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« Hear the lecture we are reading,
“ 'Tis, alas! the truth we tell. Virgins, much, too much presuming,
“ On your boasted white and red, “ View us, late in beauty blooming,
“ Number'd now among the dead. Griping misers, nightly waking,
"See the end of all your care ; • Fled on wings of our own making,
“ We have left our owners bare. • Sons of honour, fed on praises,
“ Flutt'ring high in fancied worth, « Lo! the fickle air that raises,
“ Brings us down to parent earth. “ Learned fires, in fyftem jaded,
" Who for new ones daily call, “ Cease at-length, by us persuaded ;
“ Every leaf must have a fall. “ Youth, tho' yet no losses grieve you,
Gay in health, and many a grace, " Let not cloudless skies deceive
you: " Summer gives to autumn place." On the tree of life eternal,
Man let all thy hopes be stay'd; Which alone, for ever vernal,
Bears the leaves that never fade.
A MAN who entertains an high opinion of himself, is naturally ungrateful. He has too great an efteem of his own merit, to be thankful for any favours received.
WHEN tired and fick of all mortal vanities, the rea ligious mind reposes itself in the firm expectation of drinking at the fountain of life, and of bathing in rivers of immortal pleasure. Even death (which to the guilty is the gloomy period of all their joys, and the entrance to a gulph of undying wretchedness) brightens into a smile, and, in an angel's form, invites the religious fout to endless reft from labour, and to endless scenes of joy.
THOU great, ador'd! thou excellence divine !
Th' eternal spring of life, the fource of love
ACTIVE in indolence, abroad we'roam,
OH, what a scene of bliss the foul employs,
A COURSE of virtue, innocence, and piety, is superior to all the luxury and grandeur, by which the greatest libertines ever proposed to gratify their desires; for then the soul is still enlarged, by grasping at the enjoyments of eternal bliss. The mind, by retiring calmly into itself, finds there capacities formed for infinite objects and defires, that stretch themselves beyond the limits of this creation, in search of the great Original of life and pleasure.
SUCH is the uncertainty of human affairs, that we cannot assure ourselves of the constant poffeffion of any objects that gratify any one pleasure or desire, except that of virtue; which, as it does not depend on external objects, we may promise ourselves always to enjoy.
WHEN you are lawfully engaged in the business of life, take heed that your heart and affections cleave not
IT is not without good reason that we are exhorted to pass the time of our sojourning in fear : an attachment to riches, to worldly greatness, or its carés, has a natural tendency to divert the mind from better objects, to draw off its attention from the one thing needful, and to impede its progress in the pursuit of that happiness, which is only worth pursuing.
0, WHILE we breathe this fleeting air, May we for endless life prepare; To love divine, continue chaste, All its sweet effluences taste; 'Till at the source, when going hence, We drink our fill of joy immense !
PROVIDENCE is commonly indulgent to the honest endeavours of industrious persons, that the more laborious they are in their employments, the more they thrive and are blessed in them.
KNOWLEDGE, foftened with complacency and good breeding, will make a person beloved and admired; but being joined with a severe and morose temper, it makes him rather feared than respected.
WHEN once the soul, by contemplation, is raised to any right apprehension of the Divine perfections, and the foretastes of celestial bliss, how wili this world, and all that is in it, vanish and disappear before his eyes! With what holy disdain will he look down upon things, which are the highest objects of other men's ambitious desires! All the splendour of courts, all the pageantry of greatness, will no more dazzle his eyes, than the fain't lustre of a glow-worm will trouble the eagle after it hath been been beholding the sun.
WERE there but a single mercy apportioned to eacht minute of our lives, the sum would rise very high ; but how is our arithmetic confounded, when every minute has more than we can distinctly number!
Reflections Reflections on the Close of the Year. THE year expires, and this its latest hour
Ah! think, my soul, how swift the moment flies, Nor idly waste it while it's in thy power;
Attend time's awful call, and be thou wise. Twelve months ago, what numbers, blithe and gay,
Thoughtful, plan'd schemes for the succeeding year! How vain were all their hopes, to death a prey,
Nor wealth they ask, nor poverty they fear! I've follow'd worth and merit to the grave,
The last fad duties to their ashes paid; How soon may I the same kind office crave,
The pitying tear, fad figh, and friendly aid ! Almighty Lord ! be pleased to extend
Thy wonted kindness; still thy blessings pourOh! may thy grace into my breast descend :
Teach me to work thy will, and thee adore !
Of all the causes which conspire to blind Man's erring judgment, and misguide the mindWhat the weak head, with strongest bias rules, Is PRIDE, the never-failing vice of fools.
A RICH man is no way happier than another man, but that he hath more opportunities ministered unto him of doing more good than his neighbour.
HUMILITY is the grand virtue that leads to contentment. It cuts off the envy and malice of inferiors and equals, and makes us patiently bear the insults of superiors.
POVERTY has not always the nature of an afiliction or judgment, but is rather merely a state of life appointed by Providence for the proper trial and exercise of the virtues of contentment, patience, and resignation : and for one man to murmur against God, because he possesses not those riches he fees given to another, " is in the wrath that killeth the foolish man, and the envy 56. that fayeth the filly one.".
SURELY, if we did not lose our remembrance, os at leaft our sensibility, that view would always predominate in our lives, which alone can afford us comfort when we die.
A SERIOUS and contemplative mind fees God in every thing. Every object we behold, the food by which we are sustained, the raiment wherewith we are cloathed, suggest thoughts of piety and gratitude ; and if we attend to the silent voice of meditation, we shall
" Find tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, “ Sermons in stones, and good in every thing.”
OUR principles only become pleasing and delightful, when by the influence of them we learn to calm and govern our passions; and are formed by them into such a temper, as renders us capable of chearfully enjoying the blessings of the present world, and the higher happiness of a better.
THE most momentous concern of man is, the state he shall enter upon, after this short and transitory life is ended : and in proportion as eternity is of greater im. portance than time, so ought men to be solicitous upon what grounds their expectations, with regard to that durable state, are built; and upon what assurances their hopes or their fears stand.
WE should take all the care imaginable, how we create enemies ; it being one of the hardest things in the Christian religion, to behave ourselves as we ought to do towards them.
THE HAPPY MAN.