Friday, September 11, 2009


1. Much Better to Be Alone.—He who made man said it is not good for him to be alone; but it is much better to be alone, than it is to be in some kinds of company. Many couples who felt unhappy when they were apart, have been utterly miserable when together; and scores who have been ready to go through fire and water to get married, have been willing to run the risk of fire and brimstone to get divorced. It is by no means certain that because persons are wretched before marriage they will be happy after it. The wretchedness of many homes, and the prevalence of immorality and divorce is a sad commentary on the evils which result from unwise marriages.

2. Unavoidable Evils.—There are plenty of unavoidable evils in this world, and it is mournful to think of the multitudes who are preparing themselves for needless disappointments, and who yet have no fear, and are unwilling to be instructed, cautioned or warned. To them the experience of mature life is of little account compared with the wisdom of ardent and enthusiastic youth.

3. Matrimonial Infelicity.—One great cause of matrimonial infelicity is the hasty marriages of persons who have no adequate knowledge of each other's characters. Two strangers become acquainted, and are attracted to each other, and without taking half the trouble to investigate or inquire that a prudent man would take before buying a saddle horse, they are married. In a few weeks or months it is perhaps found that one of the parties was married already, or possibly that the man is drunken or vicious, or the woman anything but what she should be. Then begins the bitter part of the experience: shame, disgrace, scandal, separation, sin and divorce, all come as the natural results of a rash and foolish marriage. A little time spent in honest, candid, and careful preliminary inquiry and investigations would have saved the trouble.

4. The Climax.—It has been said that a man is never utterly ruined until he has married a bad woman. So the climax of woman's miseries and sorrows may be said to come only when she is bound with that bond which should be her chiefest blessing and her highest joy, but which may prove her deepest sorrow and her bitterest curse.

5. The Folly of Follies.—There are some lessons which people are very slow to learn, and yet which are based upon the simple principles of common-sense. A young lady casts her eye upon a young man. She says, "I mean to have that man." She plies her arts, engages his affections, marries him, and secures for herself a life of sorrow and disappointment, ending perhaps in a broken up home or an early grave. Any prudent, intelligent person of mature age, might have warned or cautioned her; but she sought no advice, and accepted no admonition. A young man may pursue a similar course with equally disastrous results.

6. Hap-Hazard.—Many marriages are undoubtedly arranged by what may be termed the accident of locality. Persons live near each other, become acquainted, and engage themselves to those whom they never would have selected as their companions in life if they had wider opportunities of acquaintance. Within the borders of their limited circle they make a selection which may be wise or may be unwise. They have no means of judging, they allow no one else to judge for them. The results are sometimes happy and sometimes unhappy in the extreme. It is well to act cautiously in doing what can be done but once. It is not a pleasant experience for a person to find out a mistake when it is too late to rectify it.

7. We All Change.—When two persons of opposite sex are often thrown together they are very naturally attracted to each other, and are liable to imbibe the opinion that they are better fitted for life-long companionship than any other two persons in the world. This may be the case, or it may not be. There are a thousand chances against such a conclusion to one in favor of it. But even if at the present moment these two persons were fitted to be associated, no one can tell whether the case will be the same five or ten years hence. Men change; women change; they are not the same they were ten years ago; they are not the same they will be ten years hence.

8. The Safe Rule.—Do not be in a hurry; take your time and consider well before you allow your devotion to rule you. Study first your character, then study the character of her whom you desire to marry. Love works mysteriously, and if it will bear careful and cool investigation, it will no doubt thrive under adversity. When people marry they unite their destinies for the better or the worse. Marriage is a contract for life and will never bear a hasty conclusion. Never be in a hurry!