.
35. Beware of a skeptic. If he doubts God he will doubt virtue.
36. Look for thrift in the blood. If it does not appear, it must leak out through some defect in the character or habits.
37. Observe the Bible rule concerning consanguinity. In the transactions of the American Medical Association, published March, 1859, Dr. Bemis of Kentucky gives details of the history of nearly 1,000 married couples who were more or less related before marriage. His facts abundantly prove such marriages to be unfavorable to the health, life, character, and talents of the offspring. About 900 of the children of these parents died young, of consumption or scrofula.
From the reports of Hospitals, Asylums, Penitentiaries, etc., it is found that about 10 per cent. of all the blind, deaf and dumb, idiotic and insane, have parents who were blood relatives before marriage. Similar facts are well known respecting some of the royal families of Europe.
HOW TO PERPETUATE THE HONEY-MOON. Continue your courtship. Like causes produce like effects.
Do not assume a right to neglect your companion more after marriage than you did before.
Have no secrets that you keep from your companion. A third party is always disturbing.
Do not conceal your marriage for an hour. Busy bodies may perplex you with advice. Madame Le Brun kept her marriage a secret for a short time, when people advised her to drown herself rather than marry Le Brun. Even the Duchess d'Arembourg said, "For Heaven's sake, don't marry him!" The very concealment begets perils. Integrity is the law of safety. Avoid the appearance of evil. In matrimonial matters it is often that the mere appearance contains all the evil. Love, as soon as it rises above calculation and becomes love, is exacting. It gives all, and demands all.
Once married, never open your mind to any change. If you keep the door of your purpose closed, evil or even desirable changes cannot make headway without help.
Make the best of the inevitable. Persist in looking at and presenting the best side. Such is the subtle constitution of the human mind, that we believe what we will; also, what we frequently tell.
Keep step in mental development. A tree that grows for forty years may take all the sunlight from a tree that stops growing at twenty.
Keep a lively interest in the business of the firm. Two that do not pull together, are weaker than either alone.
Gauge your expenses by your revenues. Love must eat. The sheriff often levies on Cupid long before he takes away the old furniture.
Start from where your parents started rather than from where they now are. Hollow and showy boarding often furnishes the too strong temptation, while the quietness of a humble home would cement the hearts beyond risk.
Avoid debt. Spend your own money, then it will not be necessary to blame any one for spending other people's.
Do not both get angry at the same time. It takes two to quarrel. Do not allow yourself ever to come to an open rupture. Things unsaid need less repentance.
Study to understand your companion's disposition, in order to please and avoid friction.
Study to conform your tastes and habits to the tastes and habits of your companion. If two walk together, they must agree.
Chang and Eng were the Siamese Twins. Chang made Eng lie down when sick. It killed Eng, and Chang could not survive him. Take care of Eng. Few people survive divorce.
HOW TO BE A GOOD HUSBAND.
Honor your wife.
Love your wife. gave himself for her.
She must be exalted and never dethroned.
Show your love, All life manifests itself. As certainly as a live tree will put forth leaves in the spring, so certainly will a living love show itself. Many a noble man toils early and late to earn bread and position for his wife. He hesitates at no weariness for her sake. He justly thinks that such industry and providence give a better expression of his love than he could give by caressing her and letting the grocery bills go unpaid. He fills the cellar and pantry. He drives and pushes his business. He never dreams that he is actually starving his wife to death. He may soon have a woman left to superintend his home, but his wife is dying. She must be kept alive by the same process that called her into being. Recall and repeat the little attentions and delicate compliments that once made you so agreeable, and that fanned her love into a consuming flame. It is not beneath the dignity of the skillful physician to study all the little symptoms, and order all the little round of attentions, that check the waste of strength and brace the staggering constitution. It is good work for a husband to cherish his wife.
Suffer for your wife, if need be. Christ suffered for the Church. Consult with her. She is as apt to be right as you are, and frequently able to add much to your stock of wisdom. In any event, she appreciates
Study to keep her young. It can be done. It is not work, but worry, that wears. Keep a brave, true heart between her and all harm. If you will carefully walk in the way of righteousness you can shield her from cankering care. Providence will not be likely to bring upon her any thing that is not for her good.
Help to bear her burdens. Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of love. Love seeks opportunities to do for the loved object. She has the constant care of your children. She is ordained by the Lord to stand guard over them. Not a disease can appear in the community without her taking the alarm. Not a disease can come over the threshold without her instantly springing into the mortal combat. If there is a deficiency anywhere, it comes out of her pleasure. Her burdens are every-where. Look for them, that you may lighten them.
Make yourself helpful by thoughtfulness. Remember to bring into the house your best smile and sunshine. It is good for you, and it cheers up the home. There is hardly a nook in the house that has not been carefully hunted through to drive out every thing that might annoy you. The dinner which suits, or ought to suit you, has not come on the table of itself. It represents much thoughtfulness and work. You can do no more manly thing than find some way of expressing, in word or look, your appreciation of it.
Express your will, not by commands, but by suggestions. It is God's order that you should be the head of the family. You are clothed with authority. But this does not authorize you to be stern and harsh, as an officer in the army. Your authority is the dignity of love. When it is not clothed in love it ceases to have the substance of authority. A simple suggestion that may embody a wish, an opinion or an argument, becomes one who reigns over such a kingdom as yours.
Study your own character as husband. Transfer your deeds, with the impressions they might naturally make, to some other couple, and see what feelings they would awaken in your heart concerning that other man. Are you seeking to multiply the joys of your wife, as well as to support her? Are you an agreeable associate among your companions? If not, why should you expect your wife to be pleased with you? Have you acquired the ability to entertain and cheer your friends? If not, it is time you were studying to improve yourself as a husband. If you can, make yourself a model husband,