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sweeten or remove it: there is no care so light that he will not stoop to roll it from me.
But He who from his holy temple bids all the earth keep silence before Him, can surely ask no words from me. It is for Him to speak. He has called me to receive and not to give; to take and not to ask. Wilt thou not:'-O! who but feels the plaintive, touching, gracious tenderness of this enquiry, “Wilt thou not from this time cry unto me, my Father, Thou art the guide of my youth?”
And now, my dear young friend, let us again take sweet counsel together, searching what, or in what manner, the spirit of Christ breathing through this new year's call, may further speak to us. Does it not seem to you the language of high privilege; of transcendantly glorious prerogative? “Wilt thou not cry unto Me?” “ Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak,” prayed faithful Abraham in an agony of awe, when pleading for the guilty city; but we may lay aside our fears, and tell him all our wants and wishes, speaking to him as a man speaketh to his friend. There is nothing that so ennobles a man as the religion of the Bible; it introduces him to God himself — the author of all greatness, the fountain of all wisdom.
Much of the philosophy and science now abroad in the world, is falsely so called : the knowledge it pretends to is that which puffeth up, not that which really elevates. It is not intellect, but godliness that gives us the stature of perfect men. He who made us, surely knows exactly what we are, and what we want; and he has shewn us that true nobility and happiness are to be found only in habitual communion with Himself. Wilt thou not, O! my own re-purchased heart – wilt thou not, O my bosom friend, who with me art now sounding the depths of this sublime call — Wilt thou not, from this time, cry unto God, Thou art the guide of my youth?
Can we take our farewell of this text before we have considered it as the language of fact ? “Thou art the guide of my youth.” Yes; little as we think it, his restraining, his upholding hand, is on us in the giddy whirl of business, in our headstrong chase of fugitive, false good. The momentary delay that kept you from that Sabbath-desecrating party, all—all, in one moment, hurried to a watery grave; was a cord of love withholding you from ruin. “When thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee.” When mingling strong drink, and joining in the riotous orgies of your heedless and ungodly associates, who kept you from excesses fraught with double death, but God? Who was it that whispered in your ear the startling call—“Rejoice, O young man in thy youth, and let thy heart cheer thee in the day of thy youth; and walk in the ways of thine heart, and in the sight of thine eyes-yet know that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment?” How often, amidst the engagements of the world, when God was not in all your thoughts, has there stood One among you whom you knew not—the guide of your youth, though you knew nothing of His guiding; the lover of your soul, although, amongst your many lovers, you cherished no endearing thoughts of Him! Then let the feet he has so often kept from falling, from this time run in the way of His commandments: the goings He has so often held back from the broad way, be turned towards the sanctuary, the altar, the Holiest of All; and the heart that could be satiated with nothing else, repose in filial and confiding love upon your Father's bosom. The vastness of His grace will not be satisfied with keeping watch about the issues from death, leading you out by a path which no vulture's eye could see, from the very confines of eternal ruin; it longs to bring you into full possession of the light, life, and immortality, made your's in Christ.
For who does not see in this text the language of joyful anticipation “ Thou art the guide of my youth.” A guide implies an end-a goal—a resting-place--a home. Health, pleasure, wealth, ambition, novelty, excitement, philosophy, and science, have each their guides, some leading by a right, and others by a wrong path; though what is called the end in these, is little better than a mockery after all.
But when He, who is here described as “ the guide of our youth,” takes us up, he perfects the good work of instruction, by meetening us for an inheritance among the saints in light. Maturity, possession, liberty, companionship, purity, and bliss ! 0! to be like Jesus, to be with him and his innumerable army of redeemed ones, to walk in white beneath the Father's smile of love, to hold communion with the loftiest intellects, the purest spirits, the most devoted followers of the Lamb; to do his will, to see his face, to bear his signature upon our foreheads, his image on our hearts; to know as we are known; to worship him as angels worship, without the intervention of those means, and forms, and veils, and hindrances, that teach us here our wants and weaknesses. O! who but wants a home like this - a day without a cloud; a rest without a care; a joy without an end !
Dear, dear reader, it is to this heaven that God is guiding those who seek him now, Think on this blessedness, and from this time cry unto him, “ My Father! Thou art the guide of my youth!”
MORNING MERCIES FOR THE LITTLE ONES. “Cause me to hear thy loving kindness in the morning, for in thee do I trust; cause me to know the way wherein I should walk, for I lift up my soul unto thee."-Psalm iii. 8.
