« AnteriorContinuar »
GOD, whose provident mercy makes everyday a new branch of the tree of knowledge to us, whence the evening may gather fresh variety of fruit, fit to nourish those souls whom Thy grace has brought to feed on the tree of life, the cross of Jesus, grant, we humbly beseech Thee, that no experience of good or evil which this day has afforded may be lost on us; but that whatever of moment has happened to ourselves or others, may, by seasonable and minute recollection and rumination, be fitted to render us more skilful in discerning the true value and use of this estate in all the scenes of life, and ready to resign our whole concerns and being to Thy will and the advancement of Thy glory, which at length will surely crown Thy servants with immortal bliss; through our Lord Jesus Christ.
The Lord bless us and keep us this night; the Lord make His face to shine upon us and keep us under the shadow of His wings; the Lord lift up His countenance and give us peace and rest in Him, now and ever. AMEN.
COME let us now again prepare our hearts,
and humbly offer this our evening sacrifice; Let us remember our God is a pure Spirit, and delights to dwell in a calm tabernacle.
He will not enter into a soul which is subject to sin, nor stay where He finds His grace neglected.
Let us then open wide our hearts to receive Him, and summon all our powers to entertain Him.
He never will forsake us if we chase Him not away, but will guide and comfort us with His holy inspirations.
Come then, and, with devoutest reverence, attend, and let us hear what the Lord our God will say in us.
O Thou, our merciful, though offended God, behold thus low we bow our guilty heads
Blushing for shame to see our folly, and so much the more, because we see our duty.
Happy were we could we always feel these fervours of which sometimes Thou inspirest a little spark.
Oh, were that spark kindled into a fire, and that fire blown into a continual flame.
But we, alas! are hot and cold by fits; and, which is worse, our cold fit lasts the longest.
Some few half hours we spend in prayer, and many whole days in self-seeking and vanity; Sometimes we bestow a little on the poor, and often throw away a great deal on our passions;
Sometimes we deny and mortify ourselves, but far more often obey our sensual appetites; Sometimes we are drawn by Thy grace to do one good work, but seduced by our nature to a thousand iniquities.
Thus we confess to Thee, O Lord our God, who perfectly seest every corner of our hearts;
Thus we confess to Thee, from whom no secrets are hid, not that Thou mayest know us,
but that we may know ourselves, and Thou mayest cure us.
Cure us, O Thou great Physician of souls; cure us of all our sinful distempers;
Cure us of this ague-like intermitting piety, and fix it into an even and constant holiness.
Oh make us use religion as our regular diet, and not only as a singular medicine in a pressing necessity;
Make us enter into a course of hearty repentance, and practise virtue as our daily exercise;
So shall our souls be endued with a perfect health, and disposed for a long, even for an everlasting life.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost,
As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. AMEN.