Page images

lift up our souls unto vanity, and grow fond of these empty shadows? It is because God is forgotten: Alas! whither have we wandered? Unto what a wilderness? I look round about me on the creatures, and I see no shelter or refreshment, they are like broken cisterns, whose waters fail me, when I need them most. What then, O Lord, do I wait for? My hope is in thee; for thou art the fountain of living waters: all-sufficient for my happiness, and only sufficient for it. If I had not a friend or helper; if I knew not where to look for my next lodging, or my next meal; if my body were worn out with sickness, and every member of it the seat of pain; yet if I could but look up and see thy face through this cloud; if I could but call thee my Father and my God, I were happy still; and might pity the most prosperous on earth that were strangers to thee, and to thy love. There are many that say, who will shew us any good? O that thy Spirit may teach them true wisdom! But as for me I will say, Lord, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon me. Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire besides thee! It grieves me to think how I have injured thee, and wronged my own soul, when other lords had dominion over me. Thou requirest that we should give thee our very hearts, and

should be ready to leave all and follow thee. Lord, I would cheerfully consent, and hope that through grace I can say, none of these things move me, neither should I count life dear unto me, if I may but gain thee for my portion! Amen.


Our heavenly Father calls,
And Christ invites us near;

With both our friendship shall be sweet,
And our communion dear.

God pities all my griefs,
He pardons ev'ry day;
Almighty to protect my soul,
And wise to guide my way.

How large his bounties are !
What various stores of good,
Diffus'd from my Redeemer's hand,
And purchas'd with his blood.

Jesus, my living head,

I bless thy faithful care;
Mine Advocate before the throne,
And my forerunner there.

Here fix my roving heart;
Here wait, my warmest love,
Till the communion be complete
In nobler scenes above.


For Wednesday Morning.

O thou eternal Source of Light, and Fountain of love, thou hast made our minds to know thee;. our hearts to love thee; our tongues to praise thee; and all that we are and have to serve thee. No worldly creature can be a full and satisfying portion for my soul; we have trusted them too far, and followed them too long: to thee we resign ourselves, for we are thine own; to thee we submit all the powers of our souls and bodies, for thou art our rightful sovereign: from thee we thankfully accept all the benefits and comforts of our lives: in thee we expect our true felicity;-to know thee, and love thee, and delight in thee, must be our blessedness.Our soul is weary of itself, as a lifeless burden when it feels no panting after thee: it will never be well till it can come nearer to thee; till it knows thee better; till it loves thee more: the soul is deformed that bears not thine image; and lifeless if it lives not in love to thee. The mind is unlearned that reads not thy name on all the world, and sees not "Holiness to the Lord," engraven upon the face of every creature. O let us have no

other portion, no reason, no love, no life, but what is devoted to thee,-employed on thee, and for thee here,-and shall be perfected in thee for evermore.

Upon thy holy altar, erected by thy Son's mediation, we humbly devote and offer thee this heart,-O that we could say with greater feeling, this flaming, loving heart! But the fire that must kindle the sacrifice must come from thee! Let it consume this dross, that the nobler part may know its own: all that we can say to commend it to thy acceptance is, that we hope it is washed in precious blood, and that there is something in it that is thine own it still looks towards thee, and follows after thee, and will be content with inferior good no more: it lies at thy door, and will be entertained or perish! Though, alas! it loves thee not as it would wish, we boldly say, it longs to love; it seeks no greater blessedness than perfect, endless, mutual love! but, O my God, it must be a teacher sent from thee that must conduct us to thee; but no traveller that we can speak with, no book that we have turned over, can tell us more than Jesus Christ! we can find no way so suitable to our souls, no medicine so fitted to our misery: we see no doctrine so divine and heavenly, nor any so fully confirmed and delivered; nor any which so

powerfully pleads thy cause, and calls the soul from self and vanity, to purify and lead it to thyself. Thou hast mercifully given us the witness in ourselves; not an unreasonable persuasion in our minds, but that renewed nature, those heavenly desires and delights, which can come from none but thee. And, O! how much more have we perceived in many of thy servants than in ourselves. All the love that ever we perceived kindled towards thee, and all the true obedience that ever we saw performed to thee, hath been affected by the word of Jesus Christ. How often has his Spirit helped us to pray; and how often hast thou heard those prayers. On thee, therefore, O our Redeemer, do we cast our sinful souls; with thee we renew our covenant; we have no other Saviour but thyself. To thee we deliver up our souls, which thou hast redeemed, not to be advanced to wealth and honours, and pleasures of this world, but to be delivered from them, and to be healed of sin; to be washed in thy blood, and quickened by thy Spirit; conducted in the ways of holiness; and, at last, be presented, justified and spotless, to the Father of Spirits; and to obtain possession of the glory which thou hast promised! Amen.

« PreviousContinue »