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in his arms before the tearful, breathless multitude, such shouting, such leaping and weeping for joy, never greeted the ear of human being so recovered from the yawning gulf of eternity.
LESSON LXXXIX.>> INCENTIVES TO YOUTHFUL DEVOTION. 1. I EARNESTLY wish that I could induce all young persons to divest religion of every gloomy and * repulsive association; to feel that it does not consist, as some would fain represent it, in solemn looks and a sanctified + demeanor, or in an affected fondness for long sermons or long prayers; but that, properly understood, it is — and especially for the young a cheerful and lightsome spirit, reposing with affectionate confidence in an Almighty Father, + unalloyed with fear, unshaken by distrust.
2. Would you have within your bosoms, that peace which the world can neither give, nor take away? Would you possess a source of the purest and sweetest pleasures? Would you have that highest of all blessings, a disposition to relish, in their highest perfection, all the innocent and rational enjoyments of life? Then, let me conjure you to cherish a spirit of devotion; a simple-hearted, fervent, and affectionate piety. Accustom yourselves to conceive of God, as a merciful and gracious parent, continually looking down upon you, with the tenderest concern, and inviting you to be good, only that you may become everlastingly happy. Consider yourselves as placed upon earth, for the express purpose of doing the will of God; and remember, if this be your constant object, whatever trials, disappointments, and sorrows, you may be doomed to experience, you will be sustained under them all, by the noblest consolations.
3. With a view of keeping up a + perpetual sense of your dependence upon God, never omit to seek him habitually in prayer, and to connect the thought of him with all that is + affecting or impressive, in the events of your lives; with all that is +stupendous, and vast, and beautiful, in the productions of his creative
Whatever excites you, whatever in the world of nature, or the world of man, strikes you as new and extraordinary, refer it all to God; discover in it some token of his providence, some proof of his goodness; convert it into some fresh occasion of praising and blessing his holy and venerable name. Do not regard the exercises of devotion as a bare duty, which has a merit in itself, however it is performed; but recar to them as a
power and skill.
privilege and a happiness, which ennobles and purifies your nature, and binds you, by the holiest of ties, to the greatest and best of all beings.
4. When you consider what God is, and what he has done; when you cast your eyes over the broad field of creation, which he has treplenished with so many curious and beautiful objects, or raise them to the brilliant + canopy of heaven, where other worlds, and systems of worlds, beam upon the wondering view; when day and night, and summer and winter, and seed-time and harvest; when the things nearest and most familiar to you, tbe ture of your own bodily frame, and that principle of conscious life and intelligence which glows within you; all speak to you of God, and call upon your awakened hearts to tremble and adore; when to a Being thus vast, thus awful, you are permitted to approach in prayer; when you are encouraged to address him by the endearing name of a Father in heaven, and with all the confidence and +ingenuousness of affectionate children, to tell him your wants and your fears, to implore his forgiveness, and earnestly to beseech him for a continuance of his mercies : you can not, my young friends, if you have any feeling, any seriousness about you, regard the exercises of devotion as a task; but must rejoice in it as an unspeakable privilege, to hold direct intercourse with that great and good Being, that unseen but universal Spirit, to whose presence all things in heaven and on earth bear witness, and in whom we all live, and move, and have our being.
5. Thus excite and cherish the spirit of devotion. Whenever any thing touches your hearts, or powerfully appeals to your moral feelings, give way to the religious impulse of the occasion, and send up a silent prayer to the Power who heareth in secret. And, in your daily addresses to God, do not confine yourselves to any stated form of words, which may be repeated + mechanically without any concurrence either of the heart or of the head; but after having reviewed the mercies of your particular condition; after having collected your thoughts, and endeavored to ascertain the wants and weaknesses of your own character; give utterance, in the simple and unstudied language which comes spontaneously to the lips, to all those emotions of gratitude and holy fear, of submission and trust, which can not fail to arise in your hearts, when you have previously reflected what you are, and find yourselves alone, in the presence of an Almighty God.
A PSALM OF LIFE.
1. Tell me not in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
And things are not what they seem. 2. Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its + goal;
Was not written of the soul. 3. Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end and way,
Find us further than today.
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Funeral marches to the grave.
In the + bivouac of life,
Be a hero in the strife!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Heart within, and God o'er head.
We can make our lives sublime,
Footprints on the sands of time;
Sailing o'er life's solemn main,
Seeing, shall take heart again.
With a heart for any fate;
H. W. LONGFELLOW.
JUSTICE AND POWER OF GOD. 1. BEHOLD, God is great; we can not know him,
Nor search out the number of his years.
Lo, he draweth up the drops of water,
He + commissions it against his enemies. 2. At this my heart trembleth,
And is moved out of its place.
And restraineth not the tempest, when his voice is heard. 3. God thundereth + marvelously with his voice;
Great things doeth he, which we can not comprehend.
And abide in their caverns.
And cold out of the north.
Or for his earth, or for mercy. 5. Give ear unto this, 0 Job!
Stand still, and consider the wondrous works of God.
6. Men can not look upon the light
When it is bright in the skies,
NOYES' TRANSLATION OF JOB,
DESCRIPTION OF A BEE HUNT. 1. The beautiful forest in which we were encamped, abounded in bee-trees; that is to say, trees, in the decayed trunks of which, wild bees had established their hives. It is surprising in what countless swarms the bees have overspread the far west, within but a moderate number of years. The Indians consider them but the + harbinger of the white man, as the buffalo is of the red man; and say, that in proportion as the bee advances, the Indian and buffalo retire. They are always accustomed to associate the hum of the bee hive with the farm-house and flower-garden, and to consider those industrious little insects as connected with the busy + haunts of man; and I am told, that the wild bee is seldom to be met with, at any great distance from the frontier. They have been the theralds of civilization, steadfastly preceding it, as it advanced from the Atlantic borders, and some of the ancient settlers of the west pretend to give the very year when the honeybee first crossed the Mississippi.
2. The Indians, with surprise, found the moldering trees of their forests suddenly teeming with tambrosial sweets, and nothing, I am told, can exceed the greedy relish with which they + banquet, for the first time, upon this unbought luxury of the wilderness. At present, the honey bee swarms in + myriads in the noble groves and forests that skirt and intersect the prairies, and extend along the talluvial bottoms of the rivers. It seems to me as if these beautiful regions answer literally to the description of the land of promise, “a land flowing with milk and honey;" for the rich pasturage of the *prairies is calculated to sustain herds of cattle, as countless as the sands on the sea-shore, while the flowers, with which they are *enameled, render them a very parafise for the nectar seeking bee.