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him.” To you, also, the gates of mercy are still open. The gracious Father of all will welcome every one who, in the true spirit of humility and faith, with weeping and mourning and well-doing, directs his steps to him. The broken-hearted, way-worn peni
weary and heavy laden” as he is, may yet console himself with the hope of forgiveness. At the cross of Christ, he may lay down his burden, and “ find rest unto his soul."
O you who are in the flower of youth, who are just entering the busy scenes of society, and have scarcely made trial of the world's temptations or of your own weakness, devote yourselves to God; give to him
your hearts, now while it is called to-day,” now while the offering will be accepted. It is the happy season that never comes but once ; it is the morning when you have freshness for the task; it is the time for receiving impressions in favour of piety and goodness. Young and vigorous as you are, presume not too much upon your strength ; dream not that you are safe ;
“ boast not of to-morrow :" the richest and most promising blossoms have often withered in the bud. I speak to you with affection. “ Make speed and hasten your work ;" for the present may be the last admonition that you shall ever hear. All your capacities, all that you have, you owe to “ the Father of lights, the Giver of every perfect gift.” A ready and uniform obedience to his will is the most unequivocal testimony of your gratitude. Accustom yourselves to see him and to feel his presence in the diversified and beautiful productions of nature, in the works of creation above
you, and around you, and within you,-in all and over all; and often lift up your souls before him with the holy submission and with the hope and joy of beloved children. Let the whole of life be spent in providing for a higher sphere of employment and blessedness beyond the grave. It is no impracticable advice which I give you. At all times, and in all places, you have it in your power to be thus occupied. Every act of Christian virtue and Christian holiness, no matter when or where performed ; every prayer breathed from the heart in secret and in silence; every benevolent purpose ; every candid judgment; every sacrifice of ease and interest to the comfort of those around you ; every effort to obtain the mastery over sense and passion and the world, will minister to the growth of that divine principle in the soul, which is the great end of all religion. Secure this; and look forward to the result. It will bring after it a thousand and a thousand blessings. You will move on, through your pilgrimage here below, in the sweet light of heaven ; whenever the trying hour shall come, you will be well armed for the final conflict, well prepared to wrestle with the last enemy; and I cannot tell you the glory, I cannot describe to you the happiness to which you will be advanced before the throne of God, and amidst the splendours of eternity.
TO A YOUNG LADY, ON THE DEATH OF
(JOHN FOSTER, AUTHOR OF
DEAR MISS CAROLINE,
I SHOULD not venture a momentary interruption
sive retirement of the heart, if I did not hope to insinuate a sentiment or two, not discordant with the tone of grief.
I am willing to believe the interest I have taken in your happiness, will authorise me to convey to you, at such a serious hour, the expressions of a friendly and solicitous sympathy. I am willing to believe that the sincere respect with which I have addressed
you in serener days, will be a pledge to you, that, in assuming such a liberty, I cannot forget the delicacy of respect which peculiarly belongs to you, now you are in a scene of suffering; and that this little attention which I seem to myself to owe you, will not be deemed to violate the sacredness of I should be most happy, if it were possible for me to impart any influences that could alleviate the oppressions of the heart, or aid your fortitude in its severe probation. But I dare not indulge so pleasing a hope. I know too well, that suffering clings to the sufferer's self, and that any other mind, though actuated by the kindest wishes, is still a foreign mind, and inhabits a separate sphere, from which it can but faintly breathe consoling sentiments.
Yet, doubtless, there are in existence truths of sweet and mighty inspiration, which, perfectly applied, would calm your feelings, and irradiate the gloom around you. How happy were the art to steal such fire from heaven! How much I wish it yours. Yes, and there are softenings of distress, glimpses of serenity, ideas of tender enthusiasm, firm principles, sublime aspirings, to mingle with the feelings of the good in every situation. I love to assure myself, these are not wanting to you. I hope they will prolong the benignant charm of their visitation, and be at intervals closer to your heart than even the causes of sadness that environ you.
You will not, Miss C., disdain the solicitude of a sincere friend, who is interested for you while you are suffering, and loves the sensibility of which he regrets he cannot beguile the pain. I think I would be willing to feel for a season, all that you feel, in order to acquire an entire and poignant sympathy. This alone can convey the exquisite significance, the magic of soul, into the suggestions that seek to revive the depressed energy of a tender heart. I would exert the whole efficacy of a mind thus painfully instructed, to soothe or to animate. I would look around for every truth, and every hope to which Heaven has imparted sweetness, for the sake of minds in grief. I would invoke whatever friendly spirit has power to shed balm on anxious or desponding cares, and, unobserved, steal a part of the bitterness away. I would also attempt a train of vigorous thinking. I would not despair of some advantage from the application of reasoning. Indeed it is known too well, there are moments when the heart refuses all control, and gives itself without reserve to grief. It feels and even cherishes emotions which it cannot yield up to any power less than that of Heaven or of time. Arguments may vainly, sometimes, forbid the tears that flow for the affecting events of remembrance or anticipation. Arguments will not obliterate scenes whose every circumstance pierced the heart. Arguments cannot recall the victims of death. Dear affections ! the sources of felicity, the charm of life, what pangs too they can cause! You have loved sensibility, you have cultivated it, and you are destined yet, I hope, to obtain many of its sweetest pleasures; but you see how much it must sometimes cost you. Contemn, as it deserves, the pride of stoicism; but still there are cogent reasons why sorrow should somewhere be restrained. It should acknowledge the limits imposed by judgment and the will of Heaven. Do not yield your mind to the gloomy extinction of utter despondency. It still retains the most dear and valuable interests, which require to be saved from the sacrifice. Before the present circumstances took