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uriance of summer and the gloomy cold- contrary, all that is required to the honess and sterility of winter? Or can you nour of the Divine perfections is comblend the vivacity and energy of life pletely accomplished. “ Christ by his with the unconscious and immovable one offering hath perfected for ever them torpor of death, in the same individual ? that are sanctified;" and to add even the You admit that this cannot be: where value of an atom to his mediation is as the one is, the other is not; the contrast absolutely impossible, as it is to augment is complete; the existing difference ad- the power of the Almighty, or the knowmits neither of being reconciled nor al- ledge of the Omniscient. The interpotered. A like contrariety appears between sition of the Saviour assumes that man a matter of favour and a matter of right, is totally destitute of merit. All that is so that a matter of right can never be required, therefore, is a simple and entire come a matter of favour, and a matter of reliance on his work: apart from this, favour can never become a matter of the soul must perish, “for other foundright; each must continue what it has ation can no man lay than that is laid, been, and is, for ever and ever. Hence, which is Jesus Christ;" but where this the apostle Paul says, “ Even so, at this confidence is exercised, the salvation of present time there is a remnant accord- the sinner is as certain as his offences or ing to the election of grace. And if by his existence.
it no more of works: other- Would that these joyful tidings were wise grace is no more grace. But if it be universally diffused, and that every one of works, then is it no more grace: other- to whom they come would heartily emwise work is no more work," Rom. xi. / brace them. He who falls before the 5, 6. It follows, therefore, that you can throne of mercy with an empty hand and no more be saved partly by the favour of a grateful heart
, receiving the testimony God and partly by your own doings, than which God hath given of his Son, will you can enjoy present deliverance and assuredly obtain the blessings which are eternal glory as the mere result of your “ without money and without price.” personal obedience; and, consequently, Reader, may it be so with you! Now that the only source to which its inesti- may the inwrought prayer ascend on mable blessings can be ascribed is the high, “God, be merciful to me a sinner.” grace of God. Grace is emphatically free “Lord, save, or I perish.” “Lord, I beand unmerited favour ; it is that mani- lieve; help thou my unbelief.” festation of the Divine benevolence in which God appears as showering down
“My suffering, slain, and risen Lord,
In deep distress I call on thee, his blessings plenteously and freely, not I ask salvation on thy word, merely on the undeserving, but the hell- My God, my God, forsake not me. deserving. Well, then, may we exclaim :
Prostrate before thy mercy-seat,
I cannot, if I would, despair: “Great God of wonders, all thy ways
None ever perished at thy feet,
And I will lie for ever there."
More Godlike and unrivalled shine. Who is a pardoning God like thee,
Are you still indifferent and insensiAnd who has grace so rich and free?"
ble? Remember that no judgments are
so fearful as those which will be proTo allude, further, to only one aspect nounced by Him who will most assuredly of this amazing munificence, it may be appear to avenge the honours of his outremarked, that it is characterized by in- raged grace. finite wisdom, seeking, as it does, the No less accordant with the circumnoblest objects in the use of the most stances of the believer, than with the appropriate means. What, it may be condition of the sinner, is this disasked, can be so fully adapted to the pensation of mercy. To have described circumstances of the sinner? Reader, salvation as the reward of merit, would are you awakened to a sense of your have had the effect of placing him who guilt, depravity, and danger, exclaiming, received the statement in the situation of ( What must I do to be saved ?" Here it a slave working for a task-master, desiris manifest that you have not to pass ous that his toils should be diminished to through a long, arduous, and distressing the lowest point, and ended as speedily course, with the intimation that, at its as possible. But the exhibition of salvaclose, you may approach the throne of tion, irrespective of merit, and as flowing God, and, casting yourself upon him, in- entirely from the free favour of God, dulge a faint hope of salvation. On the demands the presentation of the body as
of Divine grace.
