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hast given to my care, and all that are near and dear to me.
Oh, that they may live before Thee, most gracious God, in all innocence, and that I may lead them in thy way, as Thou hast given me a most perfect pattern of meekness in thy dear Son.
According to thy mercy, comfort the afflicted, heal the sick, and
prepare me for every change, that I may not be careful whether I am to accomplish many days in this transitory life, or soon enter the valley of the shadow of death, but always lean on thy rod and staff, to comfort me in every step of my short pilgrimage, and bring me at last to thy heavenly kingdom, through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
FOR MONDAY EVENING,
The Apostle teaches us to continue in prayer, and watch in the same, with thanksgiving; for as blessings are the promised fruit of our prayers, so do our holy and grateful affections spring forth from our blessings. No one will set himself to watch the consequences of his
perceiving that he has infinite reason for thankfulness.
For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth ; so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations. Isa. lxi. 11.
We shall observe the this communion with God to produce a spiritual effect upon our hopes and fears beyond all the circumstances of the world, often doing away the care and sorrow that have been wrought by worldly circumstances. We shall say, To do God's will, to wait God's time; in these is the life of my spirit. That life which I now live, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved
himself for me.
By observing whether God gives us, or withholds an answer of peace to our prayer, we shall have a deeper knowledge of our own hearts and ways, as they appear to his all-seeing eye.
The denial of his grace will put us upon the inquiry, for what iniquity, for what vanity will the Lord not hear me? We shall be instant in our supplication to Him to show us the hidden sin, and give us a true repentance of it, and cleanse our souls of it in the blood of a crucified Redeemer. We shall in vain examine ourselves unless we also know what God judges of us from the manifestation of his love or displeasure, as known in the rejection or answer of our prayer.
Your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear. Isa. lix. 2.
No good thing shall he withhold from them that lead a godly life. How much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask it. Luke xi. 13.
We should consider that our prayer is heard, when God means for good the denial of our earnest request, and we see the hand of God in the coming of affliction. His mercy is manifest in his blessings : but his chastenings make known his love.
Perhaps we pray for submission to his will in the issue of our too anxious pursuit of uncertain riches : and He not only denies to make us rich, but takes away our patience under misfortune; yet He turns again, and shows us some greater trouble, which effaces the remembrance of our former affliction, and then He gives the sweet temper of resignation, the beloved peace
of the heart at his secret