Page images
PDF
EPUB

whole world, to thy glory, and the salvation of all mankind. For which end, grant that all who profess this thy true Religion may live in perfect obedience to its laws; and that men, as the infirmities of their nature will permit, may obey thee with proportionable sincerity and constancy, as do the spirits of the Saints in Heaven. Bestow on us, O gracious Lord, every day through the remaining part of our lives, as many of the things of this present world, as are sufficient for our necessary subsistence, for the useful and innocent conveniencies of life, forgiving us our fins, and withholding the punishments we have thereby deserved ; in like manner as we freely and heartily for thy fake forgive all those injuries and offences which we have received from others. Let all the causes and occasions of temptations cease from us, or else deliver us from the power of them; that we may not be moved either with the enticement of riches, honours or pleasures, or with the fear of want, disgrace, or pain, to do any thing knowingly contrary to thy will; and deliver us from all the evils and calamities, which either the malice of the devil, or the wickedness or milfortunes of the world might bring upon us, and set us at variance with thee, my God, or thy servaots, our fellow creatures : and I most earnestly offer up these my petitions, because, O God, I know that thou canst and

wilt

wilt do more for us than we can desire or deferve, who art infinite in power, glory, majesty, and mercy, from everlasting to ever., lasting. Amen.

The Meditation for Saturday Morning.

Upon Fasting before receiving the Holy Sacrament, Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind. He

that eateth, eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, to the Lord he eateth

not, and giveth God thanks. Rom. xiv. 5,6. I. MY soul! thou knowest that flesh is

weak and easily surprized ;, too often carried about with every wind of doctrine :* thou hast had many conflicts with me, but since thou has brought me into subjection to the spirit, I am always ready to follow its dictates. But my soul! thou demandest one thing of me which is not spiritual; it is altogether corporcal.

* II. Thou requirest me to come fasting to the holy table or the fupper of our Lord. If it be necessary to falvation, I will; but if you confider the institution, nothing of that kind is necessary; for it was instituted after supper : nor has the church made any rule about it. Where therefore neither the laws of God nor those of our superiors have obliged us, we must use our prudence, and do that we find best.

III. There * Eph. iv, 14.

III. There are these things, O my soul! I shall propose in this case; if you find that my fafting makes you more devout and serious, and that you are in a better frame of mind, you should certainly choose to go to the Sacrament fasting; or if it be indifferent, and you are much the same whether I fast or not, and find it makes no change at all in you, I would for decency, and with regard to ancient practice, accompany you to the Sacrament fafting.

IV. But, as I have by custom contracted such a habit of eating or drinking some light matter every morning, that you know I shall be uneasy or disordered without it, so I hope you will permit me to do as I used to do, and that also for your own sake, and to strengthen devotion; because the purposes of fasting (which are to raise the mind to God, and put it into a better frame) are better answered by moderate refreshment, than by wholly abstaining. Yet I say that as neither God, nor the Church, has appointed the contrary, I would advise the morning abstinence on Sacrament days, where the inconveniency of doing it is none; but I must disapprove of it if there be any inconvenience in abstaining.

V. And let us always remember that whe. ther we abstain, or not, we do it without fcruple in ourselves, and without censuring what another does, though contrary to whạt

we

A Sat. Morn.] for the Sacrament.

313 we do. But let us do in this, and in all other indifferent cases, what we believe will tend most to our own spiritual edification, without regard to what other people do ; for every one is to give an account of his. own deeds,

it to ourales, what we band in all

[merged small][ocr errors]

TNDULGE, O God, my humble claim,
I Thou art my hope, my joy, and rest;
The glories that exalt thy name

Stand all engag'd to make me blest.
Thou great and good, thou just and wise,

Thou art my Father and my God; And I am thine by facred ties,

Thy Son, thy Servant bought with blood. With heart and eyes and lifted hands

For thee I long, to thee I look; i
As travellers in thirsty lands

Pant for the cooling water-brook.
Not fruits nor wines that tempt our taste,

Nor all the joys our senses know,
Could make me lo divinely blest,

Or raise my chearful passion fo. My life itself without thy love

No taste of pleasure could afford; 'Twould but a tiresome burden prove, If I were banish'd from the Lord.

Amidst

prove,

Amidst the wakeful hours of night,

When busy cares afflict my head, One thought of thee gives new delight,

And adds refreshment to my bed, I'll lift my hands, I'll raise my voice,

While I have breath to pray or praise ; This work shall make my heart rejoice,

And spend the remnant of my days.

Another. D ROAD is the road that leads to death, B And thousands walk together there, But wisdom shews a narrower path,

With here and there a traveller. Deny thyself and take the crofs,*

Is the Redeemer's great command; Mortals must count this gold but drofs,

If they would gain this heav’oly land. The fearful soul that tires and faints,

And walks the ways of God no more, Is but estcem'd almost a saint,

And makes his own destruction sure; Lord, let not all my hopes be vain,

Create my heart entirely new, Which hypocrites could ne'er attain, Which false apostates never knew.

The

* Matth. x. 38. Luke xiv. 27. Luke xvi. 24. Mark vili. 34. Mark x. 21.

« PreviousContinue »