the living sacrifice of pure, ardent, and which she was, almost unintentionally, supreme affection. Here the declaration governed. I suppose that the latter grew is heard, “You have had much forgiven, out of the former; for, as a good and therefore love much.” Nothing short of conscientious woman, she accustomed entire devotedness is an appropriate tri- herself to deliberate on any new act, and bute from those who, deserving hell, have satisfy herself of its propriety, lest the heaven brought down into the soul before one act should prove like a staple, on it arises to the heaven that is above. which to fix a long and powerful chain of Thus our duty is our privilege: he is habit. It makes all the difference in chamost happy who is most fully conformed racter, whether a long succession of acts to the will of God, and he who habitually be good or evil; that long succession of consecrates to his heavenly Benefactor acts is-habit; and though an effort of the all he has and all he is, practically recog- understanding and the will was necessary nizes his solemn obligation to “ the ex- to its commencement, in course of time ceeding riches
it acquires such force, that each several It only remains to remark, that this act seems almost as though performed administration of mercy secures all the unconsciously. I can remember some glory of salvation to God. Were heaven things which my aunt used regularly to purchased by merit, its inhabitants might do in a certain manner while she lived occupy themselves in celebrating their with my grandfather, but which, after his own virtues; but now, not one note of death, she omitted, or performed quite self-gratulation do they ever raise. John differently. These, I suppose, were her saw in vision “a great multitude, which practice while the occasion lasted, but
man could number, of all nations, neither the methods which she deliberand kindreds, and people, and tongues,” ately chose as the best, nor habits to standing before the throne. See Rev. which she had so accustomed herself that vii. 9, 10. They were gathered not only she could not easily break them off when from every part of the earth, but from the occasion existed no longer. I recolevery period of time. Yet, diversified as lect, when a child, copying into a comthey were in rank, and age, and privi- mon-place book, at my aunt's suggestion, lege, their song was one. There was not the following very striking description of one song for the rich, and another for habit. Habit, like a complex mathethe poor; not one song for the child, matical scheme, flowed originally from a who proved that
point, which insensibly became a line, “ A flower, when offered in the bud,
which unfortunately became a curve, Is no vain sacrifice,”
which finally became a difficulty not and another for the man who was snatched easily to be unravelled.” “ This,” said as a brand from the burning after spend my aunt, “is applicable only to a bad ing his maturity in sin ; not one song for habit; but now get a straight rule, and the believer in patriarchal times, and draw a straight line, and let the succesanother for the disciple of Jesus, or the sion of single acts be kept closely along convert of his apostles; not one song for it; and thus a good and powerful habit the British Christian, and another for the may be formed and practised, till it beHindoo who has renounced his idols, or
comes delightfully easy and natural. The the African who once knew not that straight rule is the holy law of God. there was a God: no; one rapturous Take care that you keep close to it, while chorus burst from that immense assem
you draw along it, as straight as the blage, without a feeling or a sound to feeble hand of a fallen creature can draw, disturb for a moment the blissful har- a line of principles for the guidance of mony, and its burden is this, “Salvation your daily conduct. Then, whatever you to our God which sitteth upon the throne, are about to do, try whether it will harand unto the Lamb."-W.
monize with the line of right principles : if not, forbear the single act; if it will, perform a succession of these good acts, and you will have formed yourself to good habits."
One of my aunt's habits was that of
asking questions. I never knew any I SCARCELY know which to speak of person less disposed impertinently to pry first, the methods which my kind aunt into the affairs of other people; yet she intentionally practised, or the habits by was always on the watch to increase her
MY AUNT PRISCILLA.-No. IV.
HER HABITS AND METHODS.
stock of sound, practical knowledge; and She referred the matter to her medical never lost an opportunity of asking in- adviser, and was assured that the measure formation of any intelligent person in the proposed was neither necessary nor proparticular line with which he was most. per, but exceedingly injurious. I need familiar. The carpenter, the smith, the hardly say that my aunt did not yield to gardener, and the philosophical lecturer, the clamour of prejudice, but stood firm were alike laid under tribute ; and the in adhering to the course recommended stores she thus acquired were carefully | by enlightened skill and judgment. treasured up, to be applied to practical pur- It was in opposition to established cusposes, or to be communicated to others, as tom, and in defiance of the dire prognosoccasions might arise. This habit of my tications of some of the old school, though aunt, as it no doubt tended much to enrich not without the sanction and direction of her own mind, so, also, was very useful to one in whom she justly confided, that my young people under her care. I am sure aunt adopted the cool regimen for her she taught us to think, by saying to us, children under the small-pox. She re
Why?” or, “How do you know that?” | membered having herself, under that Nothing superficial was suffered to pass malady, been kept in a hot room, from with her; and, oh, how this tended to which every breath of fresh air was carehumble us, by making our little modicum fully excluded, and a large fire kept up, of knowledge shrink into its proper com- though it was in the heat of summer. pass in our own esteem! At this distant She had some idea of her danger, and period I have a distinct recollection of the more of her protracted sufferings, which cheek-burning produced, on more than she justly thonght were aggravated by one occasion, by the interposition of my the suffocating heat to which she was subaunt Priscilla's "Why?" when I was dis-jected. One of her first questions to the posed to congratulate myself on the easy physician was, Is it necessary, and why is acquirement of some second-hand asser
it necessary, to pursue such a course ? tion, which, if it were capable of being He assured her that the course referred reasoned out at all, certainly had not been to was altogether unnatural and injurious; reasoned out by me; and when not so explained to her the principles on which much personally interested, I have often to proceed in the management of the been amused, by observing the pompous disease, what was to be combated, and and oracular assertion of prejudice put to what regulated. Thus instructed, she silence and confusion, by my aunt's quiet proceeded with intelligence, confidence, " Why?"
