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النشر الإلكتروني

views of the attributes of the great Creator, as dis. played in his works.

In the scenes of nature, God has spread before us a brilliant and expressive picture of many of his perfections: he has endowed us with sublime faculties capable of reflecting on his works, of admiring their order and beauty, their harmony and proportion, and thus rising from nature up to nature's

5 God.” Yet how few are thus affected by creation! How few love to trace in it those perfections of the All-Wise, the Almighty, the All-Merciful, that are so strikingly impressed, that they may be visible to every eye, and obvious to every understanding. When our minds are employed upon the works of nature, it is generally only to make them subservient to our worldly interest, or to administer to our earthly gratification; and not to warm our hearts by the contemplation of that infinite power, wisdom, and goodness, which appear in the formation of them. If such conduct at all times is inexcusable and ungrateful, it is doubly so in our journeys and our voyages, in which the works of God are presented to us in such rapid succession; in which, occurring in such variety and number, they crowd in upon our sight, and solicit our observation. Christians! avoid this insensibitity; every where behold around

you the marks and tokens of your God. When on the ocean, the bounds of which you in vain attempt to discover, think of the greatness of him who “ ruleth the raging of the sea, and when the waves thereof arise, stilleth them;" who “ brake up for it his decreed place, and set bars, and said, Hitherto shalt thou come, but no further; and here shall thy proud waves be stayed.” When you view its numberless

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inhabitants, and observe how the several species are distinguished from each other, and what diversity in the whole; how admirably their natures are contrived and adjusted to the elements in which they are placed, and what never-failing provision is made for their subsistence and preservation, cry, with the holy Psalmist, “ O Lord, how manifold are thy works! In wisdom hast thou made them all; the earth is full of thy riches, so is this great and wide sea.” When you

raise your eyes to the heavens, and behold those vast and magnificent orbs which shine above us with so much lustre, and roll over our heads with so much order and regularity; let it not be with stupid insensibility; let it not be merely with a desire philosophically to mark their orbits, to measure their distances, and to know their proportion, but with the feelings of David when he exclaimed, 66 The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament showeth his handy-work.” In travelling upon the land, let every thing, in like manner, lead you to the greatCreator. While admiring the varied landscape, forget not its Author: behold him both in the vast and in the minute; see the footsteps of your God, not only in the towering mountain and the roaring cataract, but also in each spire of grass, and every lily of the field. Acknowledge him painting the leaf of the minutest flower, and giving lustre to the smallest insect's wing. Happy he, who thus every where discerns his God! he can call the objects of earth, “ the varied scenery, all his own.”

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“ His are the mountains, and the valleys his,

And the resplendent rivers. His to enjoy
With a propriety that none can feel :
But who, with filial confidence inspired,

Can lift to heaven an unpresumptuous eye,
And smiling say, 'My Father made them all!'
Are they not his by a peculiar right,
And by an emphasis of interest his,
Whose eye they fill with tears of holy joy,
Whose heart with praise, and whose exalted mind
With worthy thoughts of that unwearied love,
That plann'd, and built, and still upholds a world,
So clothed with beauty for rebellious man ?"

But if in “ a prosperous journey," a Christian has his heart warmed by the contemplation of the works of his God, so also,

II. Does he acquire a more deep and grateful sense of the goodness and care of that Providence, on which we depend.

Though in God “ we live, and move, and have our being,” though we could not enjoy the smallest degree of felicity, or exist for a single moment without his constant support, yet the majority of mankind think but little of this guardian providence. Attend. ing only to those second causes which have been ap pointed by our heavenly Father for the promotion of our happiness or the preservation of our lives, they scarcely ever raise their thoughts to the great First Cause of all. And even Christians, when nothing occurs to interrupt the regular and uniform course of their lives, are too apt to forget, or to feel too feebly this, their dependence; but surely in our journeys and our voyages, unless we are utterly destitute of piety, we must, from the consideration of the seen and unseen dangers to which we are exposed, feel that we need each moment to be encompassed by the guardian care, and shielded by the power of God.

Think then, when you shall be upon the ocean, how absolutely you depend upon him whom the winds and the waves obey. Recall with gratitude his watchfulness over you in times past, and his deliverances in seasons of peril. Think, as you cast your eyes upon the waves, the waves, how many

of your fellowcreatures are entombed in their bosom; how many have shrieked, but shrieked in vain, as they sunk in their watery grave! And then ask yourself, • To whom is it owing, that while these have perished, I have been preserved ? To whom but that God who must still uphold me, or in an hour, in a moment, I also must perish? And to whom should my life be devoted, but to Him who has thus made it his care?

When journeying upon the land, remember how many have expired far from their homes, and found that separation from their friends which they supposed would have endured but for a few months, to have been a final one upon earth. Remember that you are continually exposed to the operation of some of those thousand circumstances which have cut short the days of others. Each evening then, that you are sparęd, erect your Ebenezer, and cry, “ Hitherto the Lord hath helped me." Each morning that implore his protection through the day. Engrave on your

heart his interpositions. “ In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will direct your steps.”

Attend not only to your preservation, but to all the providential dealings of God to you : see him continually guiding and blessing you ; here bestowing an unexpected mercy; there, for your good, disappointing your plans: constantly so arranging, combining, and disposing events as to invite you to new degrees of holiness. Extend your observation to those with whom you associate; to the places which you


you rise,

Every where you will see proofs of a Providence universally extended, constantly operative, constantly kind.

Such views of divine providence deeply impressed, and permanently retained, will render your journey prosperous ; but if you are destitute of them, through your ingratitude and insensibility, you offend your God.

III. A Christian may esteem a journey prosperous, in which his conviction of the value and uniformity of the religion of Jesus is increased.

The various objects that will be presented to him will be calculated to produce this conviction; and if he be not wanting to himself, he must return home disposed more ardently to bless God for the revelation of his gospel, and the communication of his

grace. Does he in his journeyings enter the house of poverty? He can still find happiness there, if there be true piety in the bosom of its inhabitants. Does he visit the bed of death ? He sees the expiring mortal, if the friend of his Jesus, supported by the recollection of the agonies of his crucified Redeemer, and filled with transport from the assurance of the love of his Redeemer, now reigning in glory. Does he in his travels behold every variety of human wretchedness? He sees no wound for which there is not a balm in the gospel, no agonized heart that is beyond the power of its consolations. Does he contemplate the deep degradation of human nature? It is among those wretched persons who have treated with neglect the blessed Redeemer. Is he at any time in danger of sudden death? He is not dismayed if he have the assurance of God's love, and if he feel the gracious presence of his Saviour. Does he think of the friends and relatives that he has left? How cheering, while

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