IT was the afternoon of a sunny day, and little Lottie, after vainly trying to study indoors, brought out book and slate, and seated herself on the door-step of her mother's cottage, hoping to find some freshness there. 

"Well!" exclaimed her brother Willie, as he leaned against the wall laughing, "you look as forlorn as a sparrow in winter, your hair stands up like feathers. I have finished my tasks; they are easy enough, and I see yours are not even begun. 

Do you think sums are to be done by staring?" and he laughed again. 

The perplexed look on Lottie's face deepened into sadness, but she did not raise her head. Willie was clever, and learned things quickly, while she often could not understand what she had to do. 

It was very hot, the slate—an old one—was very greasy, and the crack seemed to come in the most awkward part, and confuse all the figures. Big tears gathered in Lottie's eyes, and she tried to wipe them away without attracting Willie's notice. 

"Crying again!" he exclamed. "No wonder the boys mock me for having such a stupid sister." 

"I am not stupid at everything, Willie," said the little girl gently, "and I think if you would help me a little, I could do better." 

Just then a boy's voice was heard calling "Willie, where are you? Come and have a game with us." 

Off ran Willie; for the village boys met together for play at this hour, and he did not wish to miss the fun. 

He had a merry time, and was just turning homeward when Peter proposed a race. 

As he was nearing the bottom of the hill, Willie's foot slipped, he fell, and Peter on top of him. 

Of course he struggled up quickly enough, dusted his knees and elbows, and was starting afresh when he gave an exclamation of dismay. He had split his jacket right across the shoulders. This was a misfortune indeed. Willie was always neat in his dress, and was particularly proud of this nice jacket. 

Now he had spoilt it entirely. And how could he go to school in rags? Lottie was still sitting on the doorstep when Willie returned. . The sum was done, but she knew it was wrong, Her spelling was learned, but she feared that a scolding for her bad Arithmetic would send it quite out of her head. She looked up as she heard Willie's step, and was amazed to see him come slowly along, with a face as woe-be gone as her own. 

Now Lottie, with few opportunities for learning about good things, had one great treasure, a little brown book, which she dearly loved. In this book were some words written to people who did not know what they ought to do, in order to please and obey the Lord Jesus, who died to save us from our sins. These were the words: "Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ." 

Lottie often thought about them, because, being a quiet, gentle child, she noticed people in trouble, and was able to help and comfort them sometimes. 

This made her glad, for she said to herself, "Although I am so stupid, yet in this way I can keep the commandments of Jesus. He said 'If ye love me, keep my commandments,' and I do love him." In a moment she ran up to Willie, and asked what had happened. 

At first he would not tell her, but a stray sunbeam, dancing down, quickly showed the mischief. Lottie got him to take his jacket off; and then examined it carefully. 

"I can mend it, Willie," she said brightly. "It will take a long time, but I am almost sure that I can manage so that the slit will hardly show." 

And with a light heart Lottie took up her brother's burden. The torn jacket was a heavy trouble to him, though some boys would have cared little for it. 

"Mother will not be home till late," she said. 

"Don't you sit up for me. I shall have to work slowly if it is to be neat." 

So by-and-by Willie went to bed, while Lottie darned steadily on. Her eyes winked and blinked, her needle once or twice pricked her fingers, but at last the task was done, and the jacket, almost as good as ever, was hung by Willie's bedside. Willie awoke with his little sister's words ringing in his ears: "I am not stupid at everything." His eyes fell on the beautifully mended jacket, and again the soft voice sounded: "I think if you would help me a little, I could do better." 

"Ah, how kindly she has helped me," thought the boy. "I wonder what put it into her head." 

But it was the voice of God in Lottie's heart that had made her act thus, and at last Willie heard it also. 

"Here, Lottie dear," he said, as they greeted each other in the morning, "bring me that sum and I will explain it. Perhaps I can make it clear to you." 

Thus that day Lottie walked to school with a face as bright as that of Willie. It is a wonderful thing that the more of other people's burdens we carry, the less we have of our own.

—Child's Companion.