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    MEDITATION IX   Table of Contents     MEDITATION XI.

Stewart, Maria.



The God who built the sky,
Hath said, and cannot lie,
'Impenitence must die,
And be damned.'

'What shall it profit a man if he gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?' dropt from the dying lips of the companion of my youth. O God, was not my conscience stung with remorse and horror, was not my soul torn with anguish, and did not my heart bleed when the summons came: "He must die, and not live." Die! Oh, must he die! Must we part to meet no more! And oh, must I be left, forlorn and unprotected! Spare his life, O God, if consistent with thy will, was my cry; if not, make me to say, Thy will be done. O, my soul, thou hast watched the sick bed of one who was near to thee, even the half of thyself; thou hast heard his

dying groans, and seen his restless head turn from side to side, in quest of ease; and his dim eye hath he turned upon thee, and implored thee for relief. Alas, what could I do! Friends, what were they but miserable comforters! And he had to God to look to! Heart-rending scene! who can describe it! O, my soul, thou hast wiped the sweat of death from off his cold forehead, and his eyes hast thou seen glazed in death, and those eyes were fixed upon thee! And thine arm supported his expiring form, till the spirit ascended to God who gave it. O, my soul, forget not that awful scene; forget not that awful moment. Come, all ye that pass by, and see if there is any sorrow like unto my sorrow. And what gratification will it be to you, my friends, to think that you have been able to be decked in fine linen and purple, and to fare sumptuously every day, if you are not decked in the pure robes of Christ's righteousness? And friends, what are they in that awful moment, if the eternal God is not your friend and portion? Could many of our departed friends but speak, they would say, fools you may live, but fools you cannot die. Do not as I have done, but improve your precious hours; take care of your immortal souls. But you have the word of God to guide you. Search the Scriptures, for in them ye have eternal life. You have the ministers of the gospel to counsel you, to point you to the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sins of the world. Hear ye them. If you will not hearken to them, such are the hardness and obduracy of your hearts, that you would
not believe, though one arose from the dead, and told you of all the joys of heaven, or the terrors of hell.


O, Lord God, when I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the sun, moon and stars, what is man that thou art mindful of him, or the son of man, that thou shouldst visit him? Thou didst at first create man after thine image, pure and upright; but man, by his disobedience, fell from that holy and happy state, and hath involved all his posterity in guilt and ruin. Thine awful sentence was just: "Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return." Help me to realize that thou art a consuming fire to those that obey thee not, and that thou art arrayed in terrible majesty. Thou chargest thine angles with folly, and the heavens are not clean in thy sight; how much more filthy and abominable must be man, who drinketh in iniquity like water? Thou canst not look upon the least sin but with abhorrence, and thou wilt by no means clear the guilty. But though thy name alone is so terrible, yet Mercy stands pleading at thy bar, saying, Father, I have died; behold my hands and my side! Spare them a little longer, and have mercy upon the souls that thou hast made. O God, help me to realize that "man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble: he cometh forth as a flower, and is cut down; yea, man giveth up the ghost, and where is he?" And help me to realize that it is with great tribulation that we enter through the gates into the

holy city. Once more I beseech thee to hear the cry of thy children in behalf of the unconverted. O God, this great work is thine; thou alone canst perform it. My church and pastor I recommend to thee; it is all that I can do; and that thou wouldst supply them with all needful blessings is the prayer of thine unworthy handmaiden.
    MEDITATION IX   Table of Contents     MEDITATION XI.