“Those who love certain animals selfishly, pampering them, as so many mothers do their children with worse results, that they may be loved of them in return, betray them to their enemies. They are not lovers of animals, but only of favourites, and do their part to make the rest of the world dislike animals. Theirs are the dogs that inhospitably growl and bark and snap, moving the indifferent to dislike, and confirming the unfriendly in their antagonism. Any dog-parliament, met in the interests of their kind, would condemn such dogs to be discreetly bitten, and their mistresses to be avoided.
And certainly, if animals are intended to live and grow, she is the enemy of any individual animal, who stunts his moral and intellectual development by unwise indulgence.
Of whatever nature be the heaven of the animals, that animal is not in the fair way to enter it. The education of the lower lies at the door of the higher, and in true education is truest kindness.”
– George MacDonald, Hope of the Gospel
From a report of George MacDonald’s sermon, reprinted in ‘Wingfold’ Winter 2015:
“If we were wise we would never mourn over our troubles. If we had a clearer insight into things we would go down upon our knees and thank God for our troubles. The Lord spoke here to everybody who had something that made him uncomfortable, who had anything in heart or mind, that just wanted Him. Every discontent in the human heart was just a cry after God.”
“We should not say hope was delusive, for we might have chosen the wrong hope. God was the father of hope in our hearts, and he had never had so much hope as now in his heart; it grew and grew till it was infinite.”