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Thou hast given me, even in their present impaired state. For though they are not the highest in the Scale of Being, neither are they the lowest; but arc, indeed, noble, when considered in their proper place, and with regard to their proper end. There is something grand and august even in the present fallen state of human nature, which speaks its Almighty Author; and those must grovel beneath their native destination, without exerting their strength, or aspiring at any thing mat is generous, elevated or gready good, who have not a just sense of this grandeur—May I have a just sense o£ k, and reverencer my Nature! May I consider mysdf as Thy Image, and strive to act up to my dignity in the humble imitation of Thy Divine Perfections.
To dispose me to do this, may 1 look deeply into myself, and frequently employ my thoughts at home. May I attentively listen to the still voice of a wellinformed conscience, which is Thy vicegerent within me. What it warns me not to do, may I ever sedulously fly from, however dear; and what it dictates to be done,, may I ever resolutely achieve, however hard!
2. With regard to Thee, O ray God! may I make
it the chief aim of my life to discharge the Duties of
„ _ .. Piety and erateful Praise. Mav I alwavs
2. Petitions J" J J
forthepractice acknowlege Thee to be, what Thou art,
of the Divine , _, . r., . Cut «■
Dmiesrespect- the Sovereign Object of all Love; for ,ng surely there is nothing drat can satisfy
the human Soul but Thee. When I stray from the Love of Thee, I find within myself a frightful Void, and Nothing of solid happiness to fill it up. All my powers are dissipated with false hopes and false fears; nor can I support the lingering torment of society with myself. But when I return to Thee, sighing and thirsting after Thy Divine Fellowship, my Soul is abundantly satisfied, and filled with inborn Tranquillity and Joy in the Holy Ghost. Nothing can disturb its Peace, while it feels Thy Presence, exults in Thy Favour; and, in all things, quietly resigns to Thee, who art infinitely Wise to contrive, Good to incline Thee, and Powerful execute what is best for me in the whole
O, then! may I always love and obey Thee, without the least murmuring or distrust; and consider whatever befals me now, as meant to discipline and prepare roe for future happiness. May I bear every thing with Contentment, Fortitude and Equanimity; neither too much elated or dejected at any thing which this earthly scene can give or take away, since I am not qualified to judge of the tendency of things in the whole.
Give me a lively Faith in Thy promises, and save Dae from all irreligion and profanation of Thy Holy Name; for Thou art the All-seeing Governor and tremendous Judge of the world, and wilt not hold them guiltless who profane or neglect the awful reverence of Thy glorious attributes—May I never neglect it, and never forget the worship and grateful praises which are due to Thee, both in private and public; for I can never be without a prompter!
All Thy works, with unceasing voice, echo forth Thy wondrous praises. The splendid Sun, with the unnumbered orbs of heaven, through the pathless Void, repeat their unwearied circuits; that, to the uttermost bounds of the Universe, they may proclaim Thee the Source of the Justest order and unabating harmony. This Earth rolls round the various seasons of the year, that, in all her changes and appearances, she may speak Thee the original of all beauty; and every other creature that lives thereon, (Man, foolish man, excepted), seems to rejoice in its state and be happy, that it may pronounce Thee the Parent of all wisdom and goodness!
Shall I then, who am favoured above them all, with reason and voice articulate, mar the grand Chorus? Shall I be the only peevish string in the tuneful instrument?—Oh no!—save me, Thou Sovereign Power! Thou Universal Good! save me from such a perverse ungrateful conduct . Let not Me, Me alone, who am here so highly endowed, wander as if deaf, blind and dumb, in the midst of Thy applauding works; but may I walk forth with the morning Sun, and under the evening Sky, while my feeling Soul attends, and my consenting Heart beats unison, to the voice of Nature; for the same is Thy voice, sounding aloud in the ears of the wiseThus may 1 go on my way through life, corresponding with the general harmony, and praising Thee for all things—Praising Thee for my reasonable being, for my preservation; and above all for the light of Thy Gospel, and my Redemption through Christ Jesus. This is that astonishing plan, by which Thou hast reconciled Justice with Mercv; and while all Superior Beings, inhabiting wide through nature, make every sphere vocal in praises to Thee for this act of Love, let not me, for whom the wonderful work was wrought, be the only reasonable creature that is silent about it, and that perceives nothing grand or august in it. Sooner let me forget to breathe, than forget to extol Thee for it. May I mingle in frequent worship with the hosts of Heaven, and swell their universal Anthem, adoring its depth, adoring its sublimity, adoring its riches! Often may my raptured heart break forth to- Thee in strains like these
"Bless Jehovah, O my Soul, and all that is within "me bless His Holy Name! Bless Jehovah, O my "Soul, and forget not all His benefits, who forgives "all thine inquities, and heals all thine infirmities; '' who redeems thy life from destruction, and crowns "thee with loving kindness and tender mercies.— "Forever bless Jehovah, O my Soul; His Name is "excellent in all the Earth; His glory is far above "the Heavens. He, only He, is worthy to be cele "brated with eternal praises!"
3. With regard to others, teach me an unbounded
Love and Benignity of heart. Save me from that
meanest of all vices, a selfish unfeeling
3. Petitions o
for the practice Soul, coiled up within its own narrow
of the Social
Duties respect- orb. May I consider myself as related mg ot »:.,. to t^at unjversa] republic of being, whose
common Parent Thou art; and, in a particular manner, feel for all my own species; ivceping the lovely tear of sympathy with those that -weep; and mingling the generous joys of congratulation with those that
Vol. i. 4 x
May I consider each individual in this world as having his infirmities and wants; and let this dispose me tenderly to bear with all, and be ever ready to alleviate the burdens of my fellow-exiles, in our common journey to the land of promise. May it be ever present in my thoughts, how many, more deserving than me, mourn around in " deep retired distress," and drink the bitter draught of misery, while I abound and am glad ; and may this consideration induce me to do good and communicate to the utmost of my power, lest in the day of final retribution they should be comforted, while I am doomed to sorrow in my turn.
But, when I have done all in my power to relieve others, let me not think that I have acquitted myself of all my duty towards them. May I also assist them with my advice, and intercede for them in my prayers, thai thou wouldst grant them resignation and patience, till, (consistent with the just purposes of Thy moral government), Thou shah be pleased to put an end to their troubles.
May it be the chief triumph of my Soul to see the world holy as well as happy; and especially to see the Society, to which 1 more immediately belong, a holy and happy one; established upon the everlasting foundations of Truth, Righteousness and Peace. For this cause, having first warmed my own heart with Thy Love, and satisfied myself of Thy eternal goodness, as I trust I have done, and that the impression thereof shall never wear away, may my benevolence prompt me to lead as many of my fellow creatures, as I can, to the same temper; striving to make