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In youth he lifts vain follies to engage,
In manhood cares, and peevishness in age.
Oft forc'd afflictive trials to endure,
By use, his hardier valour to enure:
Pined with sharp wants, deprest by forrow's train,
By sickness worn, and agoniz'd with pain.
Or if with health he blooms, with plenty (miles,
Still wars alarm him, and inceflant toils.
Pleasures, or cares, some fresh attack begin,
Objects without, and passions from within.
In vain he seeks to fhun th' unpleasing strife,
Still harass'd in the civil feud of life.
In vain his powers would turn on reason's part,
The ruling inclination holds his heart.
And O more dangerous still his conflict grows,
Charg'd by a powerful host of stronger foes,
Dread hell's malicious troops his peace annoy,
Their force oppose and stratagems employ.
While such his hazards, with such odds oppreft,
In nature's strength will man, presumptuous, rest?
Weak man! with all his boasted trophies won,
So oft deluded, and so foon undone?
Happy alone, while danger thus invades,
The faint affifted with superior aids;
Him, heaven's artill’ry arms-his strengthen'd reins
Truth's belt, a firm sincerity sustains.
A steady righteousness thro’ life expreft
He wears, bright armour, on his dauntless breast.
Calm preparation for what ills may rise,
With sure defensive greaves his feet supplies,
But faith, his best security, imparts
Shield to repel th' infernal fiery darts.
His helmet, heavenly hope : and brandish'd sword
The Spirit's weapon, God's victorious word.
And last (for each affault) the chief prepare
Fresh vigilance, and might-renewing prayer.
Thus fenc'd, and skilful how his arms to wield,
The CHRISTIAN HERO takes the advent'rous field.
Does adverse providence beset his way,
Pains waste his body, wants his mind dismay,
Stript of estate, or relatives or friends?
Still on the arm that smites, his hold depends.
Conscious of woes deferv'd, of numerous stains,
Less than their due, he counts what heaven ordains.
He takes his Father's stripes in gentlest part,
Nor one resentment murmurs in his heart,
He knows his orders wise, his nature kind,
And each affliction for his health design’d.
Finds earthly good more vain, beneath the rod;
And drove from creatures, meets his reft in God.
He marks how juft Uzzean Job was try'd;
How Jesus, how the guiltless Saviour dy'd.
Bears the hard lot his patient Lord has borne,
Stoops to his cross, and crowns him with his thorn,
Tho'o'er his long-toft bark the waves (well high,
Shipwreck'd—and left beneath a darken’d sky;
His faith th' unruffling trial firm endures,
Deliv'rance hopes, or bleft rewards aflures.
Behold !--if heaven exempts the SAINT from cares, Amid his plenty he discerns his snares :
Knows how from sensual baits his mind to eally".
Pleas'd in his station, arm'd to bear his fall:
He deems his wealth a talent left in trust,
No private perquisite for pride or luft.
His nobler portion in reverfion lies;
A heavenly kingdom, in his Father's skies:
Gentle in power, with honours ne'er elate,
He only grows more useful, as more great.
His, is the human heart, the lib'ral mind;
Foe to no party, friend to all mankind.
To every object of distressing woes,
His bounty, as his pity, overflows,
If in gay youth, to pleasures he incline,
Lo! ftill he makes their rule, heaven's word divine
Regards due season, wild excess refrains,
Nor gall they his review with guilty painsi
Him, nor delusive bliss to vice beguiles,
Th' intemperate bowl, the harlot's baneful smiles;
Proof 'gainst each lure that would the combat wing
Calm 'mid the strife that paflions raise within.
On the young HEBREW his reflections dwell,
Who a lewd wanton could resist so well;
By gratitude restrain'd, and pious fear,
A shining proof of chastity fevere!
But most the sacred declarations move,
That shut th' adulterer from the seats above,
That temp'rate passion's teach, and pure defire,
And promise aids, the conquest to acquire.
The charms of heavenly love his thoughts émploy,
The price of heavenly crowns, and heavenly joy.
He counts the pains his suff’ring SAVIOUR bore,
Resolv'd, his guilt shall ope those wounds no more;
Nor render vain such pity, love, and grace,
Shown for man's worthless, ill deserving race.
Hail, reverenc'd GOSPEL! our securest guide,
In peace best comfort, best defence when try'd :
Giv'n to support the weak, the fall'n to aid,
O! be thro' earth thy grateful founds convey'd !
--Still view the friend of Jesus, how serene, Bright faith conducts him thro’ life's parting scene: Helps him pale death to scorn, proud fiends to quell, Himself, too hard for all the force of hell : But mark, what triumphs ! mark th' amazing state, What dazzling pomps th' ascending victor wait! The joys of angels!--the PREDESTIN'D crown lThe shouts !--the plaudit from th' eternal throne ! Bliss, which a mufe defil'd with guilt and woe Conceives but faintly, nor attempts below.
Yet, blest Redeemer! heaven's disposing Lord, By whom the finner is to bliss restor’d; Chief, in my grateful heart, that owes to thee All I possess, or am, or hope to be.
Yet-can thy grace each guilty bar remove,
* And make me taste th' unknown delights above.
Till when-thy willing soldier, weak--unskillid,
So oft affaulted in life's doubtful field;
His feeble efforts in thy cause displays,
And consecrates this trophy to thy praise.
DISTRESSED ABOUT TEMPORAL CIRCUMSTANCES
A LITTLE BEFORE MARRIAGE.
HERE-E'er kind providence directs thy way,
Like thee I'll follow, and like thee obey ; The happy road, with sweet complaisance fee, And joyful tread the path, dear maid, with thee.
If humble POVERTY thy steps attend,
And thorny cares with softest pleasures blend;
Industrious love shall labor night or day,
To smooth thy footsteps in life’s rugged way.
The pains of want I'll from thy bosom move,
And lefsen grief with kind officious love;
The frowns of INDIGENCE resigned see,
Nor dread her threat'nings if but bless’d with thee.
If, after all my toils of pleasing care,
Wise providence with-hold what love would share,
My thankful foul shall eager still pursue
In quest of happiness, dear maid, for
Not on the EARTH, the gift I wish to find,
Since all her bleffings leave a want behind;
EXPERIENCE tells me these will not suffice,
Ne’er make thee happy, nor yet make thee wise.