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Prayers and Meditations

Prayers and Meditations.

[During many years of his life, he statedly observed certain days* with a religious solemnity; an which, and other occasions, it was his custom to compose suitable Prayers and Meditations; committing them to writing for his own use, and, as he assured me, without any view to their publication. But being last summer on a visit at Oxford to the reverend Dr. Adams, and that gentleman urging him repeatedly to engage in some work of this kind, he then first conceived a design to revise these pious effusions, and bequeath them with enlargements, to the use and benefit of others.

Infirmities, however, now growing fast upon him, he at length changed his design, and determined to give the manuscripts, without revision, in charge to me, as I had long shared his intimacy, and was at this time his daily attendant. Accordingly, one morning, on my visiting him by desire at an early hour, he put these papers into my hands, with instructions for committing them to the press, and with a promise to prepare a sketch of his own life to accompany them. But the performance of this promise also was prevented, partly by his hasty destruction of some private memoirs, which he afterwards lamented, and partly by that incurable sickness, which soon ended in his dissolution.-Rev. George Strahan.]

Viz., New-Year's Day; March 28, the day on which his wife, Mrs. Elizabeth Johnson, died; Good Friday; Easter-Day; and September the 18th, his own birthday.

1738.

On My Birth-Day.

September 15. O God, the Creator and Preserver of all mankind, Father of all mercies, I, thine unworthy servant, do give Thee most humble thanks for all thy goodness and loving kindness to me. I bless Thee for my creation, preservation, and redemption, for the knowledge of thy Son Jesus Christ, for the means of grace and the hope of glory. In the days of childhood and youth, in the midst of weakness, blindness, and danger, Thou hast protected me; amidst afflictions of mind, body, and estate, Thou hast supported me; and amidst vanity and wickedness. Thou hast spared me. Grant, Omerciful Father, that I may have a lively sense of thy mercies. Create in me a contrite heart, that I may worthily lament my sins and acknowledge my wickedness, and obtain remission and forgiveness, through the satisfaction of Jesus Christ. And, O Lord, enable me, by thy grace, to redeem the time which I have spent in sloth, vanity, and wickedness; to make use of thy gifts to the honour of thy name; to lead a new life in thy faith, fear, and love; and finally to obtain everlasting life. Grant this, Almighty Lord, for the merits and through

the mediation of our most holy and blessed Saviour Jesus Christ; to whom, with Thee and the Holy Ghost, Three Persons and One God, be all honor and glory, world without end. Amen.

Transcribed, June 26, 1768.
This is the first solemn prayer, of which I

have a copy.

Whether I composed any before this, I question.

Prayer on the Rambler. ALMIGHTY GOD, the giver of all good things, without whose help all labour is ineffectual, and without whose grace all wisdom is folly; grant, I beseech Thee, that in this my undertaking, thy Holy Spirit may not be withheld from me, but that I may promote thy glory, and the salvation both of myself and others; grant this, O Lord, for the sake of Jesus Christ. Amen.

1752. Prayers* composed by me on the Death of my Wife, and reposited among her

Memorials, May 8, 1752.
Deus exaudi,--Heu!

April 24, 1752. Almighty and most merciful Father, who *[Viz., the four following prayers.]

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