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pose of declaring the great things God has dono for us; to exalt the Saviour, by relating to each other the wonders of his love, the effects of his grace, the views we have of his dignity, his providences, his word, his life and death; this is surely to meet in his name. Such may expect to enjoy the divine blessing, and to grow in the divine life.
The reliefitaffords to ourselves is an encourage. ment to be often found in this work. How pleasant to tell others the way by which we came, the incidents that befel us, the dangers we escaped, and the kind and continual assistance we received from our heavenly Father! How our burdens lose their weight, when others, by their attention to our story and sympathy with our state, take a part on themselves! . When we can dif. fuse our lives, ourselves, our concerns, so far as to weep with another's eyes; when we have another heart besides our own, both to share and to support our griefs; and when, if our joys overflow, we can treasure up the overplus and redundancy of them in another's breast, so that we can, as it were, shake off the solitude of a single nature by dwelling in two bodies at once, and live by another's breath."*
But, finally, we may consider what influence it has on others, as well as ourselves. How many may be instructed by the judicious relation of a godly man! How often does it produce light in the understanding of the ignorant! How it resolves cases of conscience, under which the trem
bling believer had been doubting! and how often does it point out the way the enquiring traveller should go! Does it not frequently operate, also, as a preventive? We hear how the plans of others have failed; how dangerous it is to go near the precipice. How uncertain all things here are ; how necessary that our dependence should be entirely on God, and that no confidence should ever be placed on things of an earthly nature. But what consolation, also, is to be derived, when we hear how faithful God has been to his promises ! How wonderfully he has appeared for them who looked to him! How mercifully he has alleviated pain, directed in time of difficulty, protected in seasons of danger, and enabled the christian to persevere through every trial! How does this animate to duty, excite holy courage, and humble confidence ! Will not the hearer of such relations be ready to say, “ Shame, then, be to me that I should be so unbelieving, so impatient, so little dependent. Father of Mercies, increase my faith, stir up my soul to serve thee with constant zeal and holy activity. O may I trust in thy name, go forward in thy, work, and at last reach the mansions of eternal glory!”
We might here subjoin a few observations as to the manner of relating our experience. But the reader will find something said on this head in the eleventh chapter, under Advice respecting Ex-perience.
END OF VOLUME FIRST.