Ill-natured or impertinent and success; and her knowledge and exquestions should be avoided ; but, from perience in this, as in many other partithe example of my aunt Priscilla, I am culars, proved a blessing beyond the little fully convinced that it tends much to circle of her own family. correctness of thinking, and correctness My aunt observed method in the allotof acting too, habitually to ask ourselves ment of time. In her youth, she acquired “ why ?"
a habit of early rising; and from her My aunt was one of the first to dis- | experience of its happy influence on card from the nursery certain customs | health, temper, comfort, improvement, rendered venerable by antiquity, if not and usefulness, she endeavoured to prorespectable by reason. When a young mote the habit in others. mother, she confessed her inexperience, I remember a young lady visiting at and was willing to learn; but she would my aunt's, who indulged in the bad habit not suffer herself to be blindly led into a of morning indolence. It was her daily practice which did not commend itself to practice to require several times calling her own common sense, and which might before she could take resolution to rise; be injurious. “Why, what is that for?” and she rarely made her appearance at inquired my aunt, in reply to some of the the breakfast table, until every body else old nurse's demands for spirits, and other was nearly ready to leave it. While staying things then in common use, but now en- with my aunt, this young lady was busily tirely discarded from every well-regulated engaged in accomplishing some work for nursery. The old woman stared in aston
a present to a friend in India ; and an ishment at the presumptuous inquiry, opportunity of conveyance occurred, of and,' with some acrimony, answered, which she was desirous to avail herself. “Why? why, because it is proper; it is By dint of very close application, the what every body does.”
That answer task was accomplished just in time, and the was not perfectly satisfactory to my aunt. young lady comforted herself by pointing
to her success in this particular instance, in their relative size. “I must not," she notwithstanding her late rising; and quot- would say, "make a city of a village, but ed the ancient saying, “ A good contriver confine each within its proper limits, reis better than an early riser.” My aunt serving always a due portion of terra observed to her, that both these grounds incognita, and assigning to it a provisional of satisfaction were fallacious. “Ì do not destination, to be so employed, provided say,” she continued, “that every early no unforeseen duty arise to prevent.” By riser is a good contriver. It is possible for this habit of keeping things distinct, her a person to rise early, and yet fritter away time was well filled, without confusion. the day in trifling pursuits, or desultory She had always at hand some little bustle; but I never yet knew a good con- matter of needlework, such as could be triver, who could afford to lie late in bed. taken up and laid down without injury, It seems to me a contradiction in terms, and as did not require any particular to speak of a person contriving well for light. This quietly found its way to her the employment of time, who lets a sixth hand as soon as visitors were seated, or a twelfth part of his available re- especially mere callers. My aunt had a sources run to absolute waste. And then, few very particular friends, whom she had my dear, that success can scarcely be not very frequent opportunities of seeing, called complete, which has been pur- and whose sentiments and remarks she so chased at the sacrifice of other objects of highly valued, that she considered all her equal value. If you allow yourself to re- time and attention well employed in treaflect on the occupation of the last fort-suring them up; but with ordinary chitnight, you will perceive, that had you, in chat people she found that she could pay addition to dexterity, expedition, and them every needful attention, while purperseverance, added early rising, you suing some merely mechanical employwould have been able, not only to accom- ment, and she did not consider it a plish that one object, but several others necessary point of etiquette to sit unemof no small importance, which have been ployed. neglected. A good long letter to a friend She also generally carried about with so far distant, might have accompanied her some little sententious book, to fill up your present, instead of a hasty line just odd minutes; and it has sometimes been to say where it came from. You have matter of astonishment to me, to observe also mentioned one or two other letters how much work, and how much valuable which must remain unanswered until you reading, she got through, by thus imhad sent off your parcel for India. And proving the shreds and patches of time. then, that interesting volume which you While others were waiting for an opporwere obliged to return unread; and your tunity of leisure, to bestow days on some own pale cheeks that tell of want of ex- particular object of this kind, she had ercise; and, perhaps, my dear girl, a accomplished it in these little and almost neglected Bible and closet, (do I judge imperceptible fragments of time, which harshly, or does conscience confirm the she often compared to sands of gold, supposition?)—allconcurin testifying, that minute in bulk, but far too valuable to whatever you may have done by dili- be lost. gence alone, you might have done much One of my aunt's good rules, was better by diligence and early rising com- never to begin a work of importance, bined."
