Buying A Cow.
"Our father going away abroad, he sold one of our two cows, and took the
proceeds with him. (He, the father, was a reckless spendthrift, idle,
and fond of the public inn.) A rich neighbor directly offered to loan us
money enough to buy another; this kind proposal we gratefully accepted.
Although we did not understand much about bargains of this kind, yet the
cow we purchased served us so remarkably, that we were obliged to
acknowledge whence the blessing came. In Summer we could sell fourteen
measures of milk; in Winter, twelve to the dairyman, so that the
borrowed money was speedily paid.
"At the same time the cow performed the farm work required of it, with
such strength and quickness, we were astonished. When our father, on his
return, heard us speaking with pleasure of this animal, he became so
enraged with the poor thing, that he was determined to sell it, and
actually _offered it at half its value_.
"The faithless children were in a continual fright. When any one came
near the house, we thought that we were assuredly going to lose our cow.
But mother exhorted us not to be so fearful; for, said she, 'If your
father could do always as he likes, none of you would be alive now; but
God will never let him go any farther than he sees to be for our good.
Believe me, God, who has given us this cow, will keep it for us as long
as we need it.'
"And so it turned out, for the cow never left us whilst our mother was
alive; and when we were all provided for, a purchaser came, who paid a
high price for the creature, having heard of its wonderful powers from
the man to whom we sold the milk for so many years; but no sooner was
the animal taken to its new home, than the wonder ceased, and _this cow
became no better than any other_."
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