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And perchance the convict from the galleys may stand above the

hermit from his cell, For that the obstacles in one outweigh the propensions in the other. There be, who have made themselves friends, yea, by unrighteous

mammon, Friends, ready waiting as an escort to those everlasting habitations; Imbodied in living witnesses, thronging to meet them in a cloud, Charity, meekness, and truth, zeal, sincerity, and patience. There be, who have made themselves foes, yea, by honest gain, Foes, whose plaint must have its answer, before the bright portal is

unbarred; Pride, and selfishness, and sloth, apathy, wrath, and falsehood, Bind to their everlasting toil many that must weary in the fires. Love hath a power and a longing to save the gathered world, And rescue universal man from the hunting hell-hounds of his

doings : Yet few, here one and there one, scanty as the gleaning after har

vest, Are glad of the robes of praise which Mercy would fling around the

naked; But wrapping closer to their skin the poisoned tunic of their works, They stand in self-dependence to perish in abandonment of God.


A WICKED man scorneth prayer, in the shallow sophistry of reason; He derideth the silly hope, that God can be moved by supplica

tion:Can the unchangeable be changed, or waver in his purpose ? Can the weakness of pity affect him ? Should he turn at the bid

ding of a man ? Methought he ruled all things, and ye called his decrees immutable; But if thus he listeneth to words, wherein is the firmness of his

will?— So I heard the speech of the wicked, and, lo, it was smoother than


But I knew that his reasonings were false, for the promise of the

Scripture is true; Yet was my soul in darkness, for his words were too hard for me; Till I turned to my God in prayer, for I know he heareth always. Then I looked abroad on the earth, and, behold, the Lord was in all

things; Yet saw I not his hand in aught, but perceived that he worketh by

means; Yea, and the power of the mean proveth the wisdom that or

dained it, - Yea, and no act is useless, to the hurling of a stone through the air. So I turned my thoughts to supplication, and beheld the mercies of

Jehovah, And I saw sound argument was still the faithful friend of godliness; For as the rock of the affections is the solid approval of reason, Even so the temple of Religion is founded on the basis of Phi


SCORNER, thy thoughts are weak, they reach not the summit of

the matter; Go to, for the mouth of a child might show thee the mystery of

prayer ; Verily, there is no change in the counsels of the Mighty Ruler; Verily, his purpose is strong, and rooted in the depths of necessity; But who hath shown thee his purpose, who hath made known to

thee his will ? When, O gainsayer, hast thou been schooled in the secrets of wis

dom? Fate is a creature of God, and all things move in their orbits, And that which shall surely happen is known unto him from eter

nity ; But as, in the field of nature, he useth the sinews of the ox, And commandeth diligence and toil, himself giving the increase, So, in the kingdom of his grace, granteth he omnipotence to

prayer, For he knoweth what thou wilt ask, and what thou wilt ask aright. - No man can pray in faith, whose prayer is not grounded on a prom

ise : Yet a good man commendeth all things to the righteous wisdom of

his God: For those, who pray in faith, trust the immutable Jehovah,

And they, who ask blessings unpromised, lean on uncovenanted


Man, regard thy prayers as a purpose of love to thy soul;
Esteem the providence that led to them as an index of God's good-

will; So shalt thou pray aright, and thy words shall meet with accept

ance. Also, in pleading for others, be thankful for the fulness of thy

prayer, For if thou art ready to ask, the Lord is more ready to bestow. The salt preserveth the sea, and the saints uphold the earth; Their prayers are the thousand pillars that prop the canopy of

nature. Verily, an hour without prayer, from some terrestrial mind, Were a curse in the calendar of time, a spot of the blackness of

darkness. Perchance the terrible day, when the world must rock into ruins, Will be one unwhitened by prayer,— shall He find faith on the

earth? For there is an economy of mercy, as of wisdom, and power, and

means; Neither is one blessing granted, unbesought from the treasury of


And the charitable heart of the Being, to depend upon whom is

happiness, Never withholdeth a bounty, so long as his subject prayeth ; Yea, ask what thou wilt, to the second throne in heaven, It is thine, for whom it was appointed; there is no limit unto

prayer; But and if thou cease to ask, tremble, thou self-suspended creature, For thy strength is cut off as was Samson's; and the hour of thy

doom is come.

