The rules for domestic happiness
(William S. Plumer, "Sinners Saved by Unmerited Kindness")
Domestic happiness requires the following elements . . .
from superiors: truth, justice, consistency, humility, gentleness and kindness;
from inferiors: respect, love, obedience, honor;
from equals: truth, justice, tenderness and brotherly kindness.
A profession of religion, when not accompanied by a cheerful and habitual performance of family duties — is worth nothing.
The rules for domestic happiness are few and simple. He who runs, may read. They are mighty. We can but admire the effects produced in a Christian household by such maxims and precepts as these!
1. Be humble. "Pride only breeds quarrels."
2. "Keep your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking deceit."
3. Find your own happiness in trying to make others happy.
4. Mind your own business. Do not be meddlesome.
5. Beware of a fretful, suspicious, or censorious temper.
6. "Overcome evil with good." "Bless and curse not."
7. "Love one another deeply, from the heart."
8. Do not magnify the trials or afflictions of life.
9. Beware of sloth. There is no greater enemy of peace and happiness.
10. Make it your business to serve God.
11. Keep out of debt. "Owe no man anything." Loans breed bad tempers and harsh dispositions.
12. Keep the ultimate purpose of life in view — to glorify God. This will repress many vain wishes and chasten immoderate desires.
13. Let your prayers be frequent and fervent.
14. Never listen to scandal nor backbiting.
15. Do not grieve or worry over things which cannot be helped.
16. Set the Lord always before you. Seek His glory. Do and suffer His will with readiness. Let Christ be all and in all. Trust in the Lord forever.
There is something peculiarly pleasing in the manifestations of the grace of Christ in a truly pious family, however humble their condition in life.