My dear young children, and young friends, God has so caused his word to be written, that while grown-up people find in it what is no where else to be found, yet a little child that sits upon a father's knee, may be made to understand the truths that are contained in that blessed book. I am always glad when a minister remembers what there is that particularly belongs to children Our great Master took great notice both of the little children, and also of youth. I think you will all be able to understand the text : turn it into a prayer for yourselves, and say, 'may not this be a prayer for me?' “Cause me to hear thy loving kindness in the morning.” You will find no hard words in the text, but it is as fresh as the flowers of spring, and bright as the colors of the rainbow.
There was once a man and woman who lived a long time ago, and they had a good and kind friend who used to come and see them, and talk to them every day; and they were always pleased and happy when they saw this friend; but they did something to displease him, and then hid themselves, and were afraid to meet him ; more afraid of his voice than they were of the thunder which rolls in the air, or the tiger's roar in the forest; and they hid themselves : but at last, their friend would make them see him. Little children will remember of whom I am speaking in the parable; it was Adam and Eve. This man and woman
had afterwards children who did not like the voice of this Friend. And since then, all little children have liked any thing better than the voice of God : the heart is turned aside to sin, and the heart stops up the ear against the voice of God. And it is because of this that David prays, “ Cause me to hear thy loving kindness in the morning.” One great proof of the purity of our Saviour
that he was to have our nature in a state that was meet to hear the voice of God. The prophet Isaiah speaks of him thus, “The Lord God hath opened my ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back. A body hast thou prepared me,” but it was a holy nature ; a nature that would know and do God's holy will.
I often remember when I have watched my children asleep, and sometimes I have seen them shew great uneasiness, and a feverish, restless dream disturbs their quiet sleep ; and I have awoke the child, and spoken tenderly to it, and the sound of a father's voice has comforted it, and it has smiled; and I have found that it was only the dream that made the child so unhappy. And how often it is so with many of you; how much of life is spent in a feverish dream, and many a cry will escape you, but your only safety will be in looking up to your Saviour, to wake you out of this feverish dream. To do so “in the morning” is best. While you are young, before the sun is hot, look up to your Saviour, and ask him to let you hear his loving kindness. I noticed at an early hour this morning, a man go out to water some tender plants in his garden ; why did he not wait till a later hour ? Because then the sun would be hot, and the plants could not then be refreshed with these drops of water. The best time for instruction to drop into the heart is in the morning.
The next part of my text is, “ For in thee do I trust.” When the little child wakes up from the feverish dream, of which I have just spoken, and sees its father or its mother standing by, it is happy. It puts its trust in em, and is content. Two people were living a long time ago in New Zealand, where the people were very savage, and more than once they had threatened to take away their lives. One day they heard a great noise, and a large company were coming near the hut where this good man lived ; and they were beating their drums, and singing their war song. The good man went out to meet the savages, and spoke kindly to them ; and just at the time, the mother left her hut with her two little children. The elder of these, who had been taught to love her Saviour, knelt down and repeated these lines, just as her father approached the savages,
“Only thou our guardian be,
The savages laid down their arms, and many of them were taught to love that Saviour to whom this little child addressed her prayer. Now, this is the meaning of trusting in God: “Cause me to hear thy loving kindness in the morning, for in thee do I trust.”
The last part of the text upon which I shall speak is this, “ Cause me to know the way wherein I should walk.”
Have you ever heard the parable of the lamp? The missionaries to the Jews often relate this to them, for the Jews are still very fond of being taught by parables. There was once a king who had some sons, and he promised to give them each a king
but he wished them to travel for some time; and they asked the king which way they should travel ? and he said he would give them a lamp which would only rest and shed its light on the right path. They went on for some time very happily, and when they were in difficulty, they took out their lamp, and it never failed to shew them the road; and though it did not always point out the pleasantest path, yet they were enabled to encounter the difficulties they met with, and still went on happily. But after a time they began to be unkind to each other, and they forgot their father, and did not like to be guided by the lamp. So they took some clay, and covered up one side of the lamp, that it should only shine the way they wished; and then, at last, they covered up the lamp altogether, and they chose only the pleasantest path. But there is often a thorn under the rose, and so they found it. After they had got into a great deal of trouble, a friend met them, and told them they never would get into the right road; and he looked at their lamp, and saw that it was all covered up; but he took off the clay, and it shone upon the right way as before. The Bible, my dear children, is the friendly lamp, it only shines upon the right