FRAIL art thou, O man, as a bubble on the breaker,
Weak and governed by externals, like a poor bird caught in the

Yet thy momentary breath can still the raging waters,
Thy hand can touch a lever that may move the world.
O Merciful, we strike eternal covenant with thee,
For man may take for his ally the King who ruleth kings :

How strong, yet how most weak, in utter poverty how rich,
What possible omnipotence to good is dormant in a man!
Behold that fragile form of delicate, transparent beauty,
Whose light blue eye and hectic cheek are lit by the balefires of

All droopingly she lieth, as a dew-laden lily,
Her flaxen tresses, rashly luxuriant, dank with unhealthy moisture;
Hath not thy heart said of her, Alas! poor child of weakness ?
Thou hast erred; Goliath of Gath stood not in half her strength:
Terribly she fighteth in the van as the virgin daughter of Orleans,
She beareth the banner of Heaven, her onset is the rushing cat- .

aract, Seraphim rally at her side, and the captain of that host is God, And the serried ranks of evil are routed by the lightning of her

eye :
She is the King's remembrancer, and steward of many blessings,
Holding the buckler of security over her unthankful land:
For that weak, fluttering heart is strong in faith assured ;
Dependence is her might, and behold — she prayeth.

ANGELS are round the good man, to catch the incense of his

prayers, And they fly to minister kindness to those for whom he pleadeth; For the altar of his heart is lighted, and burneth before God con

tinually, And he breatheth, conscious of his joy, the native atmosphere of

heaven. Yea, though poor, and contemned, and ignorant of this world's

wisdom, Ill can his fellows spare him, though they know not of his value. Thousands bewail a hero, and a nation mourneth for its king, But the whole universe lamenteth the loss of a man of prayer. Verily, were it not for One, who sitteth on his rightful throne, Crowned with a rainbow of emerald, (15) the green memorial of

earth, — For one, a mediating man, that hath clad his Godhead with mor

tality, And offereth prayer without ceasing, the royal priest of Nature, Matter, and life, and mind, had sunk into dark annihilation, And the lightning frown of Justice withered the world into noth


Tuus, O worshipper of reason, thou hast heard the sum of the

matter; And woe to his hairy scalp that restraineth prayer before God. Prayer is a creature's strength, his very breath and being ; Prayer is the golden key that can open the wicket of Mercy; Prayer is the magic sound that saith to Fate, So be it; Prayer is the slender nerve that moveth the muscles of Omnipo

tence. Wherefore, pray, O creature, for many and great are thy wants ; Thy mind, thy conscience, and thy being, thy rights commend thee

unto prayer, The cure of all cares, the grand panacea for all pains, Doubt's destroyer, ruin's remedy, the antidote to all anxieties.

So, then, God is true, and yet He hath not changed :
It is he that sendeth the petition, to answer it according to his will.


INQUIREST thou, O man, Wherewithal may I come unto the Lord ? And with what wonder-working sounds may I move the majesty of

heaven? There is a model to thy hand; upon that do thou frame thy suppli

cation ; Wisdom hath measured its words, and redemption urgeth thee to

use them. Call thy God thy Father, and yet not thine alone, For thou art but one of many; thy brotherhood is with all : Remember his high estate, that he dwelleth King of heaven; So shall thy thoughts be humbled, nor love be unmixed with rever

ence: Be thy first petition unselfish, the honor of Him who made thee, And that in the depths of thy heart his memory be shrined in holi

ness : Pray for that blessed time when good shall triumph over evil, And one universal temple echo the perfections of Jehovah:

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