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HENRY WARD BEECHIER's congregation is not confined to that which assembles within the walls of Plymouth Church. Alike in the parlors of the wealthy and the cultured, and in the log cabins of the poor and the self-exiled, his words are welcomed—a comfort to those in trouble, a solace to those in sickness, a strength to those in the midst of the battle. To this great congregation, counted by tens of thousands, who have profited by his teaching, though they have rarely or never listened to his voice, this volume is dedicated by
CORNWALL LANDING, N. Y.
This volume, comprising morning and evening devotional readings for every day in the year, is composed wholly of selections from the published and unpublished writings of Henry Ward Beecher. The work is published with his approval, though the selections were not made by him. In preparing it for the press, however, his thought has never been altered. The reader has Mr. Beecher's thoughts in his own words. The editor's work has consisted almost wholly in the selection of appropriate passages, and in the adaptation to them of Scripture and of poetry.
A definite aim, never consciously departed from, has determined that selection. The book is one simply of devotional readings. Heartily accepting that catholic conception of religion of which Mr. Beecher is the most distinguished modern exponent, I have embraced in this volume a wider range of topics than is usually embraced in devotional literature. Nothing has been inserted for its beauty of expression or for its value as a statement or defense of doctrine; but nothing has been omitted, as inappropriate to such a work, which could help the Christian in his warfare with the world and his daily walk with God. May the reader find in its perusal something of the spiritual strength which I have received from its preparation.