William Gadsby, Dialogues

A Dialogue Between Speaktruth And Thoughtful

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.”—Ephesians 1:3

SPEAKTRUTH: Where now so early this morning, friend Thoughtful?

THOUGHTFUL: Indeed, friend Speaktruth, I can scarcely tell you: for the truth is, I am going with the rest of my shop-mates a new-year’s gifting, and our master’s connexions are so extensive, that I expect we shall go to many places that I know nothing of at present.

SPEAKTRUTH: I sincerely wish that what you get may be of real service to you, and not prove a means of leading you into a snare. I should be thankful to see the working-people well laden with what is called a new-year’s gift, were they blest with wisdom to make use of it for the real benefit of their families; but, alas! too often the money obtained in this way is spent in dissipation and wantonness. Indeed, I have known more than one of God’s own dear people brought into snares on these occasions, and who have burdened their consciences with fresh contracted guilt, which must at last have sank them into despair, had it not been for a sweet application of the precious blood of Christ, by the invincible energy of God the Holy Ghost.

THOUGHTFUL: Indeed, my dear brother, I am well aware of this; and I am not going this morning without a jealous eye over my own heart; but I have a large family, and a very small income, and I am in hope of obtaining a trifle to-day, to enable me to provide some few necessaries of life which we are very much in want of. Our men have agreed not to compel each other to spend their money, but, when we have gone our round, to divide the spoil equally among us. I assure you I feel my own weakness, and dare not trust my own heart. I have proved it to be…

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The Setting: It is morning and the family is busy preparing for work and school. Though the hour is running late, the father insists on reading a portion from the Bible before leaving the house:

FATHER: Come, my dear, bring me the Bible.

CHILD: Father, it is now nine o’clock, and if I stop while you read and pray I shall get scolded, for I ought to have been at school before now.

FATHER: True, child, you ought to have been at school by this time; but I have been detained this morning, and I am not willing you should go before I have read part of God’s word, and taken up a little…

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The Setting: The child has attended the house of God with his/her parents, and was dazzled by the fashionable outfits worn by the members. Upon returning home, the child enquires:

CHILD: Mother, did you see what handsome bonnet Miss Dressy had on at the chapel this morning?

MOTHER: Child, your mind runs upon nothing but pride and nonsense. Do you suppose that I have nothing to do at chapel but to notice what people wear? Did you ever ask yourself what you went to chapel for?

CHILD: Indeed, mother, I never thought of such a thing? What do people go for?

MOTHER: Child, it is not a very easy thing to say what ends people have in view. Some go because their parents go; some go to see and be seen; some go, like you, to notice people’s dress; some go because…

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The Setting: As expected, the child is very excited about the prospect of Christmas holidays, and so is singing over a little nonsense that he/she has picked up amongst his/her companions. Henceforth, the Father observes:

FATHER: Child, what frothy nonsense are you running over? What can induce you to be so childish and foolish.

CHILD: Why, father, I was only pleased to think what sport I shall have at Christmas.

FATHER: Pleased, indeed! and what sport do you expect to have at Christmas.

CHILD: Why, father, do you know that next week we are to break up the school, and have a parting for Christmas holidays?

FATHER: But what sport is there…

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