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Rest quietly on thy couch, steep thine eyelids in sleep, wrap thyself in sleep as in a garment, for He careth for thee; He is with thee, He is about thee, He compasseth thee; he compasseth thee on every side. The voice of thy shepherd among the rocks.
He calleth thee, He beareth thee tenderly in his arms; He suffereth thee not to stray. Thy soul is precious in His sight, О child of many hopes !
For He careth for thee in the things which perish, and He hath provided yet better things than those.
Raise thyself, O beloved soul; turn thine eyes from care, and sin, and pain; turn them to the brightness of the heavens, and contemplate thine inheritance; for thy birthright is in the skies, - and thine inheritance amongst the stars of light.
The herds of the pasture sicken and die, they lie down among the clods of the valley, the foot passeth over them; they are no more. But it is not so with thee.
For the Almighty is the Father of thy
spirit, and He hath given thee a portion of His own immortality.
Look around thee, and behold the earth, for it is the gift of the Father to thee, and to thy sons, that they should possess it.
Out of the ground cometh forth food; the hills are covered with fresh shade; and the animals, thy subjects, sport among the trees.
Delight thyself in them, for they are good; and all that thou seest is thine.
But nothing that thou seest is like unto thyself; thou art not of them; nor shalt thou return to them.
Thou hast a mighty void which they cannot fill; thou hast an immortal hunger which they cannot satisfy: they are not worthy that they should occupy thee.
As the fire which, while it resteth on the hearth, yet sendeth forth sparks continually towards heaven, so do thou from amidst the world send up fervent thoughts to God.
As the lark, though her nest is on the ground, as soon as she becometh fledged, poiseth her wings and findeth them strong to bear her through the light air, springeth up aloft, singing as she soars;
So let thy desires mount swiftly upwards, and thou shalt see the world beneath thy feet.
And be not overwhelmed with many thoughts. Heaven is thine, and God is thine : thou shalt be blessed with everlasting salvation and peace upon thy head for evermore.
O Lord of heaven and earth! we are fearfully and wonderfully made; our bodies are like the flowers perishing in the evening; our life is a thin vapor, which appeareth a very little while, and then vanisheth away.
As I lie here on my couch of sickness, how delightful appears that health, which I so little valued, when it was mine! how lovely and beautiful are the woods and fields, and mountains and streams, on which I used to gaze with so much indifference ! how precious those opportunities of
improvement, and those means of usefulness, which I have so frequently neglected ! Alas! shall I no more rise up in strength, and behold the bright sun and the fertile pastures, and go forth to my daily occupations? shall I leave this world, when I have done so little for myself and others, and lie down in the dark, silent grave, where there is no work or device?
Peace, troubled soul, enlarge thy views, look beyond the narrow boundaries of mortality. Thou who callest God thy Father, and Christ thy Saviour, and Heaven thy home, this disquietude, this despondency becometh not thee; brighter regions are there for thee somewhere; rather shouldst thou rejoice at the blissful change which awaits thee.
Blessed thoughts! my heart is strengthened, no longer am I afraid. Now can I say firmly, and with pious gratitude and joy - Farewell, beautiful land of my pilgrimage; farewell for a season, beloved fellowpilgrims. Death's gloomy valley is henceforth nothing to me; my Father leadeth
me across it; already I see the glorious and spiritual world, where dwell the greatest, wisest and best beings in the universe. I will not murmur, when I am called to join them; I will say, Yes, Father, I am ready, for with Thy gracious aid I shall mount up on high ; Thou hast rendered me victorious over death and the grave.
A PSALM OF PRAISE.
the Lord! Praise, O ye servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord !
Whilst we live will we praise the Lord; we will sing praises unto our God while we have any being
When Thou fillest our cups with the blessings of life, and the voice of health and gladness is heard in our dwellings; when our path is pleasant, our prospects cheering, and our spirits lively; then they shall be employed in showing forth Thy praises, 0 our God! for we dwell in the light of Thy countenance.