when she could not command time enough The young friend to whom these re- to get thoroughly into it, and get it into marks were addressed, profited by them; such a state of forwardness, that it might and in after days, when she, like myself, be taken up again without going over the was engrossed with the cares of a family, same ground ; nor even to permit trifles has spoken with grateful recollections of to break in upon a long quiet morning. my aunt and her example, as having"
“ No," she would say,
" that is too small taught her something of the art of re- a matter to give morning time to : it deeming time.
would be like changing a guinea to buy Her habits, in this particular, were a halfpenny worth of sugar-candy, and under the guidance of method. She trusting the errand to a treacherous messaid that she liked to have in her senger, who, perhaps, might never bring mind's eye a map of the day before back the change.' her, with all the several duties in Those who economize time, generally which she expected to engage marked economize other property as well. My out, not only in their proper places, but also aunt did so. Her expenditure of money,
and her habits in reference to furniture, pelled, and duty did not clearly forbid; apparel, provisions, and all other domes- but it was no matter of calculation with tic acquirements, were alike distinguish her, how her name would appear on the ed by prudent care, and wise liberality. subscription list in comparison with those Meanness and waste were alike abhorrent of others : she rather to her. It is certainly much easier to “Did good by stealth, and blushed to find it fame." manage well with sufficiency, than in Very many of her habitual acts of kindness straits; but enough and too little are were brought to light only by her death ; comparative phrases, not absolute ones; and, doubtless, many more will be disone person's plenty would be another's closed at the resurrection of the just. destitution, according to the scale of liv- My aunt's methods with her children ing to which they have been accustomed, were considerably in advance of her day. Good management consists in taking It may be that the defects of her own things as they are, and making the best education led her to guard against errors, of them; and I have often thought that of which she felt the injurious influence. my aunt's scale was so complete and well She avoided the stiffness of set tasks and arranged, that it would have been capable forced performances, and aimed rather to of easy adaptation to any change that instil a spirit of inquiry, and then gratify might have taken place in her outward it by instruction. She never thought it circumstances.
too much trouble to answer the inquiries I have often heard my aunt express of children, and never laughed at their herself much pleased at a saving of ex- blunders, but gently corrected them, and pense; but then it was always coupled was always patient in going into a matter, with some liberal device, which it would till the child had given unequivocal indienable her to accomplish, Like the amia- cations of thoroughly understanding it. ble wife of Howard, who, when on cast- Oh! I think I see her now, with a little ing up the accounts of the year, a con- one on her knee, and two or three more siderable sum remained on hand, which hanging round her; each inquiring eye her husband placed at her disposal, turn- fixed on her lips, on which dwelt the ined away from the mention of jewels, de-structions of wisdom and the law of kindcorations, and pleasure-taking, and de- ness. And she was equally well skilled sired that it might be appropriated to the in teaching them how to feel, and how to erection of some neat cottages for the act, as how to think. How she was alcomfort of virtuous and aged poor; so ways on the watch to promote and cultimy good aunt, though she was not able vate good feelings, and to repress, in the to practise liberality on so large a scale, very bud, such as came of evil, or tended possessed a soul as liberal; and, whatever to eviļ! How habitually she studied to she gained, or whatever she saved, she took make one child the medium of conveying pleasure in it, not as the food of avarice gratification to another, or the intercessor or luxury, but as the means of doing for another! But I do not wonder at the good. On the other hand, if any loss excellency of her methods and habits were sustained, or any expense incurred, with her children, though I have often through disaster or carelessness, she admired them; for I am sure that she would always find some plan of meeting constantly kept in view, and, in her humit, by sacrificing her own gratifications, ble measure, imitated, the conduct of our not by withholding the hand of bene- Father in heaven to his children. His ficence. - To her, indeed, it was habitual; will was the rule of her own conduct, and the habit of a new and generous nature, all her endeavours were directed to produced by the power of Divine grace, bringing their minds and habits into conto look not on her own things, but also on formity with it. With all her tenderness, the things of others; and to take plea- she was firm in resisting evil. Most of sure in personal sacrifices, by which the her children were, indeed, trained up in comfort of others, and especially the cause the nurture and admonition of the Lord; of Christ might be promoted.
and though there were some in her family My aunt was unostentatious in her who proved great trials to er, it could habits of every kind, especially in her not be said of her, as it was of Eli, that acts of benevolence and piety. Nothing, her sons made themselves vile, and she with her; was done for the sake of display, restrained them not. No, in their wildest or appearance. She did what she con- wanderings, the subjects of her maternal sidered right to do, as the call of duty solicitude bore testimony to her faithful, dictated; or, as the generous feeling im- tender, consistent efforts; and the remem