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enough for going to church ? God offers us certain means of grace as helps to us in our Christian life : if we refuse them we shall fare no better than a little child just learning to walk who should refuse the helping hand stretched out to hold it; we shall surely stumble and fall. Of course,
, for those who are prevented by sickness or other reason from seeking God in His house of prayer, He will provide in His own time and way; but if through carelessness or love of pleasure we turn away from Him, He will surely hide His face from us.
Teach me, O God, to love Thy house of prayer, and to worship Thee in spirit
, and in truth. Keep me from all wandering thoughts, from careless words, and from taking Thy Name in vain. May I remember that I am kneeling before Thee, the holy God, and be reverent in my spirit and in my body. Help me to listen
and to learn ; help me to pray to Thee and praise Thee ; forgive me all my sins, and take me at last to Heaven, there to worship Thee for ever, for Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.
God is in His Holy Temple,
Let us humbly enter there, And in silence meekly bending,
Kneel before His throne in prayer.
Let us ask His love to pardon
Every sinful deed and word, Let us ask His grace to make us
Grow more like our blessed Lord.
Then in soul and spirit strengthened
Turn to daily work again, There to prove how they that love Him,
Never seek His face in vain.
Text: Ps. XXXVII. 7.
'Rest in the Lord.'
To-Day is your rest-day.
You have not many in your life, for God's message to you is : 'Work for me now, you shall rest with me hereafter.' Yet, though you are bidden to work,—to you as to everybody -He gives one day of rest in seven.
All through the week you have toiled and laboured. Has it been for Him ? Can you take the rest that He gives you gladly and thankfully, that you may be better able to begin working for Him tomorrow? If Sunday seems to you this, a resting-place in your life's journey, I think you will not spend it thoughtlessly, sinfully.
Do not say, as I have heard some people say : Well, I have all the week for myself; I must be content to give one day to God. Do not think of it in that way. It is a blessed, blessed gift from God to us, to rest and refresh us; not a gift of ours to Him.
Why, all our days belong to God, to do His work in ; only on Sundays He says to us, “Now, stop working; rest and be thankful. Yet it may happen to you, as it does, alas ! to so many, that even Sunday is not altogether a rest-day. If in working—even on Sunday—you are doing your duty, doing what is necessary, I should say to you, · Do it, and remember your work may set other people free to rest who else would not be able to do so.' If it is not necessary, if it is against God's law, do not do it, even if thereby you lose your situation or your chance of 'getting on in the world,' as it is called. Remember there is a rest in Heaven which remaineth ;' but only for the people of God.'
Almighty Father, who alone canst strengthen me to work for Thee, give me grace to rest in Thee on this Thine own day. May I look upon it as Thy gift to me, and spend it—not in idleness and pleasure-seeking—but in rest that will refresh me for the coming week.
May each Sunday bring me nearer to my home in Heaven where alone I shall truly rest from my labours, and having been Thy faithful servant in this life, may I enter into the joy of my Lord. Hear this my prayer, for the sake of Thy dear Son Jesus Christ. Amen.