« ZurückWeiter »
When AIMING AT HEAVEN, the author of this book, having travelled abroad a number of years, met with many towns where the ladies had formed themselves into societies, to collect money for the poor, and visit one or two large districts every week, to relieve their necessities both of body and soul. Men are not so well calculated for this work of seeing that the comfortless poor are provided with food and raimeut; and exhorting them, if ignorant, to true repentance. Do not imagine because thou art better clothed, that thou art therefore in any respect better than thy neighbour. Although thou mayst have a fine flow of speech, it is only a power lent unto thee, perhaps the offspring of a strong mind, or the confidence resulting from the possession of affluence ; but if thou art stripped of these blessings, thou mayst fall lower than thy neighbours, and be more helpless in the world.
I have, also, known ladies, on a sabbath morning, walk a considerable distance to see if a poor woman had a Bible. This I call charity. Figure to yourself what a comfortless thing it would be for a lady of title and high birth, to be told, when she came of age, that though she possessed a title, , yet she had no money, and must now provide for herself, or starve. It is just a similar thing, when a poor woman has faith to believe something, but
for want of a Bible can come to no true settlement of mind, because she does not know what to believe, nor on what to ground her faith. And would you not, O daughters of Zion, assist a poor pilgrim on her way to heaven? Oh! pity the poor : aid them in the improvement of their morals, and strengthen them to come boldly to the throne of grace. The Lord has covenanted with the meek and lowly, that he will be a Father unto them: and in this case it is a great honor for a lady to minister unto the wants of the poor,
and to become, as it were, the messenger of heaven unto them.—And are there persons so fortunate as thus to enjoy a heaven upon earth, and to partake, with the poor, of divine enjoyment ? Yes :-God has entered into a covenant with the humble, and they that are merciful shall obtain mercy.
The Father enters into covenant with us; he promiseth to be a father to us. Hence saith the Lord, “ Isrsel is my son my first-born,” The Son enters into covenant with us, and speaks to us thus, “Thou art mine,--I have redeemed thee,—I have called thee by thy name and "therefore “thou art mine." This is Christ's covenant with us. He brings us back to his father, from whose presence we were banished, and sets us before his face for ever. He promiseth to restore us to the adoption of sons, and not only to the title, but to the inheritance also, that we may be where he is. The Holy Ghost makes a covenant with us. “By one
offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified : whereof the Holy Ghost also, is a witness.”
“ This is the covenant that I will make with them, I will put my law in their hearts, and in their minds will I write it." I know that the Father is implied in this, yet here is the proper work of the Holy Ghost. What the Father hath promised, and the Son hath purchased, that the Holy Ghost effects in us. He applies the blood of Christ for the remission of sins; he writes the law in our hearts; he comforts us in our affliction, and supports and guides us in our trials and temptations.
AIMING AT HEAVEN-finally and lastly, divest thyself of all prejudice: take the Holy Scripture as the genuine word of God : read it with reverential awe. Read it, to comfort thee in all thy afflictions. Read it, and the Comforter will come unto thee, even the Holy Ghost. Call thy family regularly together, and make them read the Holy Word. Pray with them, and exhort them to prayer. Keep holy the sabbath-day. Keep thy family together when the service of the day is finished: and exhort them to improve their minds in all holy conversation.
Let us call on Jesus, as carrying on our soul's salvation at his second coming. Let us pray for the coming of Christ: this was the constant prayer of the Church ; “ come, Lord Jesus, come quickly.” “ The Spirit and the bride say,
come.” Well knows the bride, that the day of Christ's coming is her wedding-day; the day of presenting her unto his Father; and therefore no wonder that she prays for the hastening of it; “ make haste, my beloved, and be thou like to a roe, or to a young hart.—Thy kingdom come.” Let us praise him for his coming. Our engagements to Christ are so many and binding, that we can never enough extol his name. At that day the books will be opened, and why not the book of our engagements to Christ! I can tell you surely, it is written full, even to the margin, within and without. Othen let our hearts be full of praises ! Let us join with those blessed elders that fall down before the Lamb, and sing “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain, to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing."