« AnteriorContinua »
the particular situations which individuals may be supposed to occupy. It appears to the author of this treatise, however, that little good is gained by being too particular in assigning such situations. It is perhaps better to view human life, generally, as a scene in which man' may be either fortunate or unhappy,--exposed to temptation and subject to death,—together with a few more prominent situations of the same kind; to adapt the prayer which has been composed to these remarkable situations; and to leave it to the person who makes use of the prayer to accommodate the general description, by a mental exercise, to his own particular situation.
Thus, for example, if a prayer be entitled, “ To be said by a person who has been successful in life," it is not necessary that it should more particularly express
whether his success has consisted in an addition to his fortune,—to his family,—or to his titles of honour. He can easily, in his own mind, express that more particular good, while he is employing the general expression of thankfulness for success,—and, by thus leaving the application to himself, this double advantage is gained that he who pronounces the
is not confined to any one
instance of good fortune,—and that he is not entirely passive while pronouncing the prayer,
gradually habituated to frame for himself such adaptations of the general petition or thanksgiving as are best suited to his case at the time.
It is upon these views that the following Prayers have been composed, suited only to a few of the more general situations of interest which may occur in life, but capable of being accommodated by him who employs them, in any instance, to his own individual exigency.
TO BE SAID BY A YOUNG PERSON.
Prov. i. 7. The fear of the Lord is the beginning
HEAVENLY FATHER, I THANK thee that thou hast permitted me to see the light of another day. I bless thee for the rest of the night which is past, and for that merciful care which has preserved my body from sickness, and my soul from vain thoughts.
I bless thee, O Father, in heaven, that thou hast called me into life, and endowed me with a reasonable and immortal spirit. O grant that I may never show myself unworthy of so high a distinction; but in all things may I act as thy servant, and as one who has been born an heir of immortality.
Blessed, O Lord, be thy name, that thou hast sent thy beloved Son into the world, to teach us
thy will, and to die for our offences. Blessed be thy name, that he also rose from the dead, and that he is now gone into heaven as the forerunner of his people, where he shall remain till the heavens and the earth shall pass away.
O enable me to act this day, and every day of my life, as becomes a person whom the Son of God has condescended to love. Enable me to fulfil all my duties with fidelity and tenderness. May I be kind and affectionate to those who are related to me,ếobeying in all things those whom thou hast set over me,- always anxious to do that which is dutiful, and that which is becoming,—and seeking to be a model to those who are my companions in life.
Imbue my mind with deep reverence for thy name and perfections. May I delight to read thy holy word,--and may all the services of religion be sacred in mine eyes.
Assist all my endeavours to acquire that knowledge and those honourable accomplishments which may prepare me for life,-but, above all, o take the concerns of my soul into thy gracious keeping. May I grow in heavenly wisdom and pure affections
as I grow in days and years,
and thus may I be prepared, not only for a successful discharge of the duties of this life, but for a place hereafter in thy heavenly kingdom.
Be especially with me through all the changes of this day. Alas! O Lord, I am prone to err, and without thy guidance, young as I am,
I into great sin. May thy good providence ever be with me,—and do thou so order all events, that they may contribute to train me up for the fellowship of the just.
Be very gracious to my parents, and to my brothers and sisters. Enable me to love them all with a pure heart, fervently,—and at no time of my life may I have to endure the awful thought, that I have failed in my duty to those whom I am most bound to honour and esteem.
Pardon all the sins of my former life, and take me into thy gracious care, for time and for eternity. Hear, O heavenly Father, these my prayers, and answer me in mercy, for Christ's sake. Amen.