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We shall now conclude with some practical improvement, and from this part of the subject we may infer,
1. That the Lord's work on the human heart is a great mystery. Scarcely at any period do the Lord's people understand fully what they feel; and they never can express it. Under convictions, often they cannot make language of their anguish of heart, and sometimes can give little account how it began. At their first awakening, they are ignorant of the great agent who brought them into such a condition, and of his gracious design. While every thing conspires to advance their best interest, they conclude that all is against them. The language of the weary often is that their hope is cut off, and they must perish. At the first implantation of grace, they scarcely know its nature, or how it is produced. When greatly dejected, and their sorrow at its height, it is most mysterious how a sentence or two from the Bible should irradiate their minds and solace their hearts. The continued communion which they have with the Lord Jesus, by means of his word, is also a great mystery. Most emphatic are the words of the Redeemer, "The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit."
2. That instead of being dissatisfied with their sorrow and vexation, awakened sinners should be thankful and bless the Lord. Allowing the worst that the most disconsolate can say, it is surely better
to foresee danger, than fall headlong into it unawares. Without a sight of sin, the Saviour can never be sought or esteemed; and without being apprized of future wrath, sinners will never attempt to flee from it. Without the power of the Spirit, the most pointed external warnings will produce no happy effects. Much better endure sharp convictions for a short season here, than in hell without end. The keener the smart, and the sharper the suffering, there is the greater likelihood that application will be made to Christ.
3. That the Saviour is infinitely qualified for every part of the work of salvation. He can subdue the stoutest, and awaken the most careless. He can teach the most ignorant, and give eyes to the blind. He can empty the most self-sufficient, and fill the hungry with good things. He can bring the man most intoxicated with his own excellencies to his right senses; and exalt the poor sinner so abashed and dejected with his own unworthiness that he cannot so much as lift up his eyes to heaven. He can kill and make alive. He knows and improves the best season for every part of his work. He can make every situation in which the sinner may be, and every event which passes over him, conducive to his own glory and the salvation of the soul. When his own people wax fat and forget him, he hides his face and they are troubled. Should they vainly imagine that their mountain stands strong, he can soon make them weary. Near to halt, and sensible that their life lies in his favour, he can manifest forth his glory, see them again, and speak a word in season.
word relieves them. Relieved, he guides them with his counsel through the path of life. He supports them in the hour of death, and crowns them with immortal glory.
4. From this part of the subject we may also see that such as are weary, instead of turning impatient, should wait at the posts of Wisdom's doors. These are various, and so contiguously situated, that we may wait at most of them at one and the same time. They should wait at the post of prayer. They should learn to pray without ceasing. They should pour out their hearts continually. Importunate prayer will prevail; and when the weary wait on the Lord in this duty, they shall hear a word in season. They should be much employed in reading the Scriptures. These have wounded them, and these alone can heal their wound. The precept and penalty declared and revealed in the Scriptures brought them to fear; and the precious promises contained in the Bible alone can produce comfort. The Divine testimonies should be the men of their counsel. They should wait on the Lord in public ordinances. Whoever may be absent, they should not. There the Lord commonly speaks a word in season. Aware of this, and sensible of their own need, they should hearken to his voice, waiting for a seasonable word to refresh their hearts. They should be much in meditation. When others have mused, the fire has burned; and they have equal reason to expect gracious aid and consolation. Though the vision tarry, they should wait for it. Though he may delay, their Lord will come, and speak peace to their hearts.
5. That any degree of willingness or ability to relieve the weary which the Lord's servants have is from himself. If faithful, they are ushers in his school. They declare his message, and they do it in his name. He is at great pains polishing them. He makes them weary, that they may speak to the weary heart. Paul comforted others with the consolation wherewith he himself was comforted. They receive all their gifts and grace from him. These he distributes in various degrees. He appoints to them all their station and work. Their labours are crowned with success or not, as his voice accompanies theirs. Very often he displays that he has the tongue of the learned in guiding and directing theirs. He makes them speak to themselves. Thus there is bread to the eater, and seed to the sower. Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings he perfects praise, and his strength is perfected in their weakness. Moses complained of his want of eloquence. God said, Who hath made man's mouth? and encouraged him by this gracious declaration, "Now therefore, go, and I will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou wilt say." In general he enjoins great diligence in preparation; but sometimes gives them in the hour of duty what to speak; and always assures them that as their day is, their strength shall be. One while their heart is enlarged and their mouth opened: they speak with pertinence and fluency, for their own encouragement, and the benefit of the body. At other times they are poor and straitened, that their dependance upon him may be increased; and that the Lord's people may
look above means and instruments, and never forget that the Lord Jesus alone can speak a word in season to the weary.
6. That under such a Teacher who has the tongue of the learned, the weary shall learn, and have beauty for ashes. Many teachers have spent much time and pains, and given up their disciples as unteachable. Jehovah has given Christ the tongue of the learned, and the weary must be refreshed. He knows how to solace them, and he will do it. The weary have no reason to despond. They are in good hands, and they shall have rest. He never begins to work in a saving way, but he is successful. However deplorable or apparently desperate the case of sinners is when he undertakes it, his grace surmounts every obstacle, and proves invincible indeed. He finds Gospel hearers blind; but he makes them see. He meets with them dumb; but he opens their ears and they hear. He makes the stammering lips speak plainly. He gives rest to the weary, and at last brings them safely to that rest reserved in heaven. If he complains that his report is not believed, this respects the outward dispensation, when not accompanied with the tongue of the learned and Divine energy. But even then, his word never comes short of his design. The counsel of the Lord shall stand, and he will do all his pleasure. Though sinners should not be saved, the means of grace are not without effects. Some are convinced. Others tremble. All are inexeusable, and the weary are refreshed. Hear himself: "My word that goeth forth out of my mouth shall not