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to Thee, so they move me to trust intirely in Thee, to commit my self absolutely to Thee, and heartily to serve and obey Thee.
Accordingly here I renew that Dedication which I have frequently made of my whole self to Thee, and chuse to be governed and ordered by tiby Will, rather than mine ozón; boping in thine infinite Mercies, relying on Thee for what thou judgest to be convenient for me, and conducing to my Welfare, resolving my Defires into thy better Will
, and fledfastly purposing to rest contented and satisfied with whatsoever Thou art pleased to appoint for my Portion, and believing that Thou disposest all things for our Good and Happiness.
Beflow upon me, o blessed Lord, frech a Measure of thy boly Spirit, as is needful for me, that may preserve in my Mind these good Thoughts and holy Inclinations, and excite in me still more pious Affections, and a list all
Endeavours to be so wise and so good, as Thou would't have me. Help me rightly to employ my precious Time, prudently to chuse my Society; to do all Things with good Advice; to be constant to well-settled Resolutions ; to provide and arm my self for all Changes; and foreseeing what may come, to diSpose my self to receive it, with an humble, equal, quiet and undisturbed Spirit ; and that I may never be surprised nor disordered, belp me in the Day of Prosperity to remember Affliction, and in the Day of Adversity to solace my self with the Remembrance of thy past Favours, and with the Hopes of thy future Mercies.
Purge my Mind and Heart from all false Opi. nions, and naughty Affections, and enable me to preserve my Heart so pure, fincere and undefiled, ibat from a Conscience of well doing I may feel a perpetual Satisfaction Springing up to refresh me in 'all Conditions of Lije. Indue me, good Lord, with such a prudent, sober, sweet, condescending and gracious Temper, and disposition of Mind, that 1 may be acceptable to thee, inoffensive to others, and comfortably enjoy my self; free me from the Trouble of a contentions or envious Spirit; help me to bridle my Tongue, and to keep it from Evil, and my Lips from speaking Guile ; and whatsoever the Opinions or Centures of others be concerning me, bless me with the Comforts of an innocent Mind and an upright Heart; and enable me to rejoice always in the Testimony of a good Conscience, to mind my own proper. Buhness, and in all Simplicity and
Plainness of Heart to order my self by a sound and 1 unprejudiced Reason, and not by the customs and uncertain Fashions of this present World.
Blessed be tby infinite Goodness, that I see. tbe Way to be happy, and am acquainted with the Paths of Pleasantness and Peace; blessed be thy Goodness that I have such constant good Admonitions, wise Counsels, and faithful Advices, and enjoy so many Asistances of my Friends, Lovers and Acquaint ance, to guide, refresh, and folace me in my Pallage thro' all the Dangers and Troubles of this Life: Good Lord affect my Heart with thy wondrous Love, and make me truly thankful for all these Blessings; enable me also to make the best Use and Advantage of them, and setting before me the Examples of all those who thro' Fairb and PaСс
tience have inherited tby Promise, to follow them chearfully und courageously till I become my self an Example of true Piety and generous Virtue.
Fix and establish in my Mind all good Prixciples and religious Reasons, root them so deeply in my Heart by serious and constant Meditation on them, that I may find their friendly Power and Strength to alift, Support and comfort me on all Occasions; and especially fix my Mind in an immoveable Resolution to cleave to thee, and unite it self with thee ; never suffer my Will to incline to divide it self from thine, but enable me always readily and heartily to say, whatsoever comes, it is the Lord let him do what seemeth good in his
Sight, that maintaining an uninterrupted FriendShip with thee, in this world, and never contradičting or opposing thy wise Appointments, I may bave the Confolations of thy holy Spirit filling my Heart at all Times, and may live in a delightful Hope, to see all the Troubles of this World, end in everlasting Repose and Joys, thro' tby Son our Saviour Christ Jesus ;. by whom all Honour, Glory, Praise and Thanksgiving, be rendered by me, and by all Mankind, and by all the Host of Heaven, to thee, O Father Almighty, both now and eternally.
Heb. XIII. 5.
AVING dispatched those things
which I propounded in the Beginning of these Discourses, there is
nothing now remaining to be done, but only to make some Improvement of what hath been said, which I cannot neglect, because this is a Doctrine of so great Importance.
And there are but three Things that I shall recominend to your Consideration at this Time.
I. The First is, that there is no Man, but may have him enough, if he please to use it, to attend the Affairs of his immortal Soul. I make the Inference clear to you thus; if our Souls be not our chief Care, and the informing thein with the Knowledge of God and of his Son do not imploy our best Thoughts, the Reason must be, if it be worth any thing, because something else is more excellent, and deferves more Regard, or something else is more necessary and cannot, without so much Time as will leave none for the Concernments of our Souls, be
provided and supplyed. But neither of these Řeafons can be pretended, and therefore our Souls and their Affairs, do challenge our best, most ferious, and constant Thoughts.
That nothing else is more excellent and more to be regarded, is so plain, that it doth not need any Pains of mine to demonstrate, if it lay in my Way at this present to discouse of it.
And that Nothing is of such Necessity, that it must be provided for at the Coft and Charge of our Souls (leaving no considerable Leisure to look after their Good) doth unavoidably follow from the Doctrine that I have all this while explained and proved to you, viz. That we inay well be contented (without so much Care and Trouble as we put ourselves unto) in our present Estate, whatever it be; for God, I have shown you, liath provided for all Creatures enough, and much more for Man who is the best of them: And a few Things I have likewise shown), will give us enough, and those few Things are not so hard to be obtained, but we may foon have hem; and having them, be able to think our elves rich enough.
The clear Consequence of which is, that there vill be no Excuse for Mens gross want of Care bout their Souls; they will never be able to nake
any handsome Apology for their Ignorance f the Gospel; for their not reading and medigiting on the Word of God; for their Unbelief