Imatges de pàgina
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suffered to purchase for us everlasting life. O cleanse our hearts from their impurities, that with hope, and pious confidence, we may turn to Thee, our true and only God.

5. Let us patiently endure the many painful events which cross our path through this life, and, as it were, interpose themselves between our God and us; let us take them as they come, and make use of them as so many steps towards heaven; remembering, that the evils which we are most inclined to murmur at, are those which may be most essential to our salvation. It is well for us, when we are thrown down, and cast to the earth, as St. Paul was at the gates of Damascus. We have need to be continually reminded that we have no help in ourselves, and that our only help is from God. Happy are we when we can endure our trials in silence, with an humble mind, yet with an invincible courage.

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Patient in hope; strong only in God; and deriving support and consolation from Him alone. When we are tempted to repine, let us recal to our minds the image of our blessed Saviour dying on the Cross -dying for those who placed him there. Remember his meek acceptance of that bitter cup, because it was sent him by his heavenly Father; and say, with Him,

My God, not my will, but Thine be done."

6. You complain of your too great sensibility to the sorrows and trials of this life. You say that others are not so much to be pitied, because you think that few of them feel so acutely as you do; but of that you cannot be certain ; and were it the case, still you are not to make it a cause of complaint against your Creator, that he has given you this deep sensibility, nor to suppose that he will require the less patience from you on that account. You are to look upon

this

part of your character as an additional trial, and to remember that you must answer to your Maker for this, as well as every other quality, according as you use or abuse it.

7. We know that, “ in this world we must have tribulation;" we ought also to know, and to remember, that we deserve it: Yet we are always surprised and discontented when trial comes upon us, as if it were both undeserved and unnecessary for us. It belongs only to those who are perfect in the love of God, to receive trials with joy; but the mercy of God has regard to our weakness, and he is satisfied with our resignation and submission. It is true, that we must feel for ourselves, but it must be with an entire submission to the Will and unerring Wisdom of the Almighty. And how great is the consolation which this reflection ought to afford us; for, upon unerring Wisdom we may surely rest, even while its severity appears extreme to us. Thus we may become strong in our own weakness, by resting all our burthen upon God. St. Paul says, “ I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in persecu. tions, in distresses, for Christ's sake-for, when I am weak, then am I strong" in

Him.

8. God has condescended to call himself a faithful and a just God towards his creatures : Let us not doubt this gracious declaration, and when he afflicts us, let us not despond: Let us trust in Him, for he knoweth whereof we are made, and he will pardon our weakness, if we exert ourselves to the utmost of our power. We are told by himself, that “ those whom he loves he chastens ;” and when he appears to have overwhelmed and forsaken us, he pities our infirmities, and proportions our trials to our strength. The sufferings which, when at a distance, we have supposed ourselves unable to bear, will, on their near approach, be found not insupportable. Our imagination always magnifies calamity, and our self-love is ever encreasing our sufferings. But every man's life is equally in the hands of God, and all the events of it are appointed by him.-To one he gives life-to another death. Let him do what seemeth good to him, for he is the Lord.”

9. This subject farther treated under the title of

ABSOLUTE RESIGNATION.

1. There are few precepts more strongly enforced in the Gospel, than that of conforming ourselves to the will of God, and the example of Jesus Christ, who, we are told, was in all things submissive to his heavenly Father. All virtue consists in our will and intentions, and the regula

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