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was beautiful in thine, and when all this is not yet enough to manifeft thy wonderful compassions towards me, thou feedelt me at thine own table, thou lodgest me in thine own bosom, thou makest me partaker of thine own inheritance.
Blessed God, what couldst thou have done more for me that thou hast not done? And yet for all this I forsake thee, I neglect thee, I abuse thee, I adulterate those many vows and promises I made ụnto thee. And now, Lord, when I am even ashamed to present myself before thee, when my false heart hath been so great a stranger to thy bless sęd bosom, that I am even afraid to kneel to thee for mercy; thou graciously forgivest me, thou bemoanest my sin, thou hideft my shame, thou makest love unto me, and (to the wonder of my soul) delightest still to set thy love upon me,
Thou, O my blessed Saviour haft told me, that if I were of this world, it would love me, but now I am not of this world, that the world hateth me : Lord, what madness is this in me to love mine utter enemy? to delight in her bosom, which hunteth for my precious life? to forsake thee, the pleasant lilly of the vallies, the sweet refreshments of eter. nity, to weary out, and wound my soul amongst the bryars of this barren wilderness ? 'Thou Lord, haft faid unto me, arise my love, my fair one, and come away; tlou invitest me from the showers and tem
pests of a stormy winter, from the cares and troubles of a discontented life, to the sweet dews of thy graces, the gentle breathing of thy spirit, the tender buds of thy love, the lovely blossoms of thy goodness, the pleasant fruit of thy promises, the joyful crop of thy performances : and notwithstanding all this I still cry,—yet a little more sleep, yet a little more slumber, yet a little more folding of the hands together; yet a little more fin, yet a little more. shame, yet a little more sorrow. .
Ah, Lord, what is there in the creature, that thus strangely bewitcheth me? or rather what is there not in it, that is not every minute ready to betray me, and despoil me of those precious ornaments of soul which thou hast given me ; the cares and crosses of this life afflict me, the pleasures before me, the prophets disturb me, pride puffeth me up, and even mine own heart deceiveth me, by calling good evil, and evil good; by making that sweet in the expectation, which is bitter in the fruition: Lord, while I have sought the creature, I have lost myself, my body in distempers, my soul in distractions,
That precious faith which is the ground of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen, whose end is the salvation of my soul, which is thy gift who art the God of truth, is now drowned, in. a sea of error, and justly given up to believe dreams. but to know myself miserable; I see nothing in this misery, but terror and confusion, affliction to my body, destruction to my soul; all occurrences of this life should have rather added to my growth of grace, than disturbance of nature : I have hitherto been grosly mistaken, in calling that a defect of my body, which is in truth an error in my soul: nature was at first created pure, no disobedience was then in the passions, man hath married it by his fall : all the streams that are now troubled, flow from this fountain; this barren excuse therefore is so far from lessening fin, that it makes it bigger. I am now fo much the more stained by committing a&tual fin, as I should have been more holy, and am not, since original. :
Lord, let this teach me to do truly with my soul, to uncloath myself of all sinful excuses, that fo fin may appear truly what it is, and may become out of measure sinful; that mine anger may be holy, my application of it happy, that nothing may difurb me but fin; that I may be a lion in thy cause, a lamb in mine own; that when I hate the fin, I may love the person ; when I rebuke the offence, I may pray heartily for the offender; so shall I zealously enjoy thee my God, religiously embrace my neighbour, patiently possess mine own soul,
· AND now, Lord, as thou has given me an heart to confess my sins of impatience before thee, so give me a sweet assurance in my Saviour, that by him I have assured pardon for them.
If thou Lord, for my finful anger, fhalt inflict upon me thy severe wrath, and for my long continuing in my sins, the long duration of thy punishments; yet let not thy severity exceed the measure of my christian charity; though thou continuest my miseries, yet withdraw not thy mercies, ő make me more and more humble unto thee my God, and more and more meek amongst thy children: conform me to that blessed pattern of true piety and patience; that as a sheep in thy hands, (my blessed shearer) fo I may be dumb, and not open my mouth against thee.
Lord, banish from me all desires of revenge; let patience have its perfect work, to quiet me here, and crown me hereafter. ;
. I confess myself to be a great and grievous finner,
and yet I am thy creature ; my body is thine, and my soul is thine, both were joined in thy creation, and both joined in my devotion; both have finned against thee, O let them both be humbled before thee, not to satisfy thy justice, but to implore thy mercy; not to merit thy grace, but to magnify thy goodness.
· Lord, maake me truly sensible of the greatness of my misery, that I may the more devoutly, the more sincerely sue to thee for mercy: forgive the many violent eruptions of my finful passions, give me a meek and humble spirit, that I may happily enjoy thy presence, and mine own content. Lord grant that I may patiently and joyfully embrace the wrongs and injuries of this life, for thy fake, who haft been patient even to death for mine.
1 Let that be made easy unto me by thy grace; which by nature is impossible, that nothing may delight me, but thy love, nothing grieve me, but thy displeasure, nothing offend me, but thy dishonor. Amen.