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circumstances and the regard we draw; and that no man is utterly secluded from the possession and enjoyment of it, be his station in life what it
may. Learn therefore to dismiss thy complaints, and no longer accuse the Creator and Father of the world; accuse thyself and thy froward taste, and thy irregu. lar desires, and thy servile propensity to imitation, and thy false, perverted judgment on the worth of things, and the weakness by which thou sufferest thyself to be deceived by appearance and fhow, or swayed by the senseless fashion of the times, and the waste or abuse of thy more extensive knowledge – of these things thou mayst complain ; but, from complaints proceed to alteration and amendment, if thou art not happy, or only happy in a slight degree; since thou mavst drink at every source of happiness which nature, art, society, and religion,
And when thou hast learned this, thou hast learned the science which is the most important of all, the science of being chearful, pleased, and happy, and of ever becoming more so.
So instructive, my pious hearers, may the time we pass in the country be to us, and so instructive it actually is to reflecting persons. To such an one what appears to be no more than recreation and pleasure, will prove a copious spring of wisdom. Thus will he-at once invigorate both his mind and his body, the health of the one, and at the same time the health of the other. Thus does he draw nigh unto his Creator, his Father, his God; learns
open to thee.
to behold and feel him in all his works ; and rectifies his judgment on the worth and destination of man, and on his real felicity. May we all reap these experiences from our excursions into the country; and on every fresh occafion in more abund. ant measure!
The Value of Domestic Happiness,
O GOD, the eternal, inexhaustible fountain of
all comfort and happiness, how various, how abundant are the sources of satisfaction and pleafurę which thou hast opened to us thy children, and to the enjoyment whereof thou invitest us by thy good providence! If thou have beset our path of life with numerous impediments and difficulties for our discipline and correction, yet hast thou embellished it with numberlefs beauties and satisfactions which impart to us courage and energy to overcome those difficulties. If thou lay upon us sometimes heavy duties, toilsome businesses, severe afflictions; thou softenest and alleviatest them to us by still more various and greater recreations and comforts. Yes, we may, we should be even here on earth contented and happy; and if we are not so, it is by our own K4
fault. In capacities, in means, in opportunities, in encouragements to it, thou lettest none of us be wanting. But too frequently we let ourselves be wanting in the wife and faithful use of that which can and should make us happy according to thy will! But too often we allow ourselves to be cheated by the semblance of things ; flight truth and wisdom and virtue, the only sure guides to happiness; and let ourselves be misled by error, by folly and vice on the road of trouble and misery. And then we doubt of thy goodness, murmur at thy decrees and dispensations, and complain of the lamentable lot of humanity! O God, how unjust áre we frequently against thee, and how inimical to ourselves! Ah, forgive us our transgressions, most merciful father, and lead us back from our deviations. Let the light of truth dissipate the errors and prejudices that so often misguide us. Teach us ever better to know and more worthily to use the wise and kind dispositions thou hait made for our happiness. Grant that we may all seek and find it there where thou wilt that we should seek and find it, and let us all become constantly more intelligent and good, and thereby more capable of its enjoy, ment. Bless to this purpose the meditations that are ñow to employ our thoughts. Let us perceive the ħappiness of domestic life, to which we are called by thee, in its real form, and derive from it all the blessedness that it is capable of procuring us. Grant
our requests, thou father of mercies, which we implore of thee in the name of our faviour Jesus, and, entirely relying on his promises and resigned to thy will, we farther address thee as : Our father, &c.
MATTH. xxi. 17
And he left them, and went out of the city into Bethany, and
he lodged there.
ing at a distance for what lies by him, for what is inviting him at home to immediate enjoyment; and this is commonly the cause that he either does not find what he seeks for at all, or not so complete as he could wish. Thus all mankind are in quest of fatisfaction and happiness. But probably they least search for it where it would be the most eafily, the most certainly, and the most completely found. They overlook or despise the sources of it which lie nearest to them, and are already in their posleffion; which no man can shut up from them, no man can render tasteless or contestable; which flow indeed without noise, but in a copious and uninterrupted stream : and rove about in anxious, pero 47