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his having spent the days of his youth in folly and sin, God gives him now time and space for repentance, in a safe and quiet habitation, where no other care' but that of his soul need intrude. Should the grace of God here visit him, let him daily reflect on the great change that awaits him at death. Heaven must be heaven to the richest believer : though cut off in the midst of his choicest pleasures, he will undoubtedly have his happiness increased beyoud conception. But think what it will be to the poorest ! to one racked, perhaps with pain, or worn out by old age! To the friendless, the prisoner, or the persecuted ! Oh may the heart-consoling thought have its full influence on the mind of every poor believer, who may read this page, and help him to wait patiently, as well *as to hope quietly for the salvation of his God.
Character of Mr. Peach.
Passing by a window well decorated with wigs of different colours, shapes, and sizes, it occurred to my recollection, that this must belong to the top barber, Humphrey Preach, mentioned by the widow 'at the work-house; and having for some weeks determined on a new purchase, I instantly resolved to avail myself of her recommendation.
On casting my eye upon the name over the door, I observed it was not Preach, but Peach; as the Christian name answered, I concluded my ear had deceived me. I entered an empty shop, and thumping with my stick, advanced step by step in expectation of an
All was silent. I then tried without success the effect of a loud call on the name of the master. The door of a small room at the further end of the shop was open, and I boldly entered. Another door which was shut I ventured to open, and discovered a neat well-furnished kitchen, but no trace or sound of an inhabitant. I then returned
into the room and seated myself, resolved to await the issue. The family library lay on the window-seat, which was soon inspected, as it consisted only of the Bible, Prayer-Book, Pilgrim's Progress, and Dr. Watts' Psalms and Hymns. The walls were ornamented with a few neatly framed pictures, containing the history of the Prodigal Son; and the chimney-piece with cups and saucers, with a tea-pot in the centre. Two brown oaken tables, and six chairs, a neat floor cloth, and a mahogany tea-board, which answered the purpose of a looking-glass, completed the furniture. As I sat viewing with admiration the general cleanliness and neatness apparent, I concluded that Mr. Peach was indebted to some female inmate, most probably wife, or daughter, though their absence reflected much on their discretion. After sitting a full half hour in solitary suspense, the master of the house entered, and expressed in a civil manner his concern that I should have waited. He said, his wife and daughter had left home early in the morning, to see a sick relatìon, a few miles off, and that he was forced to carry home a gentleman's wig, he had promised him should be finished that morning. I accepted his excuse very readily, as it affected myself, but expressed my surprise at his desertion of his house. “Ah! Sir,” he replied, “I can trust God with my house, and all it contains.”
" And you can tempt God too, as well as trust him," I replied. ~ But what could I do, Sir," rejoined he, “I had
promised the gentleman his wig, I could get no vne to carry it, and the lock to the house-door is out of repair, so I have a couple of bolts within side.” There was some difficulty in the case I acknowledged, which would all have been avoided by a little prudent forecast, for, in the first place, the promise should not have been made on the uncertain method of conveyance, and in the next, the house-door lock ought to have been mended immediately. I soon convinced the honest barber of his folly and presumption.
To the generality of persons, an exhortation to the use of means, for the security of worldly property, would be quite unnecessary.
Even after they have laudably adopted their prudent measures, what anxious thoughts do they harbour for their success, and how little are they disposed to trust even for a blessing on their care. Yet such is the strange inconsistency of human nature, these same persons can trust, or rather presume on the mercy of God toward their souls, though they neglect every means he has afforded them to work out their salvation. They expect to derive all the advantage of Christian knowledge, without studying the Bible. They expect to partake of the privileges of the true believer, without even taking the trouble to enquire into the nature of Christian faith. They expect the pardon of their sins, without the for. saking of them.
They expect to grow in grace, without prayer and watchfulness. In a word, they
expect heaven, without any preparation of heart, to enjoy the happiness of it. This is a delusion of infinite importance, where the neglect of means will prove the destruction of the soul, for let it never be forgotten, that although God sometimes converts the sinner by an act of sovereign grace, there is no warrant in his blessed word to expect it. Having both in spiritual and temporal affairs, used with thankfulness the means appointed for their several purposes, they may safely cast their care upon God, in the confidence that he careth for them.
I did not feel less esteem on the whole for Humphrey on account of the display of presumption he had made, for I know too well the frailties of men, to be offended on all occasions by their discovery. After adjusting the business which chiefly led me to his house, I mentioned my visit to the work-house, and the short account given me by the widow of his predecessor, I also expressed my wish to hear from him a few more particulars, as I understood he visited him in his last illness. “With all my heart, Sir,” said he, “ 'twas mournful visiting to be sure, but I felt myself called to it, as how I had known him in better days, and being both of a trade too. No good ever comes of forsaking the trade we have been brought up to, and so I told him over and over. I have been barber and wigmaker these five and thirty years, (counting in my